Kissing Toads

I’m once more attempting Al’s fabulous prompts. I’ve missed a couple of the Haibun Thinking Challenges, but here is this weeks. Haibun is a Japanese literary form that combines one or more paragraphs of your written narrative (prose) with a concentrated (short) poem – the haiku. Hai stands for haiku, bun stands for prose. It’s a great way of getting your creative juices flowing, why don’t you follow the link and have a go.

There are two photos provided this week, I’ve chosen the one below. I’m got a bit of an historical thing going on this week, not sure why, but hey a girl’s gotta dream …….



“Find them before daybreak” bellowed the dark figure from his mount.

The thumping sound of hooves grew louder and ever closer. Clara could see the stallion’s nostrils flaring in and out. Foams of saliva congealed at the edges as its teeth bore down on the bit. The rider pulled hard on the reins and a trail of white foam flew across his thigh. He raised a sword high above his head, the metal glistening in the darkness catching the moonlight and shattering it in to a thousand tiny fragments that only seemed to emphasise his savagery.

Clara wrapped the shawl tighter round the two small boys huddled by her knees. Her heart beating so fast and loud in her ears she thought the men would surely hear. Buried beneath the rushes, their feet in the rising water, all three shivered with cold as much as fear. The sound of the dogs moving off through the woods had Clara raising her head above the reeds. She straightened, brushing the damp moss off her dress and stood back from the boys.

“Ok they’ve gone, we need to move quickly” she whispered, all the while her eyes furtively scanning the shores of the river and the forest entrance. The smallest boy, Jonathan, looked up in both awe and apprehension.

“Can’t we go home Clara, I’m cold and I miss my blanket”.

Clara looked down and caught the tears edging his eyes, the ones he was fighting so hard to keep at bay. She smoothed her hand over his forehead moving a loose curl away from his face, and smiled. Perhaps searching for toads in the dead of night wasn’t their best idea after all. She nodded at the two boys, held out her hands and turned towards the house. Papa would be furious; she’d already seen his face when his horse passed them earlier. But she knew he wouldn’t be angry for long. When Mama had told her the story about having to kiss a lot of frogs to meet a prince, Clara thought there was no time like the present and if she started now that she was nine she would find him in no time. Her plan was fool proof, or it would have been without her brothers in tow. She would just have to come back tomorrow night on her own.


 Beware of kissing toads,

An innocent kiss can burn,

Love will look for you.


6 thoughts on “Kissing Toads

  1. Hah wow, that is truly stunning, I used to ride and this bit: Foams of saliva congealed at the edges as its teeth bore down on the bit. The rider pulled hard on the reins and a trail of white foam flew across his thigh. was absolutely amazing. I really want to put this in my scrapbook blog, really really wonderful read, really xx

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