Fog

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He sniffs the damp fence post, a reveal of who came before.
Deciding all is well, he leaves his mark
and we continue on.
Fog sneaks in behind us, a foreshadowing of storm.
We will not venture out into early morning falling flakes,
only because I fear ice that lays waiting to surprise,
A turn of seasons offers its own perspective,
leaving its mark for me to decipher.

 

My Heart

My heart is my secret weapon.

No one knows, only I.

I know how to pull back the bowstring, just right, not to far, and not too loose. Then let go. Let it go and do as it will. Ascend into the air and fall where it must. That’s the important part – plan and let go. Let the arrow do it’s job.

It was an odd day. It was the Day of The Snow Eclipse. No one invited it. It just happened. An unwelcome visitor ending festivities minutes after completion, too soon.

I pulled out a shawl I tucked away in case, always in case, it is needed. I wrapped it around to warm my shoulders.  It’s magenta of the softest wool spun by hand and knit with intention. Each stitch pulled and tied with meaning, hope for outcome. Yet leaving the wearer to do as they will.

The crowd dispersed quickly as the dry flakes floated to their rest. Really, a quick melt. The days had been warm, so a long life was not in their cards. A party of white would have to wait for the days to come.

I packed my cards and small table, cloth and electric candles into the petite suitcase that had been carried by my grandmother a century ago with its precious cargo nestled inside. Now, it was electric candles instead of beeswax because today’s weather brings little rain and only dry snow. It was a labor of love as I placed each ancestral piece into its own spot carved out of foam covered with silk cloth.

With a click, a lock secured the broken clasp that no longer held itself together, time having worn it down to indifference.

I stood, handle firmly gripped as I lifted what shouldn’t be heavy, yet it always was at the end of a long day of reading and inquiry. Straightening my back and taking a step forward, my booted foot caught the fringe of my skirt and I felt myself in free fall. You know the one, when time seems to stop and you tell yourself that you are falling, as if you didn’t know. And you fall with nothing to catch yourself, tumbling over the small suitcase, and one more time just for assurance’s sake.

It’s not so bad when one is all alone. In the dark and quiet and the words can flow with ease.

Before I could take a breath, I heard a snicker.

Great. Someone saw my graceful tango with fringe, boot, and suitcase.

Unable to untangle myself, I didn’t turn around or hold back to see the origin of the annoyance.

“So don’t why don’t you make yourself useful and…”

Before I could finish, a leather gloved hand, graceful but strong offered itself. Green leather, a bronze patina. Small swirls edged into it with a delicate finesse.

“And so I shall,” a gentle voice flowed over me.

Oh, yes. I forget too easily about my secret weapon.

Thankfully, the honeyed scent from the arm now balancing me,

reminded me,

reminded me,

remind me…

 

Author’s Note:

Today we met to write. My first line chosen at random was : My heart is my secret weapon.

The words to include: eclipse, invited, minutes, sincker, magaenta, colleague, ascend, and labor. I think I only missed “colleague.”

 

 

 

 

Dog

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There is something holy
about the three of us
here in bed together,
a clouded sky at
snow’s first settling.

When you came to us
we were only two,
you made three,
a sacred number.

As you press against me
your gentle breathing
silky coat
a comfort to my day,
I am guarded from
that which diminishes
that which matters less.

A ternary,
we sleep.
Woman, man, and dog.

Patience

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Day Twenty-Eight

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In spring flowers are to bloom,
buds to burst with life,
sun to warm ground
awakening that which slumbers.

Here snow aligns itself along
reaching limbs, arcing to ground
in acceptance of something that
cannot be controlled, bending in
accommodation, knowing softness
is cardinal and warmth retraces
its steps.

I pause for season to shift, for
sun or snow to answer. I bow
to you, and rest avowed
in transformation.

 

 

Author’s Note:

A spring snow and Beltane in our lovely and mischievious Colorado is my prompt today.

Shards

Our writing group meets occasionally. It’s not nearly enough. Today we met to eat and catch up and laugh and revel in one another’s company surrounded by Christmas cheer. And we wrote. It was a joy. Thank you, Diane, Sandy, Dorothea, and Crystal. And always in our hearts, if not present – Niki, Sheila, and Annette.

Today we grabbed some chapter titles out of several books on the shelves surrounding us for our story starters. Five words trickled off the pages to be used as we wrote. You can see them following my story.

 

 

Shards

“Never keep the fork in the left hand while drinking water.”

“Excuse me?”

Looking down through her wing-tipped glasses, past her long pointed nose, and across the table, she bullseyed onto my left hand and repeated, “Never keep the fork in the left hand while drinking water.”

Then she returned to pick up her fork with a dainty bit of Christmas pudding placed every so politely at the tip and raised it up to her pursed lips, only to pause as they unlocked to allow the sweet to disappear.

I felt a sharp jab at my knee under the table as Connery whispered into my ear, “Stop staring.” The jab hit just right to cause enough pain to startle me. I dropped my fork and water glass onto the white dessert plate rimmed in gold and trimmed with playful green holly leaves and three teeny tiny pricks of red.

The quiet was deafening as everyone froze to stare at me. Again. Shards flew everywhere. There was a gasp out of the old lady’s locked lips, a sigh, a roll of the eyes ending with an excruciating “Humph!” while her boney long fingers settled not so delicately into her lap.

I stood. Short curtsied. And excused myself before the tears in my eyes sealed off my exit.

Instead of running upstairs and barricading myself into my room for the rest of Christmas Day, like I always do, because “God only knows what she will do next!” had become the expectation, I turned right instead of left. My quick step turned into a full out run as I made my way down the long hallway past the ornate mirrors and around the center table with lion’s claw feet balancing a Christmas tree that reached higher than my apartment ceiling. I continued across the Persian runners to the door hung heavy with evergreen boughs and chartreuse bows and gold and silver balls larger than my head. It was her kingdom. She ran it well.

Charles was not there to open the doors for me. It didn’t matter. With all my might I pulled the double doors open and ran down the icy steps across the newly snow covered drive and into the woods that lined the road into my grandmother’s estate.

I wouldn’t be missed. Everyone could now relax without me there to cause more damage. Peace would quickly descend with my exit leaving only the whistling breathing of the grand dame rising above the stilted tea sipping and gazing out the window into the crystal white jungle where freedom called everyone, most too afraid to answer. Inheritances have power, even more than howl of the wolf or the glow of the full moon or the sea blown wind as they beckoned to the souls encased behind glass and bricks and wrapped in velvet. Some ignored it completely. Others wished. I answered.

Once hidden within the trees, I stopped to look back. I touched the necklace that hung around my neck to be sure it was safe. It was a habit I formed when I first received this lucky charm. Ignoring the cold and wet snow seeping into my required lace covered slippers, my first thought was to wonder how much it cost the old woman to pay the window washers to keep all those windows clean.

They were always spotless, clear and crystalline. One of my earliest memories of summer visits at the estate were of window washers arriving early morning as the sun rose after an evening storm. It didn’t matter that an afternoon squall would again throw its tears against those rectangular eyes hoping someone would notice. No, the window washers would just stop where they were to return the next day. Not to pick up from where they left off, but at the beginning, the windows the old woman used.

I enjoyed watching them. They would laugh and joke and sing. Something seldom heard in this house. I looked forward to the thunderstorms, not only because I liked to stand on the veranda and let the rain pour over me. But I knew I would soon be in the presence of joy.

Once a window broke accidentally as they were going about their regular post-rain duty and glass shattered into the library where the old lady and I were reading.

The window washers were immediately dismissed and told to never return. She had some cruel words for them. They had put up with so much from her for so long I wondered why they ever returned at all.

I stood back holding my breath as the old lady scolded them. One of them noticed and winked as if it was all in a days work. I think he was glad to be released from the prison.

I slipped away as they were packing up their tools. She would never miss me. I was never missed, only tolerated when I was noticed. So I needn’t worry about being caught talking to the freed criminals.

“I am sorry I won’t see you again.”

The one who winked at me smiled, and held out his hand. “Open your hand and promise me to always be yourself?”

His words confused me, but I obliged.

I extended my hand, palm open, “I promise.”

He dropped a small crystal into my hand.

“It’s a glass goose. I wash windows for my father. But at night I spin glass for me.”

“Hurry up!!!” called his partner now in the drivers seat gunning the engine. “Let’s get out of here. Good-by and good riddance.”

“Promise?” He winked again and I noticed that he had one green eye and one blue eye.

“Promise.” I smiled and closed my fingers around the goose and brought it to my heart. My other grandma always told me that when I got something I loved to place it next to my heart and breath in deeply so our heartbeats would become one.

As I looked through the boughs draped with snow into the lighted windows, I reached to my heart where the crystal goose hung on a silver chair around my neck.

 

 

Our prompts:
Opening line chosen at random:
1. Oysters and other shellfish
2. Your mustache attracts baby goats
3. Backbone pie
4. Her new perfume attracts circus folk
5. Never keep the fork in the left hand while drinking water
6. Don’t let your elbows stick out like buttresses
7. A Key to Good Digestion
Words to be incorporated:
kingdom     lucky charm   window washer   jungle   knees   chartreuse

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Winter Geese, the Solstice

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If I hadn’t lifted up to see,
taken my eyes from my path,
you would have passed from sight
without a hint of your glory.

I was breaking new ground,
a new snow, new for me,
my feet to hold me firm,
but you startled me.

A path was there, other
imprints to follow, guide,
iced but sure, not my size but
there to lead.

I stepped abreast,
aside the clough and rents,
into fresh snow
where no road could be discerned,
and then your call.

I understand, fear no more to
stay me within rimy fissures. I feel
your soft earth beneath powdered
snow, my eyes above to see your sun.

.
.
.
Author’s Note:

We finally had a good snowfall. Good for how snow now comes. Not as much as it use to. Dryer winters. Less cold. Weather has changed.

Yet, there is much that doesn’t change. Winter Solstice comes again and new Light re-enters. But if I am too connected to the path, the path is all I see.

I must remember to look up, especially when I am called.

My doggie, Benny, gets me outside, a lot. He now has a coat and boots and we walk in all but the coldest weather. It’s good for me, not only physically but for my soul.

I look up more. I’m less afraid to step off the beaten path. I hear our Holy One’s voice that I once ignored, or maybe, couldn’t hear…

 

May you find Light within, and release yourself to allow it to shine out.
May you give Compassion as your gift in this holy season and beyond.
May you walk the new year softly upon this Earth honoring All…
creatures, plants, rocks and stars…
for we truly are One.

Happy Solstice.

Amen. Munay. Aho.
Lexanne