Fatefully Furrowed

muddy tracks chagit moriahgibor

Photo: Chagit Moriah-Gibor

 

“What did this?”

Calvin gulped.

“What?!” Eric insisted. “A jeep?”

“Not a car.”

“What then?”

“We better turn back.”

Eric squinted at the muddy furrows.

“Nothing you want to meet in the dark,” Calvin shuddered and revved the motorcycle’s engine.

 

 

For Sammi’s Weekend Writing Prompt: Furrowed in 40 words

 

The Boy Who Was Very Brave

 

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Photo: rawpixel.com on Pexels.com

 

“Be brave,” he said, and closed his eyes to ward off at least the pain of seeing his skin pierced by sharpness.

“Just a scratch,” the nurse stated in rote-like monotone, forgetting that for this boy nothing at this point was ‘just a scratch,’ especially not with veins well worn from prodding, let alone in a child who must struggle to understand why any of this was necessary.

“Be brave,” he said again, and his voice shook, and a tear slid under his lids and traveled down the small cheek to settle on his ear like a tiny sorrow-diamond.

“I’m sorry,” the nurse pressed her lips together when the third poke failed and another scarred blood vessel rolled under her needle. She’ll have to try another site. How on earth did someone not put a port in this child yet?

“Be brave,” the boy clenched his eyes to slits but more tears fled. “Be brave.”

The nurse looked up, distressed by his determined resignation. She paused and placed her gloved hand on his cheek. “You are,” she said. “Very.”

Eyes still shut, he shuddered and she wasn’t sure if he understood. She pulled a chair to his gurney and smoothed his hair. Someone from the Children’s Home had brought him to the hospital with another flareup, but the orphanage was too short-staffed to have anyone stay with him, especially when the boy wasn’t fussy and reportedly “used to” the hospital.

As if there could be such a thing as a child being “used to” being alone in a hospital.

“You are brave,” she repeated. Her eyes stung and perhaps the emotion in her voice more than her words filtered through his bracing because his eyes opened to meet hers.

“You don’t deserve any of this,” she said. “No one does. What you do deserve is to get better, and for people to really see and understand how brave you are. You are so so brave.”

Another tear rolled toward his ear. She hoped this one wasn’t from fear but from recognizing a connection.

“I’ll be as gentle as I can,” she promised. “I know this must be awful, but I need to get a line in for your medicine. Can you be brave for me just a bit longer?”

He held her eyes before he nodded.

“Good boy. So let’s just get this over with?”

He nodded again and this time did not close his eyes but hung them on her face. He did not look away or make a sound as she flicked and poked and needled.

“Good lad,” she praised, relieved, as she finally placed the clear bandage over the IV.

He took in a long breath.

“Can I get you anything?” she lingered, wanting to do something for this boy, so small and pale and alone.

He nodded.

“Some juice or crackers, maybe? It’ll do you good to get some of these in you,” she chattered. “I bet we have some toys I can borrow from the playroom for you.”

He held her gaze.

“Can I go home with you?” he asked. “I promise to be brave for you. I’ll be brave every day.”

 

 

(*Based on a true story.)

For Six Word Saturday

 

 

A Good Fit

Photo by Bryan Schneider

Photo: Bryan Schneider on Pexels.com

 

“How does it look?” she twirled,

And I knew she was asking about

A lot more

Than the dress.

 

“It looks really great,” I answered,

And she knew

It was about

A lot more than

Her silhouette,

Or how the fabric hugged

Her curves.

 

“Then I’ll take it,” she said.

And we smiled because

We both knew

It meant she will take him, as well.

 

 

For Sammi’s Weekend Writing Prompt: Silhouette in 65 words

 

Forgotten Foundations

deserted in the desert ofirasif

Photo: Ofir Asif

 

“Will he come back?” Leah peered over the wall.

Rachel pulled her younger sibling back into the shade.

“Will he?” Leah pressed.

“I don’t know,” Rachel’s voice caught. She coughed to hide her fear. She’d break if her sister became frightened. It would make everything too real.

She didn’t know where they were. A car ride preceded a long hike into the desert and the nap in the ruins. “Best thing during the heat of the day,” Dad said.

He was gone by the time they woke, deserted like forgotten stones.

 

 

For Sammi’s Weekend Writing Prompt: Foundations in 91 words

Take A Snapshot Of Your Heart

Cuba12 InbarAsif

Photo: Inbar Asif

 

As one year draws to close

And another gets set to rise,

Take a snapshot of your heart

In its joy and woe alike.

 

As moments tick toward the new,

Remove blinds from your weary eyes,

And let Soul show you who

You’ve been when you were wise.

 

It will revisit steps you took

So you can plan the next,

And hold the images of good,

For New Year’s light to reflect.

 

 

For Six Word Saturday

 

Blush Blessing

Red AtaraKatz

Photo: Atara Katz

 

May your day be lit

By sun

And new grown things

On path to home

And love within.

May the closing year

Bring calm

And blushing joy

And flowered hope

For what begins.

 

 

 

For Sunday Stills: Something Red

 

Not Yet History

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Photo: Tomasz Mikolajczyk on Pexels

 

“Are these from olden times?” the boy’s eyes were round with wonder.

“Not so olden,” his mother sighed. “We have some in our bomb-shelter. Everyone was fitted with a gas mask during the Gulf War. We had to carry it everywhere. Even preschoolers like you.”

 

 

For Sammi’s Weekend Writing Prompt: Mask in 45 words

 

Carved Time

ancient cyprus1 SmadarHalperinEpshtein (2)

Photo: Smadar Halperin-Epshtein

 

Long years had

Carved the stone

And cleaved to blue

The sky,

Yet puffy clouds

Still gawk as they

Meander

Idly by.

 

 

For the December Squares Challenge

 

 

Perfect View

aerial photography of tree surrounded with fogs

Photo: Markus Spiske on Pexels.com

 

“There!” Angelo pointed.

“There what?” Payton panted

“There if you bother to lift your head.”

Payton scowled but was more occupied with getting oxygen into his lungs than wasting it on responses. He was sure that Angelo-The-Braggadocio had set the punishing pace deliberately to get him gasping. Not everyone climbed mountains for recreation!

The stitch in his side finally subsided enough to allow him to remove his fists from his thighs and straighten to take in the “amazing vista” Angelo had promised.

Dense fog. Vague tree tops. Milky air.

“There goes nothing,” Payton grouched.

Angelo chuckled and the saturated air softened the sound into something almost vulnerable.

Payton glanced at his friend. Glanced again. Was the wet on Angelo’s cheeks mist or liquid feelings?

“It is the perfect view,” Angelo murmured, his oft guarded face as open as a child’s. “To be inside Big Sky is to revisit Heaven.”

 

 

For What Pegman Saw: Big Sky Montana

 

 

The Best Tradition

Traditions R.Yehuda

Photo: R. Yehuda

 

The doorbell rings

The gate stays open

As they trickle, stream, come in.

Sisters, brothers, nieces, cousins,

Nephews, parents, aunts and uncles,

And new additions to the scene.

Candles lit and babies cuddled,

In the kitchen tied-up aprons swirl

As busy hands ready cuisine.

A phone is passed:

A distant caller

Hellos each loved one from the screen.

The rooms are filled

The hearts are fuller.

Another year of treasured family din.

 

 

For the Sunday Stills Challenge: Traditions