A Clean Cut ~ prosery

A Clean Cut

His name does not come easily to her, and that is good. She refuses to speak it and would consider herself blessed if she never heard it again. For all the damage he caused her, she is now in a better place with that part of her life behind her. She’s had it sliced away. Leaving a scar would mean admitting that he is still a part of her. But there are no scars. It was a clean cut. Several clean cuts, in fact.

So, she was cutting his steak too thin for his liking? Within seconds of receiving a blow to the side of her head for once more failing to meet his standards, she drove the knife into his heart. Many, many cuts later, his body was bagged and ready for a night trip to the landfill. All traces of him gone.

 This is my response to Prosery: slices and scars, the prompt from Sarah at dVerse ~ Poets Pub, where the challenge is to write a prosery, flash fiction or creative nonfiction, with a 144-word limit (here, exactly 144 words). Included in the bit of prose is to be a complete line from a poem. For this prompt, the line is from Liverpool, by Michael Donaghy: “she’s had it sliced away leaving a scar.”

Image sourcefreepik.com

Winging It in the Zombie Apocalypse ~ prosery

Winging It in the Zombie Apocalypse

Oh, the wonders of science, and all they make possible. For decades, genetic manipulation has allowed us to transport ourselves through levitation. Then there’s the resistance to disease. The common cold no longer troubles us, and COVID, despite the continued appearance of mutant variants, has been deterred with simple gene therapy.

However, the delay in eliminating avian flu has proven to be a deadly mistake, compounded by the crossbreeding of two viruses. This became apparent at a free-range poultry farm in Iowa, where the bodies of workers have been found lying among roaming chickens eagerly pecking away at their newfound meal. The workers had fallen from the sky, victims of SARS-CoV-ian. And so, like many, I live in fear, for how can I be sure I shall see again the world on the first of May, with the coming of the Zombie CoV-ian Apocalypse.

 This is my response to Prosery: Sara Teasdale and May, the prompt from Merril at dVerse ~ Poets Pub, where the challenge is to write a prosery, flash fiction or creative nonfiction, with a 144-word limit (here, exactly 144 words). Included in the bit of prose is to be a complete line from a poem. For this prompt, the line is the opening line from May Day, by Sara Teasdale.

For how can I be sure
I shall see again
The world on the first of May

                              – Sara Teasdale

Image source:
pngitem.com (chicken), fao.org (bird flu virus), Wikimedia Commons (SARS CoV-2)

Sweet January ~ prosery

Sweet January

It was on a chilly day in early March that she flew into Buffalo. Two months had passed since we had been together, but it seemed like two years. Within seconds, it seemed as though we had never been apart. After one night at my place, we drove to the Finger Lakes for a romantic weekend. Our stay at a bed and breakfast in Geneva, with all its splendor, was wonderful, as was the scenery as we drove along the snow covered valley of Seneca Lake, touring the area’s wineries. It wouldn’t be until July that I would leave behind snowy winters and move to Missouri to be with her. Talk what you please of future spring and sun-warm’d sweet tomorrow, but, for that wonderful week in March, it might just as well have been July, for all the warmth that filled my heart.

 This is my response to Prosery: When it comes to Christina Georgina Rossetti, the prompt from Sanaa at dVerse ~ Poets Pub, where the challenge is to write a prosery, flash fiction or creative nonfiction, with a 144-word limit (here, exactly 144 words). Included in the bit of prose is to be a complete line from a poem. For this prompt, the line is the opening line from A Daughter of Eve, by Christina Rossetti.

Talk what you please of future spring and sun-warm’d sweet tomorrow.
– Christina Georgina Rossetti

On Holding Nothing ~ prosery

On Holding Nothing

Behind me, decades. Around me, the same. Past and present seemed as one. A life may change, but making this change, from one moment to the next, meant an adjustment that I could not make overnight, even when I knew it had been a long time coming.

Harmony can be deceptive, and an underlying discord had been woven through ours for many years. It had been much easier to dismiss it than to face it head on, but there it was. Holding on to something that, in truth, was long gone, I wandered, lonely as a cloud in skies that seemed to hold only darkness.

Yet, as time passed, I came to realize that the darkness had been there for a long time. Once I let those decades slip away, I left the storm clouds behind. Ahead of me were nothing but blue skies.

 This is my response to Winter Be Gone!, the prompt from Lillian at dVerse ~ Poets Pub, where the challenge is to write a piece of flash fiction with a 144-word limit (here, exactly 144 words). Included in the bit of prose is to be a complete line from a poem. For this prompt, the line to be included is the opening  line from”I wandered lonely as a Cloud,” by William Wordsworth.

I wandered lonely as a cloud
– William Wordsworth

Photo by Aakanksha Panwar on Unsplash

And… YAY!! New laptop.  It feels good to have those problems behind me.

More Than One Day ~ prosery

More Than One Day

The ills that have befallen our world are a direct result of our actions, from discarded waste that would choke the creatures we profess to cherish, to weather conditions that will not improve, no matter how heated the discussions, if nothing is done to change the practices that harm the very air we breathe. We are partners in her course and must turn it in a direction that would cherish nature.

Some will talk of the labors that have brought advances to mankind and ask why we should not enjoy those benefits. If that be your stance, then take a holiday. Just one day. And bring no book, for this one day we’ll give to idleness, mindful that for every day that follows we must accept our responsibility and put forth the effort needed to reverse those ills we have placed upon our world.

 

This is my response to Prosery: Bring no book! With Prosery, the challenge is to write a piece of flash fiction with a 144-word limit (here, exactly 144 words). Included in the bit of prose is to be a complete line from a poem. For this prompt, the line to be included is from”Lines written at a small distance from my house,” by William Wordsworth.

And bring no book; for this one day
We’ll give to idleness

                            – William Wordsworth

Also shared with earthweal weekly challenge: NATIVE TO THE NOW.

Image source: The Conversation

Bombarded ~ prosery

 

Bombarded

Who is to say what will wear down a man?

Bringing my mother into our home? No one wanted to see her in a nursing home, so she lived with me for more than two years. It certainly wore down something. My divorce is proof of that, though, in truth, it had been a long time coming.

Once my mother did go into a nursing home it was only three months before she was gone. But that wasn’t the end of it. Even as my mother’s health was failing, my sister was fighting a losing battle with cancer. Here it is a year later, and my sister is gone.

Would all of this be enough to wear down a man? How does anyone recover from three major hits in that short of a span? I need to know. I am bombarded yet I stand.

 

This is my response to Prosery: Bombarded, the prompt from Merril at dVerse Poets Pub. With Prosery, the challenge is to write a piece of flash fiction with a 144-word limit (here, exactly 144 words). Included in the bit of prose is to be a complete line from a poem. For this prompt, the line to be included is from “Planetarium,” by Adrienne Rich.

“I am bombarded yet I stand”
                                                                      – Adrienne Rich

On a Wing and a Prayer ~ flash fiction

On a Wing and a Prayer

Touching down at the end of the runway in a maneuver too late to provide a safe landing, the wheels of the airplane chirp and skid before continuing on a line that tears a path through a carpet of tall grass and wild flowers, leaving a scar on the land. One after another, the members of a missionary contingent slide down the emergency exit and gather in a small circle where they drop to the ground, kneeling.  They produce votives, each from a breast pocket, and pray by candlelight, thankful that they are among the living.

 

This foolish bit of flash fiction is my response to The Sunday Whirl – Wordle #518.

landcarpetslinedownkneelingtearsflowers
latewheelslivingtouchingcandlelight

Click images for larger view in new tab.

Sky Watching ~ prosery

Sky Watching

Lying in the bed of my pickup, on my back with a jacket balled up beneath my head, I took in the splendor of the stars and marveled at the beautiful arc of the Milky Way.

But what seemed like a simple enough proposition has become an unending nightmare. Drive several miles out of town, into the desert, for a night of sky watching. What could go wrong? Falling asleep with my parking lights on, for one thing.

Sun blazing and my water long gone, I lie in the bare shadow of a large rock after two days and nights of walking. I realize I am seeing clouds in what was clear sky just moments ago, but these clouds are clearly foreign, such an exotic clutter against the blue cloth of the sky.

I close my eyes and wait for rain that never comes.

 

This is my response to Prosery: Clouds, the prompt from Merril at dVerse ~ Poets Pub. With Prosery, the challenge is to write a piece of flash fiction with a 144-word limit. Included in the bit of prose is to be a complete line from a poem. For this prompt, the line to be included is from “Clouds,” by Constance Urdang

“But these clouds are clearly foreign, such an exotic clutter
Against the blue cloth of the sky”

                                                                           – Constance Urdang

I’ve met the additional challenge of hitting the 144-word mark, exactly.

Image source: wallpaperseden.com

What Is Nine Hundred Miles? ~ prosery

What Is Nine Hundred Miles?

What is nine hundred miles to a man when family is a short flight away, or a drive in a day? Is there separation when connection is as simple as a message, a call, or FaceTime? What is the separation when the difference is measured in split seconds?

The heart will guide where the mind cannot see. And so the man made the move. Both baggage and cartage. A relocation of nine hundred miles to be with the woman he loved, loves still, and to know happiness. He learned that nine hundred miles is actually eighteen hundred miles, for the heart must always return. He has traveled that distance many times over the years, so that he could know the two sides of happiness. So it is, and will always be, for crucial to finding the way is this: there is no beginning or end.

This is my response to Prosery: Finding Your Way, the prompt from Merril at dVerse ~ Poets Pub. With Prosery, the challenge is to write a piece of flash fiction with a 144-word limit. Included in the bit of prose is to be a complete line from a poem. For this prompt, the line to be included is from “Map to the Next World,by Joy Harjo.

“Crucial to finding the way is this: there is no beginning or end”
– Joy Harjo

I’ve met the additional challenge of hitting the 144-word mark, exactly.

July will be nine years since I moved from New York to be with Bonnie. We were married three years ago, but there have been many trips back to Buffalo to visit family.

Terra Nova ~ prosery

TerraNova

Terra Nova

With little more than the clothes on my back, I approach a building found by following the directions in a note meant only for true believers. An otherwise empty wall holds one nondescript door. As I enter, it closes behind me. I feel a rush of air and realize I am in an airlock. Glancing back, I see that the entrance is gone. There is only one door before me. Above it is a sign that reads, “If you are a dreamer, come in.” Without hesitation, I open it to see a wondrous vista before me and realize that gone are the technologies that would deny Terra the expression of her true self. I step through with no regrets, for who could deny this unspoiled beauty is worth more than all I leave behind. Forward lies the future mankind once thought out of reach.

 

This is my response to Meet me where the sidewalk ends…,
the prosery prompt form Lillian at dVerse ~ Poets Pub.

With Prosery, the challenge is to write a piece of flash fiction with a 144-word limit. Included in the bit of prose is to be a complete line from a poem. For this prompt, the line to be included is from “Invitation,” a poem from Shel Silverstein’s Where the Sidewalk Ends.

“If you are a dreamer, come in.”
                                  – Shel Silverstein

This prosery started out as a poem for Day 12 at napowrimo.net, which challenges us to use words from Lempriere’s Classical Dictionary and the Historical Dictionary of Science Fiction.” I used “airlock” and “Terra.” When I saw Lillian’s prompt at dVerse I realized I could revise it to be a prosery. I’ve met the additional challenge of hitting the 144-word mark, exactly.

Image source: Wikipedia (edited here)span>