Pegman took us to New Orleans today. Oh! What could be better to write about near Halloween than an old graveyard? Thanks, Pegman!

Fabiola read them bones better en anybody. Yes, sirree, she surely did.
Chucked em in a rusted coffee tin, rattled em up, throwed em right on the ground.
Mind you, the ground had to be soft sand or ruffled-up garden dirt.
No concrete nor asphalt.

She told us them bones were from coyotes or pigs.
But soon we notices dat graves being tampered with.
Not zactly dug up. No.
But holes appeared, like somebody done been using a clam gun.
Or something like dat.

Den one-by-one peoples whose ancestors been dug up started gettin sick. Fluenza. Rat-bite fever.
Well, by rights, we mens needed to protect our families
so we took old Fabiola and throwed her in Bayou Teche.
Felt good about it, too.

Funny thing? Since Fabiola been gone, bones been appearing in trees long the trail to the Teche.
Thems that see um rot from the inside out.



Pegman took us to Hyderabad, India today. While wandering around, I found this archway over the entrance to an Opera Garden. Wow! thought I, a great story can come out of this. Sorry, my muse took me to the dark side again and on such a sunny morning!

The day has been too long, too full of screamed accusations, loud music played to cover the sound of thrown objects shattering on walls and floors or breaking windows. And the hatred! That is the worst of it. And for no reason Siya can think of. The feeling permeates the air, tainting it with something she can almost smell. Like burnt chalk or a jar of desiccating rubberbands.

They love one another. She has proof. Some tangible, some not. Hugs. Small gifts of teddy bears and cotton candy. Snuggling on the couch when they are alone and the house is quiet. Walking hand-in-hand to the Erragadda Market. Tickling. Taking baths.

Shouted words rumble up the stairs into her bedroom. “Touch her again I will rip you apart with my bare hands!”
“Oh, Baba.” Siya presses her hands over her tiny ears and finally begins to cry.

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Photo by Sandra Crook

Souls come to me. Some blacker than the inside of midnight, others so bright they dim the light of stars.
From the beginning of time, we each stored them in the manner we saw fit.

Father kept souls in driftwood. Grandfather stored them inside tiny grains of sand.
Feathers. Leaves. Moss.
Each generation has a plan better than the last.

I chose shells, for they come in different shapes and sizes.
Small ones for babies, spiked ones for mean old men.
Sadly it ends here. There is no next generation.
I sweep up my collection and throw it into the sea.


Today Pegman took us to Duoro Valley, Portugal. Thanks, Josh and Karen, for using my suggestion. A friend of mine is traveling in Portugal and I fell in love with her pictures. Now Portugal is on my bucket list. In researching what people do for a living in this region, I discovered the history of Port wine and this delightful picture. That’s how our Beatriz was born. But, like the person listening to the story, I’m skeptical that Bea came up with the idea. On the other hand …
I’ve added a link to the end of my story if you are interested in the history of Port.

Beatriz came up with the idea.
What? You say a woman could never think of such a thing. Pffft, you know nothing!
Now, let me tell my tale. The sale of wine was failing.
Why? You may ask. Because the wine spoiled before it arrived down river.
No one likes to open a keg of vinegar when they expect fine wine.
The village was slowly dying. Young people left. No one remained to pick the grapes.
What? No. Seventy-year-old people are meant to rest. Not harvest under the blazing sun. Quiet!
So, our Bea came up with the idea of adding brandy . . .
What now? How did she think if it? I should know this?
Anyway, merchants began to call our wine Vinho do Porto.
Yes, yes. Today it is called Port but it should be called Vinho do Beatriz for it was that clever girl who saved our village.



Interrupted Plans

Posted: September 26, 2018 in Friday Fictioneers
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Our purple-clad Fairy Blog Mother kindly posted today’s photo prompt provided by Yvette Prior. This picture was a mind-boggler for me. Still, here are my 100-words.

On one side, everything is organized.
Grocery lists. Children’s schedules. Doctor’s appointments.
On the other, it feels like a hurricane whistled through and tumbled everything around.
Where are the keys? Did Roger leave me forever? I must walk the dog.
Too late. Time for dinner.
Stephanie opens the fridge, removes barbequed salmon, tartar sauce, coleslaw, and mashed potatoes.
She feels quite brilliant for having planned ahead.
When Roger comes home – yes, he’s only gone to work – the table will be set.
She startles when gentle hands turn her around.
“Come back to bed, my sweet. It’s half past midnight.”

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Legitimate Secrets

Posted: September 22, 2018 in What Pegman Saw
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This week Pegman took us to Goizueta, Navarre in Spain. Thanks, Karen. Now I want to visit this gorgeous country.

A delicate balance, our relationship. You down beside the road, me up on the hill. My husband leaves. Your wife returns. My husband returns. Your wife goes into town.
A mere half-hour passes in between. When no one watches we exchange winks and nods. Touch hands in our kitchen or your hallway.
Our children play together. Sadly we use their playtime to exchange notes; tuck papers inside their tiny socks. It’s not our fault. We do what we can.
I don’t believe either of us remembers how this started. Church? The market? Whispers in the alley?
But we must keep up our relationship. We must, for if we don’t, one or all of us will surely die. Times have come to that.
We no longer know which side we’re on, but we do know our secret exchanges will keep our families from dying in our country’s ugly war.



Wednesday-Friday has once again provided an interesting photo prompt posted by our Fairy Blog Mother, Rochelle Wisoff-Fields. Here are my 100-words.

These are the bones of our people, stacked one upon another to form the perfect protective structure. Time means nothing to us. We come. We go. Live and die, yet we are always here, guarding our children and their children and on and on and on. No one tires of the process. While alive, we smile up at our ancestors. Celebrate their strengths and weaknesses. Thank them for watching over us. We know that following death we will shelter the cheerful and the lost, participate in weddings and funerals through our spirits. A never-ending circle that brings comfort and peace.