Tanka Tuesday: Illusion

For Colleen Chesebro’s Tanka Tuesday. The photo is of the Phare de Cordouan, the lighthouse on the point where the Gironde rolls into the ocean.

Photo©Jack ma


Air quivers silver,

heat haze ripples like water,

silent birds fly by.

Through deforming mist all seems

hearts desire to those with dreams.  


Flash Fiction: Moon

This 144 word story is for the FFfAW challenge inspired by the photo below ©Maria@Doodles and Scribbles


Dark night, an uneasy, troubled silence fell. As ever, since…

She peered down the slick, asphalted street where no footsteps echoed, no cats stalked the shadows, at the light, round and bright that hung low above the last wall before the outside. There was nothing in her world like it. Moon was a word she knew but the thick blackness that encased the world meant she had never seen it. Even the sun, once so bright, they said, was pale and dim. So far away.

The light beckoned. She so wanted it to be the moon. She left the house, crept like the vermin close to the boundary wall, following the thick silver beams. At the perimeter she stopped, frozen in the brilliance of the not-moon, as a searchlight, picked her out. Rifle burst ripped up the silence a fraction before the bullets hit.

#Three Line Tales: Fairy tale

This is for Sonya’s photo prompt, a lovely one this week.

Photo ©Dmitri Popov


“Pretty,” the child said, pointing at the candy-striped stucco, the neat, even windows and the cornice strung with coloured lights.

“That’s where the princesses live,” her mother said knowingly, “and if you’re a good girl, one day you might be chosen to join them while you wait for a prince to take you for his wife.”

At one of the neat windows that didn’t open, a girl gripped the bars behind and stared down into the street, where a child skipped happily holding her mother’s hand, and she longed to be able to reach the glass and smash it and scream to the carefree child that it was all lies.

Microfiction #3linetales Cherries

A story in three lines for Sonya’s photo prompt.

The photo is ©Inma Ibáñez


They looked so appetising, such a vibrant red, her mouth watered as she imagined how they would taste.

He sat down next to her, and together they gazed at the branch, the pale blue sky behind, and the luscious fruits dangling so close it seemed they had only to reach out their hands to pick them.

She had begun the movement before she caught herself and grinned at him, rather foolishly. “The hologram is just so realistic,” she said apologetically, “and they look so good. Whatever they are.”

Threads. Or are they?

This is my response to the Secret Keeper’s Monday poetry challenge to write a poem or piece of prose which includes these five words or synonyms:
Fame, view, mask, bridge, yarn.

Sorry but I can’t find the name of the artist of the painting.


The threads draw tighter,
Masking the sight of the water,
A shimmering, steely safety net.
Or is it illusion?
Bridge sways beneath my feet,
Centuries of glory shifting in river sand,
Dimmed by the cloud mist over the sun.
Or is it my eyes?
Resplendent it is no longer,
Mud creeps, seeps into the fabric of all things.
Not even stone resists.
How could I?
Nailing courage,
Fighting against the sticky web of indecision,
Listening to the roar of the river calling.
Or is it warning?
The sun sinks weary and bloodless into the west,
Drawing the black spidery lines in its wake.
Bridge bucks, sighs, and settles,
Or is it my feet?
I wake, walk, leave the place, where the world is in flux,
And find the bank again, the right bank.
Or should it be the left?

Purple rain of dreams

Painting by August Macke

Purple rain of dreams
Colours the garden
Bright as midnight,
Skims a silver sheen
Across the slippery lawn,
Scatters darts among the carp
Of the ornamental pond,
Cascades the scent of jasmine
About the windows seat.
Beneath the rain of dreams,
I reach for your hand
And place the palm against my cheek,
To wipe away the streaks of indigo,
Bright as midnight,
Damp as morning tears.
But your hand is a bundle of twigs,
Dry and dead as the lost summer,
Bleak as the coming winter,
And through the veil of rain,
The cold stars glitter,
And suddenly the jasmine
Has the cloying scent of lilies.




Crowds flock to see
A mock up frigate in the port
Wait in line to step aboard
To touch and feel a facsimile.
Children point and want to climb
To creep like inexpert monkeys
Along the rigging, picking at the ropes.
Bright new lead-free paint picks out the detail
On the wooden hull.
A replica, they say, as good as old.
No rats in the hold
No insects in the biscuit.
No biscuit.
Restaurant meals for these city sailors.
The sun beams down still hot
Breeze sighs with summer softness
The river glitters blue as an unclouded sky.
All conspires in the great pretence
That time does not turn our past to dust
The picturesque has not passed away
While we can trot a clone out on parade
And summer has not really gone.

Photo credit
Créative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 4.0 International.