Self Reflection

This lockdown was so different from the one last year. I just fell into it in relief. I let go of all the lists, goals, must-haves, shoulds, deadlines, took a break from social media and spent a lot of time in self-reflection.

It was almost like I had gone into winter when nature withdraws from the business of growing and expanding and settles into rest and replenishment. The silent darkness is full of restoration.

I found that on the other side of surrender lies joy. On the other side of letting go of outcomes lies lightness and peace. Detaching from the narrative connects you with your deeper, authentic self.

The Aftermath

(100-word flash fiction)

She sat down and hoisted her bruised legs onto the chair, HIS chair.  The welts were still visible.

The baby moved inside her in protest.

“Calm down, darling,” she cooed, caressing the bump, a bud waiting to spring forth.  “The storm has taken him. Forever.”

Fallen spring blossoms lay strewn around them like confetti.

“He can’t hurt us anymore. We will always be safe now.”

She felt a slight pressure under her palm. Parting her blouse, she stared down, there was the unmistakable indent of a tiny palm.

She gently lay her palm over it and high-fived her baby back.


My today’s portraiture client was a domestic violence survivor. She said she gave birth to her daughter with bruises on her body. Black-eyes were common. She still stayed for a few more years until she mustered the courage to leave. He walked out of their lives and never contacted his kids. Her eyes were beginning to well up. I had to divert her from unpleasant memories. I guess the above story is a bit of a real-life one.

Thank you Rochelle, for keeping up all going in these difficult times 🙂

 Photo prompt –

PHOTO PROMPT © Dale Rogerson

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Forgiveness

(100-word flash fiction)

She knew he would come. She had not expected flowers though. And chocolates.

She almost lost her resolve.

The charm was in place, the smoothness had not lost any of its silkiness. The dimples almost lifted her off the bed into his arms. Thank goodness her leg was broken.

“Sorry!” he said. “Faking it again,” she thought.

“Here, have some coffee!” she offered the Styrofoam cup from the hospital tray.

He took it as though it was the forgiveness she never gave.

“It helps,” she thought, “to have a nurse best friend. They know how to spike coffee with cyanide.”

***

After some very hectic work weeks, I am back. Good to start writing and reading all your stories again 😊 Good to visit your page again, Rochelle

Photo prompt –

PHOTO PROMPT © Susan Eames

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Wake up! Wake up!

(100-word flash fiction x 2)

“Wake up! Wake up!” heard William. It sounded like the cuckoo clock back home he had engineered, just to tease Mary. It was machine-gun fire.

When a bomb had exploded in their trench, they had scattered like disturbed, scurrying ants. Wounded, bloodied and dizzy, he had tumbled into another trench.

Something nebulous seemed eager to claim him. Was it Sleep? Or Memories? Floating in was the London bus he had met Mary on. Followed by the beat-up jalopy proclaiming ‘Just Married’.

A shadow fell across the Memories and a gun barrel took its place.

“Wake up! Wake up!” it said.

***********************

“Wake up! Wake up!” chimed the cuckoo clock.

Mary was startled awake from her afternoon nap.  She stood up suddenly and moved towards the clock that William, the appliance-tinkerer, had engineered.

Inside her, the baby kicked in protest.

“Settle down, ‘lil one.” She cooed, patting her bump. “The war will be over any day and Daddy should soon be home.” She picked up the telegram, which proclaimed, bold with hope, “COMING HOME FOR THE BIRTH”

“I’m home!” announced the doorbell.

She ran to the door, but it was just the postman with another telegram. It said, “WILLIAM, KILLED IN ACTION”

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I wrote the second story first but felt William’s story had to be told too. Hope everyone’s well and keeping safe and away from the Virus. Thanks Rochelle for bringing us together every week 😊

Photo prompt –

PHOTO PROMPT © CEAyr

CLICK FROG TO JOIN

Colours

(flash fiction)

Eyes almost cobalt, Neil was her blue-eyed boy.  Amber with hair to match and a temper on-the ready to flare . Born yellow with jaundice, Sunny lived on to fill the house with laughter. Petal, dear Petal, with parrot eyes and always rescuing animals. Indigo, her daydreamer child, mostly lost in Piscean waters.

She hears their voices in the deep of night. Sees their faces in vibrant colour behind closed eye-lids.

She remembers how they were taken away,  one by one,  only she can’t remember why.

That must be when the colours started to leave her.  Now she sees the world only in monochrome.

Or, perhaps, grays are the only colours in the psychiatric ward.

Another phone composition in the dead of night. Because I’m addicted? All thanks to Rochelle. I  blame her 😁😆😂🤣
Photo prompt –

PHOTO PROMPT © Rochelle Wisoff-Fields

Click on the frog picture to add your link.

The box

The box looked innocuous.  All sealed and stamped by the lawyer. From the deceased estate of Peter Cooke.

Dave was all agog having never heard this name mentioned but Mili’s face was closed off as she opened the box, as though she had gone into an inner world.

There were Gibran books and video tapes with labels that said,  THE TWOS OF US, OUR BEACH HOLIDAY, THE BEST TIME OF OUR LIVES.

Right underneath was a thin envelope and written on it was, “We almost created a life together, a life you didn’t want to keep.  But I couldn’t let go of the memory.”

Inside was an ultrasound image of a foetus.

 

I wrote this on my phone so it might not be exactly 100 words.  Thanks Rochelle for keeping our creative juices flowing 😁
Photo prompt –

By justjoyfulness Posted in Art

Aloha

(100-word flash fiction)

Melania is infuriated.

Everyone else’s in lockdown, having a break, but she is still expected to get up, dress up and turn up. She’s tired of pretending to listen, pretending to look intelligent, pretending to care.

She would rather take long baths and catch up with what the Kardashians are doing.

But, this is the last straw. Day in and day out, even to official meetings, her husband now wears this floral cap that says ‘Aloha!’

Trump’s logic. “If you run away from the virus, it will catch you. But if you welcome it, it will run away from you.”

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Couldn’t resist a wee dig at our chief entertainer.

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For the Fiday Fictioneers prompt, head over to our chief shepheress’ page. For more stories, click on the colourful frog icon below.

PHOTO PROMPT © Jan Wayne Fields

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Glad

For today’s NaPoWriMo, I tried out the Chaucerian Stanza, which is a stanza of seven Iambic Pentametre lines. In this stanza the first line rhymes with the third, the second with the fourth and fifth, and the last two lines rhyme together, thus forming a couplet. Also called Rhyme royal, rhyme also spelled rime, in short, it is a seven-line iambic pentameter stanza rhyming ababbcc.

Justjoyfulness - Glad

NaPoWriMo 26 – Kennings

For day 26, some kennings. Bjorn at the Imaginary Garden with Real Toads presented the concept of Kennings. Or compound noun combinations.

My impromptu attempt 🙂

~~~

A leaf-fall. A leaf

falls on to the forest floor.

Beyond that, silence.

~~~

A heart-knock. Someone

knocks on my heart boarded up.

Beyond that, silence.

~~~

A tune-lilt. Lilting

tunes slowly take me apart.

Beyond that, silence.

~~~

A death-wish. Dying

to the past my only wish.

Beyond that, silence.

~~~