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///// Nightdwellers 'Beginning Line' Challenge (March) ///// Write a piece of literature with the beginning line ‘I DRINK A COCKTAIL OF MOONLIGHT…’ Tag it #nightdwellers #beginningline. http://www.facebook.com/groups/NightdwellersWrites/
Written by AmandaCary

I drink a cocktail of moonlight

But you see

I do not swallow

I breathe

The glow of that rock

It's remnants hushed

To a dust of humbled rays

Boasting the warmth

Of a million lights

Pulled by the touch

Of a blackened nothing

It crawls to the very corners of me

Into each and every crater that craves

To taste these memories of centuries

Traveled by the

Sun

Unknowing

And boiling in her own innocence

Her majesty all but aware

Of the weight she holds over

Countless souls

Who are one in the same

Once filtered through the teeth of time

Softened in broad strokes

And spilled graciously over us

Through this blessing of the

Moon

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///// Nightdwellers 'Beginning Line' Challenge (March) ///// Write a piece of literature with the beginning line ‘I DRINK A COCKTAIL OF MOONLIGHT…’ Tag it #nightdwellers #beginningline. http://www.facebook.com/groups/NightdwellersWrites/
Written by AmandaCary
I drink a cocktail of moonlight
But you see
I do not swallow
I breathe
The glow of that rock
It's remnants hushed
To a dust of humbled rays
Boasting the warmth
Of a million lights
Pulled by the touch
Of a blackened nothing
It crawls to the very corners of me
Into each and every crater that craves
To taste these memories of centuries
Traveled by the
Sun
Unknowing
And boiling in her own innocence
Her majesty all but aware
Of the weight she holds over
Countless souls
Who are one in the same
Once filtered through the teeth of time
Softened in broad strokes
And spilled graciously over us
Through this blessing of the
Moon
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Define what it means to be an atheist.
Written by AmandaCary in portal Religion

I'm Not an Atheist

Nor am I

Christian

Catholic

Baptist

Church of Christ

Pentecostal

(Insert other Christian denominations here)

Buddhist

Hindu

Jain

Muslim

Fondu

Etcetera

Etcetera

Etcetera

I'm probably Agnostic, which I've been informed is the most cowardly and faithless of all belief systems, but I conform to nothing and refuse a label because I don't really care. I hate the very limiting term "belief system."

In turn, I suppose none of the above matters.

In my observation, to be atheist simply means to believe only what can be proven factually and scientifically or otherwise obviously.

I have total respect for that.

It doesn't mean putting faith in theories, as some would misunderstand and use to call flaw to the atheist "non-existent belief" belief system. It simply means understanding what has been proven, which also means understanding that even these things can (and inevitably will) change.

It means a surgeon is given thanks for his twelve-plus years of medical school when he saves your life.

It means exploration into the unknown and (theoretically) infinite universe.

It means questioning everything on the table that is deserving of interrogation.

It means half of the reason (probably more) that human beings in first world countries have the life expectancy that they have today.

It means that thunder is a result of lightening and not a result of an angry dude throwing bolts down from the sky.

It means, before we damn and shake fingers in the faces of all atheists, we may want to thank our lucky stars they exist or we might still be chanting prayers and bleeding ourselves out of fever instead of taking antibiotics.

It means not using an uppercase A when spelling the word "atheist."

And I have total respect for that.

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Define what it means to be an atheist.
Written by AmandaCary in portal Religion
I'm Not an Atheist
Nor am I
Christian
Catholic
Baptist
Church of Christ
Pentecostal
(Insert other Christian denominations here)
Buddhist
Hindu
Jain
Muslim
Fondu
Etcetera
Etcetera
Etcetera

I'm probably Agnostic, which I've been informed is the most cowardly and faithless of all belief systems, but I conform to nothing and refuse a label because I don't really care. I hate the very limiting term "belief system."

In turn, I suppose none of the above matters.

In my observation, to be atheist simply means to believe only what can be proven factually and scientifically or otherwise obviously.

I have total respect for that.

It doesn't mean putting faith in theories, as some would misunderstand and use to call flaw to the atheist "non-existent belief" belief system. It simply means understanding what has been proven, which also means understanding that even these things can (and inevitably will) change.

It means a surgeon is given thanks for his twelve-plus years of medical school when he saves your life.

It means exploration into the unknown and (theoretically) infinite universe.

It means questioning everything on the table that is deserving of interrogation.

It means half of the reason (probably more) that human beings in first world countries have the life expectancy that they have today.

It means that thunder is a result of lightening and not a result of an angry dude throwing bolts down from the sky.

It means, before we damn and shake fingers in the faces of all atheists, we may want to thank our lucky stars they exist or we might still be chanting prayers and bleeding ourselves out of fever instead of taking antibiotics.

It means not using an uppercase A when spelling the word "atheist."

And I have total respect for that.
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Challenge of the Week #58: You are a victim of injustice, write a story about it. The most masterfully written piece, as voted and determined by the Prose team, will be crowned winner and receive $150. Quality beats quantity, always, but numbers make things easier for our judges, so share, share, share with friends, family, and connections. #ProseChallenge #getlit #itslit
Written by AmandaCary

Dear John,

    We spent our end side by side as we should have, but open to nothing, mapping our existence in your cynical glory and nicotine stained fingertips.  My eyes bright and naive in the beginning, drawn to your dark circles and fog and magnetized by what felt like a never-ending, beautiful melancholy of a-minor.

    The first time I found you hanging from the end of a noose, I lost all use of my legs.  I never told you that. Our child in my arms and too young to remember any of it, I dragged you down with one hand, screaming and cursing at you for doing such a horrible thing to yourself and your family.  You were angry with me, and I understood why soon after.  But I would never be the same.

    The pills were next, then your wrists, and after that I lost count of all of the threats, the plans, the attempts that never amounted to anything more than emergency calls.  I did begin a tally of psych visits, however, as my life became a sleight of prescription exchange after exchange.  My evenings turned from a sigh in a glass of blood red Cabernet to praying to God that it would not be the day that the rush hour traffic would keep me so long that you'd have time to finish before I got home.

    I learned when to speak and when not to, and I learned that it was best I didn't express any negativity around you in the event that my words would be the focus of your next attempt to kill yourself.  I knew they had been in the past, as you'd told me, and I began to pick away at all of the parts of me that allowed anything but a smile to peek through at you.

    I write you this, John, not because I want to make you feel guilty or ashamed.  I know you were sick, and I loved being by your side regardless of the circumstances behind what became an ever-watchful eye.  

    I write you this because I spent the last thirty-seven years of our marriage together in a cold well of silence, muffling my own voice in order to keep yours alive.  Every moment I breathed was for the one that you would tell me you were happy in our life together, in your life here, and you felt you had something worth living for.

    I write you this to bury with you because I am numb, and do not know how to grieve a loss that I've waited for over three decades to come.  

    I write you this because I gave myself into you to keep you from going out, but now you're gone.  Now you've left me - no goodbye, no kiss - having died of nothing more than heart failure in your sleep.

   So now I'm saying goodbye to you and your pain, and I will send it with you rightfully so that I may finally let my own take its place.

                                                                                                  Love Always,

                                                            Jane

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Challenge of the Week #58: You are a victim of injustice, write a story about it. The most masterfully written piece, as voted and determined by the Prose team, will be crowned winner and receive $150. Quality beats quantity, always, but numbers make things easier for our judges, so share, share, share with friends, family, and connections. #ProseChallenge #getlit #itslit
Written by AmandaCary
Dear John,
    We spent our end side by side as we should have, but open to nothing, mapping our existence in your cynical glory and nicotine stained fingertips.  My eyes bright and naive in the beginning, drawn to your dark circles and fog and magnetized by what felt like a never-ending, beautiful melancholy of a-minor.
    The first time I found you hanging from the end of a noose, I lost all use of my legs.  I never told you that. Our child in my arms and too young to remember any of it, I dragged you down with one hand, screaming and cursing at you for doing such a horrible thing to yourself and your family.  You were angry with me, and I understood why soon after.  But I would never be the same.
    The pills were next, then your wrists, and after that I lost count of all of the threats, the plans, the attempts that never amounted to anything more than emergency calls.  I did begin a tally of psych visits, however, as my life became a sleight of prescription exchange after exchange.  My evenings turned from a sigh in a glass of blood red Cabernet to praying to God that it would not be the day that the rush hour traffic would keep me so long that you'd have time to finish before I got home.
    I learned when to speak and when not to, and I learned that it was best I didn't express any negativity around you in the event that my words would be the focus of your next attempt to kill yourself.  I knew they had been in the past, as you'd told me, and I began to pick away at all of the parts of me that allowed anything but a smile to peek through at you.
    I write you this, John, not because I want to make you feel guilty or ashamed.  I know you were sick, and I loved being by your side regardless of the circumstances behind what became an ever-watchful eye.  
    I write you this because I spent the last thirty-seven years of our marriage together in a cold well of silence, muffling my own voice in order to keep yours alive.  Every moment I breathed was for the one that you would tell me you were happy in our life together, in your life here, and you felt you had something worth living for.
    I write you this to bury with you because I am numb, and do not know how to grieve a loss that I've waited for over three decades to come.  
    I write you this because I gave myself into you to keep you from going out, but now you're gone.  Now you've left me - no goodbye, no kiss - having died of nothing more than heart failure in your sleep.
   So now I'm saying goodbye to you and your pain, and I will send it with you rightfully so that I may finally let my own take its place.

                                                                                                  Love Always,
                                                            Jane
#prosechallenge  #triggerwarning  #Itslit  #getlit  #injusticeofdepression 
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///// Nightdwellers 'Beginning Line' Challenge (February) ///// Write a piece of literature with the beginning line ‘LEAVES FELL TO THE GROUND THAT DAY…’ Tag it #nightdwellers #beginningline. http://www.facebook.com/groups/NightdwellersWrites/
Written by AmandaCary

Leaves fell to the ground that day

I could not see them hiding where they'd land

Beneath a fog, who was awake and waiting to scurry that trail

Behind me, to disguise my own toes from the air

I could feel them slide between the concrete and soles 

The tearing of tired skin from a brittle bone 

But I could not hear the crunch of their fingers

The trees were too loud with their shrieking and mourning

Having lost what they'd grown from sweet buds

Even knowing before their leaves spun into gravel 

That a racket could never save the end to it all 

They were always destined to fall that way

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///// Nightdwellers 'Beginning Line' Challenge (February) ///// Write a piece of literature with the beginning line ‘LEAVES FELL TO THE GROUND THAT DAY…’ Tag it #nightdwellers #beginningline. http://www.facebook.com/groups/NightdwellersWrites/
Written by AmandaCary
Leaves fell to the ground that day
I could not see them hiding where they'd land
Beneath a fog, who was awake and waiting to scurry that trail
Behind me, to disguise my own toes from the air
I could feel them slide between the concrete and soles 
The tearing of tired skin from a brittle bone 
But I could not hear the crunch of their fingers
The trees were too loud with their shrieking and mourning
Having lost what they'd grown from sweet buds
Even knowing before their leaves spun into gravel 
That a racket could never save the end to it all 
They were always destined to fall that way
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Challenge of the Week #55: Write a story of 200 words or more about a stranger. The most masterfully written piece, as voted and determined by the Prose team, will be crowned winner and receive $200. Quality beats quantity, always, but numbers make things easier for our judges, so share, share, share with friends, family, and connections. #ProseChallenge #getlit #itslit
Written by AmandaCary

"Didn't Your Mama Ever Tell You?"

It was a gray day, but she waited nonetheless, counting aloud the lines on the sidewalk the same as she did every day. A gangly family of pigeons scuttled around her worn leather moccasins, as they always did, and she sat complacent and smiling on the same metal bench beneath the same dying oak tree. She was here every day at seven in the morning with nothing but the company of a cheap bag of birdseed, and I imagined she probably didn’t travel too far away at any given time.

I jogged this path religiously and always wondered if she’d noticed me as I’d noticed her. It seemed no one else who followed this trail paid any mind to her at all, but against the drab landscape of the city park, she stood out like a spotlight to me. Faded pink floral trousers and a tattered white Donald Duck tee were her mainstays, but today she wore a yellow crocheted beanie on her head, pulled all the way over her ears. Yesterday her hat was green, and I’ve even once seen it red with white stripes around the Christmas season. Her head was the only thing about her that ever changed.

Today I stopped. Today I said hello and gave her my name, but her expression didn’t budge. Her counting, however, ceased without a hitch as soon as I spoke. She continued to smile her nearly vacant smile and said, “Hello.  My name's Amanda.”

“Oh, yes. Thank you.” I wasn’t expecting a response, so, surprised, I could only reply in observation, “I see you here every day, ma’am.”

I can’t be certain why I decided to approach her. Perhaps it was curiosity, perhaps concern, but as I attempted to read what may or may not have been amusement at my disregard for well-mannered conversation on her face, I sure wished I’d taken the time to think of something thoughtful to say.

“I see you here every day, ma’am,” she replied, and the corners of her mouth rose towards her ears by only a hair. Yes, she was amused.

I didn’t have an intention of being rude, but I couldn’t help but study her. She sat silent, still gazing into the direction I’d come from, so it was easy to stare. Lines had formed in arcs where her mouth curved, as if she had been frozen into a grin for a lifetime. Crow’s feet tapered into soft, pale papery cheeks, and she was tiny, thin as a rail, smelling of peanut butter and mildew. She must have been at least eighty.

“M-may I sit for a moment with you,” I was hesitant for the split second before I asked, but I did so with a friendly nod of my own, and she answered, “May I sit for a moment with you?”

I made sure to seat myself close enough on the metal bench to feel amicable but not too close for comfort, and I attempted to carry on this seemingly one-sided conversation.

“So, are you from here - from Chicago?” She faithfully kept her sight locked on the tunnel I’d emerged from and repeated me once again, “So, are you from here - from Chicago?”

“Um, okay. Yeah, I am. Are you hungry? Would you like to get some breakfast together?” Somehow, her reply was easily predictable, “Um, okay. Yeah, I am. Are you hungry? Would you like to get some breakfast together?”

Obviously this woman was a little loose mentally, so I stood slowly and bent towards her, my palm open for hers. I thought I may as well take matters into my own hands.

“Yes, I am! I’m starving. There’s a little diner right around the -"

Before I could finish, she gripped tight to my wrist - wild, bloodshot eyes burned fervently into my own.  They danced with an ominous menace I'd never seen, and her smile was now wide and maniacal, filled with rotten brown teeth and reeking of decayed meat.

Her voice was different than before, something like a deep Creole accent shot from her putrid mouth as she continued to smirk, "Di'nt you Ma-Ma evuh tell you to don't talk to stranguhs, gal?  That how you get took!"

The "k"she cracked with her closing "took" annunciated a warning so vile that my head spun.  My heart stopped for just that moment, her cackle filled my air so thick I could not catch a breath.  I ripped my hand from her grasp, tripping backwards on my heels, and hit the pavement.  

Then I just ran. I ran away in the style of a campy horror movie victim, knowing I was doomed to something, somehow.  I couldn't hear her laughter as I fled back through the tunnel I'd entered by, but I didn't stop. I dug my feet into the concrete and pushed my knees into the light from the other side, racing for dear life.

But something wasn't right. My heart was screaming, and I couldn't breathe. A sharp stab tore through the back of my skull, and I couldn't help but wonder if I was having a stroke or something worse. My ribs cracked as if I'd never run a day in my life.  This didn't make sense.  I ran marathons on my goddamn period, for heaven's sake!

Heaving, I found the main road beyond the park's tunnel entrance. The little diner I wanted to bring her to sat with an inviting wooden bench out front, so I stumbled towards it for relief.

As I approached, the window caught a glimpse of her yellow beanie. She must have followed me somehow.  How the hell was she so fast?  

I twisted to catch her, aching left shoulder blade and crackling knees, heart still beating out of my head, but she was nowhere to be seen.  I must have imagined it.  

I collapsed onto the bench seat, slouching haggardly and dripping sweat, panting like a dog in heat.  It must have been the panic.  I couldn't understand what the hell about that old bag scared me so badly, but I'd never freaked out so hard in my life.

Suddenly, a faded floral pattern, pink roses and paisley came into focus as I sat nearly doubled over.  Wrinkled hands pocked in liver spots and mottled with bulging blue veins dangled between my thighs.  My thighs.  

I shot out of the bench and pulled myself to the diner window, searching for my reflection, but I couldn't find it.  What stood in that window was a wretched old witch wearing a Donald Duck tee and smirk straight from hell, mocking me.  A yellow beanie sat atop her head.  

I screamed for help, but no one heard.  I grabbed at passersby, but they took no notice of me.  I couldn't run any longer, I was too winded, so I just fell.  I knew I was sobbing, and I knew this was impossible, but touching my cheeks, there were no tears.  Only a smile that would not leave.  Only rotten teeth and the smell of my rank mouth penetrating my nostrils.

I had to get back to her.  She never left the park bench, and she was going to fix this.  I didn't know what was happening to me.  I didn't know if I was dreaming.  I didn't know who I even was, but this was not my body and those were not my fucking trousers.

The walk back to the park was a blur, probably faster than it felt, and my heart never had a chance to slow down.  The tunnel seemed a hundred miles long in my condition.  I was only twenty five, but I had become a corpse in waiting.

Finally, the bench was in view, but she was gone.  I was gone.  I wasn't even sure what I was expecting to find.  People everywhere, but no one that resembled me, and I was the only person here that was her.  No one heard me, no one saw me.  I was nothing.

Sitting on the bench was a bag of birdseed, so I joined it.  I waited for myself to return, to emerge from that tunnel at seven the next morning as I always did.  To find me sitting on this same old park bench, under this same dying oak tree.  I was here every morning, but I never came.  

********

It was a gray day, but she waited nonetheless, counting aloud the lines on the sidewalk the same as she did every day. A gangly family of pigeons scuttled around her worn leather moccasins, as they always did, and she sat complacent and smiling on the same metal bench beneath the same dying oak tree. She was here every day at seven in the morning with nothing but the company of a cheap bag of birdseed, and I imagined she probably didn’t travel too far away at any given time.

I don't know why, but I decided to say hello today, and I did.

"Hello, ma'am.  I'm Brady.  I see you here everyday, so I thought I should say hello."

She responded, "Hello, ma'am.  I'm Brady.  I see you here everyday, so I thought I should say hello."

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Challenge of the Week #55: Write a story of 200 words or more about a stranger. The most masterfully written piece, as voted and determined by the Prose team, will be crowned winner and receive $200. Quality beats quantity, always, but numbers make things easier for our judges, so share, share, share with friends, family, and connections. #ProseChallenge #getlit #itslit
Written by AmandaCary
"Didn't Your Mama Ever Tell You?"
It was a gray day, but she waited nonetheless, counting aloud the lines on the sidewalk the same as she did every day. A gangly family of pigeons scuttled around her worn leather moccasins, as they always did, and she sat complacent and smiling on the same metal bench beneath the same dying oak tree. She was here every day at seven in the morning with nothing but the company of a cheap bag of birdseed, and I imagined she probably didn’t travel too far away at any given time.

I jogged this path religiously and always wondered if she’d noticed me as I’d noticed her. It seemed no one else who followed this trail paid any mind to her at all, but against the drab landscape of the city park, she stood out like a spotlight to me. Faded pink floral trousers and a tattered white Donald Duck tee were her mainstays, but today she wore a yellow crocheted beanie on her head, pulled all the way over her ears. Yesterday her hat was green, and I’ve even once seen it red with white stripes around the Christmas season. Her head was the only thing about her that ever changed.

Today I stopped. Today I said hello and gave her my name, but her expression didn’t budge. Her counting, however, ceased without a hitch as soon as I spoke. She continued to smile her nearly vacant smile and said, “Hello.  My name's Amanda.”

“Oh, yes. Thank you.” I wasn’t expecting a response, so, surprised, I could only reply in observation, “I see you here every day, ma’am.”

I can’t be certain why I decided to approach her. Perhaps it was curiosity, perhaps concern, but as I attempted to read what may or may not have been amusement at my disregard for well-mannered conversation on her face, I sure wished I’d taken the time to think of something thoughtful to say.

“I see you here every day, ma’am,” she replied, and the corners of her mouth rose towards her ears by only a hair. Yes, she was amused.

I didn’t have an intention of being rude, but I couldn’t help but study her. She sat silent, still gazing into the direction I’d come from, so it was easy to stare. Lines had formed in arcs where her mouth curved, as if she had been frozen into a grin for a lifetime. Crow’s feet tapered into soft, pale papery cheeks, and she was tiny, thin as a rail, smelling of peanut butter and mildew. She must have been at least eighty.

“M-may I sit for a moment with you,” I was hesitant for the split second before I asked, but I did so with a friendly nod of my own, and she answered, “May I sit for a moment with you?”

I made sure to seat myself close enough on the metal bench to feel amicable but not too close for comfort, and I attempted to carry on this seemingly one-sided conversation.

“So, are you from here - from Chicago?” She faithfully kept her sight locked on the tunnel I’d emerged from and repeated me once again, “So, are you from here - from Chicago?”

“Um, okay. Yeah, I am. Are you hungry? Would you like to get some breakfast together?” Somehow, her reply was easily predictable, “Um, okay. Yeah, I am. Are you hungry? Would you like to get some breakfast together?”

Obviously this woman was a little loose mentally, so I stood slowly and bent towards her, my palm open for hers. I thought I may as well take matters into my own hands.

“Yes, I am! I’m starving. There’s a little diner right around the -"

Before I could finish, she gripped tight to my wrist - wild, bloodshot eyes burned fervently into my own.  They danced with an ominous menace I'd never seen, and her smile was now wide and maniacal, filled with rotten brown teeth and reeking of decayed meat.

Her voice was different than before, something like a deep Creole accent shot from her putrid mouth as she continued to smirk, "Di'nt you Ma-Ma evuh tell you to don't talk to stranguhs, gal?  That how you get took!"

The "k"she cracked with her closing "took" annunciated a warning so vile that my head spun.  My heart stopped for just that moment, her cackle filled my air so thick I could not catch a breath.  I ripped my hand from her grasp, tripping backwards on my heels, and hit the pavement.  

Then I just ran. I ran away in the style of a campy horror movie victim, knowing I was doomed to something, somehow.  I couldn't hear her laughter as I fled back through the tunnel I'd entered by, but I didn't stop. I dug my feet into the concrete and pushed my knees into the light from the other side, racing for dear life.

But something wasn't right. My heart was screaming, and I couldn't breathe. A sharp stab tore through the back of my skull, and I couldn't help but wonder if I was having a stroke or something worse. My ribs cracked as if I'd never run a day in my life.  This didn't make sense.  I ran marathons on my goddamn period, for heaven's sake!

Heaving, I found the main road beyond the park's tunnel entrance. The little diner I wanted to bring her to sat with an inviting wooden bench out front, so I stumbled towards it for relief.

As I approached, the window caught a glimpse of her yellow beanie. She must have followed me somehow.  How the hell was she so fast?  

I twisted to catch her, aching left shoulder blade and crackling knees, heart still beating out of my head, but she was nowhere to be seen.  I must have imagined it.  

I collapsed onto the bench seat, slouching haggardly and dripping sweat, panting like a dog in heat.  It must have been the panic.  I couldn't understand what the hell about that old bag scared me so badly, but I'd never freaked out so hard in my life.

Suddenly, a faded floral pattern, pink roses and paisley came into focus as I sat nearly doubled over.  Wrinkled hands pocked in liver spots and mottled with bulging blue veins dangled between my thighs.  My thighs.  

I shot out of the bench and pulled myself to the diner window, searching for my reflection, but I couldn't find it.  What stood in that window was a wretched old witch wearing a Donald Duck tee and smirk straight from hell, mocking me.  A yellow beanie sat atop her head.  

I screamed for help, but no one heard.  I grabbed at passersby, but they took no notice of me.  I couldn't run any longer, I was too winded, so I just fell.  I knew I was sobbing, and I knew this was impossible, but touching my cheeks, there were no tears.  Only a smile that would not leave.  Only rotten teeth and the smell of my rank mouth penetrating my nostrils.

I had to get back to her.  She never left the park bench, and she was going to fix this.  I didn't know what was happening to me.  I didn't know if I was dreaming.  I didn't know who I even was, but this was not my body and those were not my fucking trousers.

The walk back to the park was a blur, probably faster than it felt, and my heart never had a chance to slow down.  The tunnel seemed a hundred miles long in my condition.  I was only twenty five, but I had become a corpse in waiting.

Finally, the bench was in view, but she was gone.  I was gone.  I wasn't even sure what I was expecting to find.  People everywhere, but no one that resembled me, and I was the only person here that was her.  No one heard me, no one saw me.  I was nothing.

Sitting on the bench was a bag of birdseed, so I joined it.  I waited for myself to return, to emerge from that tunnel at seven the next morning as I always did.  To find me sitting on this same old park bench, under this same dying oak tree.  I was here every morning, but I never came.  

********

It was a gray day, but she waited nonetheless, counting aloud the lines on the sidewalk the same as she did every day. A gangly family of pigeons scuttled around her worn leather moccasins, as they always did, and she sat complacent and smiling on the same metal bench beneath the same dying oak tree. She was here every day at seven in the morning with nothing but the company of a cheap bag of birdseed, and I imagined she probably didn’t travel too far away at any given time.

I don't know why, but I decided to say hello today, and I did.

"Hello, ma'am.  I'm Brady.  I see you here everyday, so I thought I should say hello."

She responded, "Hello, ma'am.  I'm Brady.  I see you here everyday, so I thought I should say hello."
#fiction  #horror  #prosechallenge  #Itslit  #getlit 
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Once upon a time, there was a hound who hollered, howled, and heckled through each and every night into the wee early hours of each and every morning. Why?
Written by AmandaCary

Why She Cries

A hound that bellows through the night

Wails a cry not wept to muffle

Her howls are only tried and trite

On the tame ear deaf to struggle

Let her sing her piercing call

Do not cease her tireless fret

Her story spirals far beyond your small

And narrow label, "just a pet"

Her eyes have shown a sorrow deep

Harrowing trials wandered through

It is for these reasons she may weep

This untold worry does accrue 

For this, she hollers into pines

A wood for miles behind your border

Her woeful scream will not resign 

Til she restores her family's order

The pain that feeds your hound dog's whine

The tale that fuels her howling

Began two weeks before the time

Your rubbish brought her prowling

She was only looking for a treat

To curb her famine and her pain

So seven children now could eat

Nurse teets and drink her milk again

She was drying to the will of nature

A starving dog without a bone

But she left those pups in way of danger

When she found your home 

And while she's grateful for your love

She only needs one hour of freedom

To find the babes she's speaking of

So that she may warm and feed them

In your fence, you jailed this hag

Good intentions were to salvage

You gave her name and bowl and tag

But left her pups to open ravage

Her bawls they answered for ten moons

Until a storm came from the skies

You scolded for those blinds she chewed

But she could not hear them from inside

And from that night, their whimpers ceased

Although she hopes to hear an echo

She will return with puppies from the trees

If for only an hour you will let go

She will race the hollows of the forest

And find their belly's growling

She will fill them full and make them nourished

Come home with babes no longer howling

But, you see...

She has not the heart to understand

Ten years have passed her bellows by

The hound cries for naught but bone and sand

A mother left in mourning til she dies

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Once upon a time, there was a hound who hollered, howled, and heckled through each and every night into the wee early hours of each and every morning. Why?
Written by AmandaCary
Why She Cries
A hound that bellows through the night
Wails a cry not wept to muffle
Her howls are only tried and trite
On the tame ear deaf to struggle
Let her sing her piercing call
Do not cease her tireless fret
Her story spirals far beyond your small
And narrow label, "just a pet"
Her eyes have shown a sorrow deep
Harrowing trials wandered through
It is for these reasons she may weep
This untold worry does accrue 
For this, she hollers into pines
A wood for miles behind your border
Her woeful scream will not resign 
Til she restores her family's order
The pain that feeds your hound dog's whine
The tale that fuels her howling
Began two weeks before the time
Your rubbish brought her prowling
She was only looking for a treat
To curb her famine and her pain
So seven children now could eat
Nurse teets and drink her milk again
She was drying to the will of nature
A starving dog without a bone
But she left those pups in way of danger
When she found your home 
And while she's grateful for your love
She only needs one hour of freedom
To find the babes she's speaking of
So that she may warm and feed them
In your fence, you jailed this hag
Good intentions were to salvage
You gave her name and bowl and tag
But left her pups to open ravage
Her bawls they answered for ten moons
Until a storm came from the skies
You scolded for those blinds she chewed
But she could not hear them from inside
And from that night, their whimpers ceased
Although she hopes to hear an echo
She will return with puppies from the trees
If for only an hour you will let go
She will race the hollows of the forest
And find their belly's growling
She will fill them full and make them nourished
Come home with babes no longer howling

But, you see...

She has not the heart to understand
Ten years have passed her bellows by
The hound cries for naught but bone and sand
A mother left in mourning til she dies
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Explain to the one you love why you will not be joining them in the afterlife...
Written by AmandaCary in portal Poetry & Free Verse

To You Who Loved Me, Blind and Clean

My Darling,

I kneel beside you

Your last breath no longer 

Beading sweet moisture along my fingers

As I've weaved them into yours

To watch you pass into a light you were born of

Your chest will never rise with your lungs again

And your lips are silent once and for all 

I can feel the tick of your second hand 

Slowing with each beat of your heart 

I now know for certain that you will go first

I never imagined this moment

Me waiting for the end as you sleep  

I always saw this much differently

I wanted to leave first 

So that you could be given a place to grow

Without my weight

The freedom to move on to someone more 

Honest and deserving 

Of the pedestal you keep 

In place for the one you hold 

We have made a promise 

To find one another when we leave these bodies

One I knew I'd not be 

Allowed to keep

Beyond my own existence here

You swore to me that you would 

Wait on the other side

With pink roses 

In the place where you first 

Had me as your own

My love, you are going  

I cannot let you wander in vain  

I have given you all of my white 

And my shining

All of the afterglow and sweetness

Of a loyal soul, to you that I have been

But I have only shown you what I wanted you to see

And I have lied to you day after day 

So that you believed you walked this soil 

Hand in hand with purity by your side.

Where you are meant to be now

Will not allow the wickedness of a devil  

The heart behind this mask is black to all but you  

This love alone is not enough 

To take me to where you are made to go  

I have given to you with everything 

Decent inside me  

But darling

You are the only thing 

That has kept me good

Before you

I was a scavenger

Feeding and cursed to life  

After you

I will be so again

Do not wait for me, Love 

Eternity is a fee far too great 

A price you should never pay

For what I have to offer 

Move forward from the stench of me

A beauty like yours 

Cannot be left to linger

In wait 

For such a crooked 

Smile as mine

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Explain to the one you love why you will not be joining them in the afterlife...
Written by AmandaCary in portal Poetry & Free Verse
To You Who Loved Me, Blind and Clean
My Darling,

I kneel beside you
Your last breath no longer 
Beading sweet moisture along my fingers
As I've weaved them into yours
To watch you pass into a light you were born of

Your chest will never rise with your lungs again
And your lips are silent once and for all 
I can feel the tick of your second hand 
Slowing with each beat of your heart 
I now know for certain that you will go first

I never imagined this moment
Me waiting for the end as you sleep  
I always saw this much differently
I wanted to leave first 
So that you could be given a place to grow

Without my weight
The freedom to move on to someone more 
Honest and deserving 
Of the pedestal you keep 
In place for the one you hold 

We have made a promise 
To find one another when we leave these bodies
One I knew I'd not be 
Allowed to keep
Beyond my own existence here

You swore to me that you would 
Wait on the other side
With pink roses 
In the place where you first 
Had me as your own

My love, you are going  
I cannot let you wander in vain  
I have given you all of my white 
And my shining
All of the afterglow and sweetness

Of a loyal soul, to you that I have been
But I have only shown you what I wanted you to see
And I have lied to you day after day 
So that you believed you walked this soil 
Hand in hand with purity by your side.

Where you are meant to be now
Will not allow the wickedness of a devil  
The heart behind this mask is black to all but you  
This love alone is not enough 
To take me to where you are made to go  

I have given to you with everything 
Decent inside me  
But darling
You are the only thing 
That has kept me good

Before you
I was a scavenger
Feeding and cursed to life  
After you
I will be so again

Do not wait for me, Love 
Eternity is a fee far too great 
A price you should never pay
For what I have to offer 
Move forward from the stench of me

A beauty like yours 
Cannot be left to linger
In wait 
For such a crooked 
Smile as mine
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Written by AmandaCary

Fuck!

An expression that seems to escape

My lips an awful lot these days

Funny how people jump

At the sight of a light

When we're stuck in a tunnel

And more amusing for the little bit

Of relief to show itself 

Bright and shining like a big old fat twinkly star

Only to shrink like lightening 

To the likes of pin prick

When you follow it down to the end

Sometimes it's just enough to make 

The toaster look like a fine

Companion to a hot bath, but 

Hey! Everyone's got problems, right?

"I'm Afraid of Americans"

Because we're all poor and pissed off

With nowhere to turn but a good credit score

And when you don't have that

You've just got four children with 

No Christmas and a rocky business

And love, right?

Who the hell came up with 

That justification for starvation, anyway?

Some people have a head start and fall

On their caboose 

No brain in their head to lead those 

Overflowing pockets 

And when I see that

I can't help but wonder what the 

Hell we're trying to accomplish

Here on this fine mass of

The international real estate 

And then some have the mind but no 

Entry fee to make it to lift off

The rest of us just float around

With chewed up thumb nails and 

Hard-earned crow's feet

Waiting for the day we'll strike the lotto

Big for winning or lose it all

Hurry up and die

Sounds like strawberry JELL-O if you ask me

Survival really should not

Be a gamble in a place so privileged

(Does anyone else see how twisted that is?)

Belly should not be expelling foodstamp

Breakfast on the tightrope of impending doom

Before every eight-hour shift of working 

To pay for a goddamned human necessity

I wanna go off grid, you know

Away from people

Who don't think twice before toying with 

Your hopes and good will

The taxes are paid in squirrel nuggets and high fives

And no one puts a lien on the mountainside cave

You bought in full

Name on title means nothing to 

Uncle Sam

I will find one day a place in the trees

Where the money is made from

Quail feathers and poison ivy leaves

So that the only thing I'll ever have to say 

FUCK!

About again is a blistering

Rash in the crack of my

Ass

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Written by AmandaCary
Fuck!
An expression that seems to escape
My lips an awful lot these days
Funny how people jump
At the sight of a light
When we're stuck in a tunnel
And more amusing for the little bit
Of relief to show itself 
Bright and shining like a big old fat twinkly star
Only to shrink like lightening 
To the likes of pin prick
When you follow it down to the end
Sometimes it's just enough to make 
The toaster look like a fine
Companion to a hot bath, but 
Hey! Everyone's got problems, right?
"I'm Afraid of Americans"
Because we're all poor and pissed off
With nowhere to turn but a good credit score
And when you don't have that
You've just got four children with 
No Christmas and a rocky business
And love, right?
Who the hell came up with 
That justification for starvation, anyway?
Some people have a head start and fall
On their caboose 
No brain in their head to lead those 
Overflowing pockets 
And when I see that
I can't help but wonder what the 
Hell we're trying to accomplish
Here on this fine mass of
The international real estate 
And then some have the mind but no 
Entry fee to make it to lift off
The rest of us just float around
With chewed up thumb nails and 
Hard-earned crow's feet
Waiting for the day we'll strike the lotto
Big for winning or lose it all
Hurry up and die
Sounds like strawberry JELL-O if you ask me
Survival really should not
Be a gamble in a place so privileged
(Does anyone else see how twisted that is?)
Belly should not be expelling foodstamp
Breakfast on the tightrope of impending doom
Before every eight-hour shift of working 
To pay for a goddamned human necessity
I wanna go off grid, you know
Away from people
Who don't think twice before toying with 
Your hopes and good will
The taxes are paid in squirrel nuggets and high fives
And no one puts a lien on the mountainside cave
You bought in full
Name on title means nothing to 
Uncle Sam
I will find one day a place in the trees
Where the money is made from
Quail feathers and poison ivy leaves
So that the only thing I'll ever have to say 
FUCK!
About again is a blistering
Rash in the crack of my
Ass
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Written by AmandaCary

Cramps

Oh, I despise thee like

The heavens repel the 

Flames of burning hell

I wish to send thee

To the cornfield

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Written by AmandaCary
Cramps
Oh, I despise thee like
The heavens repel the 
Flames of burning hell

I wish to send thee
To the cornfield
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Written by AmandaCary

White Stain on the Sofa

(When my inspiration is lacking, I write about bodily fluids because I'm a grown-up)

Could this be leftover love

Steamy romp on the couch

Unbridled passion ignited 

A yip and a howl

Or perhaps sultry

Self-heating oils

Made a drip

Lips much too 

Distracted for a

Quick clean up nip

Maybe the buildup

Lead to an

Explosive release

That could not be contained 

Between anyone's knees

Or a job much too

Large for an 

Everyday girl

Made a dribble 

Down chin 

Left organic decor

Nope, if only

I wish

Strangers didn't always assume 

The white stain 

Must in fact be 

Baby humans 

We lose

That is snot on my sofa

I swear it is true

Left by the resident monster

He smeared some on you, too

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Written by AmandaCary
White Stain on the Sofa
(When my inspiration is lacking, I write about bodily fluids because I'm a grown-up)

Could this be leftover love
Steamy romp on the couch
Unbridled passion ignited 
A yip and a howl
Or perhaps sultry
Self-heating oils
Made a drip
Lips much too 
Distracted for a
Quick clean up nip
Maybe the buildup
Lead to an
Explosive release
That could not be contained 
Between anyone's knees
Or a job much too
Large for an 
Everyday girl
Made a dribble 
Down chin 
Left organic decor

Nope, if only
I wish
Strangers didn't always assume 
The white stain 
Must in fact be 
Baby humans 
We lose

That is snot on my sofa
I swear it is true
Left by the resident monster
He smeared some on you, too
15
5
7
Juice
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