Colleen’s Weekly #Poetry Challenge

#TankaTuesday Weekly #Poetry Challenge No. 243, #SynonymsOnly

Family & Peace

Image by Free-Photos from Pixabay

in the house
the tribe has fled
blood-soaked through floorboards
evil in the quiet space
they whispered of love that fled
of laughter that has turned to dust
their lives were taken while harmony slept
rest in the quiet hush of his Holy Hand…

© Anita Dawes 2021

MLMM Wordle #257 ~ #Poetry

Mindlovemisery’s Menagerie

The cicatrix stuck out like a sore thumb
What a pity the tree didn’t have
proprioception, allowing it to move out of the way.
Strange thoughts going through my mind
As I walked through the woods.
I have no need to leave crumbs to find my way back
The last time I was here, a strange luminous light
drove me mad, as I could not discover what it was.
I could not suddenly pretend to believe in fairies
That mix of little folk that like to tease
Maybe, after a lifetime of study
I will be lucky to see one of the shining folks for myself.
An hour in, there it was, luminous, shining
Could this be the original light from so long ago?
Can I continue to deny that there is something
other than myself living in these woods?

© Anita Dawes 2021

The Sunday Whirl ~ Wordle 518 ~ #Poetry

I watch the yellow leaves of autumn falling
On coming winter, carpets the land with new colour
My phone rings, down the line I hear the bad news
Late last night our pastor took a new journey
One not planned. His wheels hit a patch of oil
Sending his car over the bridge
Our small village gathered
Out tears mingled with the flowers we held
Candlelight flickered like dancing stars
We could feel our pastor reaching out
Touching the living, one last time
With his soft-spoken words…

© Anita Dawes 2021

#FFFC ~ Heads ~ #Poetry

Fandango’s Flash Fiction Challenge #134

The photo is from Pinterest.

For the visually challenged writer, the photo is of woman sitting on a chair in front of a bathroom sink and putting on a head on top of her body.

Wurzel Gummidge comes to mind
That loveable scarecrow
Reminding me of the many heads
We all must swap on a daily basis
Thank God for head number two
Or I would not remember my name
This changes from moment to moment
There are times when I’m doing a job
And it all goes belly up
This tells me I am wearing the wrong head for the job
Where would we be without our multi-facetted minds?

© Anita Dawes 2021

MLMM ~ Wordle #256 ~#Poetry

Mindlovemisery’s Menagerie

How can a page from a story run through my grey matter
Take hold of the back of my neck to have a gorgonize effect
I heard the doorbell ring, decided to ignore it
I knew it would be my old pal, Lucky
Going on about the strange landmark
He found on a map he picked up in a flea market
Undoing the lock from my bike
Reminding myself to get a new pedal
I rode around the vicinage
Trying to find the house described on the page
As I rode through the tunnel
I felt a sudden rush of wind
A door opened in the middle of the tunnel
I could see the crusade
The Knight’s Templars were being slaughtered
I could hear the clash of metal, the screams of the dying
I could see men, falling from their horse
And horses falling over men
I could smell the earth, the iron in the air
I will admit I happen to have a vivid imagination, but
On reaching home, I found blood spatter on my t-shirt…

© Anita Dawes 2021

Eugi’s Weekly Prompt ~ Journey ~ #Poetry

Eugi’s Weekly Prompt – Journey – Sept. 2, 2021

I had been walking for two hours
The road ahead looked long
My feet had moved a lot of roads behind me
I didn’t seem to be getting anywhere
The road kept stretching,
like soft coloured bubble gum
faces were beginning to form
hands held out towards me
begging, pleading for help
I didn’t dare look behind me
Thinking of Lot, being turned into a pillar of salt
I could hear one voice above the whispers
The fallen souls, the unwanted
They cannot be allowed to reincarnate
The likes of Hitler and many more
If the world stands any chance of surviving
Do not feel sorry for them
They will become part of the road soon enough
Not everyone can see what you have
If you decide to write about your journey
As your mind is telling me
No one will believe you
So, remember to call it fiction…

© Anita Dawes 2021

The Sunday Whirl ~ Wordle 517

I believe a filter for the brain should be available on the NHS
I have met a few people of late that could do with one
I must admit, I was right on this occasion
The monkey cage was filthy
I could sense their hunger as they huddled in the corner
Trying to get away from the cold
It is never normally like this
I left my complaint at the office
They are shorthanded and couldn’t deny
That some of the cages had fallen behind
I wish I could help tidy up
Before I could finish the sentence
She asked which days I could volunteer
We won’t let you stray, we will take care of you,
My mind said, like you have the cages.
That was unkind
Suddenly, I felt eager to start helping
I could try three days a week
I sat on the bench under the mulberry tree
Wondering what I had let myself in for
The next day I was shoved fully grown
from the womb Into the monkey cage.
Now I had to put my money where my mouth was…

© Anita Dawes 2021

Remembering When it all Began…

Image by Free-Photos from Pixabay

I have always enjoyed reading books. Mostly for the sense of escapism involved. Somewhere you can forget all about your own life and live someone else’s, albeit vicariously.

It has been a blessing, sometimes more than at other times, depending on how my own life was going at that moment.

I honestly believe that reading books has kept me sane. They have taught me practically everything I know, for if I need or want to know how to do something, I turn to books to find out. Nowadays of course, we have the internet, but in my youth all we had were books.

These days, something else has been added to my enduring love affair with the printed word. Putting it quite simply, they have inspired me to write. You could say that the art of reading could do this anyway, to anyone. But up until recently, I was not aware of this. They were my retreat, my sanctuary. Nothing else.

But everything has changed.

I was a compulsive reader, consuming anything I could get my hands on. I didn’t discriminate and read everything. Asked to list my favourite authors, I would have been hard pushed, for I loved them all.

Somewhere along the way, I seem to have developed a ‘criterion’. I no longer just read a book. My brain seems intent on sifting the wheat from the chaff, so to speak. Who knew it could have that kind of opinion?

Two pages into a book, and if it is not talking to me by then, I discard it and try another. These days I love the kind of books that inspire me and make my fingers want to pick up a pen. Not to copy or emulate, but to write down the way the author has made me feel. Sometimes I find myself with a book in one hand and a notebook in the other.

It’s as if a doorway has been opened in my mind. Artists say colours work for them, for me it’s the power of the words and the way they are used.

Something else has changed in me. I have always considered myself reasonably adept with the English language. It was my favourite lesson at school and over the years as I have said before, it has saved my sanity on many an occasion.

For the first time in my life, I have doubts, and they are growing all the time. I have helped other people edit and proofread their books and been totally convinced I was good at it. Many people (including an agent) said that I was. I have also reviewed dozens of books along the way.

But then I picked up a pen and wrote a story of my own. I never expected it to be as hard as it turned out to be, as words usually came easily to me. But I discovered a very important fact about writing a book. Not only must it have a beginning, middle and end, it must flow, make perfect sense and be interesting to read.

It also had to have a structure and sub plots; the list was endless. I discovered to my horror that I was not as clever as I thought when the pen was in my own hand! Words tend to come at me in a rush, short spasms of prose that seem quite eloquent at the time but appear quite truncated when you attempt to join them all together. So much so, I nearly gave up on Nine Lives several times.

I began to seriously doubt I could ever be a writer, that this wasn’t something I could simply learn how to do.

But I persevered, did my absolute best, and after my edits and even more soul searching, I uploaded it onto Amazon, thinking my work was done.

But I was wrong.

In my haste to achieve something that will hopefully out last me, I forgot the most important step of all. Someone else should have read it first. Someone objective, who would come to it afresh, with no desire or agenda to bin it at the first error.

I learned that it is impossible for me to see my manuscript with a subjective eye. You cannot possibly hope to really because you have lived with it for so long. I wrongly assumed the reverse would be true, that the fact you created every word would make you more than qualified.

This was so long ago and I have learned so much more since then…

MLMM ~ Wordle #255 ~ #Poetry

Mindlovemisery’s Menagerie

I could see his blue sweatshirt was torn
The pain inflicted shone on his face
The vulgarity of it tore at my heart
There grew a longing to help
I noticed white feathers drop beside the young boy
Which told me an angel was watching over him
An old saying popped into mind
Trouble follows trouble
Is there a way to bluff your way through life?
Dodge fate?
Will he end up with butterflies and rainbows?
He lay on the park bench as people jostle by
I sit opposite, catching a glimpse of him
Like looking through a slatted window
His life in small slices
Is there a way to double his luck?
What a pity I am not his fairy godmother
I would take away the terrible fate I fear for him
I hope the white feather has some merit…

© Anita Dawes 2021