Tag Archives: love

Shepherd’s Winter – Part 27

thT15S8CORCold And Love

With the sun in full view Daniel and his family boarded their snow machines and buzzed north and disappeared into the stream bed that led to the river that would lead them to their home.

Loneliness descended on Shepherd as if an angel of death swooping from the mountains to the north carrying abandonment and foreboding. Angry clouds like galloping grey steeds wielding frozen swords of pain invaded the wilderness around Shepherd’s cabin.

Shepherd split wood at a furious and fearful pace and stacked it on the porch.

He stood before the fire to warm himself and listened to the radio. The barometric pressure plummeted.

He split and stacked more wood. Pal and Trap looked on as if lending moral support. Shepherd puffed and blew vapor from his lungs like a steam locomotive.

Above him he heard the wind pass through the pines like a bow over the stings of violins. It was the hideous sound of a mad and demented composer. In moments a coldness swept by him as if somebody suddenly opened the door. He split feverishly like bailing water from a sinking boat.

His instincts alerted weather coming like nothing he had ever experienced. He began to doubt his survival. It was like watching a wave advancing in which there was no hope, only the inevitability of being swallowed.

He closed the shutters and secured them.

Shepherd stood at the front of the cabin a short distance away facing the wind in defiance. His thoughts drifted to Daniel and his family, but assured that he was wise of the ways of the wilderness and home safe. Suddenly without warning a warmth came over him. It was like embers laying deep in his chest and radiated to his entire body. His muscles relaxed. It was Nan; sweet, pure, strong, vibrant, and comely – a jewel of the north.

Shepherd turned to the cabin as if in a trance and it was a trance. He stumbled on the first step. He sat on the steps as the cold rushed around him. He thought, “I have instincts for everything, but emotions and love.” A thousand frames sped though his mind; the smiles, the glances, the tears, the expressions, the words; all the signs that

Nan was falling in love with him… and he with her.”




Filed under Short Stories

John Smith’s Longing

John Smith’s love for the daughter of a goat herder was indeed unconventional. He was a man of the world and she was a woman who had little to no concept of the world.

John learned to speak her language, Tocharian; an obscure language. Nyas was the name John gave her. It meant longing or desire.

“Where ever my life takes me and no matter what woman I will come to know and love you will always be remembered by me as Nyas,” he told her as they parted for the last time.

As wealth came to John he found it convenient to hire a man, a butler named Roberts. Roberts became a confidant.

It was on the island that one night after all the guest had departed that Roberts said to John, “You must go back and find her.”

“Who,” John said.

“The one you long for,” Roberts said.

“John Smith longs for no one,” John said.

“Your stories and liquor can not erase her memory,” Roberts said.

“How can you be sure?” John said.

“When a man has lost what he most wants he chooses to live from his legacy,” Roberts said.

“How do you know of Nyas,” John said. “I have mentioned her only in passing when speaking about my adventures in Asia.”

“Your mind wanders at the mention of her name,” Roberts said. “And when you drink heavily you mention her in your sleep.”

“I should drink less,” John said sharply. “What do you say to that?”

“I say we should prepare to visit the Taklamakan Desert,” Roberts said.

John mused rubbing his thumb and index finger together.

“You’re rubbing so vigorously it’s about the start a fire,” Roberts said.

“Wake me early,” John said. “We shall leave in the morning. Are you up for it?”

(Continued tomorrow.)



Filed under Essays, Short Stories

Pride and Joy: Relationships

Pride and Joy

What’s your most prized possession? GO!

Admittedly I don’t take the prompts serious. I have fun with them. Fun has its limits and never would I want to give a false impression for the sake of being funny. This is, to me, a serious subject.

My most prized possessions are relationships with people. I really like them. That’s why I aspire to be one someday.

First there is my wife. If that doesn’t exist life is somehow a little less full. There are times I look at here and see the girl I dated as a teen ager. Her hopes, he dreams, her vulnerabilities, her fears. She makes me smile and feel not so alone. She knows my thoughts, my feelings, and who I am (and loves me still).  Then comes my children. I really like them. Of course I love them, but they are really likable. (This includes grandchildren, sons-in-law, and daughter-in-law, it’s a package deal.) They are easy and enjoyable to talk with. My mother, who is now 100 and at present not doing well. But we talk daily and it means much to both of us. I have friends far and near. One I call perhaps once a week and others less often, but that in no way indicates any less attachment and regard for them. Most importantly is my relationship with my Creator. Without his direction, examples, and teachings none of the above would even be remotely possible.

Here is a link to my daily short story, The Kellen Moore Selfie at Billy Bronco’s.


Filed under Daily Prompt

Daily Prompt and “Quack” (a beautiful short story)

Daily Prompt: Sixteen Tons

How do you feel about your job? Do you spring out of bed, looking forward to work? Or, is your job a soul-destroying monotony of pure drudgery, or somewhere in between?

Some idiot said find what you like to do and make a living at it and it will never be a job. Well kiss it buddy! I worked in a auto parts factory for 30 years. I didn’t like it, but I had to find a way to like it. For 28 of my 30 years I didn’t mind going to work, but now that I’m retired and can say I truly hated my job.

Now I’m retired. I should have retired when I was 25.

We all can’t live in a weather beaten house off the rugged coast of Maine writing the great American novel or stand before a majestic mountain with canvass and brushes, somebody has to make the world tick.

That’s my two-cents worth. (Did you notice the bitterness?) Anyway here’s a lovely story about love and ducks:


It was a walk along the river. A walk that Cat dreaded. A warm day. A cool breeze off the water. Ducks paddling against the current. A leaf or so parachuting to thethJBZI91NE water and floating away.

“Rivers are great metaphors for life,” Cat said seriously.

“How so?” Nile said bending down to pick up a stone and skipped it across the water.

“They run their course,” Cat said. “And empty into the sea and it’s as if the river never existed.”

“That sounds rather depressing,” Nile forced a smile.

“The same is with relationships,” Cat said trying to be matter of fact. “They run their course and eventually we never knew they existed.”

“I don’t think so,” Nile said turning to Cat surprised at her logic and tone.

“I think our river has ran its course,” Cat said staring away from Nile and at the river.

“I thought it was going so well,” Nile said.

“All good things must come to an end,” Cat said.

“Why?” Nile said.

“Because it just does,” Cat smiled.

“I don’t think it does,” Nile said. “I think expectations change. Most of the things we read or hear aren‘t true. People really don‘t grow apart. It is a purposeful endeavor. It‘s not that they want to grow apart they stop doing things that make them grow together.”

“What makes you the expert?” Cat fluttered her eyes.

“Do you want an expert?” Nile gestured by tossing his arm in the air. “Who of us is?”

“This whole thing seems like déjà vu to me,” Cat said. “It’s like it has all happened before and I’m being swept along with the current. We have no say so.”

“Let’s just ignore all we’ve heard about karma, fate, déjà vu, premonitions, and what ever. I don’t believe in those things. If those things exist we don’t have any control over our future at all. That‘s a bleak existence. Look at those ducks; they will be there tomorrow, the next day, and the day after that. They fight the current.”

Cat looked into Nile’s eyes. “This is all new. It’s an adventure that I’m willing to take and there is no turning back.”

“What made you change your mind?” Nile said.

“Love is strong,” Cat said. “And I don’t hear any hint of weakness in your voice or in you eyes.”

Nile looked at Cat and smiled. “Quack.”


Filed under Daily Prompt, Short Stories

Daily Prompt & For The Love And Sea Shells


Daily Prompt: Three Coins in the Fountain

Have you ever tossed a coin or two into a fountain and made a wish? Did it come true?

I suppose everyone has. Scams have a beginning somewhere and I suppose the coin-in-the-fountain scam might be one of the oldest. But it was proceeded with “Hey, lady, you ever see a snake talk? Got any change on you?”

Anyway fountains don’t grant wishes and snakes don’t talk, but the scam is ran by the same guy.

Here’s my short story for the day. I think you will enjoy it.

For The Love And Sea Shells

As a youth Leo called his home “The Rock” as in San Quinton. His father was a lighthouse keeper on a small island off the coast. Except for a few summer residences there was isolation. It was just his father, mother, and him.

He was either at his mother’s side or father’s. Difficult for them to have intimate moments so they sent young Leo hunting for seashells. By the time he left the island there were several piles along the pathway from the beach to the lighthouse.

As much as he disdained his youth and living there, over the years he began to romanticize about the place.

“Leo,” Abe said. “I see you scheduled vacation for next week. Where ya goin’?”

“My childhood home,” Leo said. “A little island off the coast. I think its abandoned now.”

“Island!” Abe said. “Like Coney Island or Long Island?”

“No,” Leo smiled. “A real live island, surrounded by water.”

“I don’t think you ever told me about it,” Abe said. “What’s it look like?”

“My home was a cozy cottage on an island manicured by nature as perfect as any landscaper could only imagine or accomplish. The cottage was white, pristine, and full of charm and life. Waves gently lapped the beaches on the south side of the island as waves crashed the north side. Day after day is spent in undisturbed beauty observing nature and the sea in all its splendor. Everyday is unlike the other, full of enchantment, wonder, and solemnity. A place to renew your purpose and explore new vistas.”

“I was raised in Queens,” Abe said. “I can’t top that. You explored, you got worked over.”

The next week Leo motored in a rented boat two hours to the island now abandoned. The lighthouse was now automated and had been that way for decades.

He ran the boat up near the beach, cut the engine, and tossed the anchor. Overgrowth had consumed the island. The entrance to the pathway leading to the house and lighthouse had grown shut. He climbed a rock to spy his old home and the light house.

Growth surrounded the house. A portion of the roof had given in. The porch’s pillars had all caved. It was weather-beaten beyond recognition like a bruised, battered, and bleeding boxer sitting defeated in his corner.

He found a way to the house and poked around awhile, recalled some fond memories, and found what remained of the pathway back to the beach. Walking along the path resurrected and invigorated long lost memories.

He was satisfied as he approached the end of the pathway. He could now put everything to rest and come to grips with the fantasy he lived regarding this place. It truly was a rock, yet he did not want to allow himself to be bitter.

As a final gesture and note of finality to the place he would never return he must have honest and good words to leave it with.

He turned to gaze upon the house. “Rustic,” he said. “That’s the best I can do.“

His eyes followed the pathway from the house to his feet. He walked a few steps back the pathway. He parted the tall grass. There was a pile of sea shells. He walked further and uncovered three more. He smiled thinking about his parents. “Rustic and a place for lovers.”


Filed under Daily Prompt, Short Stories

To London For Love (Part 2) & The Daily Prompt

Daily Prompt: Against All Odds

Tell us about a situation where you’d hoped against all hope, where the odds were completely stacked against you, yet you triumphed. Be sure to describe your situation in full detail. Tell us all about your triumph in all its glory.


Any glorious triumph I’ve had is when remaining silent when I felt like firing back, offering a gesture of peace  when it would have been easier to retaliate, and observing my work rather than brag about it. Glorious triumphs are best experienced in silence and private where no one can see how you really feel.

Here is the conclusion to yesterday’s short story. It is in many ways a glorious triumph. I hope you enjoy its conclusion.

To London For Love (Part 2)

(Continued from yesterday.)

Wendy sat across the table of small London pub with the tour guide from the Tower of London, Preston Cromwell.

“I hope this is to your liking,” Preston said. “I feel quite uncomfortable in plush places, it takes me off my game.”

Wendy smiled. “And your game is?”

“Being natural,” Preston smiled. “But you, my lady, I suspect could be natural in any crowd.”

“Not really,” Wendy said. “Being away from home you sort of take on an ultra ego. Someone you’d like to be but can’t.”

“I believer you could be anything you want,” Preston said.

“Flattery is something I sense immediately,” Wendy said and before Preston interpreted. “And you are honest. And I thank you for that.”

“I, too, would not speak in such a way if you were not a stranger in this land,” Preston said. “I am by nature shy beyond comprehension. I became a guide ten years ago on the advice of my therapists who recommended to pursue employment that would force me to be outgoing.” He smiled. “And here I am on a date. You don’t mind if I call it date do you?”

“Not at all,” Wendy said. “That’s what I’m calling it and that’s what all my friends are calling it. They wrote in their journals I was having a date with a handsome English prince.”

“Well,” Preston said. “They were one for three; I’m English.”

“I’m uncertain of your pedigree,” Wendy said. “But for certainty they got two right.”

Preston’s smile relaxed. “And flattery does not become you either. I accept that. No one ever called me handsome except my dear mum.” His smile returned. “And she had a vested interest.”

“How did you acquire the boldness to ask me for dinner?” Wendy said.

“It seems that word of your vast knowledge was spreading amongst the Beefeaters and guides,” Preston said. “It was all a matter of time before one of the single blocks or less scrupulous married cads ask you out. If you’d gone to the dungeon Marty Wellington would have asked you, a widower, not bright and has false teeth, speaks with a lisp. I wasn’t about to let you have an evening with that.”

They ordered a meal and each told of their home and a little about their lives.

After the meal at the pub they strolled in the a park near the pub.

“I have a question,” Wendy said.

“Certainly,” Preston said.

“Is this a beginning or an end?” Wendy said.

Preston’s throat tightened. Wendy’s heart slowed. She felt her face warm.

“I’m sorry,” Wendy said. “How inappropriate. We just met.”

“That’s all right, my dear,” Preston said. “I’m English and we have responses for everything and I have none.”

They walked a few more paces. “I’ve never been to America. I should go.”

Wendy rapped her arm around his and they continued to walk.

“You know something, my dear?” Preston said. “I think you have been on my arm for a long, long time it’s not till now I noticed.”


Filed under Daily Prompt, Short Stories

Feeding The Monster

th3WNX6F0SBert picked up the phone. “Hello.”

“Guess who?”

“Hey, Sis,” Bert smiled. “What’s up?”

“Hang-up the phone right now and get over here right away,” Sis said. “And no questions. Just get gone.”

She was too jovial to be serious so Bert’s drive to his sister’s home was not with a sense of urgency.

Bert’s sister was 8 years older. She was the one who looked after him as an infant, a toddler, an until he started school. At times she was the scolding disciplinarian and at other times a doting aunt. It all seemed like the perfect balance.

Bert mused about the time Sis gave him the beating of his life. They never had a harsh word. “I had it coming,” Bert mumbled. Bert was so wrapped up into memories and the mystery behind the invitation he didn’t bother to knock at Sis’s door. He walked in. Sis gave him a hug and pulled out a chair at the kitchen table.

“I’ve got a surprise,” Sis said and placed a huge bowl of ice cream in front of him.

“Is this it?” Bert said.

Sis raised her eyebrows and said gleefully, “This is it.”

“The color is perfect,” Bert said. “Beyond pink, but not quite red.”

“Do you remember how we relished it as kids?” Sis said.

“Oh yes,” Bert said.

“And you even got the small chunks of cherries in it,” Bert said.

“Taste,” Sis said eagerly.

Bert dislodged a sliver of ice cream from the mound in the bowl. He brought it to his mouth and enveloped it like a snake. He allowed it to melt slightly and the flavor burst in his mouth and raised like incense into his nostrils.

Bert swallowed and smacked his lips. “It’s perfect.”

“I found the owner of the Red Rooster and threatened him with bodily injury if he did not give me the recipe,” Sis joked.

“Did you get it from him?” Bert said.

“No way,” Sis said. “I looked up former employees and they didn’t know what the recipe was. They said the only guy who knew was the owner. You won’t believe how I’ve experimented over the years and now we have it. We can enjoy our own Redheads.”

Bert chuckled. “Remember Saturday afternoons Mom and Dad packed us kids in the car and we drove out to the Red Rooster for ice cream. Me, you, and Mom we got the Redheads and Dad and Lucy got the Brown Cows.”

“We always got the Redheads,” Sis smiled and reminisced. “Those were the days.”

“Sit down here, Sis,” Bert said patting the chair next to him. “Get a bowl and let’s live the moment together.”

Bert and Sis savored the ice cream and the moment. They spoke cheerfully of old times.

“What is the secret ingredient?” Bert ask.

Sis leaned close. “Cinnamon oil.”

“You’re kidding me. How did you come up with that?” Bert said. “Did you tap somebody’s wire?”

“One of his old employees told me he bought supplies from a local candy maker,” Sis said. “I found the candy maker at a nursing home. He was reluctant to tell me, but I pretended to be his wife and he told me everything; even some things I didn‘t want to here, if you know what I mean.”

“You’re a conniver,” Bert said and smiled. “And evil.”

“All for the taste of a Redhead,” Sis said. “No one would do this for vanilla or chocolate.”

“I think it’s deeper than that,” Bert said. “It’s guilt for the beating you gave me.”

“What!” Sis said. “You were a monster.”

“Yes I was,” Bert affirmed. “And you did a good job of taming me.”

“You have two choices with a monster,” Sis said. “You either beat him or feed him.”

(365 Writing Prompts)

(This is also a Daily Prompt. My sisters were my heroes.)

Heroic Bloggers

  1. Morning milk delivery | Vintage Photography
  2. covet | yi-ching lin photography
  3. Where were You – the Power of Forgiving | A Teacher’s Blog
  4. Siegfried Sassoon, Hopelessness and Iraq | As I please
  5. Feeding The Monster | The Jittery Goat
  6. daily prompt: heroic | aimanss…
  7. Daily Prompt: Heroic « cognitive reflection
  8. DP Daily Prompt: Heroic | Sabethville
  9. Daily Prompt: Heroic | Incidents of a Dysfunctional Spraffer
  10. 5 Year Old Hero – The Engine that could. | L5GN
  11. Heroic | Geek Ergo Sum
  12. Daily Prompt: Heroic | Finding Life
  13. The Portal – A Friday Flash Fantasy | My Little Avalon
  14. Heroic Visions | THE OVERCOMING
  15. Tail Business and Heroes! Daily Prompt… | alienorajt
  16. A Little Girl’s Hero « My journey to qualify for the Boston Marathon…and everything in between…
  17. Daily Prompt: Heroic | tnkerr-Writing Prompts and Practice
  18. The Dad Who Didn’t Have To Be | theauthorwhoknows
  19. Daily prompt: Heroic | laura-in-china
  20. My Childhood Hero | all my likes
  21. My Dad, My Hero | A mom’s blog
  22. Daily Prompt – Hero. | My Beautiful Messed Up World.
  23. Even Heroes Can Wear Thin « Mon Cache
  24. Are You A Hero in Your Home? | Ako Si Ehm Blog
  25. The Dark Knight | Sébastien Grobelny – Photography
  26. Hanging with the Guys | Nicetomeetyou:I’mCourtney
  27. Daily Prompt: Heroic | Chronicles of an Anglo Swiss
  28. Of becoming your own hero/ heroine. | Concentrate On Yourself
  29. Mr. Rogers Was My Hero
  30. Moon, Moon on the sky…….Watch Me Die | Shadows Of The Divine
  31. Daily Prompt: Heroic | Basically Beyond Basic
  32. My Heroes | Flowers and Breezes
  33. Still my hero | Life is great
  34. Heroic : My 5 Year Old Self. | ♥Barb’s Magical Land Of Oz♥
  35. Who Says Heroes Have to Wear Capes? | meanderedwanderings
  36. The Forgotten Hero | Dance with the Rain
  37. Lawrence of Arabia/Daily Prompt-Hero | I’m a Writer, Yes I Am
  39. babusya | peacefulblessedstar
  41. Daddy | The Magic Black Book
  42. Still my hero | From Five to Fifty
  43. My First Post-marital Blog Post | Vagabond
  44. Five’s Hero.. | Relax
  45. A Father’s Enduring Love | Lisa’s Kansa Muse ~ Dreamy abstraction in a 100 year old Four Square Farm House
  46. Heroic | The Story of a Guy
  47. I don’t remember being five | dreaming of melville
  48. Hero | LOQUACITÉ
  49. 9/11 Heroes | Daily Prompt: Heroic | Ireland, Multiple Sclerosis & Me
  50. Brianne Writes
  51. Heroic | The Nameless One
  52. When Being a Mommy Supersedes Being You | Transforming Mommy
  53. Super Mario can do anything | “The Ish,” presented by the Bohemian Rock Star
  54. Heroic behaviour | Fictionalism
  55. Heros all | Exploratorius
  56. Neil Armstrong — RIP and Godspeed | Exploratorius
  57. Dying A Hero’s Death | Parents Are People Too
  58. There’s No Such Thing As Superman | Must Be This Tall To Ride
  59. First Hero | Dreams to Reality !
  60. Heroic | Just for Fun Drawings
  61. Looking Up | HAPnHAP
  62. OUR HERO… | The Christian Gazette
  63. Daily Prompt: Heroic | Nicole Sloan’s Writing
  64. Underdog | Bright Tuesday
  65. Daily Prompt: Heroic | The Uncustomary Housewife
  66. Oh Captain, My Captain! | Daily Prompt: Heroic | A Room of One’s Own
  67. Heroic | Wicked Words
  68. Finding Hero | The Sex Bandit
  69. Become Your Dog’s Hero: Photo Friday | Dog Leader Mysteries
  70. Daily Prompt: Heroic | Occasional Stuff
  71. Astro Boy – Hero of Manga and Anime | Travel with Intent
  72. Daily Prompt: My Four Legged Hero | Reclaiming My Narnia
  73. S. Thomas Summers | The Wisdom of Trolls
  74. Heroic | Life as a country bumpkin…not a city girl


Filed under Daily Prompt, Short Stories