The Wives Club

Time again for ‘Friday Fictioneers’. A weekly 100 word photo prompt hosted by Rochelle Wisoff-Fields. A merry band of over 100 people participate each week. Becoming addicted is guaranteed, resistance is futile…..

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Ted’s confidence lasted about as long as the ice in his Sangria. Sally watched his eyes flit from one woman to another; a little blonde by the wall, the brunette, another blonde by the kitchen. She watched his tongue slip out just a fraction over his lips. Stood by the doorway, she couldn’t miss the tiny beads of sweat on his forehead or the dark patch of dampness spreading across his chest.

“Shall I introduce you to my husband ladies?” she said scornfully,

Ted swallowed.

“Or should I say OUR husband”

Their eyes met.  Sally smiled. Ted’s legs gave way.

She Sits And She Waits.

So today is Tuesday and time for the ‘Haibun Thinking Challenge‘. This week it’s freestyle week, so the world’s your oyster, so to speak. Clink on the link and have a read at the others and then have a go yourself, go on I dare you…….

 

She sits and she waits. She doesn’t know what for, because nobody ever told her that. They just said to wait. She listens to the wind and holds her breath to hear a breeze. Sometimes she reaches out her tongue, just a little, to catch the teardrops from the sky and when the sky begins to smile again, she reaches our her hand to try and catch a rainbow between her fingers, she never can.

So she carries on watching, waiting in the shadows. Sometimes she sings, no more than a whisper, and watches the trees dance a waltz on the melody. The arms of the old mighty oak sweep down low and she bobs a shy curtsy and holds out her hand.  Sometimes there are others. She sees children playing; hears laughter in the air, sometimes young couples rest against the oak. She keeps very still so they won’t know she’s there.

Time seems to pass in the blink of an eye, the sun rises higher and it sets ever lower, and still she sits and she waits. She remembers Mama wrapping her shawl real tight around her shoulders and sitting her down under the oak. Her ruby red lips shimmering in the moonlight as she kissed her goodbye. Mama said she’d come back when the man paid his dues. She didn’t know what dues were, but Mama said “she’d earned em”. Then the bad man came. He said she had pretty hair but he smelt bad and his prickly beard hurt her face. Then he upped and stole the life right out of her body.

So now she sits and she waits, just like a good girl.

Death is just a door,

That separates you and me,

Love will guide you home.

In The Trash

This is for my first attempt at a ‘Papi Prompt‘. As anyone who knows me knows, I’m a sucker for a good prompt. The idea is to write a 500 word piece of fiction based on the sentence provided. This week’s sentence is ‘I found the silk scarf I gave her for Valentine’s next…’  

Here goes 

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I found the silk scarf I gave her for Valentine’s next to a single black stocking and an empty packet of contraceptive pills. I lifted them out. Smooth black nylon rubbed against my fingers.  It was nearly half ten but the streetlamp gave me enough light to read the packet. Birth control, why the hell did she need birth control? My senses went into overdrive. I tried to count, 1… 2….3…..  The therapist said count when I felt it coming on. I started again 1…..2…..3….  I kicked the trash bag by my feet; the sound of cans hitting between the kerb and ricocheting off into the road like a metronome keeping beat.

It felt like we’d been trying for a baby forever. “This is our year” she’d say as she sobbed onto my shoulder every month. So many shirts she’d ruined with all those crocodile tears. I felt my hands fist at my sides and the edge of the packet pierced my palm. I squeezed tighter.  A light went on in the bedroom, I looked up and saw her reach for the curtain, first the left side, then the right. They didn’t quite meet in the middle, I started the count again, 1….2….3….. Damn the therapist, this wasn’t working.  She couldn’t even get the lines straight; she knows how it upsets me. I make sure she knows. Every-time.

I stuffed the packet and the stocking into my pocket and walked back into the house. Downstairs was dark; just the gentle hum of the fridge filling the silence. I straightened up the shoes by the door, turned the key and locked the door. My hand went to the stair rail and I stopped. My heart was racing, sweat spotting on my back. For a few seconds I just stared.  The bathroom door was slightly ajar at the top of the stairs and I focused on the light seeping underneath. Then I turned back, re checked the lock, picked up the cast iron door stop and climbed the stairs, slowly.

“Where have you been” she called from the bedroom. Her tone restless, slightly raised. I wondered if she’d seen me at the bin. I walked into the bedroom; she was lying on the bed, wearing a red and black baby doll and a ‘come here’ smile. For a minute I was thrown by the fact she only had one stocking on. I reached into my pocket, fingering the nylon. She raised her hand, something white gripped in her fingers.  “It’s happened” she said, rushing onto her knees, pushing the thin blue line of the tester into my face. “I finally got to throw away the pills” she sang, half laughing, half crying. I grabbed her, pressing terrified, euphoric kisses across her face. 

I put the door stop against the bathroom door, like I did every night. The noise from the boiler could be really annoying. While I couldn’t stop grinning, the fact she was only wearing one stocking really rankled my OCD.

What Is Love?

 

Love is a layer,

Of butter cream icing,

Love is the embrace,

I feel when we’re dancing,

Love is the melody,

That plays in my head,

Long after the music,

Has left me for bed.

*

Love is a scent,

Of apple blossom trees,

Love is the honey,

From regal queen bees,

Love is the taste,

Of liquid pure gold,

Left on my lips,

Forever enthralled.

*

Love is a touch,

Of soft fallen snow,

Love is the warmth,

From a fireside’s glow,

Love is the feeling,

That flows through my blood,

Pulsating and yearning,

To be all that it could.

I Don’t Know Why I Love You

 

You want excitement,

And I want romance,

You like to plan,

And I follow chance,

You turn the lights on,

And I turn them off,

You like to spoon,

And I feel too hot.

You wake with coffee,

And I wake with tea,

You eat fried bacon,

And I have muesli.

You read the sports,

And I read the news,

You watch the adverts,

And I stare confused.

You tell the bad jokes,

And I frown in shame,

You laugh at calamity,

And I take the blame.

You want to be open,

And I want to commit,

You want us to marry,

And I think I’ll submit.

*

I don’t know why I love you,

But I do.

A New Day, A New Life

This weeks contribution to the ‘Sunday Photo Fiction‘ hosted by Al Forbes. The challenge is to write a short piece of fiction 100 – 200 words based on the weekly photo prompt provided. Get yourselves over, read the others and have a go yourself, it soon becomes addictive.

This is a follow up for an earlier piece I wrote for the same challenge – The Gift

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She’d left the house running. Her feet blistered and sore were rubbing against the coarsely worn threads under her soles. When the chance came she hadn’t stopped to think, no time to put on shoes or a shawl over the lightweight shift she’d gone to bed in. She ached to stop, but knew that stopping would mean surrender, and she would rather die than surrender. She swallowed the bile in her throat that threatened her resolve. Gasping in the cold night air, she quickened her pace, trying to ignore the pain.

As the last evening star faded into dawn, she stopped. Wearily lowering herself onto the dew soaked grass.  She thought of the child, her child. Tomorrow, or today she thought now as she watched the sun slowly rise across the hillside. They would make her hand him over. Make her give away her baby as if it was a parcel of meat or a new set of clothes. She looked down at the bundle, tightly wrapped in its blanket. His eyes opened. He looked into hers and sealed his fate on her soul. The clouds opened and a new day rose. Today he was hers.

Light The Way Back

The only good thing about Wednesday is that it’s ‘Friday Fictioneers‘ time again. A 100 word photo prompt hosted by the fab Rochelle Wisoff-Fields. Click on the linky, read all the others and get yourself onto the programme…..

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Photo Copyright : Dawn M. Miller

The first lamp was lit at quarter to six. Jeannie smelt the change in the air. She wiped her hands on her apron and reached for the shutters. The second lamp was lit at ten past six. The balmy evening sky turned black. A raging wind danced a tango through the harbour. The third lamp was lit at twenty past six. The waves lashed higher, fell back and then rose higher still. Wives and mothers prayed to Poseidon for the men out at sea. By the time the storm broke, every lamp from the village was on Jeannie’s front porch, guiding the boats safely home.

Looking For Love

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I’m looking for love,

In all the wrong places,

Following the crowd,

And all the old faces,

I’m kissing the frogs,

But never a prince,

Looking for someone,

To leave fingerprints.

*

I’m looking for love,

In all the wrong stations,

Catching the train,

To pretend situations.

I’m still in third class,

Not moving to first,

Standing room only,

I’m falling head first.

*

I’m looking for love,

In all the wrong guises,

Protecting my heart,

From pain and surprises,

I see all my chances,

In rose tinted lenses,

Still chasing heroes,

Till I come to my senses.

The Archway

Time again for the ‘Haibun Thinking Challenge’ This weeks prompts are a photo from Sally of My Beautiful Things, and a piece of art from Anja of Oh Pithy Me. I have chosen Sally’s photo. If you would like to have a go, head over and take a look, have a read and then why not give it a go yourself.

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At the eastern edge of the graveyard a barren patch of grass runs from the chapel’s stone turret to the loose brick wall along the edge.  A peculiar spot of earth that has never flourished and where generations of children have grown up on folk lore and legend as to why. Some say a village girl was burned as a witch and the ground was so badly scorched by the heat, nothing has ever grown since. Others say a young boy was hanged from a tree for poaching a rabbit and his swinging shadow casts a permanent veil across the ground. Although the stories may alter and each generation adds a little more colour to its telling, there is always one part that remains constant. A lullaby whisper that can be heard on the wind,

Sing a song of death,

With whispered words to call me,

Run child, run child, run.

But when summer comes and the scent of honeysuckle lingers in the breeze. The villagers gather to honour the tales of old. To an outsider, the symbolism of the tall wooden archway festooned with flowers would seem rather quaint, just a bygone reminder of summer festivals and pagan celebrations. But an outsider would never see this sacred ritual. They would never see the children gather, all in white, barefoot and rosy cheeked. They would never see the elders standing back with heads bowed low. They would never see the sacrificial child, the one with the daisy chain crown, walk under the arch and never return. But perhaps they would catch a whisper or a chant on the wind,

Sing a song of death,

With rising chants we call you,

Run child, run child, run.