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Monthly Archives: October 2013

Word Prompt: Aliens

When Miss Sopine opened her front door to greet the trick-or-treaters, she took one look at the costumed group and exclaimed, “My, what a creative bunch you are! Your alien costumes look so real!”

As the neighborhood seamstress, Miss Sopine fancied herself a young Martha Stewart, and though she wouldn’t admit it aloud, she was a tad envious of the master expert who custom-designed and crafted the scaly latex suits on the group before her.

“Did you order them online?” she asked. “Etsy?”

The short alien at the forefront of the group turned to his taller brother, who shrugged blankly and shook his head.

“Well, if someone local made your outfits, I want a name,” Miss Sopine insisted, holding the bowl of candy to her chest as she waited for an answer.

The aliens glanced at each other. The tallest one, also the most impatient of the group, stepped forward and pointed his long, sharp finger at Miss Sopine.

“Young man, don’t play games with me. You and I know very well that I didn’t sew your costumes -”

The alien hissed and opened his mouth to reveal two rows of jagged teeth and three slithering pink tongues.

Miss Sopine’s eyes bulged as she leaped back with fright. The entire group now advanced upon her, pushing her into the foyer, where she dropped the bowl of candy and yelped as mini chocolate bars scattered across the hardwood floor. As the final alien crossed her threshold, it quietly closed the front door, cutting off the squealing voices of small children singing “trick or treat” at the neighbor’s house across the street and leaving poor Miss Sopine alone with the family of hungry extraterrestrials, who were looking for a snack to eat…


Word Prompt: Slime

Slime oozes, fuses, and flows from buckets, sewers, and pipes. Blazing lime green and electric blue rivers of coagulated goo pour into streets and invade sparkling kitchen floors. People scream and jump on chairs, whose feet erode in the chemical flood.

Slime sparks pandemonium not unlike the stinky black sludge that spews from toilets and sinks when the sewer pipeline is clogged. But slime reigns the fear factor, the unknown and uncontrollable glue-like surge feeding off the sobs and tears of shrieking women and shouting men, who bark, “what the hells is that?!”

Slime takes no time to explain itself. It has homes to eat and streets to bury. A mad scientist to please. Few are aware that slime is a yes man. Or thing. A yes thing. A doer. Sometimes even a do-it-yourselfer.

Slime bubbles and gurgles, meanders and slides down hills, climbs walls when it can. Slime overtakes everything. It’s a mess to clean up. A sight to behold when the HAZMAT team arrives to survey their job. Men in shiny body suits and gas masks uncertain where to begin. Sucking up the ooze into giant trucks. Where it will go, no one really knows.

Word Prompt: Labyrinth

Shrubs stretch tall, looming

A wall of interlocked limbs

No calls of rover to let me in

The ceiling of stars inching closer

Glass marbles shuffle the ground

Should I slip and fall

I shall plummet through open holes

Never wake up, or this will be real

Sugar skull caves with spiraling stairs

Winding, winding, and winding down

To fires and lapping waves

Stirred by tornado dances

Desert boll dustings

Nettled brush leering to feel skin

I stumble through the frosty breath

The monster who exhales within

Palatial turrets guarding this maze

From where her weary few escape

The enigma of our infinite chase.

Word Prompt: a Basement

Where the creepy-crawly slither. Leaving slimy trails on dusty concrete floors. Spiders climbing up the walls to spin their sticky traps. Bump. Creak. What was that? The sound of ghosts and monsters living in the room where no one of the human kind would ever call his home. Wooden shelves with rusty tools. Torture weapons for the sickest souls. A gurney in the corner – the one that put old grandmothers to sleep. A box of wooden dolls with doped eyes and blood-red lips. Waiting to come alive when the moon is full and the clock strikes twelve. They’ll dance and jeer and call down the little ones to play their demented games. While the cackling witch stirs her soupy cauldron, plotting her double date with Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde. And a werewolf howls. Scratches at the door. Begging to be let inside. Where ghouls and goblins take inventory of the madness and weave together a horrific tale within the darkest closets of our hostage minds.


Word Prompt: Potion

All Hallow’s Eve —

The kids come out to play

I go to work

Brewing and boiling

Grating and toiling

My special concoction

A syrup for all ages

Big or small —

Won’t matter at all

When they take the first sip

I have them in my spell

Little angels they will be

‘Til next Halloween.

Word Prompt: Vampire

When Mary Ellen held up her suggestion for the book club’s next read, Janet ruled her eyes. Not another vampire story. How many of those books were there?

Every other month, she was forced to choke down another woeful (and poorly written) tale about a tormented vampire caught in the familiar throes of a Shakespeare romance. Cotton candy drama, Janet called it because a majority of the women in her group ate this stuff up with child-like delight. But when she tried to recommend the great-great-great grandfather of vampire tales – Bram Stoker’s Dracula – they all gagged as though she was serving them a platter of broccoli.

“We were supposed to read that in high school,” Mary Ellen shuddered. I tried to read the first page and was bored to tears. Literally, girls, I cried from boredom!”

Janet wondered if Mary Ellen could even read the first page, but she bit her tongue before the question could escape her lips. Janet blamed her husband for this inept group. If he hadn’t accepted the promotion which forced them to relocate to Midwest Suburbia, she’d be curled on a sofa in a New York City cafe and chatting with her best friends about Neil Gaiman’s latest book. Now she was surrounded by unhappy housewives, who self-medicated their droll lives with vampires and fifty shades of gray.

Why did this have to be the only book club in town? She posted ads, even begged the town librarian for a list of patrons who might want to form a new club. Every name the librarian offered was a member of this club – and some of the first women to jump up and down excitedly when a new vampire book was produced from a knock-off purse and offered to the group like free Mary Kay samples. The only new club they were keen on starting was a Team Edward Club.

Janet truly believed she had hit the rock bottom of life, and if she wasn’t so starved for social encounters and human interactions, she would have tried to claw her way from the club to escape their brainless drivel. In a town of no culture, to keep from falling six feet under, she stayed to feed upon the vapid chatter of its underwhelming book club….

Word Prompt: Lighthouse

Rumor is –

No one operates the lighthouse

Yet the light shines on

At dusk the boats turn home

Like the man on the moon

They claim he’s there

The old town friend

Who couldn’t let go

He lingers outside our port

Casting the beam wide and bright

They say he’ll never leave

Never is a promise many fail to keep

But should he stay true

The ghost guarding our black coast

Won’t steer us wrong