The prompt today is to use this zen garden as your inspiration.
Here is my response:
Shoulders slumped, feet heavy on the glistening pavement, Jocelyn makes her way home in light rain, which gradually soaks through her jacket and trickles down her back. The grey drizzle matches her mood, yet another day stuck inside the call center, reading by rote the same sales pitch over and over again. This hadn’t been her dream, she had believed she could find a career designing and tending gardens but no-one would hire an inexperienced student so she had make do with the first job offered and there she had stayed. Even after paying rent and all her bills she had a surplus, which was reflected in her savings account but she had nowhere to spend it. Holidays alone did not appeal, a fancy car would stayed parked in the under ground garage most of the time as she could walk to work in less than ten minutes and she wasn’t into fashion. She had made her small apartment a Japanese inspired haven with rich colours and objects; this was where she was happy. Opening the door she placed her lunch bag on the kitchen counter and headed straight for the shower, the warm water soothed her, her silk kimono feeling luxurious against her skin. After a light supper, she sat redefining her Zen garden, comforted by the slow motion of the small wooden tools, watching the fine grains of sand move and the careful placing of the miniature stones.
The sudden ring of the phone breaks her peaceful meditation.
“Is this Jocelyn Woo?”
“This is Jocelyn, who is calling?”
“Hello Jocelyn, my name is Harry Kyoto, I was given your number by George Ita at the Sumay Garden Center. He told me you were very talented at design when you worked with him in your summer holidays from college”.
“That was a while ago Mr. Kyoto but I do continue to design gardens in my spare time”.
“Yes, George has shown me some of your designs and that is why I am calling. I would like to offer you a job. Would you consider it?”
“Mr. Kyoto I would be absolutely delighted to accept. What position are you offering?”
“Well garden designer, of course, what else?”
Jocelyn felt dizzy with excitement, her heart was pounding – a dream come true when she had been at her lowest since moving to the city.
“When do you need me to start Mr. Kyoto? I only need to give two weeks notice”.
“That’s excellent news Jocelyn. So shall we say you will start on the sixteenth?”
“Thank you so much Mr. Kyoto, I’m really overwhelmed at your offer”.
“Well from the designs George showed me I think I am the lucky one, Jocelyn. Take care and I’ll see you soon”.
As she replaced the mouth piece, she couldn’t contain her excitement and let out a yell of pure joy – no more stuffy crowded tower block office with the constant gabble of voices saying the same thing over and over. She would be living her dream in two short weeks.
I would love to read your poem or short story inspired by this prompt – leave it in the comments.
Today’s prompt gives you a For Sale sign as the inspiration.
Here is my response – For Sale Signs
The two houses faced each other dissimilar in architecture and coloured siding but both sporting for sale signs. At first glance, it could be thought a coincidence that both households were moving but the facades held a hidden turmoil. Heartbreak was sealed within.
As with all beginnings, it had started in all innocence and the future repercussions unimagined. An invitation to a barbecue from the new neighbours as a way to introduce themselves to the neighbourhood was quickly accepted. Frank knew Jocelyn would be quick to investigate the new homeowners furniture and decor, she just loved being nosy. With a bottle in hand and a small bouquet of flowers, they rung the doorbell and waited. A call from the back yard summoned them to walk around the house. Jocelyn let out a sigh. Frank knew she was just dying to see inside.
“Well hello neighbours. My name is Adele and when he emerges from the kitchen you can meet my husband, Jeremy.”
“It’s nice to meet you, Adele, this is my wife Jocelyn, and I’m Frank. We bought wine and these are for you.”
As Adele looked into Frank’s eyes and took the flowers, he felt a tingle in his hand and his heart beat a little faster. She was exquisite. His gaze was broken when a hand landed on his shoulder.
“Hello, I’m Jeremy, glad you could come over.”
“Thank you for inviting us, Jeremy. I know I’ve just arrived but may I use your bathroom?”
Frank glanced at Jocelyn, exasperated at her guile. He watched as they both entered the kitchen door then looked back at Adele. She was watching him intently, a slight flush to her cheeks. And that is how it began. An affair that consumed the two of them for the rest of the summer.
Jeremy’s frequent business trips initially allowed Frank to visit Adele without suspicion. Jocelyn was too self absorbed to notice at first until one night she happened to run across to tell Frank a pipe had burst and found him and Adele in an embrace. Jocelyn’s screaming and ranting continued for days and nights. She threatened, cajoled and pleaded all in a vain attempt to make Frank love her again. Adele remained hidden in her home after Jeremy had accosted Frank in the driveway and punched him so hard it had broken his nose. The police were called and Jeremy left with them. Frank obviously did not press charges under the circumstances. Jeremy arrived a day later and with two suitcases thrown into the trunk squealed his tires as he left.
Frank left at his usual time then backtracked when he saw Jocelyn leave for her dental appointment. Parking in his own driveway, he walked across the road and gently tapped on Adele’s front door. Her beautiful face appeared at the window. The door opened slowly and Frank walked in. They talked for hours, expressing their love and planning their escape.
Now the for sale signs face each other across the road the only symbols of the true meaning of their existence.
Please join in and write your own story or poem inspired by a For Sale sign. Leave it in the comments below.
I am sharing the word prompt we enjoyed at my writer’s meeting last night.
Use these words in a short story or poem: tower, rotten, bribe, diamond.
Here is my 15 minute response.
“Rotten Tommy, he’s stolen my potatoes again! I’ll get him back, you see if I don’t.”
Lucy nodded, turning her mouth downward to show Rodney, she was sympathic. In reality she knew Rodney had probably lost all the sacks of potatoes in a game of poker and was covering up.
“We’ll have to grow more. We have time this season, Rod.”
“There you go being all positive again, Lucy.”
She turned away at Rodney’s unkind words. She would go as hungry as him without money for food. The door slammed behind her.
“Good riddance!” She mumbled under her breath. Outside the window she saw the imposing towers of the castle. She daydreamed of one day being carried off by the Prince and showered with diamonds away from Rodney and the hovel they called home. He was supposed to look after her, his younger sister but she always seemed to be the one to solve the problems.
Lucy turned quickly at the sound. Freddy was crouched under the window.
“What are you doing there?”
“I have some potatoes for you.”
“And where did they come from, Freddy?”
“Best not know but for a quick kiss, I will let you have the whole sack.”
“Oh will you? Maybe I’ll tell Rodney your plan and he can beat it out of you.”
“Oh, come on, Lucy, one little kiss for a sack of potatoes isn’t much of a bribe is it?”
“Did you steal them from Rodney or Tommy?”
“Does it matter?”
“I suppose not. Come here then and put the sack under this bench then you shall have your one kiss and no more.”
Freddy smiled, threw the sack over his shoulder and hurried in the door. Lucy poised her cheek outward for his kiss and as quickly pulled away.
“I could get you more food for more than a kiss, Lucy.”
“I think that’s enough, Freddy, now off with you.”
Freddy’s shoulders slumped but he left knowing Lucy might be beautiful but also very strong willed.
“Another day, Lucy.”
“Take care, Freddy, if Tommy finds out he’ll be less than pleased to lose a whole sack of potatoes.”
Once Freddy left Lucy pushed the sack further back under the bench with her feet to make sure it was well hidden. Now they would be able to eat for a week or two.
Why don’t you have a go at this prompt. Share your response in the comments.
Today’s writing prompt is a view of a pathway. What story or poem does it inspire in you?
I wrote this response for it. I hope you enjoy it.
“What’s down there, Mummy?”
“I don’t know, sweetheart. Shall we go and look?”
“Yeh, an adventure – follow me into the jungle. I’ll protect you.”
The irregular shaped stepping stones draw us into the unknown depths of his imagination. With a stick for a sword, he leads the way. He is a Commander and fearless leader of an army, searching out the enemy.
It feels pleasant to be under the shade of the tree’s canopy, out of the hot sun. As I watch Sebastian dart back and forth taking cover behind tree trucks, my heart warms. He is the miracle I never thought would be mine. So many years of trying to get pregnant and then the indignity of numerous medical tests had made life so difficult. Gerald tried so hard to comfort me, and accompanied me to all my appointments and endured tests of his own. It was only when I caught him unawares on that fateful evening, that I knew I would have to stop pressuring him to carry on. The total despair in his voice; as he had spoken to his mother; had chilled me to the bone. He was blaming himself and truly believing I would leave him or worse. I had crept away unnoticed and walked for hours along this very path, deciding our future. My decision made, I surprised Gerald with a candle lit dinner the very next evening and announced.
“I cannot struggle any more, Gerald, let’s enjoy life again. Put all this behind us.”
“Are you sure, Claudia? You have so wanted a child.”
“Yes, I’m very sure. It’s obviously not meant to be.”
I had to ‘eat my words’ three months later, when my stomach upset was identified as ‘morning sickness.’ Our specialist was not surprised. He told us it was quite common for women to conceive once the stress was absent.
“Mummy, come on. Keep up.”
“I’m coming, Commander. Have you found the enemy yet?”