Tear-stained send off

Dey couldn’t a been friends a his. Not da Chuck I knew. 

So, who are dey? Where’d dey round ‘em up? 

Huh. None a our old haunts. 

Maybe dey came with da church. Sure, de’re some a dose professional criers.   

Wit me locked up, Chuck had plenty a cash to make sure he got a tear-stained send off. 

Plenty a cash. My cash. The cash I came ta dis berg ta collect. 

Maybe his bein’ dead is doin’ me some kinda back-handed favor. 

Sure keeps me from killin’ him for my cut of the dough. 

A blessing or a curse? Who knows. 

If I’d a got to him first, I don’t think I’d a been smart enough ta know da difference anyway.

I’m gettin’ tired a buryin’ my friends. 

Especially da ones dat up n die wit’out givin’ me a chance to wring my cut outta ‘em first.

This was written for Crispina’s Crimson’s Creative Challenge #47 utilizing the three phrases provided by the OLWG #122. The phrases were:

  1. round ‘em up
  2. am I smart enough to know the difference?
  3. burying my friends

Mrs. Oswald

Inevitably, every morning as I pass on my way to the bus, Mrs. Oswald is outside in her curlers and night clothes.

“Here kitty, kitty, kitty. Here kitty.”

“Morning, Mrs.Oswald. Saemus giving you a hard time?” I’ll ask her.

And she will answer, “Aye! He’s tommin’ it up again, no doubt. Just like a man.”

I asked her one day, merely in making conversation mind you, what exactly she meant by that, ‘just like a man’.

“You shouldn’t ask me that! Why, you’re nearly a man! Too soon you’ll be gettin’ away with it yerself. Cattin’ about all night, with any pussy that’ll have ye. Lying about all day, sleepin’ it off. Lived through thirty-six years a that with me Harry. Never knew a moments peace. Wonderin’ ever night where he was. Waitin’ for ‘imself till all hours. Till the night.. He didn’t… A’tall…”

She left off her story there. Drew her terry robe up tight and pulled herself woundedly up the stairs by the hand rail, leaving the screen door to slam itself closed behind her.

Although I’d never mention it, I decided that day that Mrs.Oswald must have loved her Harry, very much. 

I think that is why she keeps herself in cats. If one fails to come home, she can easily get herself another. 

Not so with a man. At least not one- with whom a woman is truly in love..

This piece came to me based on the three phrases offered by the OLWG #27 prompt. The phrases were:

  1. get away with it
  2. Here kitty, kitty, kitty
  3. You shouldn’t ask me that

Conversations with a Catholic girl

“Looks like Cupid has been a particularly busy little bowman this year.” Father Murphy jested as he ran his finger down a long line of reservations looking for the first available Saturday afternoon on which the church could accommodate yet another spring wedding. “The church is booked solid. I’m afraid it won’t be available until April 1st.”

“April Fools Day?” Carolyn queried, her tone doing little to hide her dismay.

“To it’s credit, it would be a difficult anniversary date to forget.” Father Murphy responded jovially in effort to ease her obvious disappointment. “Why don’t you talk it over with your young man and get back to me. I can save the date until I hear back from you.”

Carolyn agreed, if only halfheartedly, and quickly dialed Bobby’s number. 

“We can’t get the church till April 1st.”

“April Fools Day?”

“That’s exactly what I said. Father thinks it would be a convenient anniversary date to remember, but then again I couldn’t tell him what the gypsy woman said. I wouldn’t want him to know that..”

“That what? That some carnival side show gypsy fortune teller told you if you weren’t married before the spring equinox you would live out your life as an old maid? C’mon, honey, you don’t really believe all that gypsy hooey do you?”

“Well.. No I guess not, but…”

“There’s always the Justice of the Peace.”

“Don’t even say that! My parents would think we had to get married if I even brought up a civil ceremony.”

“And they’d be right. We do have to get married. ’Cause I’m a fool for ya baby.”

“So it’s settled then, my little fool? I should call Father Murphy back and tell him we’ll book the church for April 1st?”

“Sure, honey, if that’s what you want. Just think of it as an extra couple a weeks for you to bone up on your cooking skills.”

“Speaking of which, I was looking over that cook book your mother gave me, and..”

“Caro, cooking is not something you read about. It’s something that you do.”

“Hey! You can learn a lot from books!”

“True. So I’ll get you a couple about great sex.”


This little ditty includes the following three phrases provided by the OLWG #26.

  1. You can learn a lot from books
  2. The gypsy woman said
  3. It won’t be available until April 1st

Siren Song

Photo courtesy of i witness news

Whenever I find myself growing grim about the mouth; whenever it is a damp, drizzly November in my soul; I reach out and take something- that doesn’t belong to me. It’s usually something I don’t even want. Something I wouldn’t buy for myself- even if I had money to burn.

It’s a curse, this obsession I have with lifting things. A compulsion I might be able to justify, if only to myself- had I never been caught. But I have. Several times. So many times in fact that I fear being caught has become an integral part of the ritual.

The exhilarating rush experienced by deftly concealing some worthless trinket on my person, takes on orgasmic proportion, when I notice the shop owner- and she smiles that way. The way people only smile, when they know they have you. I gasp and jerk my hand back, but it’s too late. 

I have become an expert at feigning remorse. So expert in fact that of’t times I fool even myself. Until the gloom returns. Until the doldrums begin devouring what is left of my soul. Until the sirens begin to sing- and I know there is but one path to redemption.

In addition to using the three phrases provided by the OLWG #25, this piece has been written in 50 word increments, and incorporates the last two weeks literary quote prompts from 50 Word Thursday. The included prompts are as follows:

  1. She smiled that way
  2. It’s a curse
  3. Money to burn

“I gasp and jerk my hand back, but it’s too late.” – The Archived – Victoria Schwab.

“Whenever I find myself growing grim about the mouth; whenever it is a damp, drizzly November in my soul;” – Moby Dick by Herman Melville.


Uncredited photo from Celluloid Pop Culture Junkie

Despite the rain, he leaned nonchalantly against a lamp post. A fedora tilted low over one brow. Wearing a London Fog, the color of dusk. 

A halo of light surrounds him. It transforms everything it touches. The raindrops now glisten, like diamonds on my windshield. The ambient glow of the street lamp- becomes the low hung harvest moon.

I know I shouldn’t, but I pull up alongside him. I am just about to ask him if he’d like to get in out of the rain, when slowly, just his eyes turn toward me.

They smile.

“Hey Sister, can I trouble you for a light?”

“I think I have one right here.” I fumble for the words, as I draw a lighter from my handbag. “Here. Try this.” 

I feel the callus of his palm as it brushes lightly against my fingertips. The lighter changes hands. He lights his cigarette. Takes a long drag, expels it, and for a moment, he is one with the fog.

“Nice girl like you shouldn’t be out talking to strangers on lonely, dark nights in the rain.”

“What makes you so sure I’m a nice girl?”

A stifled grin quivers across his lips, as the smile in his eyes grows wider.

“You wouldn’t have pulled over to invite me in out of the rain if you weren’t.” 

“Offer still stand?”

This little vignette incorporates the three phrases provided by the OLWG #23. The phrases were:

1. Diamonds on my windshield
2. Try this
3. I think I have one right here