Oh, Yes, I Am Playing Along…

Oh, yes, I am playing along with this year’s prompts

I have a sketchbook–well, it’s more of a writing journal that I turned into a sketchbook…and I have been sketching every day of October…

Here are some of the finished pieces:

 

It usually takes me a couple days to sketch, then paint, then finish each one…which is why I don’t publish them every day…I just can’t…but eventually…all shall be revealed.

 

But wait, I have also been using the prompts here to write stories over on the Sisters blog…can you tell which ones were inspired by what prompt?

My goal this month is to write something every day…whether it gets published on Sisters or not…so far, so good…

Here are a couple links to get you interested…and inspired…more will be coming along…

Flowers In The Forest

Into The Forest Dark

Sleep Tight

I think at the end of October, I will pull together all the art that I have done, as well as all the stories, and I will create a little book…different than the usual free PDF at the end of October…but still, along that same vein.

 

Advertisements

Once Upon A Time In The Morning…

I woke up this morning, unsure of where I was, again.

It’s been a long time, this self-imposed hermitage.

Silence can be staggering in its roar.

It takes me a few minutes to get moving, my body unwilling to leave the warmth of our nest under the layers of blankets. I struggle to sit up. I push myself to put my feet on the floor, wincing as the agony struck before any pressure is put upon them. It is what it is. It’s been this way for years. No one had any answers. I walked away.

One day, I know, something will shift and the pain will go away. When I pray about this situation, the answer always come to unbind my feet. Unbind my feet. I am still working on a way to do that in this lifetime where no strips of cloth bind my feet.

I stretch, wincing as the little pains and flares snark out bitter comments. Again, normal. I work slowly, twisting here, pushing there, pulling here, a careful dance my body and I have every so often throughout the day. There’s comes a point where I relax, take a few deep breaths, and shuffle forward.

I fill the kettle, settling it over the flame. I pull cups from the cupboard, two, then three. One cup for honey and lemon juice. One cup for chamomile tea with honey. One cup for honey and coconut oil and eventually for coffee. I keep a small jar of cold-brewed coffee in the door of the refrigerator. While waiting for the kettle to sing out that the water is ready, I pull out a glass and fill it with water. I drink two glasses before the kettle whistles. I pour the boiled water into each cup, filling the first two completely and the final one only halfway.

I stir each cup in its turn, making sure honey and whatever else is well-melted and dispersed. Then I grab the cold coffee jar and finish filling the third cup, stirring that again to bring everything together in the cup.

I take the honeyed-lemon water cup and move outside to the porch, to my chair.

There I sit, the breeze puffing into my silvery hair. Birds call and twitter about. Squirrels chirp. Whatever else is there rustles under brush and above in trees. I stare out at the mountains. Trees overwhelm my vision. I do not seek to see the leaves. I allow the greens to wash over my heart, to open me to this new day.

I take my time. I have no schedule. I do what I do as it feels good to me.

I will drink this lemon water. I will drink my chamomile tea the same way. I will drink my coffee as it suits me, perhaps with a bit of just baked yesterday fresh bread with butter rubbed all over its surface.

This is not a meditation. This is simply a recognizing of myself, the day, my surroundings. I allow thoughts to come and go. I do not listen. I breathe, calm, focused, present. This is living. This is life. I embrace this.

After a bit of food, my coffee is all gone. Now it is time to get to work.

Someone Else…

Once upon a time…I was someone else…

Now, I don’t remember who that was.

I don’t think that it matters.

There is this path, foot-worn dirt, before me.

I can choose to go back,

To search for that person

That once I was…

Or I could choose to stay put,

Settle here,

Squat down in the dust,

And watch the clouds pass me by…

Or I could pick myself up and scatter what remains of my breakfast.

These hard biscuits, dipped in honeyed water,

Leaving them to feed the birds who sing over my shoulder

From the tree in whose shadow I recline yet.

I can decide to go forward,

Into the unknown,

Just to see what it there.

Just to see who I become.

I think I prefer that choice

Over all the rest.

So long.

The Frog Pond

Once upon a time, I stepped out the door just before dawn.  The air buzzed softly, insects still slumbering away in their tiny beds.  Morning birds cooed and called, tumbling about in the trees.  I paused for a moment to inhale the moist air that prised its way through my hair.

 

Time to go.

 

I took this time as my own, as often as I could.  Alone.  Silent.  Outside.  I could tell you I walked to commune with Nature, but this would not be true.  I walked merely to commune with myself, with my own inner voice and deeper understanding, those parts of me that were all too easy to ignore inside, surrounded by family and work.

 

I walked.

 

I got lost.

 

I drifted along.

 

I didn’t plan where I was going.  I didn’t pay the scenery any mind.  I knew eventually I would stop, just as I knew eventually I would make it home again.

 

I came upon a pond I hadn’t seen before, which is not all that unusual as the property and the surrounding woods are quite vast, at least in my mind.  Upon acres upon acres, that’s where I stood.

 

I found a relatively clear and dry spot near the edge, so I plopped down to watch the ripples on the surface of the water while my mind flitted here and there, wandering with itself through the jungle inside my brain.

 

How long I sat there, I cannot say.  The heat of the day grew.  The buzz and whine of insects rose up louder.  BIrds sang and cried.  Squirrels chattered and chided.  Larger creatures blew about through the woods as they wished.  I felt safe here.  I felt a part of things here.  That to me was a great magic.

 

“Excuse me.”  A voice rocked me out of my revelry.

 

I looked around.  I saw frogs, birds, bugs, flowers, trees…but no one I could assume had spoken to me.

 

“Yes?”  I called out, softly, not nervous, but my feeling of safety had stood up and was prepared to bolt.

 

There came a gentle chuckle; I looked about once more.  Suddenly, my attention flew to the water at my knees.  “Yes,” he said.  “I spoke to you.”

 

It was a lovely pale green frog with darker green splodges all over him.

Feeling safe again in an instant, I relaxed and smiled at him.  “Hello, then.  Can I help you in some way?”

 

What?  Who doesn’t fancy speaking to a frog, or to an obviously magical being dressed as a frog?  Doesn’t everyone dream of this sort of thing?

 

Then came a chortle.  “Aren’t you worried you’ll have to kiss me or something like that?”

 

I returned his titter with one of my own.  “If that is what you require, I would gladly give it, sir.”  I was not joking; I was deadly serious at that moment.  I looked at him, his smooth skin shiny, wet, not all that anxious to do some kissing.  “Is that really what you want?”

 

“No.”  He shook his head with a wistful smile.  “The pond grows smaller with every year.”

 

I looked around.  As I had never been here before, I had no way to judge the shrinkage.  I looked back at the frog.

 

“There are pollutions in the water,” he told me.  “terrible things that are killing our children before they hatch.  Many that do hatch are born deformed, having many legs or some other deficiency.”

 

“What can I do?”  I sincerely wanted to help.

 

I swear the frog blinked at me, his gaze level as if gauging how far to push me at that moment.  “Take me home with you.”

 

I waited.

 

He waited.

 

I broke the silence.  “And then what?”

 

“Build us a new home.”

 

“Us?”  Would I be required to travel back and forth to a place I wasn’t certain how I arrived at in order to ferry frog after frog to a new home that I haven’t yet created?

 

“No, no traveling back and forth.”  the frogged responded to my inner thoughts.  “Take me.  Build a new home for us.  The others will follow on their own.”

 

I didn’t take any time to think about it.  I didn’t need to.  “Sure.”

 

I was busy pondering how to carry the frog back with me safely, without knowing exactly how far from home I had actually gone.  I nearly missed his next question.

 

“Aren’t you going to ask for anything in return?”

 

The question took me aback.  “No.”  I shook my head.  “Why would I ask for something in return?  Why would I not just help you?”

 

Again came that throaty froggy snicker.  “Thank you.”  This time, I knew for sure that he winked at me.  “I will be fine in your pocket while we walk home.”

 

And, so it was.

 

 

 

Choices…

Once upon a time, she was given a choice.

Take this bumpy road–or take that bumpy road.

Which to choose?

The ordeal was no in the picking of one or the other.

The difficulty arose in the understanding of the best way to release the present while maneuvering into the proper position for future endeavors and for eventual success.

Many people stood up, glad to offer their own persuasive arguments.

Some held good in their hearts.

Others…they held deadly darkness and spite within their own.

Who would she trust?

Who could she believe?

She stopped.  She stood still.  She listened.  Deep.

Her choice, she said, was to listen to her own dear heart.

She decided to trust her own intuition, her own inner knowing.

She took neither road proffered to her.

Instead, she turned the opposite direction of both and began to walk.  Out into the field of blooming yellow flowers.

She forged her own path.

Difficult it was, the way she walked.

However, at the end of every day, the gifts to be had were always many,

 

The Stranger

I guess it was my cousin who met them.  Brought them home.  I guess it was at some bar, some dark hole in the wall.  Who knows?  Now, in my kitchen, because gods forbid he take them to his place, sat four men, smoking foul-smelling cigs, blowing blue smoke all over my pristine domicile, chattering like monkeys, passing a bottle of tequila back and forth.  My tequila.  My special occasion, just for sipping tequila.  This is not the load me up and let’s shoot stuff…and they were tipping it back like water.

 

‘So, what’s going on?” I asked.

 

I was met with jovial laughter and much banter.  Three of the boys started to talk at once.  All I heard was a muddle.

 

The silent one glanced up from flicking his ash into the bowl set aside for that purpose.  Of course, with my lungs, there wasn’t an ashtray to be had in here, for a reason.

 

The taller one raised his glass to me.  “Breakfast.”

 

I rolled my eyes.  “Seriously?”

 

My cousin fell off his stool trying to get to me.  Trying to reassure me.  Trying to coerce me to join in.  It was too late though.  The smoke was biting into me now.  I had to leave.

 

I waved.  Covered my face.  Turned and ran.

 

That’s how I met him.  That was my first introduction.