Nana’s Will

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“So how exactly will this work?” Maria scanned the detritus left by the fire. Remains of a lifetime of work and investment. Gone. Shards and a handful of charred pots. Is all.

“We start from seed, as it were,” Steve pressed. “We get Dad’s old truck out of the garage. Use it as a wheeled nursery.”

Maria sighed. It could work, but was she even up to it? Where there’s a will there’s a way, Nana had always said, and it matters most where there’s little will with which to find a way.

“A willed nursery…” Maria nodded. “Nana’s way!” 

 

 

For Friday Fictioneers

Photo by: © Jan Wayne Fields

Their Homecoming

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The seas were rough but that did not deter them. Wet ropes dug deeply into palms, the ripples in rough fibers matching the wiry muscles that strained in their necks, shoulders, arms.

Endlessly, the night dragged on. The ocean swelled and sunk and breathed and coughed all around them.

Still they kept their posts, secured to heaving decks with belts and makeshift harnesses.

When darkness finally waned and dawn returned, the contours of the mountains rose alongside them.

They shook the salt from reddened eyes and readied for the final passage.

Their boat was broken, but their hearts were home.

 

 

 

For Rochelle’s Friday Fictioneers

Photo prompt © Ted Strutz

 

 

A Heart of Stone

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“All you have is this little wheelbarrow?”

Marsha nodded.

Shelly shook his head.

“I don’t mind how long it takes,” the despair in Martha’s voice was overshadowed by determination. “And anyway, this won’t be too heavy.”

Shelly shrugged. “You’d change your mind after you make a few trips pushing this rusty thing uphill against the wind.”

In the weeks that followed Marsha wondered more than once if her brother had conjured the wind just to spite her. Dust and grit found purchase in her eyes and throat. Her palms grew red, then raw, then rough.

And still, she pushed the loaded wheelbarrow through gravel and scrub brush and small canyons of cracked earth that manifested overnight upon the path she forged across the steppe.

Slowly the grave-marker took shape.

“I’ve brought the stones from our creek, Mama,” she whispered as she placed each carefully. “Your heart will never again thirst.”

 

 

 

For Crispina‘s Crimson’s Creative Challenge

Lady In Waiting

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(Photo: Na’ama Yehuda)

 

If he could make it there, he’d make it anywhere.

It was the axiom he had placed everything on.

He held on to the promise when his body hurt from beatings. He played the image of it in his mind when emptiness of heart and stomach kept him from shut-eye. He whispered small encouragements to himself to drown the insults that insisted he was nothing.

For he was. Someone.

He had to believe.

The words she said.

About where he could be.

Himself.

If he lived.

So he did.

And lit beneath storm clouds, she stood, waiting.

For the day.

 

 

 

For Rochelle’s Friday Fictioneers (Thank you for using my photo as a prompt this week!)

 

Unhollowed

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(Photo: Lucas Myers on Unsplash)

 

There was little in their heart

But ice

And calculated cruelty.

A wanton abuse of

Power.

Ribald actions of

A misery intended

To inflict.

The wreck they left

Of any who had

Crossed them,

Threatened to hollow

Even the hardiest

Protest.

And yet,

There were still some

Whose souls

Would not give in

To ugly.

Whose light

Resisted.

Insisted.

Persisted.

 

 

 

For Sammi’s Weekend Writing Prompt: wanton in 60 words

 

 

Uncanny

 

There was a mystery

To their madness.

An uncanny sense of

Doom.

But she did not flail

Afraid

In darkness,

Whilst she could spot a petal

Bloom.

Instead, she watched

With rapt intention

As life suffused

Their eerie

Gloom.

 

 

 

For Sammi’s Weekend Writing Prompt: Uncanny in 39 words

 

Tiny Tidings

 

The dreary times were soon to pass.

No matter that her breath still steamed both outdoors and inside the drafty house. No matter that her red fingers barely bent with swelling and that the chilblains on her toes still burned and ached and itched. No matter that she took so long to warm come night that she almost despaired of sleeping.

The dreary times were soon to pass.

She knew.

True, it was still frosty.

But the cold was dying.

She knew, because the ice formed only on the very edges of her washbasin and because what frost adorned the ground in the morning would transmute into miniature mirrors of dew by the time the sun rose higher in the sky.

And because she saw the primrose.

Blooming.

Out there.

In audacious glee.

If the tiny flowers could endure the remnants of frigidity, so could she.

 

 

For Crispina’s Crimson’s Creative Challenge

 

Newfound

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(Photo: Jon Tyson on Unsplash)

She lay in bed and let the day’s words wash over her.

A soft stream in the mayhem.

“You’re a tenacious child,” her teacher said, eyes smiling. “You’ve tried and tried and made this grade your own. Not everyone would have continued, but you did. I am so proud.”

Tenacious, she mouthed into the dark and tuned off shouts and thuds and cries. So proud, she curled into the glow of newfound understanding.

 

 

For Sammi‘s Weekend Writing Prompt: Tenacious in 73 words

 

A Thorny Issue

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Photo: Andrey Grinkevich on Unsplash

 

There would be no smooth solutions

No easy way to extract

Themselves

From the tangle

They had let grow

All around them.

 

Only one way out was left:

Through the bramble,

Through the sorrow

Through the scars that would

Need nursing

Back to truth.

 

 

 

For the dVerse quadrille challenge: Bramble

 

 

 

Blending In

Photo prompt: © Rochelle Wisoff-Fields

 

She knew from the moment she walked in that she was way out of her league. Her virgin palette was blinding amidst the well-worn, paint-that-will-never-come-off-anymore held by others. She felt blush suffuse her face and an even deeper shame at raised eyebrows and feigned disinterest. Apparently she did not even warrant curiosity. An outsider. A wannabe.

She almost up and left.

But she’d saved for months to afford the class, and she spent her last on paints and brushes.

The need to create pulsed in her blood.

She stood her ground.

Blending in or sticking out, she’d stay. She’ll paint.

 

 

For Rochelle’s Friday Fictioneers