Bleed Until the End

I’ve learned to bleed, in thirty-three words.

I’ve opened veins to pour out love.

I’ve hemorrhaged happiness and staunched with sorrow.

I’ve transfused word pints to feed my muse.

I’ve learned to fly.

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Trifecta is ending it’s run encouraging writers to write and stretch out of the need for over verbosity. This is my farewell submission to one of my favorite writing prompts. I am sad to lose this outlet of creativity.

This final week they are cutting us lose with these instructions:

“There’s no topic, no word, just a free write. Go anywhere your mind wants to travel.  Take us there too.  Just make it count, leave your blood all over this page.  Thirty-three words exactly.  Of course.  We couldn’t end it any other way. “

I took my cue from the fourth sentence.

Thanks to the editors for giving me the tools to hone and sharpen my skill. You will be greatly missed.

Trifextra: Week 105 The End

Trifextra: Week 105
The End

 

 

 

I Can Change

I can change,

but I won’t change who I am. I have behaviors, attitudes, actions, that hinder and alter the way I can, and should interact within my own life as well as with friends, family, acquaintances and even strangers.

I can change,

judging into loving.
fear into confidence.
anger into calmness.
melancholy into happiness.
cynicism into teaching.
weariness into fitness.

These can change me, so I can see an image of a proud and confident woman in the mirror, and project that same pride and confidence to all who are around me.

These are words. Words just lie on a page (or a computer screen), inanimate, inactive. Written and not lived and acted upon, they become a bittersweet symphony. I need to pick up these words and roll them around in my soul, wrap them around my heart and begin living them, because

I can change.

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Week 99 at Trifecta has this prompt: We’re asking for your own resolutions in just three words.  Make it count.

Graceful Kindness

Last ”Faith from Ruin” post ~ Three Strikes

They arrive late in the night and the darkness was quiet and deep. She decided to wait until morning to go to St. James, worried a nighttime door knock might alarm the priest. Clara had been careful with the money and decided to spend another night in a motel. The convenience store clerk told her about the Lakeshore Motel, a cheap, clean motel owned by his Aunt and Uncle. He called ahead so they would know she was coming.

Ida Lerner opened the office door where she waited in a tattered yellow terrycloth robe and moccasin style slippers. Burdened with their bags, Clara and Lucy whisked inside by a brisk Autumn wind. Ida’s face bore the grace of happiness crinkles around her gentle eyes. She shuffled behind the counter, looked up at Clara and a smile warmed her face

“Sweetie, you must be exhausted. Let’s just wait to do this in the mornin’ after you’ve had some sleep.”

Clara tried to protest, but Ida, looked away and quickly continued,

“I’ll putcha down at the end where it’s nice ‘n quiet. There’s no neighbors down there an’ you sleep as long as you like. I’ll be here when yer ready.”

She tottered around the counter, pressed the key into Clara’s hand and hugged the robe around herself. Crouching down eye to eye with Lucy in a covert tone, ” You come and see Miss Ida in the mornin’ for cookies and milk.” then glanced up at Clara and winked. Lucy smiled shyly, and hid behind her mother’s arm.

Clara caressed Lucy’s face as she nuzzled her elbow, hoisted their bags, and smiling, “Thanks, Mrs…..”

“Ida dear. Just call me Ida.”

“Thanks, and goodnight Ida.”

Ida ushered the pair outside, and locked up. They wobbled to the last door and turned the key to a quaint clean room with two beds. She dropped the duffles on the floor.

Lucy tucked in, she whispered, “Our dreams are on the way baby,” wiped blurry tears and fell asleep.

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Trifextra: Week 93

Trifextra: Week 93

Inspiration for today’s piece was drawn from Trifecta Week Ninety-three. The word this week is GRACE. As always, third definition :

GRACE
3)  a : a charming or attractive trait or characteristic
: a pleasing appearance or effect : charm <all the grace of youth — John Buchan>
: ease and suppleness of movement or bearing

Click the badge there on the left and go read some of the other submissions. There are some great writers who participate in this weekly challenge.

Inspiration also from an awesome song by Simon & Garfunkel “Bridge Over Troubled Water”

Three Strikes

Last “Faith from Ruin” post ~ Leave it Behind 

She threw the phone across the cab of the car. Shane’s number and ringtone. Already two phone calls. She wasn’t interested in more threats, the same crap hashed over a third time. This was not going to be a bowling turkey with three strikes because there were no benefits, no good outcome from yet another conversation. This was more like baseball, three strikes and you’re out.

When Clara stopped the night before in Hamilton she spent some precious money on a room. The Denny’s waitress told her Millie’s Tavern rented rooms upstairs. A scaled-down version of a “No Tell Motel”.  She and Lucy got some much needed sleep in a real bed. Today she was determined to get another 800 miles down the road. That morning in Denny’s she did some Google Map research on their free wifi. She needed to find state highways through small towns. She would continue ever westward to get them in the middle of Iowa by the end of the day. Whatever town she found herself in at the end of they day would become their new home.

Lucy sat in the backseat playing games on Clara’s iPad. She found it under the passenger seat while retrieving a dropped purple crayon. Clara wondered when she rushed out of the house where it was, but hurried packing prevented extravagant searching. She was relieve for another distraction for Lucy and thrilled the battery wasn’t dead.

She found herself relaxing as the distance grew. The landscape changed and every town they passed through offered something interesting. Clara and Lucy made a game of finding something weird or funny in each town and when they did, Lucy drew a picture.

They gathered miles and drove from day to night. Road signs declared Spencer would be the last town. A billboard caught her attention. An image of Jesus at a door and the caption,

“Knock and it shall be opened.
St. James Catholic Church-Our doors are always open.”

Spencer was end of the road and so she decided to find the church.

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This week Trifecta is asking for 33-333 words using the third definition of the word TURKEY.

1: a large North American gallinaceous bird (Meleagris gallopavo) that is domesticated in most parts of the world
2: failure, flop; especially : a theatrical production that has failed
3: three successive strikes in bowling
4: a stupid, foolish, or inept person

Hoobastank’s “Dissappear” fits Clara and Lucy’s escape. Clara needs to make them disappear and find a place to begin again.

Trifecta: Week 92

Trifecta: Week 92

The Long Road

Last ”Faith from Ruin” installment — Evil Robots

The night and the road droned endlessly. She was surprised and thankful fatigue was no where near. The conversation with Shane had amped her, zapping away every drop of weariness she had felt before the nasty exchange. Thankfully, Lucy, who woke when she got back into the car, fell back asleep after a drink of water and Clara’s special lullaby.

Her wide-awake state, the emptiness of the road, and the quiet car gave her too much time in her own head. Her mind jumped from her anger and fear of Shane, to resentment and more anger toward her sister, then off to regret and self-loathing for falling for a jerk like Shane to begin with, then, the observations of everyone else. She didn’t want the judgmental brand “Abused Wife.” Rather if she were to be branded she would rather be judged “Survivor,” or”Savvy.”

Another four hours driving and pangs of hunger gnawed. She started to look for mile markers and signs for the next town. She watched for overpasses with off ramps where signs were often posted on the on ramp side. A few attentive miles paid off when a familiar box of green, numbers and letters like blinding beams announced 12 miles to Hamilton. She had no idea what to expect, but decided it was time for a break.

millies tavern

Fifteen minutes later, Clara drove into a little hamlet and passed a 24-hour Denny’s. Further on, a raucous, rowdy bar with the harmless, yet titillating name “Millie’s Tavern” slid past. She drove on and passed quiet storefronts and empty side streets. Other than Millie’s, Hamilton was the quintessential sleepy town. She turned around in the elementary school parking lot and headed back to Denny’s.

She parked and shut the car off. Her legs tingled and ears rang slightly from the absence of road noise. Lucy sat up, bleary eyed and disoriented.

“Mommy? Where are we?”

“Are you hungry Button? I’m starving! Let’s go have pancakes, OK?”

“Yay! With strawberries?”

“Absolutely.”

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This time for Faith from Ruin, I’m giving you 330 words and I’m writing with inspiration from two different prompt, Trifecta and Write On Edge’s Write at the Merge. Can’t have a post without a good song to go with it. Sheryl Crow is an upbeat song but she talks about winding roads and faded signs, so hey, I made it work.
Trifextra: Week 91

Trifextra: Week 91

Trifecta’s (post 33-333 words) word this week, third definition is:

BRAND (noun)
1a : a charred piece of wood
b : firebrand
c : something (as lightning) that resembles a firebrand
2: sword
3a (1) : a mark made by burning with a hot iron to attest manufacture or quality or to designate ownership
(2) : a printed mark made for similar purposes : trademark
b (1) : a mark put on criminals with a hot iron
(2) : a mark of disgrace : stigma <the brand of poverty

AND

Write at the Merge (a now defunct site) provided the photo “Millie’s Tavern” and a song by The Beastie Boys. I chose inspiration from the photo only. Post is to be done with a word limit of no more than 500 words.

Charming Lucy

Last  ”Faith from Ruin” installment — Right is Right

“Mommy, how come we aren’t going home?”

Not ready for this, she quietly mulled the possible answers. Saying too much upsets Lucy; too little could elicit infinite “Why?” which she could end in frustration, anger, tears or all three. This had to be kept light, and fun as long as possible.

“Mommy?”

“Hmm? Sorry. Did you want to play Angry Birds?”

Handing the phone back she hoped changing the subject would put her off a while.

“Not really. I wanted to play with Reagan. Can I?”

Peeking in the rearview she saw determination in Lucy’s eyes and knew she would have to persuade her like a shaman using an oboe to charm a cobra in order to make the child understand.

Intent on the road, she carefully chose simple, meaningful words.

“Remember I said we were going on an adventure?”

“Uh huh.”

“It’s like Rapunzel in Tangled. She had to run away with Flynn. They had lots of adventures. Sometimes scary, sometimes fun. They made new friends and everyone lived happy ever after.”

“Where are going mommy? What about Shane?”

“I don’t know yet baby. We won’t see Shane again.”

Lucy’s head dipped down, her mouth pinched and a her features clouded. “Good. He’s a meanie poopy head.”

Clara bit her cheek to suppress the shocked giggle threatening to escape. She looked in the rearview, “Lucy.”

Lucy looked up, “What?”

“Love you lollipop.”

A smile spread across her face like liquid sunshine, “Love you lemon drop!” Shoulders scrunched, she tipped her head back as her twittering giggle broke the ice and Clara released her laugh.

Lucy’s giggles ended with a dramatic Kindergarten, “ahhhh!” A curious glint twinkled in her eyes as she caught her mothers eyes, “Knock knock!”

“Who’s there?”

“FENCE!”

“Fence who?”

“Fence I colored the princess!”

Laughter burst uncontrollably, and included generous laugh-tears.

“Lucy, that’s silly! You’re gonna make mommy wreck! PlayAngry Birds. See if you can beat the next level.”

Clara turned the radio on and settled in to drive.

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Trifecta: Week Eighty-Seven asks for 33-333 words from the prompt “Charm”, 3rd definition:

CHARM (verb) (3rd definition) 3: to control (an animal) typically by charms (as the playing of music)

Trifecta: Week 87

Trifecta: Week 87