‘Mid-winter’ by Jan Strickland

I am very happy to welcome back Jan with her take on the writing prompt of ‘in the bleak mid-winter’.  It is perhaps a less literal take on the theme, but one that works equally as well and has a glimmer of hope at the end.  Thank you Jan for taking part once again.

barn

Clutching her little, well-loved Teddy bear that she had been given for her 3rd birthday, 7 year old Tracy hid beneath the sacking in the barn.

It was cold, mid-winter, but at least she was out of the biting wind and lashing rain.

“We will be fine here Toby until the morning, then we can creep out of the village;they won’t know where we are until later. After all, the party will go on late and they will be too smashed to notice I’ve gone. Sorry Toby, they won’t notice WE have gone.”

Toby seemed to nod sagely, his glass eyes staring blankly at her.

“Why do you think they don’t love me Toby? I love them, even when they yell at each other. Is it something I’ve done do you think?”

She snuggled down and tried to sleep, clutching her beloved bear. The rain beat down on the corrugated roof, the sound eventually helped her to drift off to sleep.

Tracy woke up to the sound of sirens, and people calling out her name.

“Oh, thank the Lord, Bob, she’s in here. Tracy why did you run away? We were frantic with worry.”

Tracy looked up solemnly at her mother and a large solitary tear escaped and trickled down her cheek. “Mummy, you and Daddy are always fighting and yelling at each other, and it’s all my fault.”

“No, oh no it’s not your fault darling. Daddy and l have been having a few problems, but we are trying to work things out and it’s nothing to do with you, I promise. Please pet, don’t worry us by running away again, we both love you so much.”

At that she swept her Daughter up in her arms and carried her to the waiting car.

 

 

(c) Jan Strickland

 

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‘In The Bleak Midwinter’ by lassfromlancashire

I am very pleased to share with you the first entry for this month’s mini competition, which I think has addressed the writing prompt perfectly!  Thank you and welcome back to lassfromlancashire.

winter tree

lassfromlancashire says:

In the bleak midwinter
Friends are apt to moan
“My fingertips are frozen
My feet feel like a stone
Snow and hail are falling fast
Snow piles up on snow
If only it would melt away
If only it would go!”

“Come now, Winter’s not so bad
And if you wrap up warm,
A good thick coat and woolly scarf
Will shield you from the storm.
Come out and see the lovely trees
All decked out in snow
The skaters and the sledges
See how swift they go.”

Winter can be beautiful
Don’t sit at home and sigh
A Winter Wonderland awaits
Come out, you’ll soon see why!

(c) Esme

 

‘A Force of Nature’ by elizfrat

With one day to go before the deadline, I thought I would squeeze in one of my poems to fit in with the prompt of The Day of The Storm.  This is based on a tree in the garden of one of my old houses – I was always very nervous when it was windy, but then it had been standing for over a hundred years so I’m sure there was nothing to worry about……

tree near house

A FORCE OF NATURE

The large sentry creaks,

battered by gale;

its branches twisting

and folding in on themselves.

As if to protect the trunk –

its heart.

 

A symphony whistles through

early evening air

as leaves dance and spar

and let the wind pass through.

Their music all but drowned out by

the relentless breath of wind.

 

I watch as ground around me

is ripped up;

a cacophony of noise and destruction.

Empty plastic bags ride the gusts,

refuse spills,

and garden debris stings my eyes.

 

I catch a movement

out the corner of my eye

and note a light in

neighbouring house.

Without communication

I still sense their trepidation;

 

their nervous watchfulness

as tree sways

ominously towards

their rooftop.

Then retreats.

 

Then repeats;

Advances and retreats,

Advances and retreats.

 

The majestic oak

becomes a threat.

And I catch my breath

 

And wait

And watch

And hope

That the wind will die down soon.

 

(c) Elizabeth Frattaroli

Call for Submissions

Do you have a childhood memory you would like to share? Or perhaps a fictional piece rooted in childhood? If so I would love to hear from you. Please feel free to enter the August mini writing competition for a piece of poetry or flash fiction on this month’s writing prompt.

This month my entry is a poem entitled ‘Clocks’, a piece that brought back memories of when the whole world was full of potential and I only had to wish for it….

Dandelion_sun

CLOCKS

They float soundlessly through air,
invisible threads, strands of dreams
which, they say, make wishes come true.

Drifting on summer breeze
these ‘fairies’ glide by,
occasionally coming to rest,
tangled in undergrowth.

As children they hold mystical charm;
are things to wonder at,
representing hope.
But they also hold the key
to the passage of time,
so we are taught.

Is it merely the strength
of our lungs,
or is there more at work
when the magic
of children’s breath
disperse these filaments;
the number of which determine the hour?

And so time passes,
these clocks are forgotten
we gradually start to bow to
more organised schedules:
Childhood philosophy drowned
in a sea of adulthood,
of life, of responsibility.

Until the next generation
revives the magic for us once again.

FIRST LIGHT

The following was inspired by a particularly hazy morning over the River Tay on my drive into work one morning last year.

FIRST LIGHT

sunrise with trees

Haze descends to meet the lake
as full moon clings on to morn
A latent thief
outstaying her welcome
Tenacious and unashamed
it mocks the weak daylight
penetrating the sky

The dawn is drowsy
A stranger
Meek
Cowed by lunar supremacy
Ashamed to conquer the sky

Silently watching,
the lake glistens
Stretches up
to cushion the falling mist
And calmly reflects
the subdued conflict above

Time to shake things up a little……..

Hi everyone. It was slim pickings this month for the mini writing competition. Whether this was due to the writing prompt or holiday season (or a mixture of both) I’m not sure, but I thought it would give me an opportunity to try something a little new. 🙂

I have contacted Jan and she is happy to do things a bit differently this month so……. instead of voting for your favourite of the two entries, please vote below for which writing prompt you would like to see for August’s competition.

The voting will run until the end of July and the topic that receives the highest amount of votes will be set for next month. Thanks for taking part and I hope to read some more great entries soon.

childhood

nature