Monday, October 26, 2015

Why I Write 9: Just Write

I write because I must. Simple as that. I wanted to provide a more definite answer, but what it comes down to is whether I enjoy writing. Do I see myself making tons of money from all the hours I spend writing? I don’t know. Everyone wants to feel secure for the future, but I’m not going to gloat and say I’m a great writer when writing is really a craft that matures as we practice it.

I come from a background in teaching and I know how important it is to practice what you preach… to put your foot down and learn from the years prior to make the following one better. It’s a never-ending cycle to keep honing those skills necessary to do the job well. Writing is the same. You have to keep at it in order to reap the benefits. Sometimes, it takes a long time to feel those benefits, but they’re going to be there as long as we persevere.

So, let’s take some time from our busy schedules and write… write about that woman in the store… write about that man in his orange cruiser… write about the mosquitos attacking us… just write.

Monday, October 19, 2015

Short Stories & Such 21: Skeleton in your Closet - Literally

Hi everyone! Here’s a fun story just in time for Halloween. Hope you enjoy!

Skeleton in your Closet – Literally

The thumping in my head got louder and louder and I strained to open my eyes. I rose from the bed with a heavy head that could have rolled off my neck if it wasn’t that I brought my knuckles to massage my temples. I groaned. Last night’s party was such a blur. Ooh, my poor head. At least I made it back to my apartment in one piece. A good shower should help get rid of the vomit smell and, then, I could head out for some nice breakfast. Especially coffee. Lots of coffee.

I took slow steps toward the closet to see what I could wear today, but when I opened it, I screamed so loud, my ribs cracked.

“What the f**** is that?”

The skeleton just plopped itself against the closet wall. My things had been spread apart already so I could see it. The bony hands dangled on its sides and there was faint yellow coloring around its surface.

Did I put it there? I couldn’t have brought back this…. this thing. I lifted it from where it propped and I’d say it weighed less than a poodle. But, what was it doing here? Was this a prank?

Wait a minute, wait a minute. Oh, my gosh, I can’t believe this. I did know how this got here. Where’s my roommate? Where was Maggie?

Her cell kept sending me to voicemail and her Facebook page didn’t mention anything from last night.

“Hmmm… I wonder.”

I set the skeleton back against the closet’s wall and examined it further. The head of this skeleton had a slight dent on the right side of the skull. I remembered feeling Maggie’s hair when I last cut it. This had the same type of hollowness.


The skull turned toward me. Gasping, I stepped back.

The bony arms lifted up and I was suddenly in its grip.

“Maggie, wake up! Kuhhsh. It’s me, culff… Jemma.”


This short story was written back on June 26, 2012 from the Writer’s Digest prompt with the same title. You can see the original and check out any comments at

Monday, October 12, 2015

Death as Metaphor 20: Personal Poetry Reflection and Analysis II

in dreams, fear the music
moonlight darkens

Another aspect of death I use is in the prevention of it. However, this is impossible since one cannot escape death. My poetry visions of death change depending on what I feel are important in my life.
Death can be an emotional experience that crushes your heart in two. It is not the death of my body but, the death of my conscious mind, the death of losing something in me or from someone that has affected me in such a way that it feels like I am dead; the walking corpse in time that is unable to deal with the loss or pain or feeling.

John Ashbery (1981) wrote in his poem, “Paradoxes and Oxymorons,”  ( that the poem is what maps out its direction as being open-ended and intuitive writing. The poet is thus the vessel and yet, the poem is part of you, your thoughts and feelings.

I find that my poetry stems from some dark thinking as a way of expressing what’s inside me through metaphorical words of death. Sometimes I do not comprehend fully why I choose certain words to go together and how death plays out in the poem.

Monday, October 5, 2015

Art 6: The Sitting Nude in Quietude



This piece was done in charcoal during my first year in a Life Drawing class. It was the first time doing a male model and he tended to do awkward poses. I managed to get this simple one, though.
Other than the head needing some work, I like the way the shoulders add motion to the piece. The neck area is also an area I focused on and thought it came out well. I hope you enjoyed looking at this piece. I call it the Sitting Nude in Quietude.