Watch for Witches

gnome on swing chair

Red-capped Jeroboam soldered the gear. He wound the mechanism and let it go. The device turned and whirred as he expected, so he put it down to tinker on it further.

“What are you making, gnome?” asked a human customer.

“A device that tells time. Wind it up in the morning, and it will work all day.”

“Sounds like witchcraft.”

The gnome squinted. “You could make one too, if you’d get over that ‘witch’ crap.”

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This was written for Sammi Cox’s Weekend Writing Prompt #119Tinker. As an avid D&D player, I immediately thought of tinkering gnomes and couldn’t put that idea down!

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The Days of Old

grayscale photo of explosion on the beach

“Tell me about the days of old,”
Asked the little girl.
“Tell me how the giants collapsed,
And towns in fire whirled.” 

The bard hummed and strummed his citurn,
And his strings did tune.
“This is not a song for the weak,
But it’s before noon.

“I hope tonight you’ll soundly sleep;
Blame yourself if not.”
The young girl sat with bated breath,
Hoping to be distraught.

“Back before the nuclear fires,
Buildings did shimmer
And reached to lofty sky with spires
‘Til skies grew dimmer.

“The sun disappeared behind airplanes
Carrying the bombs.
Then cancerous growths emerged
On those who survived…”

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This was written for Sammi Cox’s Weekend Writing Prompt #118, Song. I feel like this was left incomplete, but perhaps we’ll investigate that some other day?

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Paradise

atmosphere blue cloud cloudiness

To meet again in bliss
With the people you love,
You must forgive the foes
You hate.

Lose the antipathy
Against your enemies,
And I will reward you
With peace.

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This was written for Sammi Cox’s Weekend Writing Prompt #117, Antipathy. I usually have a very hard time forgiving people for even little things, so I wrote this poem as a way to think about it.

As a side note, I probably won’t be as active this weekend. I’ll be ok, but I’m feeling pretty depressed and think I need to slow down on social media for just a little bit. Hopefully I’ll be back up to speed soon. — H

Ballroom Dancers

active dance dancer dancing

Each step increases their skill,
Creates muscle memory,
Gets them one step closer to
Winning the qualifier.
“What if we lose?” asks Emmy.
“Then we go on,” says Oscar.
“We will just practice harder.”
“We’ll hit all the beats, my dear.”
The amateurs danced their best,
But the pros defeated them.

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This was written for Sammi Cox’s Weekend Writing Prompt #116, Amateur. I sometimes wonder what it takes to jump from amateur to professional; often, I think it requires focus, dedication, and time.  If I treat writing as a hobby (like I currently do), will I ever be able to feel like a pro?

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The Unjust Judge

close up court courthouse hammer

“Has the jury reached a verdict?” the judge said, his tone clipped and fast. He held his breath and bladder tight.

The judge wallowed in his sweaty robes while the representative of the jury stood. With each passing second, the judge considered taking his wife’s advice and getting his prostate checked.

The old juror’s hands shook, verdict in his fingers. “Yes, your honor. We find the defendant guilty of talking in the theater and texting while driving.”

“Life in prison, the court is adjourned.” The judge pounded the gavel and rushed for the bathroom. 

DividerThis was written for Sammi Cox’s Weekend Writing Prompt #115judge. I felt lighthearted this week, what can I say?

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Independence

musket

There’s nothing wrong here.
Ignore all that blood –
With a mere grimace
I can bear through it.
Don’t open my coat,
Don’t look too closely.
I can operate
And get the bullet

Myself. 

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This was written for Sammi Cox’s Weekend Writing Prompt #114, Grimace. The little poem was inspired by a drunk history I saw when just letting youtube play whatever it wanted. It was about a lady named Deborah Sampson who pretended to be a dude, fought as an elite soldier, got shot, and chose to operate on herself rather than get caught. So, a week late for the 4th of July stuff, but good nonetheless! AMERICA

Arecibo

fantasy-2847724_640

“Well, it’s definitely a message. It’s binary, very clear, quite ordered.”

The head of the agency tapped the desk.  “You have a translation of it?”

“Yes sir, we think it’s decoded.” She handed him a block. “There were 1,679 blips. If the message was purposefully sent, the number probably means something. Since it’s semiprime, we set the message onto a 23 by 73 grid and raised the grid spaces that were ‘on.’ The patterns clearly indicate a message.”

He swept a tentacle across the braille. “We really aren’t alone in the universe! It has the numbers one through 10, then a code of sorts. What’s it say?”

“Get your FREE bottle of male enhancement pills from Crazy Joe’s NOW.”

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This was written for the Sammi Cox Weekend Writing Prompt #111, translation. The original Arecibo Message was a 23 by 73 binary message launched from the Arecibo Observatory as part of its opening ceremony in 1974. Intended to be a publicity stunt more than anything, the message was nevertheless an informative thing indicating the presence of life on Earth for anyone who might be around to receive it. But, knowing us, we’ll send another in a few years advertising penis pills, ’cause that’s the way we do.

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Burn Faster, Brighter

woman holding moon lamp

Absala glanced through her crystal ball at the humans on the other side.  “How could this be? Their advancement was glacial last I looked.”

The humans had built machines that ran faster than cheetahs, flew faster than fairies.  They could instantly speak to people on the other side of the Earth.

Absala would check the portal in 100 years, after the humans had burned all their oil.

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This was written for the Sammi Cox Weekend Writing Prompt #110glacial. I’ve been waxing philosophical about technological advancement a lot recently, so here’s to continuing that trend!

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Remember The 80’s

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Let’s build a place
That’s perfect.
It has
Gated reverb,
Hair metal,
New wave.
No tech distracts
From our friends
Or fam.

Let’s build a place,
An idyll,
A dream,
Based on a past
That didn’t
Exist
Anywhere but
In our heads
And hearts.

Let’s build a place
Without the
Bad stuff.
Forget crises,
Ditch sadness,
Leave pain.
No AIDS, racism,
Trickle down,
Cold war.

Let’s build a place.
Remember
Goodness.
Recreate time
Untainted
And pure
An ordered time
With new wave,
Not hate.

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This was written for Sammi Cox’s Weekend Writing Prompt #109, idyll.  This look into the past was inspired by Chris Molanphy of Slate’s most recent Hit Parade podcast about Phil Collins and Genesis.  What could be more 80’s nostalgia?

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