Early winter means February in my corner of the US, and while we’re looking at a mid-week heat wave of 40 degrees here in the Midwest, I feel for our people in the South and Southeast. Continue reading
Dipping her paddle expertly, Sara struggled against the increasingly muscular pull of the current. The sun rose, set, and rose again, unnoticed under the moss-choked cypress trees that canopied the dark creek. Continue reading
In TUFF Love, Carrot Ranch’s Charli Mills asked participants to revise an original western romance through a 99-59-9-99 word process with each step requiring a different craft twist. This event is an exercise of inspiration through to editing. I didn’t enter this one because it turned out to be more about discovering heart’s desire of Self, than traditional Romance. But I still like it, so I share with you all.
Original 99-word Draft: Molly Rides the Rails
Molly rode the rails these days. Cities had sprung up, like oozing boils, over the open prairie she loved. With the spread of progress came the spread of stifling rules.
Forced by her father to shed her buckskin, don heavy skirts with tight collars, binding her hair from the wind’s caressing fingers, she appeared the perfect little miss. Continue reading
Cora stretched her long neck, beak pecking the fast moving clouds in the pale sky. Twisting, she at last freed herself from her heavy, confining carapace. It’d been necessary protection against wicked solar radiation, brought on by the forebears of those singing blessings to the thin creek twisting through desert, below. Continue reading
Pace the living room, arms hugging my chest. My growling belly needs comfort and protection, not for need of nourishment, but because it craves. Outside, snow drives sidewise, piling up outside the doors, gathering in dark window corners. Continue reading
At his age, you’d expect his eyes to grow wide
His mouth to open in shock,
His shoulders to rise and curl around himself in protection. Continue reading
Hope strained, smoke-stained streets
Shattered hearts, Minnesota
Patience, as we heal.
(This, on top of COVID. And those who gather together–prayers broken by opportunistic anarchists–risk a steeper next wave in the coming weeks.)
© Liz Husebye Hartmann (2020)
The spellbook was specific: one hundred candles to draw and light the circle, less one for each sorceress. Fewer, and the plague would continue. Once fully lit, the circle could not be crossed. Back to back, the three worked quickly, coaxing flame from dry wick. The twins moved clockwise, junior apprentice Bella counterclockwise. Continue reading