Turning the Corner

”Faith from Ruin” last time ~ Reasons

” Still round the corner there may wait, A new road or a secret gate.’ ” Ida’s softly etched face smiled at Frank then Clara as she explained.

“I found that quote years ago. Do you know Tolkien? Oh of course you do. Well he wrote more than a story about a Hobbit and a merry band of misfits lookin’ for a ring. His poetry is magical. At a place in my life this quote brought me much comfort and today I’m giving it to you.”

Clara’s eyes pooled and spilled over as a deep sob escaped. Her lowered head swayed while she spoke.

“The last few months in Allentown were hell. No one knew what Shane was like. They all loved him. I didn’t have support from my family or friends. No one believed me!”

Ida crossed the room, retrieve  tissues from the window sill, handed them to Clara while Frank squeezed her hand.

“When I found you guys, it was, just too good to be true. I’m not sure how I deserve the goodness you’ve given me . . . us. We . . . I don’t know how we will ever repay you. It’s almost too much.”

Her head dropped onto crossed armed and she wept.

Ida stood, put her arm across Clara’s back, and urged her to stand.

“Frank, you keep little Lucy entertained for a bit. Dear, let’s get some fresh air.”

Image courtesy of Unsplash.

The screen door slapped the door jam as they walked away from the back of the  motel. Ida led her toward the greenness of the awakening farm fields where a furrowed double track country road began. There was a sharp edge to the air and the vividness of a thunderstorm brewing in the west.

“Honey, your road began when you left Allentown. Brand new, your future in front of you. Drove blindly in a direction and God’s hand led you here. To us.”

She swept Clara’s hand into both of hers and continued.

“You are our gift too. We missed out on kids and grandkids. It wasn’t in God’s plan.”

The brittle old straw rustled and swished beneath their feet and a brief silence held them.

“But we always had each other and I’ve never regretted the road I chose.”

Ida stopped and faced Clara. With heartfelt sincerity she pressed on.

“We have a chance to make a difference Clara and in this short time we’ve grown to love you and little Lucy. We want to help however we can even if it’s just a little room, babysitting and dinner every night while you get on your feet.”

A smile teased the corner of Clara’s mouth and with both hands she scrubbed away the tears. She turned and looked down the long  Iowa country road that disappeared in the distance.

“Ida, I promise, I won’t take advantage. I accept your gift. Lucy and I have found a new family. I’m ready to walk through that secret gate.”


Sometimes you have to slap your muse around and kick her in the shins to get things moving. This long spell of missing inspiration had to come to an end and sometimes you just need to do it. Start writing.

I found the wonderful Tolkien quote along with the photograph at Write On Edge. Their prompt gave me 500 words to work with and I pried out a new post for Faith from Ruin.

I liked the lyrics in Metallica’s song “Nothing Else Matters” but decided to find a good cover. This one by Lissie fit the bill perfect! The song sung by a woman seemed appropriate, and honestly? She kills it! Might like it better than the original.

Writing Prompt: 2014, Week 12


”Faith from Ruin” last time ~ Hope Disappeared

Ida and Frank “kidnapped” Lucy for a trip to the grocery store. Frank, with a wink and sly grin imparted the advice, “stick close kid. Ol’ Frank’ll take care of yuh.”

Clara settled in the kitchen at the worn farm table still burdened by her overnight brooding. She clenched her eyes tight and shook her head vigorously, determined to brush off her trip down a slippery, jagged memory lane. With hands wrapped around a steamy mug of coffee sweetened with Ida’s homemade pumpkin spice creamer, she sipped and breathed in the sweet aroma and decided it was time to move on.

Her mind began to clear, and hunger edged in. She got up and  cut thick  slices of Ida’s homemade bread to toast and slather  with butter and honey. She crunched through the sweet buttery treat, giggling as the honey dripped down her hands and on her chin.

Lucy burst through the door chattering away as Frank and Ida bustled in, arms laden with bags of food. They visited comfortably as the pantry and fridge were reloaded. When they were done, Lucy was sent to the Lerner’s living room with a new pack of crayons, pencils and coloring books she and Frank had “snuck” into the shopping cart. A fresh pot of coffee brewed and mugs filled, the adults sat around the table.

Clara looked into her mug and began, “I’ve been doing a lot of thinking. I want to be completely honest with you. You guys deserve that, especially since you’ve treated Lucy and I like family.”

Swallowing hard, she took a deep breath and continued. “Lucy and I are running, well not really running, um, we’re finding a new place. Lucy needs happiness and stability. So do I. The black eye was from my husband. I warned him but, um. God! He drinks too much and he’s an abusive ass!”

Clara quickly continued, cutting Ida off as she tried to say something. “Shane, my husband, is not Lucy’s dad, so we don’t have that and I haven’t done anything illegal. I just loaded us up, and, left. I didn’t have a place, just a distance; far enough he wouldn’t want to come after me. I’m so hurt and I have scars on my heart and I’m not sure I can learn to love again.”

Ida reached over gently grasped Clara’s hand, and smiled. “Honey, we could see clear as day you needed refuge. I told you the first night, stay as long as you need and don’t worry ’bout the money. There’s no guaranty in life and Lord knows we can’t always count on those we love.”

Clara looked at Frank who had grabbed hold of her other hand and pulled it toward him. He thought carefully while he slowly spoke. “Clara, love’s like a rock. Sometimes smooth. Sometimes rough. We surrender to it. We learn when it knocks us around so we decide to throw that rock away, and these hazards of love never more will trouble us.”


This week at Write at the Merge, Write on Edge’s writing prompt, two quotes were give as inspiration. I chose  the quote in the image below and which is featured in the piece in bold itallics. I was able to work it into the much needed conversation between Clara and the Lerner’s. The P!nk/Nate Reuss song also had lyrics and a theme that fit where Clara is emotionally.

The Space Between

”Faith from Ruin” last time ~ Graceful Kindness

“Good morning Mommy!” her tiny voice chimed. “Are you awake?”

Clara stretched and turned her head toward her daughter. A laugh caught in her yawn “I am now. Let’s get dressed and go see Miss Ida.”

“For cookies?”

“I don’t know Button. It’s rude to ask, but if she offers, sure.”

After showers and some much needed girl primping, they slipped on light jackets against the brisk Northern air that blew in overnight. This time the office was warmly lit, and the door unlocked. Clara closer her eyes and breathed in the smell of fresh brewed coffee. She saw a beautifully set side table, resplendent with treats and delicate cups for coffee. She hadn’t noticed the welcoming warmth of the tiny lobby the night before.

Sharons table & cookies

“Clara! How wonderful. Did you and Lucy sleep well last night? Help yourself to a cup of coffee and a cookie.”

They stepped over to the table. Clara poured a cup of coffee and handed a cookie to Lucy and took one for herself.

“Ida, thank you so much for your kindness. Shall we get thing squared away?”

Waving her off Ida smiled wide and pooh-poohed, “Oh, pshh! I can see plain as day you need a place for a bit. Just fill out a room card and don’t even worry about the rest.”

Her eyes widened and filled she stammered, “I-I don’t know how you know, but I-I can’t thank you enough.”

She turned away, sniffled swiping at her eyes. “Um, can you tell me where St. James Church is? I, um, well I need to find it.”

“Sure thing sweetie. Come look at the town map.”


Clara couldn’t explain why she trusted Ida completely, but she took her up on the offer to watch Lucy while she went to St. James. She parked her silver Malibu on the street in front of the church. The church was like a miniature Gothic cathedral, complete with a tower and steeply pitched roof which made it appear much taller. Her sneakers squeaked on the shiny marble floors. She dipped fingers into cool Holy water and blessed silently, Father-Son-Holy Spirit. She drifted forward quietly, slid into a pew, first seated on the cool oak then kneeling on sunken, well-worn kneelers.

The familiar comfort of echoes, and groans always found within sacred walls, eased her worries, walls where she felt safe from pain. Eyes closed she saw arms stretch out to her offering warmth and repose. She heard occasional quiet tap tap taps and kneelers creak as other mortals came and went.

Clara slowly calmed into steady tranquility as her internal conversation continued and the space between the turmoil of her flight, and the peace where her soul truth dwelt was bridged.


Write at the Merge-Week 36

This week at Write at the Merge we were given this for inspiration:

“This week, I’m going to ask you to write about the space between, the pause between two events using the following as prompts: Led Zepplin’s Ramble On or Dave Matthews Band ‘The Space Between’. I’m going to ask you to write about the space between, the pause between two events”

I’m a huge Dave Matthews fan back before they were big and touring all over the Northern US playing in small venues and stacking up fans. Of course, I chose The Space Between and lucky me, it is perfect for Faith from Ruin.

Photo of cookies and coffee provided lovingly by my dear friend Sharon. A piece of her heavenly home.