The Cliff

PHOTO PROMPT © Sandra Crook

Each time she saw the cliff looming over the shore, she though of a loaf of bread rising in the oven.

Of course, bread was not covered in a crinkly blanket of green. Still, the image warmed her heart with its sense of home. For nearly 21 years, she had opened her eyes to that cliff. It was like a faithful old friend, steadfast, reliable, unchanging–until the earthquake that destroyed everything.

All that was left now was devastation.

She wondered where she would ever find home again.

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The Boot

We owned a small motel in central Minnesota for three years.

One evening, a youngish man hobbled into the office. There was a medical boot on his left leg. We checked him in, turned on the “No Vacancy” sign and went to bed.

Morning brought the usual work. I unlocked the door of the young man’s room and nearly threw up from the stench. He had killed a six-pack of beer, tried at some point to use the toilet. He missed. There was a huge, stinking, reeking circle of urine in the carpet.

I ventured into the bathroom and was startled to see the medical boot upside down in the waste basket.

I hope he made it home.


Depression

PHOTO PROMPT © Dale Rogerson

All she could see was shades of black and grey. Not one speck of color. Every day was a repeat of the previous day.

Her bed was her safe place. She could burrow under the blankets and drift off to sleep to escape.

There was no joy.

People had stopped visiting, calling, writing little notes. It was as if she, too, had died.

She got out of bed only to use the bathroom and have a cup of herbal tea.

Soon, she hoped, someone would find her corpse buried under the blankets.

Frustration

PHOTO PROMPT © Brenda Cox

“Bennie, you can’t miss it. It’s the only one down there.”

“Okay, Gianni, but can you describe it more?”

Gianni sighed. “It’s a Citroen Deux, their trademark ugly green. White top.”

“Uuuhhhhh–how about you give me the license plate?”

“Good grief! Okay, it’s DJ-865-TY. Now, would you just GO?”

“Well, why? Do you want to buy it?”

“BENNIE! Maybe, maybe no. Come on, just go take a look!”

“You can’t be too careful——“

Gianni backed his wheel chair from the balcony, frustrated with his friend. “Yes, you CAN be too careful! Life passes you by.”

Freedom!

PHOTO PROMPT © Bill Reynolds

Alyssa had always been a loner. Moody, her mom said. Self-involved, her dad said. Just weird, her sister said.

Finally, when she finished college, she took her long-planned year off. She bought a used camper, hooked it to her pick-up, stocked it well, and took off for parts unknown. No cell phone, no internet. Just the beauties of nature and, of course, her beloved guitar.

She never thought about how her trip would end. That would take care of itself. For now? No one telling her who she WAS, compared to who she OUGHT to be.

Just Junk

PHOTO PROMPT © Rochelle Wisoff-Fields

Audra and Pete entered the store, doing their best not to jostle the merchandise. Narrow paths wound between piles of stuff.

Pete was disgusted. “I’ll never understand why you love death traps like this! Nothing but disorganized trash!”

“Hush, Pete! You’re insulting.”

“Bah! Let’s go!”

“No, wait–oh, Pete! Look at this!” Audra held up a faded book, her eyes shining with delight.

“What, an old useless book?”

“No! Pete–LOOK! I think it’s a part of the first-run printing of this author! Look at the date, and check out the typeface!”

Pete looked, and smiled.

Aftermath

PHOTO PROMPT © Roger Bultot

The wind from the hurricane’s spinning arms had finally abated. The playground was all puddles and fallen leaves, but little Annie wanted to play.
“Please, Mommy? I’ll wear my rubber boots! I’ll be careful!”

There were no other children at the park, but Annie was not deterred. Off she ran, heading for the “slippyslide” she loved so much. She clambered up the steps in her big red boots, unaware of anything else in her joy of being outdoors.

Just as she reached the top, the huge snake raised its ugly head, looking straight at her.
“MOMMYMOMMYMOMMEEeeeee!”

Flight

He sat, iPhone in hand, gazing out the rain-streaked window. Relentless rain, soaking, causing a person to shiver in the heat. Even though he was warm and dry, he felt chilled again as he pictured his flight through woods, fields, hills and valleys. Drenched every day. Fat leeches clinging to his feet and legs. If they caught him, he would die a slow and hideously painful death. No mercy. Not for a Western photoghrapher/journalist who had exposed them as the monsters they were.

Memory was clear of the moment he sensed eyes on him.

“Hey, Mistah! You come. We hide! Come!”

A Song at Twilight

PHOTO PROMPT © Rochelle Wisoff-Fields

Abby hummed as she worked: Just a song at twilight, when the lights are low. . . .

Her mind was always full of memories, but lately they’d been running like a movie in her mind. Meeting Abe for the first time. . . .their first kiss. . . .wedding. . . .honeymoon. . . .babies. . . . graduations. . . . .marriages and grandbabies. . . . . .Abe’s final illness, robbing his body of mass and strength. . . .their final kiss goodbye. . . .

She stopped. Hummed “when the flick’ring shadows. . . .” She took her last breath, and went to Abe smiling like a bride.

Granny Leah

Granny Leah, confined now to a wheel chair, shook her head at the stuff piled in the garage.

“Ach, ve haf too much dese days!” Her grandchildren rolled their eyes, knowing they were in for another episode of Back in My Day.

“Ja, ve had nossing in da camps. No shoes, no Unterwäsche. No mitts for da hands. Ve came mit nossing, und ve go mit nossing. Nossing to pack und carry ven ve left.

Granny Leah glanced up at her grandchildren. Grinning, she said, “Und das is alles! Wir gehen.”

Note: Unterwasche is underwear. There should be an umlaut over the “a” but I didn’t know how to find it. Und das is alles, wir gehen means, and that’s all. We go.

Another note: I figured how to do an umlaut on my Mac. Easy, when you know how 🙂