The Gatherer of Worries

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There was once a woman who gathered worries as others gather flowers, beer steins or antique cars.

She lived in a pretty house with a pretty garden full of pretty flowers and scrumptious vegetables. She loved her beets and marrows and dahlias, but most of all she loved her worries. She couldn’t get enough of them.

She’d even borrow worries from friends, beg for their cast-off worries.

Word spread and soon people came from far and wide to give her their worries.

She kept the ones she liked best under her bed, in a rectangular wicker basket. Those worries she didn’t care for she burned on the bonfire on Saturday mornings when the wind was blowing in a southeasterly direction, away from her house.

She only gathered women’s worries. She made this decision reluctantly, but as she told herself, she did know her limits. Anyway, the men were perfectly capable of looking after themselves.

Every morning she sifted through the worries in her basket and decided Continue reading

Advice to You of Two Worlds

chimneys on the rooftop of Gaudí's La Predera, Barcelona

That you are of two worlds, hurled from lunar atmospheres and solar frequencies, that I know.

That you are bursting with hope and hilarity, seizing in bear hugs all who float by, I know too. Also that you are sneaky, yes you are, leaking lies, striving to impress, beguiling the well-intentioned with intense and immense argumentations, sentences that fall into phrases, phrases into words, words into letters, letters into ugly smudgy blotches of ink.

Think before sinking into that morass, move fast, fly.

Don’t deny the demon – but you, who are of two worlds, must learn to unfurl your mauve boa with esprit, élan and go forth, sew, sow, and delight, claim your birthright, if you can, both birthrights, hobnail boots here, glass slippers there. Ride the wild mare of red night, all blue mane and glinting hooves into the buttery dream of day.

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This is another photo from my recent Barcelona trip: chimneys come alive on the rooftop of Gaudí’s La Predera. When I first saw them, the chimneys turned into guardsmen but in my photo they seem to have become more feminine.

Weekly Photo Challenge: transmogrify

 

The Shine

Sagrada Familia, Barcelona

The Shine came on Tuesday and left late Saturday evening.

But how many days or weeks had passed between that Tuesday and Saturday?

Some claimed it had been years, decades or possibly centuries. “Think of Snow White,” they said.

Others pooh-poohed any idea that more than the usual Wednesday, Thursday and Friday had slipped by.

“Look,” they said. “No flowers faded while we were in the Shine. Someone has Continue reading

Crow Soul

crow

I see its shadow first. The shadow of the one with the big humped shoulders. The misshapen, distorted shadow flits across my open newspaper like a dark breath.

Then comes the cawing – a raucous cacophony. The sky is full of crows.

While the other crows circle and shriek, the hump-shouldered crow sits in the tree beside my chair, silent. Its eyes are blank and dull, its feathers mangy and moth-eaten, showing bald patches on its stomach and head. We stare at each other. I’m the first to look away.

The flock of crows takes off into the woods. Only the hump-shouldered crow remains. I Continue reading

Swan Girl

2016

Berwick-upon-Tweed

Her hair was a disaster, matted, dull and tangled. But her fingernails were immaculate – long and smooth.

Her top was like a shroud, draping shapelessly over her shoulders. But her skirt was as glorious and brilliant as a wedding gown.

On her left foot a worn running shoe with scarcely any of the sole remaining, on the right a Continue reading

The Bride Quest

embroidery

Alexei was a good husband. At least, he was ready to be a good husband.

He could hew wood with his axe at a speed that put every other man in the village to shame. He could light a fire quicker than you could draw a breath. He could stack firewood, build a table, a chair, a bed. He was ready.

It was time for him to begin his Bride Quest.

What he wanted was not just any wife, he wanted a wife who Continue reading

Ice Boy Wants Out

ice sculpture in Place Jacques Cartier, Montréal, March 2016

Ice Boy wants out. Enough of living in an ice cube. There has to be more to life than sub-zero temperatures, icicles and snow.

He wants change, something different. Very different.

He wants sun and warmth. He dreams of a desert island – sand, palm trees, a tube of SPF 30 suntan lotion, a straw hat. Soft twangy music. He’d get himself a grass skirt, dance a little. Shades. He definitely wants shades. The mirrored kind that turn from blue to green to magenta and stop other people knowing what you’re thinking. A cocktail of course. He’d have to have a cocktail. A red one in a curvy glass with a yellow umbrella perched on top.

Ice Boy chips and scrapes and wriggles all night. His fingers are raw, his fingernails broken, he’s exhausted. But by morning he’s gone.

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This is Blurt#38 in my Year of the Blurt! My new year’s resolution was to write one Blurt – a quick, spontaneous story – each week through 2016. Thanks for visiting.

Ice sculpture ‘cut out’ – Place Jacques Cartier, Old Montreal, March 2014.