Blue Belle

Blue Belle NaamaYehuda

Photo: Na’ama Yehuda

 

She hangs out next to the couch, wrapped around the floor lamp like a hand in a hand. She’s been there a long time. She lived on other floor lamps before this one, till their time had come and she welcomed a new one. She makes friends with them all, says goodbye to those who lost their spark. Perhaps she thinks of them, sometimes.

She hangs out next to the couch, wrapped around the floor lamp like a protective palm over a young hand. She watches little fingers wrestling beads onto threads, listens as small mouths make words out of thoughts, witnesses big hearts in tiny chests writing grand ideas into evolving minds – theirs and mine.

She hangs out next to the blue couch. She hears the unasked questions that stay behind worried parents’ lips. The questions children ask, sometimes for the first time. She understands. She does not prod. She just knows. They look for her, especially after a long break, reassured to find her there, still wrapped around the floor lamp like a comfy hug.

She’s been there long enough to find the right time to catch their eye.

With a quiet smile.

Blue Belle on her perch by the couch. Patience in her heart, twinkle in her eye.

 

 

 

For Linda Hill’s SoCS prompt: Blue (first blue object you see)

 

 

Nick’s Shtick

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Photo: Alexander Dummer via Unsplash

 

I nicked Nick

With a stick

After he picked

And tried to hit

Me

With a brick.

He should not try

Such a sick

Kind of shtick

If he doesn’t like

Being tricked

And summarily pricked

By a royally ticked

But quick thinking

Chick.

 

 

For the dVerse Quadrille challenge: Nick

 

 

The Whey Weigher’s Way

A girl churning butter, three-quarter length, facing front, looking away to left, wearing a low-necked dress, apron, and small frilled cap over short curls; after Mercier.  Mezzotint

Photo: The British Museum #2010,7081.1712

 

Tis the Whey Weigher’s way

To weigh

The whey

As she goes

About her day

Sifting curds

Through woven trays.

 

You can stay

If you may

To watch the way

She weighs her whey

In pots and jugs

Of rounded

Clay.

 

And though so many

Will downplay

The lowly whey

As throw away,

She knows it is

Quite fair to say

That whey is worthy

Of more sway

And should more than

Earn it’s pay.

 

 

(I had WAY too much fun with this today! 🙂 )

For the SoCS writing prompt: way/weigh/whey

 

 

Fixer Upper

Photo prompt: © Penny Gadd

 

“It that better?”

“No! You made it worse!”

“Sorry. What direction?”

“To the right! No, the left. I mean, to my right, not your right! There. No! Stop! You over did it. Now it’s worse again.”

“Fine. I’ll go slowly. Tell me when.”

“When. I mean, not yet. Stop! No, a little more.”

“Are you sure it isn’t straight? You’re a little lopsided yourself. Have a sip of water, maybe.”

“I’m fine. Stop micromanaging me. I’m concentrating. Shush and let me see …”

“Go ahead. Take your time. Don’t mind me. I’ll just perch here and twiddle my vines.”

 

 

 

For Rochelle’s Friday Fictioneers

 

Couch Karma

NYC afternoon NaamaYehuda

Photo: Na’ama Yehuda

 

It will be the couch for me today, after a bit more lifting, hopping, sliding, climbing, carrying, skipping, and bending, than my sort-of-hanging-in-there spine is happy with.

Not that I regret any of the evasive maneuvers to ‘prevent’ a giggling toddler from stepping on my shadow … Not that I regret going down the slide (well, a little … going down wasn’t the issue, getting back up was … I swear they put these toddler-level things lower and lower to the ground … ;)). Not that I regret counting ducks and spotting turtles, tracking helicopters in the sky, crouching to fix sandals and greet puppies, or examining mini-melted-puddles on park-paths of what might’ve been a dropped ice-cream (the alternative is gnarlier…). I don’t even regret riding hippos “to Israel and also to the Zoo” (yep, New York’s got a whole bloat of tolerant Hippos in the Safari Playground — and no offense to the hippopotami for the term — I don’t make English, I just use is …).

T’was all of it a lot of fun, it was. Delightful as every time spent with this knee-high to a grasshopper of a peanut is. Love that gal to the moon and Mars and back (whether we get there on or off the back of a hippo calf). But this does not mean there’s no piper to pay.

So, I’m paying the piper today. (Hopefully only today …)

And it’ll be slow transitions on and off the couch and bed and chair. And some Ibuprofen, and Biofreeze and Arnica salve, and the duck-wobble molasses-like moving that is the package deal in a body a bit too willowy and quite a bit too finicky than its inhabitant likes to accept, but perhaps should.

Or won’t.

Because.

Life’s too short and couches got to earn their keep somehow.

 

 

For Linda Hills SoCS prompt: Couch

 

Where It Broke Out

Photo: Sue Vincent

 

“This is where it broke out.”

Bender shaded his eyes from the glare and squinted at the black patch on the meandering snake of ice.

“Tis a mighty small one, then,” he noted.

Roman frowned. “That hole is bigger up close. And anyway, you should’ve seen the length of it.”

Bender shrugged and took a few steps closer, daring Roman to do the same. The ice crunched under their feet, a staccato to their accelerating heartbeat.

They would be punished for walking here. The Winter Gods had taken too many who strayed onto what masqueraded as solid ground but was in fact bog fairies lurking beneath frosted fronds. Even in summer these flats were dangerous, full of sinkholes and swampy ponds that sucked at your feet and then leeched out your blood. Children were outright forbidden from entering the bog.

Which made the space all the more alluring to boys who had to prove bravery and test the lore.

For there was a boy, the stories told, who got swallowed by a sinkhole only to be adopted by the creek and made half-human and half-snake. He could breathe both in the air and underwater, and came to hunt in winter, when other snakes were slowed by cold.

Some had said they’d seen it, slithering among the silver plants by dusk and dawn. Some even claimed to have escaped its grasp — for the half-boy-half-snake had arms that ended in sharp claws held close to it’s lower body as it undulated silently toward its prey. One man had four parallel scars upon his calf that he said were the proof of his escaping the creature.

Roman said he’d seen it, slipping out of the ice.

Bender never could trust Roman’s sight, influenced as it tended to be by what his friend wished to see but often did not. Still, to say so would be showing him a coward … so … Bender took another step, crunching deeper into the foreboding land.

Behind him, Roman breathed out clouds of exhalation accentuated by shorter puffs of terror. “Perhaps it had gone back in already,” he whispered.

“Yeah,” Bender gasped in barely masked relief. “Must have. After all, it is almost full light. Nothing for it but for us, too, to head back.”

 

 

 

For Sue Vincent’s WritePhoto prompt

Prepositionally Prepared

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Photo: Tucker Good on Unsplash

 

Before first light was when she meant to leave, and working through the night she made sure to have everything she needed with her. When that was done, she double checked that all other items were stuffed into bags or packed inside boxes or sorted into their respective containers. It mattered to her that things maintain their places: on shelves, by couches, under cabinets, in canisters, outside on the terrace, underneath the eaves up at the attic, even stacked along the small shelves that she’d tucked between the twin beds of the guest room or strung across the top of the door-frame inside her closet. She believed it important for one to have whatever they needed near at hand while at the same time not letting life be scattered all over toward disorder.

It wouldn’t do to seek something and not find it untill after it was too late to be of any use. Or worse, redundant instead of necessary.

She was leaving and had no plan for or intention of return. But when they found the place, she wanted whomever it was to know that she had made arrangements on their behalf and had been on top of things to ensure their life, too, could be sufficiently organized.

 

 

(Just went to town and had some prepositional fun with that, I had … )

For Linda Hill’s SoCS prompt: Preposition

A Stranger’s Eyes

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Photo: Conner Baker on Unsplash

 

Her hand clasped the steering wheel and she fought against the tears that threatened to blur the road ahead.

The wheels whirred over miles and miles of black as the stars spread a rotating canopy over her car. A bug atop a line drawn in the sand, she was. A smidgen on the wide expanse of life under the heavens.

She won’t go back.

She could not allow it.

He had her squelched under his thumb for so long that she did not recognize her own face in the mirror. Her eyes had become a stranger’s.

“There are times,” her mother once said, “when a woman must believe herself. You may think yourself broken, but you will love again the stranger who was your self.”

She’d thought it cryptic at the time, melodramatic.

She understood now. “I’m coming home to myself at last, Mom.”

 

 

 

For the dVerse Prosery prompt: Love after Love in 144 words

 

 

Zen Essence

calm curl NaamaYehuda

Photo: Na’ama Yehuda

 

In the moment of the soft swell

Of a calm curl,

The gentle foam

Belays the power of

The waves that lift ocean liners

And cradle whales.

A breath

Before

Exhale.

 

 

Thank you, Terri, for this prompt. Perfect for today. For me, the shore is the ultimate calibrator. I took this photo in Ogonquit, Maine, quite too many years ago. Time to go back. Time to go to the beach. Any beach. For breath, for awe, for space, for zen.

For Sunday Stills: Essence of Zen

 

Up Or Down

 

She could go up

Or down

On the path

Into town.

There the low road

Awaited,

Full of snarls and

outdated.

Or she could take

The high

With its twists,

Turns,

And sighs.

 

She could go up

Or down

On the path

Into town.

So she paused to

Reflect,

How to best

Course correct,

And decided it

Best

To give the high road

A test.

 

 

 

For Crimson’s Creative Challenge