October 7th, 2011


Read "Eldis"

rix_scaedu wrote a story, "Eldis," sparked while reading my poem "With His Boots On," which was based on prompts from e_scapism101 and ladyqkat.  Cascading inspiration, whee!  This is another deep-time ghost story, with a closer view of the ghost's experiences moving through time as things and people change.  Very well done.

I'm always intrigued to hear things like this, when a new piece is inspired by something I wrote or when it comes from the same prompt(s).  It's cool how different writers can create quite different things from the same or similar source material.

Crowdfunded Illustration: "Husband by Hand"

Check out the lovely illustration of "Husband by Hand" that meeksp posted, inspired by my poem.  The depth of field is particularly rich, with the bread-man in the foreground, Bettina in the midground, and Fiorenza in the background.  Both women really look like themselves, even at this preliminary level of detail.  Also, look at the herbs hung overhead: the leaf shapes are all different.  I'm guessing something like (left to right) sage or bay, rosemary, lavender flowers, basil, and oregano or sweet marjoram.

Please drop by and leave comments for the artist on LiveJournal or on Dreamwidth.  Enough comments will activate a round of revision on this sketch, which has a lot of room to refine its details.  If you've got spare change, throw something in the hat for tips; revisions are now activating in $15 increments.  Thank you!

Poem: "Telling Tales"

This poem came out of the October 4, 2011 Poetry Fishbowl.  It was inspired by prompts from heavenscalyx and xjenavivex.  It was sponsored by Shirley & Anthony Barrette.

Telling Tales

Since he had spent forty years in the morgue,
perhaps no one should have been surprised to see him there,
although the pretty girl hired to replace him
screamed and ran from the room when he first appeared.

He kibbitzed on his own autopsy,
making the poor girl so nervous
that she fumbled with the evidence bags.

He nagged the policemen assigned to his case,
pointing out clues and connections,
and once, he wrote,


in ectoplasm
with a helpful arrow
indicating the evidence.

When the prosecutor decided not to prosecute
on account of the strange goings on,
the ghost frowned and touched the coffee machine
which instantly frosted over with a chime of breaking glass.
Then he began to fondle the office plants,
watching them wither under his frigid touch.
The case proceded forthwith.

After the trial, two policemen
hauled the convicted murderer
out of the courtroom and into a cell.
Chuckling, one of them said to the other,

"Anyone who thought
that simply being dead would
make Old Man Ashcroft shut up
sure had another thing coming!"


Poem: "Clapboard Apparitions"

This poem came out of the October 4, 2011 Poetry Fishbowl.  It was inspired by a prompt from eseme who pointed to photos in a post by asakiyume.  It was sponsored by Shirley & Anthony Barrette.

Clapboard Apparitions

These houses are not haunted
but rather haunts themselves,
clapboard apparitions
that appear and disappear
through the gray felt of fog.

The slate of their roofing
has long since slipped its nails
and returned to the ground
from whence it came,
forsaking the sky to be a floor
to mice and ants and small green ferns.

The whitewash of the walls
has been washed away
by that quiet maid, the rain.
She has left them as sleek and gray
as the shining tresses of her hair.

The barns, too, have fallen to ruin,
their bright sides faded from red to brown,
their broad beams sagging
like the swayed backs of old horses.

Forgotten is the lowing of cows,
replaced now by the cooing of doves
and the shrill skeet-skeet  of barnswallows.
The sweet hay that once fed the cows
has been ground down to dust and straw,
left only for the lining of nests.

Even the fences have given up the ghost,
gnarled fingers of ironwood
sticking up through drifts of leaves,
coils of wire wrapped around quite large trees
that were seedlings when once the wire was new.

The things that man has made
outlive his fleeting desires
and the short skit of his life,
cast against the lazy curtain
of the long summer days
where nature plays out her patient script.


Fishbowl Update

I've posted the poems from today's donation.  Tally is now at $275.50, with less than $25 left to reach the $300 mark and release a piece of bonus material.  I finished some background stuff for Fiorenza, the Italian Herbalist so that's the series that would get the bonus.

You can see the list of unsold poems here.  Also, two of the open epics are near completion, as "Restoration" and "The Accidental Hero" each need $15 to finish.