I Just Dropped By To Say…

This afternoon I walked over to Target to get a lampshade for a lamp you’ve had since graduate school.  I was fairly certain the lamp had finally died, but it hasn’t.  You rewired it this morning.  I was happy for you.  Something your mother gave you over 40 years ago.

Then, on the way home, I entered the lobby of our condo building to behold three chairs with ‘free’ signs on them.  Lampshade in hand, I dragged the unusual rocking chair down the hall and into our condo.

“Honey, quick!”  I whisper-shouted.  “There’s this wonderfully clunky old solid wooden desk chair in the lobby.  It’s free!”
And so you rolled it down the hall and into our condo and we examined our fortunate finds.

The rocking chair is a fold up rocking chair.  I’ve never seen one quite like it.  The seat and the back are upholstered in shade of gold with an old-fashioned design to it.  A lovely mahogany wood frame.  The office chair is made of oak with a center leather part in the seat – surrounded by oak – and a nice open and simple slatted back.  It’s on coasters and swivels.  It also rocks – probably because it’s set that way.  We’ve looked underneath and can tighten things.

So I’m pretty excited, after almost 15 years, to have two chairs for the living room.  And we plopped those about four feet from the double floor to ceiling knotty pine bookshelves you built.  And between the chairs I plopped the upholstered poof table I found at Goodwill.   That’s all situated on some sort of dark maroon Indian area rug.  Facing that is our sofa.  It’s a huge soft slouchy sofa.  And then there’s art work and stuff on the walls and crystals hanging from the ceiling and beads in the living room door.  Nothing actually matches.

I think I’m happy with our living room.  We’ve finally created that dark Victorian/Bohemian look I hated as a child but love as an adult.  A huge glass door filters a soft sunlight into the room.  Outside the glass door is our balcony and our potted garden.

I used to think I wanted all these large open, and almost empty, rooms.  Those sorts of rooms don’t feel welcoming to me now, though.  The air is too light.  Nothing hangs around in them for very long.

The burnt red lampshade sets a nice mood because I’m off for two days and plan to read “Going Clear” – about Scientology.  We don’t have a television but the reviews make the book and the HBO documentary sound worth reading about.  I hope it’s not too scary.  Years ago I heard the founder had something to do with science fiction.  Oh my!


Old Lace & Bay Windows – Fiction

Time for this week’s Flash Fiction For Aspiring Writers.   It takes place each Wednesday.   100-150 words more or less.  I’ll put the link to this week’s stories at the end of this piece.  Drop by to read or write or both :)  Thanks to PJ (Priceless Joy) for hosting this challenge.  Here’s the photo and my story (175 words):

bay windowsOld Lace & Bay Windows

Mother always says I’m crazy. Since I know that opinion clearly depends on her definition of crazy, I’ve never paid much mind to her assumptions of me.

About 20 years ago, I moved out west. According to mom’s outlook on life,  everyone out west is probably crazy. That could be why I like it so much here. I’ve never tried to run away from my craziness as much as I’ve tried to tone it down just a tiny bit.

I bought a small town house in the Haight. The previous owner  had flattened the signature bay windows. I’ve hung old lace panels and strung crystals from the curtain rods. All around me glows magic and rainbows.

Mom and I talk on the phone each week.

“When do you think you might be coming out, Mom?” I’m always asking.

“Soon. Maybe. Are you happy, Polly? And you like your place?” Mom sometimes asks.

“I do like it, Mom. It really stands out from the other buildings. You’d just love it,” I always say.


other stories can be found here: this week’s stories

photo prompt Copyright Vanessa Rodriguez

The Importance Of Orchestration – Fiction

Time for another installment of   Friday Fictioneers  hosted by Rochelle.  100 words or so based on the image below. Click on the froggy link (after this piece) and come join us!

david-stewartThe Importance Of Orchestration

I was tired that night, but I’d volunteered for the decorating committee. We had enough art supplies to make 12 stained glass Easter eggs using waxed paper.  They’d look colorful hanging around the Fellowship Hall.

Outside, under the gazebo, another group had gathered to practice music for the Easter service.

I could have jumped off the side of the earth but,  you know,  I had obligations.

“What sort of obligations?”  Harris asked me as I collapsed into our bed later.

“To orchestrate of course,”  I replied.

Harris hugged me close.  I needed a hug.  I was tired that night.


photo prompt © David Stewart

When Everyone Already Knows Everything – Fiction

I’ve been under the weather for our last two Friday Fictioneers .  I did write a poem – inspired by last week’s photo.  It’s here: Maybe I Like Picasso

Here’s my entry for this week.

When Everyone Already Knows Everything

After Miss Esther died, Vernal was to himself.  He seemed surrounded by a protective aura.  Most of us knew they’d been lovers, but most of us knew better than to say anything about that.  We mostly just waited and let Vernal grieve his own way.

“What should I say at the memorial?” Vernal asked me.

“What do you want to say?”  I replied.  Vernal huffed.

The memorial took place at the town’s woodsy hearth where Miss Esther had held her seasonal celebrations of one sort or other.

“Prescott County was damned lucky to have a witch, like Miss Esther, watching out for us all this time,” Vernal said in conclusion to his eulogy.


photo prompt – © – Rachel Bjerke

Maybe I Like Picasso – A Poem

Woman Playing Mandolin, Picasso

Maybe I Like Picasso

That winter,
we stood on a footbridge.
The world was iced
in shades of gray
and brown
and sepia.
I knew it was over
but I held on
to what was warm
and beautiful
and colorful
about us.
I held on
even when you walked away.

Though I want to let go
I hold on
to everything.
Who knows why?
Maybe I like Picasso.
Even as you walked away
I thought we were so beautiful.


Brothers & A Birthday

I’m still under the weather.  Thought I was better but…this doesn’t mean I’m not having chocolate iced chocolate birthday cake tonight.  It’s there, on the table, in a tiny pink box, waiting for me.  Then, I get this – from my brother…

Warning: If you are receiving this message on March 16 then you may be having a birthday.   Do not have a birthday if you are not actually one year older.   Do not take more than the prescribed daily dose of happy birthdays.   While having a birthday, excitability or drowsiness may occur.   You may consume numerous alcoholic drinks while having a birthday, but avoid driving a vehicle or operating heavy machinery.   Do not have a birthday for more than 24 hours as this may cause a dangerous birthday overdose, result in symptoms of birthday withdrawal, require immediate medical intervention, or have an adverse effect on your credit rating.

Till latrez…