2023 First Post


This is my first post of 2023. Just making sure I could get here (a year is so long!) and remember how to put a new post up.


All looks good. I think I’m ready for Saturday morning to begin.

The Reception Room Prompt 12

The door opened and the room came into view. It was a room brought together by

musicians and artists and writers and their guests. It received them. There was 

no challenge as to which group was most important. The musicians wanted 

audiences to hear their music. The artists wanted people milling about looking at the pieces on the walls and tables that they had created. The writers, who had worked, through nights 

with candles burning down to save electricity wanted people to hear their words, 

the order of the words they had chosen and the ideas the words generated. 

They needed people, guests. All of the people who came to visit the room were 

its guests. Guests of the other artists and guests of each other. They all gave 

their time, the most important thing that they each had to give, to each other.

The Carousel Ride Prompt 11

Mommy lifted her onto the horse’s back. Kallie’s hair 

in tight pigtails matched the horse’s red-gold mane. 

Kallie squirmed and squinched on the hard, plastic surface

and began to cry. Oh no, Sweetheart, this will be fun!

Kallie looked at her mother, tears welling up. The music began.

It was kind of like the music that Miss Ella played for music

class. Kallie’s tears faded away and then her teeth peeked out between

her lips. Her head bobbed, the music played faster, and Kallie

held on tighter. She turned around at the sounds made by the other

children on horses and camels and tigers, oh my! They were

louder than the music and Kallie threw back her head, looked

at the top of the carousel and made the same happy sounds

as everyone else. They came from a place way down inside 

her tummy that jiggled up and down when she was ever so happy.


She had a habit, bought Angora Rabbits.

They’d live six years, then she’d gush the tears.

Animals not too swift, not on their feet.

Angoras are angry, angry, and not very sweet.

This Angora, Angora she named Theodora.

$1,000 in the Pot

In the morning light it was easy to see 

where her brother Abel had driven the truck. 

Not too close to the house. Few footprints 

remained under the new snowfall, a light

one last night. Darla recalled other snows 

that had blown in nearly to the windows 

and under the house. Especially 

under the house where the snow froze, 

first warmed by the house itself and then 

froze into solid rock by the winds that 

skimmed down the hill. She had spent 

a winter here with him, with Josh, 

but she’d learned the snow fell even 

in July. It was time to leave. 

She’d park the truck in town 

after her boxes were loaded 

onto the train. This view, lonesome, 

didn’t reveal the small town nearby 

with people who’d bet on whether 

she’d make it even one year. She’d 

held out for Abel. He could use the money.  

She turned, got into the truck,

shut the door and headed 

to the civilization that she knew.

The Lover Prompt  8

What is it about you that compels me to 

find you, to seek you out? Is there comfort, 


or hope for a future with you? No! Yes! You 

offer me nothing more than a short affair

no matter how many times I seek something 


more from within your darkness. You come 

to me in different forms. You hide behind 


different names. You entwine and embed yourself 

with others that dilute you, your taste, your smell, 


your touch, how you feel upon my tongue. You . . .

what is it about you that compels me to


demand your best self, not just any self. Sometimes 

you are warm, even hotter than the devil. At other times

more from within your darkness. You come 


to me cool, chilled or frozen. You make me happy 

and restore balance to my soul, my 90% cocoa.

Summer Snowflakes Prompt 7

Spring snowflakes fall. You know, the fat, wet ones. The ones 

that hit the warm pavement and spread out. When I see spring 

snowflakes I think about snow in the summer. How far would a

summer snowflake get? Would it land on the ground? Would it

melt in the air and fall as a fat raindrop? What would it do?

Are you like the summer snowflake? Elusive, unpredictable? 

Where will I find you when I have given up hope?

The Memory Lingers Prompt 6

Hi K,

Hope you are well.  I’ve been thinking about you. I know, I know…. So why didn’t I do something about it rather than just think? I couldn’t un-remember how we left things, or more specifically how we didn’t leave things the last time we saw each other. How our worlds faded, we didn’t collide, we just went off on our own orbits.

It’s been warm here but the last couple of days have been cool. I can’t help but remember how cold June was when we were growing up. May was warm, too hot for school, but June was always cold. At least in my memory which is mixed up with memories of us playing together.

Our energy provider increased the rates and changed the way they bill. They now bill at different rates for the time of day. We got fancy new meters for that. I remember how we’d run through our houses turning lights on and off, opening and closing the refrigerator. Now that behavior would drive up costs. Imagine having to remind the kids not to open the doors. 

That did bring out the solar salesfolk to walk up and down the block and knock on doors. We finally decided to spend time and listen to a sales pitch. Calculating costs at an increasing 5% per year for the next few years it would take us until 2043 to break even and begin to see the benefit of having those panels. I think we’ve finally put the question of solar panels away. Imagine, who’d have thought about our living until 2043. I think of your mom and how Congestive Heart Failure sapped her a little more every day.

We are leaving tomorrow to drive to Maine to visit with our son and family. Everyone would like us to fly rather than drive, but with all the chaos at the airports, we just don’t want to deal with all that confusion. Our compromise was to drive fewer miles each day. Stop more often. Stop for the day sooner. So, it’s going to take us five days to drive from here to there, but it seems to have mollified everyone. 

We are reasonably well, all things considered, enjoying the quirks and annoyances of adding years. I miss you. I wish things hadn’t gone the way they did.




Evaluating Possibilities Prompt 5

Rosemarie sat on the open porch in the oak chair,

the hardback book on the table beside her.


Sunbeams washed over her. The book wasn’t 

the Bible so she had to hide it from Jonas 


or he’d toss it to the pigs. Like he’d done before

He didn’t believe in any reading except 


The Good Book, like his mama. But he didn’t even

read that anymore. The knitting bag sat at her feet. 


The Hearts in Love afghan pattern coming together. The

afghan’d be done by the end of summer, in time 


for her to swap it for the soft leather satchel 

that Burt wanted, the one that sat in the window 


space at Wilson’s General Store. She picked up 

her wine glass, looked critically at the sour mash


in the sunlight. The sunflower on the label

had grown up right by the back door. 


But that’s what that city feller’d wanted. A picture 

of a real sunflower. He’d paid Jonas a wrinkled $20 


bill to take that picture. Jonas didn’t care about 

the flowers by the house, but he kept the $20 

instead of giving it to her. That’d be his last mistake.

Stairsteps Prompt 4

They came out of the shack that stood at the dip of the draw.

Albert first, though he grumbled about going to school at 15,

then Benjamin, named for her brother who’d died in the war,

and Caroline, who had green eyes that strangers noticed,

Dancing Deborah as she liked to be called, followed,

then Edward, for her husband’s pa who’d died at the bottom of the mine

and Frank, who liked to play dress up and hid an old baby doll.

She stood at the end of the line and held squirming Georgia

with one hand on the swell of her belly.

The postmistress took the picture which would hang on the wall

by Christmas.

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