Microfiction: Struggle

This is for the Daily Post prompt.909px-Johannessen_-_Kräftiger_Sturm_-_1918-22

They stand side by side in the road, not touching though they have only each other. The trees, caught by the gale bend and sway, shrieking in anger. The mother turns and looks back at the house through the quaking pine branches and she leans, almost imperceptibly, her back to the wind, letting it catch her steps to push them back the way they have come.

“No!” her daughter screams above the furious wind. “It’s finished. We’re not going back.”

The woman hangs her head, hiding her face as if sheltering it from the lashing rain. Her daughter knows better, knows that her mother’s eyes will be full of tears.

“He’s a pig and you know it!”

The daughter stands firm against the gale, glaring at the black clouds and the squat house where the windows are dark. She waits but she will not give her mother her arm.

Reluctantly, the woman turns away from the house, her home, her life, bracing herself for the force of the wind, the storm, and her daughter’s anger. Stifling a sob, she takes the first step and feels herself break with the effort.


Storms and sunsets



That was the other speaking, not me,

not the one you know.

The one you know would never dare

look you in the eye,

tell you unpleasant home truths,

ruffle peacock feathers.

Why? For fear of this—

the slamming door.


In the sunset of your leaving,

even the cherry blossom drips scarlet,

and the sky bleeds with my heart,

black swallows dart,

filling the hollows

with their strident laughter.


Hands and heart tied to you,

I follow, a limping bird,

but would I take the right path,

would I even know it,

had I the choice?


Bright night-velvet fades to grey,

I cringe from the uncompromising light

that floods the empty white space

with cold tomorrows.

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?