In comparison

Beaufort range, Vancouver Island, Canada

In my hometown,
on the west coast,
the mountains are big
and the people small –
in comparison. Continue reading

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Blown

 

Horizontal snow
scatters crows  –
ammo from a pellet
gun morning.

Such a flap.

They don’t know
even bullets can’t
outrun December.

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Photo credit: Greg Saulmon https://birdsdowntown.wordpress.com/2012/11/07/with-first-snow-in-western-massachusetts-crow-roost-takes-shape-in-springfield/ 

Advent pot

She stuffed Hershey’s Kisses into the numbered pockets of the soft, felt advent calendar. The kiss tradition began back when Hershey had a factory in a nearby town called Smiths Falls. She felt virtuous supporting a local business and keeping its workers employed by sweetening the December mornings of their children with a sugar kiss. (Chocolate breath still reminds her of Christmas. ) That small factory closed a few years ago and the death knell rang its last gong. Then an entrepreneur purchased it to grow medical marijuana. Continue reading

I’m risqué

But you already knew that, didn’t you? Here’s what The Review Review said about my story “Anchor” which was published in edition 190 of The Antigonish Review or TAR as it is sometimes called.

TARs current edition – 191 – is entirely digital and they’re archiving all their previous journals. When 190 is up, I’ll let you know. I’d love for you to read the story, especially those of you who followed the saga of Harry Bittercress and Lady Smock. “Anchor” branches into the story of Rose Laine and her boyfriend, Derrick Fudge, told from the point of view of Rose’s mother, a recovering alcoholic.

Blogging made this story possible. The series about Lady Smock and Harry Bittercress sprung from another blogger’s post (A Tramp in the Woods) about wildflowers he encountered on his rambles in the New Forest in England. Harry Bittercress is a weed and Lady Smock, commonly known as a cuckoo flower, is a dainty pink, hairless perennial found mostly in Europe and Western Asia.

Thank you, fellow bloggers, for the daily inspiration and for launching my fiction writing.

With love and gratitude,

Susanne

 

 

For the love of pineapple

“Leftovers in the dining room,” the email announces.

All 200 employees scurry down the stairs to the dining hall to scoop up remains of the catered lunch left behind by the visiting big wigs.

I pick through an enormous bowl of fruit salad and scoop lumps of pineapple, a couple of blackberries, a spoonful of blueberries, some raspberry mush into a container. I take every juicy chunk of pineapple and leave the tepid scalloped potatoes and cold ham with curling edges to those who seek comfort in stodge. I turn my back on the date squares and chocolate macaroons and return to my desk coddling a plastic container brimming with bright, wet fruit. Continue reading

“Oh, Bits!” by Josh Langston

Technically, this is a mystery novel and if it needs a category of mystery, I might slot it under the “cosy” column but it’s also a period-piece, set in Atlanta, GA during 2nd World War, a romance, and a fantasy all told with a shot of humour. If you keep a spreadsheet of books you’ve read this year with various columns to note your reading history, you might need a new column labeled “genre-bender” and perhaps that’s where Josh’s book belongs. Continue reading

Furtherance

wuthering bites

The Lady hadn’t left the house in 200 days. She must get out, her shrink said, for the furtherance of her mental health. She risked becoming a modern Miss Havisham if she didn’t jump back in the saddle (his words) and soon.

Squinting over a plate of flowers at the Ikebana exhibition, bald and stooped, scrubbing his mouth with the back of his hand, she saw Harry for the first time. Well, she thought, he’s as good as anybody.

“Would you like to get a sausage roll and tea?” she asked, bold as brass.

Odd – the things flowers make you say.

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Mal de mer

From the archives…

wuthering bites

“Luv, let’s get away this weekend,” Harry said. “Take the ferry, have an adventure, romp in a four poster bed.”

Lady didn’t mention the hole in the wall or the crumbling parging or the sconce dangling from the kitchen window. She stopped nagging but it niggled nonetheless.

The crossing was rough and the ferry pitched and heaved. “Hang on”, said Lady and fetched a bucket while Harry turned green and clutched the railing. She watched rolling waves of mal de mer bring up lumps of vomit, stinking with his inadequacy.

Ashore, Harry held the battered bucket and watched his Lady leave.

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Stop the epidemic!

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Curated leaves

It’s time to stop the curation epidemic. We, the Ministry of Overused Words (MOW), the Word Protection Collective (WPC) and the Respect for the Oxford English Dictionary (ROED) – now known as the Anti-Curation Coalition (ACC) – demand a cure for the word curated – a curative dose, for the overdose, the rendering comatose of a perfectly reasonable word. Continue reading

The tropics of Canada

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I never tire of a peachy sueded dawn,
the nap of clouds brushed back
to reveal the start of another
blue day.  I never tire of a light jacket
and bare legs in these the dregs
of summer.

I never tire of bean stalks crawling
up their twine canes, scarlet blooms
still blooming even though the bees
are long gone and the harvest past.

I never tire of begonias and impatiens
persistence beyond the autumn moon,
their flower heads spotlights among
ankle deep maple leaves jostling
in the unseasonably warm breeze.

Anorexic trees, limbs naked now,
remind me something is amiss
and sandals in the front hall
confirm this as do the mittens still
waiting for cold hands and the
down settled unfluffed in winter
parkas in the closet.

Outside the lilies revive and the
Rideau River flows unfrozen into the
ocean that rises in rebellion with
the blood of Arctic glaciers spilled
on our shores.

But I never tire of a peachy dawn
on my tropical island in the north.

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