East Wind Sighing Loud

Frosty Robin

East wind sighing loud

Creeks whitely swollen with snow melt

Let there be storms

Merry migrant song birds chirp

Rebirth of spring delivered.


I combined two challenges and wrote a tanka.


Tuesday, March 03, 2020

#Haikai Challenge #128 (2/29/20): east wind (kochi) #haiku #senryu #haibun #tanka #haiga #renga


Tuesday Writing Prompt Challenge- March 3, 20202: Today’s prompt: “Let there be storms”




people in procession celebrating nyepi
Photo by Artem Beliaikin on Pexels.com

A fanfare of trumpets sounded, drums beat and gongs clashed. The twelve-foot wide red carpet unrolled down the street. The crowd of people lining the carpet edges bowed low in a rippling wave as the honored guest advanced carried by servitors on the ornate litter decorated with brocaded silk fabrics, precious metals and glittering gemstones. Confetti and fragrant flowers showered down. Fireworks explode in brilliant bursts in the sky. The litter halted in front of the gilded and swagged marble façade of the hotel. The Herald took a deep breath and keyed his mike. “The Honorable Mister Archibald Bryson Cunningham The First, Tourist, Citizen of the Town of Dorchester, the State of New Hampshire, the Nation of The United States of America, the Planet of Terra, the System of Sol. We welcome you to our fair city, Extravaganza, Capital of Opulence!” The Mayor bustled down the steps importantly, handing a golden key to Archie. “Welcome my dear boy, welcome, thrice welcome.” He oozed charm. “Here is the key to our grand metropolis. The finest luxury suite has been reserved for you and we are ready to serve your every need. I hope that you enjoy your stay.” Archie accepted the key, climbed the steps. The spectators cheered loudly tossing their hats and waving their hands.  Five minutes after he entered the doorway the Director of Ceremonies cried, “Cut! Reset!” Obediently the populace and their props returned to their original positions, ready for the next guest.


Wednesday, February 12, 2020

A Writing Prompt a Day: Write a piece about an elaborate greeting


PSA Safe-Driving Campaign


To: Courtney Wright, Advertising Director, WXLX Radio

Re: Our new Public Service Announcements for the Safe-Driving Campaign

I recommend one of our local, well-known performers, Tyrese Martinez, aka “Tyresastic T M” for his raspy voice and hip-hop/rap style, and driving beats. He is quite popular with our target demographic group. Here are my suggested lyrics for the first song.

“Yo’ Mama’s Watching You”

“Hey, yo’, yo’ man—

Play it safe, stick to the plan

Yo’ mama’s watching you—

Seeing each little thing that you do

Don’t speed—

My words ya’ better heed

There’s no need—

To race to take the lead


Chorus: Yo mama’s watching you

Seeing each little thing that you do

Be careful man, get a clue—

To the rules of the road ya’ better hew

She got eyes everywhere, everywhere!

She’s got the eyes that glare,

Those eyes that stare—

She got eyes everywhere, everywhere!


Leave early so’s ya’ ain’t runnin’ too late

Ain’t no need to go and tailgate—

Don’t wanna hear that familiar voice berate

So wise up sucker, ’n’ play it straight—




Go ahead and stay off that phone,

Just leave that **** thing alone—

Prove that you’s da man that’s full grown

Don’t need to risk entering the danger zone




If you have any suggestions or amendments I would appreciate your input.

From: Charles Fortnum, Senior Copywriter



Tuesday, January 21, 2020

A Writing Prompt a Day: Write a piece using a technical gimmick (rhyme scheme, etc)


The Cuisine Critique

By Tennyson Carper

Morgan’s Port, Bhuandabya

Notrine, Third Day, Seventh Week, Year of the Spotted Ox

Weigh anchor me matey’s and avoid this destination. Some restaurants are just too cute for words to describe, but I’ll try anyway; it’s my job. By Hook or Cook falls into this category (actually, I consider it an eatery, the term restaurant is too high flown and fancy for the atmosphere I encountered).  As you may have guessed from the name it has a pirate theme. The Owner and Head Chef, Tristan Cold-blooded Blacke studied his trade in the Chellesdean Islands. He admits to previously working at a beach bar there (any other trade he may have engaged in is open to speculation.) He discovered the treasure of Captain Myra the Merciless and opened his dream restaurant here in the city. Stuffed parrots (apparently the Health Inspectorate quarantined the only live one when it caught the Zivebado Flu, besides that it only spoke Nkajinese), fake palm leaves and silk-flower leis decorate the walls. The wainscoting and ceiling are faux thatch. The red tablecloths and napkins have black Jolly Roger’s sprinkled all over them. The lighting is dim and they use a fog generator to suggest smoke. The wait staff (many of whom were undoubtedly real pirates at one time) wear puffy red or white shirts, vests, kerchiefs, black pants, patent leather knee-high boots, and pirate hats. Eye-patches, hand hooks, peg legs, scars, tattoos, and dreadlocks are common. They completely mangle the Aengleaic language. “Arrgh! Avast me hearties! Belay that!” and other examples of pirate slang litter their speech. The music consists of Reggae groups and Steel-pan bands. The menu is equally unimaginative. The list includes the sort of names that one would expect from a place of this caliber.

For my drink I had the Walk the Plank Punch had a large number of those the little paper umbrellas littering the mug that rather turned me off of it. The sole redeeming feature of the beverage was the lavish amount of rum that killed the flavor of the mixed fruit juices.

For my appetizer I choose the Dead Man’s Chest Cheeseburger Sliders. They were most definitely dead, it had been broiled into charcoal. On second thought, I think that actual charcoal might be more savory.

The serve-yourself Booty Buffet Salad Bar was stale and tired, every single leaf of lettuce was wilted and limp. The dressing had far too much oil. The croutons were as crunchy as bricks.

My first entree was The Shipwreck Stew was aptly named, it was a jumbled mess of ingredients and flavors that looked like grey glop. I couldn’t distinguish the meat from the vegetables and it had an overly generous amount of Tzingleze spice (HOT HOT HOT!) The dish tasted quite foul.

My second entree was the Marooned Mackerel Cake was quite awful. All that you could taste was fish, three-day old fish at that. It was accompanied by turnips that had been boiled to paste.

My dessert was the Shiver Me Timbers Sundae. A rather lousy vanilla yogurt sparsely covered with carob sauce and a scanty scattering of rancid peanuts.

 The wait stiff responded promptly and were friendly to me (one buxom blonde bombshell quite overdid it, she jumped into my lap unasked, I didn’t even pinch her bottom first!) The highlight or should I say low-light of the evening is the exit, you have to Walk the Plank ( a skinny rotting teetering board haphazardly overlaying a deep, steep-sided reeking ditch) to depart. I visited this location on two occasions, I devoutly hope never to repeat the experience.

By Hook or Cook is located in the eastern outskirts (the poorest side) of the city of Morgan’s Port, at 666 Asylum Road, in the scenic country of Bhuandbya. It is an hour long walk form the docks which are the city’s mainstay through a number of narrow dark alleyways filled with cut-purses, crimpers, and whores. No reservations are required.  Normal wait time is a quarter-glass. Accepted tender consists of: coins, precious metals, gemstones, and healthy slaves (all items are checked for authenticity at the door. Be warned they have some extremely vicious bouncers.)  My meals averaged 25 Silver Tangibles. I reluctantly rate By Hook or Cook One-star, mainly because no negative stars are allowed. I highly recommend passing it by, it was one of the worst examples of a pirate themed eatery I have ever dined at and far too expensive for what actually arrived on the table.


December 5, 2019

A Writing prompt a Day: Write a piece about a themed restaurant


Kelsh Family Dinner

“Caveat, all identities have been changed to protect the guilty parties. Several separate events have been combined to occupy the same space-time location.”

“Welcome everybody to the 86th Annual Allen Family Thanksgiving Dinner! In a historic first, we have five generations gathered together today! Three days of frantic behind the scenes preparations  have lead up to this moment. Provisions are completed and the meal is ready to begin! Let the battle royal commence!” The announcer drawled in a ringing voice.

The food is being brought into the dining room, the board already crowded with place settings and centerpieces groans under the added weight. A hush falls over the audience, as the star of the show enters. . Dad’s carving the turkey. Careful now, remember last year! Oh no! His hand slips! The crowd roars as the blood spurts! “

“Mother’s bustling up, first aid box in her grasp. Proficiently she swabs the wound. It’s okay folks! Dad just nicked his index finger. A couple of bandages and everything’s fine!”

“The observers settle back with disappointed sighs. We all remember last year when dad had to rush to the emergency room and get nineteen stitches in his left palm. And who can forget Grandfather Walter  who lost his pinkie finger in ’67.”

“They’re serving the bird now. Everyone’s looking at it with suspicion, no doubt thinking of the infamous gathering of ’95 when we all wound up with food poisoning. No it’s all right, this gobbler’s cooked all the way through, some might even say it’s just a tad over done. What an epic fiasco that was; one bathroom versus 60 odd people, all of them needing to use the facilities right now!  Mom had to hire  a Rug Doctor crew to sanitize the mess and it cost her plenty!”

“The rest of the food is making the rounds. Mitzy passes to Frank. We’re crammed in at the table cheek to jowl. Fumble! There’s a large spot of gravy on Grandmama’s antique white (it has rather yellowed with age) lace tablecloth! “

“Now Bernice and Timothy are wrestling over the last drumstick. Bernice stabs her cousin’s arm with her fork. Success! The drumstick is hers! Timothy’s nursing his injured forelimb and shooting lethal looks at Bernice!  There’s going to be trouble over this, I can see him plotting his retribution now.”

“I was right! There goes the winter squash, forcefully hurled! Some of it missed, the tablecloth is sure getting lambasted today!”

“Cousin Eddie sneaked in his hip flask and is steadily getting sloshed. He’s already three sheets to the wind! Smells like he loaded it with brandy this year.”

“Dalton and Jordan are lobbing brussels sprouts at each other across the table with their spoons. Oops! Dalton’s projectile has gone awry and hit Lucas in the eye! Lucas retaliates by flinging a glob of mashed potatoes. That shirt will never be the same! You’d think that a group of thirty-somethings would be more mature, I guess that the holiday brings out the kid in all of us.”

“Gramps and Tony are arguing about their rival football teams. The bowl of cranberry sauce goes ballistic! Another hit on the tablecloth! Grandmama’s face is turning red with fury!”

“The babies, Johnnie and  Bethany are crying at full volume trying to outdo each other. Uh-oh! One or both of them require changing, pronto!  Phew! Everyone hold your noses!”

“Great Uncles Clarence and Curtis are debating politics. Yikes! They’ve reached the daggers drawn stage! Now they’re fencing with the bread sticks. It’s a shame to see seventy year old men acting so childishly.”

“Second cousins Deborah and Kenneth are lobbing stuffing bombs at each other. There’s not much consistency there this year. They’re bursting open on impact, leaving crumbs all over the place. One piece just landed in great aunt Maud’s full cup of coffee! The splash zone from that hit’s going to leave a mark!”

“Teenagers Ryan and Gabriel are using their straws to suck up peas and blowgun them at random relatives. They just knocked Lawrence’s toupee into the salad bowl! Whoopsie! There goes the French Dressing! That tablecloth is sure getting blasted!”

“Aunts Clarice and  Judith are going at it hammer and tongs over who has the best Jell-O salad! They’re standing bosom to bosom (and an impressive sight that is, both of them are 48 Double D’s), and screaming at each other like fishwives!”

“In-laws Sheila and Lyssa, the Stepford Wives Twins (so perfect that it’s scary,) are planning a surgical strike on selected stores. Operation Grab Bags Full of Stuff is scheduled to activate at o’dark hundred in the morning so they can be first in line! What dedicated pair of bargain hunters!”

“Now Sis and big Luke are going at the dessert. Look out folks! Sis has gotten possession of the Reddi-wip can and isn’t afraid to use it! She’s just given Luke a huge whipped cream mustache and beard! Little Luke clutches his sides he’s laughing so hard at his father. Big Luke’s reacting. Splat!  There goes the pumpkin pie! And the beleaguered tablecloth takes another punch! ”

“Four hours have passed; the assembly has been loud and boisterous. Dinner is finally winding down. We can all give Thanks this year, no serious injuries or illnesses occurred. Everyone’s settling in to clean up and digest. That poor old tablecloth’s going to need a lot of bleach!”

“Yet another famous holiday meal in the Allen Family Chronicles. This play-by-play has been brought to you by Niki Allen-Price, your announcer, singing off.”



Tuesday Writing Prompt Challenge November 26, 2019: Write something around the theme of Thanksgiving–being grateful, family, food, traditions, etc.   It can have a serious tone or create something that will make us laugh.


shallow focus photo of woman holding her hair
Photo by Alexander Mils on Pexels.com

Trapped in my ancient fear

Afraid to reach out

Connect to another

Wary of further rejection

I withdraw into the safety of my soul

A fortress of solitude indeed.



Inspired by: Tuesday Writing Prompt Challenge: Tuesday, October 1, 2019 Today’s prompt: Write anything around the theme or words: Trapped in my ancient fear

Tuesday Writing Prompt Challenge: Tuesday, October 1, 2019