It Began

It began with a whisper. Sweet nothings breathed in my ear, their meaning sent goosebumps down my neck. I pulled you closer and whispered the words back. We made love.

It ended with a gasp. Your admission told to my face, the weight of your eyes buckled my knees. I pushed you away and screamed admissions of my own. We scorched earth.

It changed with a heartbeat. Proof of our love growing inside, the life of our child transformed my mind. I paved you a path and sobbed tears of joy. We made amends.

It transformed with a cry. The birth of a person, our tangible connection entered the world. I pressed you into my soul and made a small family. We lived life.

Changes

Written for: FinishThatThough

Prompt: Must use the provided first line.

This piece won Grand Champion!

She was seventy-five and she was going to make some changes in her life. Her mother had passed away a year ago, and with the grief came relief. There was no one left to impress, no one to curtail herself for, to protect.

The first thing she did was get a tattoo. The dragon of her dreams flying over her shoulder blades. The tattoo artist asked her, twice, if she was “sure”. So, she flicked him off because she could.

The second thing she did was cabaret. She had to show off her tattoo somehow. Walking on stage in garters and a corset did just the trick. Through the darkness, she could see the flashing camera lights and smiled for them. She no longer feared going viral. No, she looked forward to it.

The third thing she did was start a business. Ideas she had held close to her heart finally broke through the flood dams. So what if it was tacky, so what if it was beneath her status; she went to the park, laid out a tattered comforter, and sold her handmade jewelry.

The fourth thing she did was sex, lots and lots of sex. She brought men and women to the home she had shared with her mother. She left the bedroom door open. She lounged with her partners in the nude. She screamed obscenities and desires into the night; let herself experience the pleasure of it, over and over again.

The fifth thing she did was visit her mother’s grave. A recurring fling dropped her off. She brought a handmade string of pearls and placed it over her mother’s gravestone. Then she sat, and told her mother all her stories.

Puzzle Pieces

We build ourselves piece by piece,

fitting together as needed –

to survive, to thrive, to breathe.

We build ourselves piece by piece,

with sanity and self-preservation –

for dry eyes, for lover’s spats, for compromise.

We build ourselves piece by piece,

link our puzzle next to another’s –

with passion, with attraction, with hope.

We build ourselves piece by piece,

able to deconstruct the whole –

in growth, in adversity, in change.

I Will Never Be Lost Again

“I miss getting lost,” I tell the empty car.
“Turn right at the next intersection,” It replies.
I know my hands will turn the wheel even as I wonder what will happen if I continue driving straight.
In this decade, I’ll always know my way; I’ll always know which route is faster or cheaper or more scenic or less so.
I look at the mountain range ahead, framed by a late summer sunset. I can make out a tiny structure on one of the peaks. Is it a home or a restaurant or a getaway?
I turn right, just as I was told too. I drive away from my questions because my trajectory is written, the voice directs me, and I will never get lost again.

In response to The Daily Post’s writing prompt: “Going Obsolete.”

Goals

“Balance,” his mother said to herself. The shopping bags slipped from her shoulder, he reached out to take one but she shook her head. “I got this.”
“What about me? What can I do?” He asked her, still eyeing the bags.
“I set out to be a good mother to you and a good CEO for them. I know what I want so I work for it.”
“And how does this relate to you carrying too many shopping bags?” He asked.
“This is my exercise– I have to stay fit so I can continue mothering you well into my eighties.”


It’s Warmup Wednesday over at FlashFriday – Base a 100 words story off of this image; include a lifelong dream:

Olympic Games, 1896; the athlete Herman Weingartner, horizontal bar champion. Public domain photo by Albert Meyer.

The Challenge of the Ice Bucket

“I don’t think we should do this,” Harold stopped himself from biting his peeling lip. It felt like some of the hanging bits of skin were his oldest companions, these days.

Samuel sighed. “It’s not that big of a deal, they do it on the internet.”

“So that means it’s okay? Did we imitate every act on the Johnny Carson show? No. Why is the internet any different?”

“Oh, the internet is very different. It has images of beautiful beaches from all over the world, lots of panda videos and even the occasional young lass in very revealing clothing. Let me tell you about this one website I found-”

“I’m aware of the internet,” Harold said through a groan. He braced his hands on his knees, groaning again as he lifted from his seat. “I merely disagree that we should do this to Max.”

Samuel kicked the bucket of ice. “But it’s for Lou Gehrig’s disease!”

“Max doesn’t even have that disease.”

“He has something; can you smell him through that vented windbreaker?”

“Cause you smell like freshly cut roses,” Harold chastised.

“Oh come on,” Samuel whined, almost sounding like his five year old grandson. “We already brought the ice down here.”

Harold looked from the bucket of ice to their nearby friend. He remembered the last time Max stole the pot of poker winnings from right under his nose. That sealed the deal.

“All right,” Harold relented. “Let’s do this.”

Embedded image permalink

Tuesday’s Photo Challenge #6

Home

I know this drive. I lie in bed during late, sleepless nights and run it through my mind like a film on repeat. The seemingly endless road between who I am now and who I once was – they say you can never go home again.

My high heels hit gravel as I close the door of the rental. This is when momma would run out onto the porch, screen door almost slamming daddy’s face as he followed. He’d catch my eye over momma’s shoulder, smiling while she pressed me close.

The wind blows gravel over my heels, scuffing them. The screen door shakes in the breeze; it’s worse than silence. I shouldn’t wait for the warmth of her hug or the comfort of his laugh –

Flashes of the twenty-four hour news cycle burn through the memories. The train crashing, the fire absorbing the cars, I cringe and try not to imagine them screaming as heat chars their skin and takes them away. I try and fail.

The weathered wooden porch creaks under my heels and for a moment my hand pauses on the doorknob. The house, the porch, the drive, the hometown – it’s all too different, it’s all exactly the same.


Written for last week’s FlashFriday

Final Act

“Double that,” Henry grins around his cigar.

“There’s no way you’ve slept with that many women.”

“Oh come on, Carl, in seventy years? Over two hundred women is not uncommon.”

Carl sniffs into his scotch. “If you’re a playboy!”

“Not everyone finds their one and falls in love.”

Like most comments about ‘love’, it makes him think of Ann and how she felt in his arms. He smiles through the tears that spark in his eyes.

“Was it worth it?” They both ask at the same time.

Neither answers the other. Carl raises his glass of scotch, instead.

“Cheers to our final act.”


Written for Micro Bookends, where they provide the first and last word – you write the rest.