In Other Words — Sunset

0A9E2ADA-033F-406E-A643-FD1A14A4C68CIt’s amazing how easy it was.

It’s remarkable how enabled he was.

It’s staggering how complicit they all are.

Where party loyalty trumps love of country.

And brings about the sunset of democracy in America.

In other wordsWritten for the In Other Words prompt from Patricia’s Place. The challenge this week is to write a story or poem of five lines or fewer using the picture above and/or the word “sunset.”

#writephoto — Adrift

30581418-2CE8-46CA-9CE0-C2074B5AD2E8Cal liked to think of himself as an adventurous soul, but he never ever considered himself to be any kind of daredevil. And yet here he was, living in a cave on an isolated island in the middle of the Pacific Ocean.

Feeling rather pensive, Cal sat down on the makeshift seat he’d constructed out of driftwood. He thought about what possessed him to embark on this ill-conceived journey. He clearly wasn’t prescient enough to have anticipated the unusual weather and rough seas that he encountered. As he thought about it, perhaps he should have given more credence to those who warned about climate change.

Cal tried to recall how long it had been since his small dinghy had crashed onto the rocky coastline of this island. But he couldn’t remember. Had it been weeks? A month? Longer?

He had managed to survived on fresh fruit and berries, as well as on fish and small rodents that he was able to catch. He gathered enough wood and brought it into his cave to dry out and would use his old, reliable Zippo lighter to ignite small fires so he didn’t have to eat his caught fish and meat raw. But the lighter fluid was gone and the flint worn to the point that it could no longer create even a tiny spark.

Using more driftwood and some vines he had pulled down from the trees, Cal crafted together a raft. The time was quickly approaching for him to cast-off from his cave home on the strange little island. He had no way of knowing if he would survive his attempt to return to the life he knew. But if he did, there was no doubt in his mind that his adventurous days were behind him.

F93D132E-2B97-47F4-8EF8-8301CCB85650Written for Sue Vincent’s Thursday Photo Prompt. And for the Tale Weaver prompt from Mindlovemisery’s Menagerie, leveraging the word “pensive.” And also for these daily prompts: Word of the Day Challenge (daredevil), Fandango’s One-Word Challenge (prescient), and Ragtag Daily Prompt (cast-off).

D is for Demagogue

08F5B08E-E5D6-46F7-B097-62DAA68F1FFFI never thought I’d live to see the day when the President of the United States was a demagogue. But that’s where we are.

What exactly is a demagogue? Thank you for asking. Wikipedia defines a demagogue as follows:

“A demagogue or rabble-rouser is a leader who gains popularity in a democracy by exploiting prejudice and ignorance among the common people, whipping up the passions of the crowd and shutting down reasoned deliberation. Demagogues overturn established norms of political conduct, or promise or threaten to do so.”

So let’s see. Does Donald Trump:

  • behave like a rabble-rouser? ☑️
  • exploit prejudice and ignorance? ☑️
  • whip up passions of the crowd? ☑️
  • shut down reasoned deliberation? ☑️
  • overturn established political norms ☑️

Not yet yet convinced that the American President is a demagogue? Well, Washington Post reporter Michael Signer writes:

“A textbook demagogue meets four tests. First, he identifies as a man of the masses, usually by attacking elites. Second, he creates great waves of passion. Third, he uses that passion for political benefit. Fourth, he tests or breaks established rules of governance. Taken together, this approach enables the demagogue to create a state within a state — a massive cult — that follows him alone.”

Check, check, check, and check!

But some might ask, “is having a demagogue as the leader of a country a bad thing?” Well Demosthenes, a Greek statesman and orator of ancient Athens, who lived from 384 BC to 322 BC, said:

“A demagogue must be neither an educated nor an honest man; he has to be an ignoramus and a rogue.”

Consider this: Modern demagogues include such men as Adolf Hitler, Benito Mussolini, Huey Long, Father Coughlin, and Joseph McCarthy. They each built mass followings by exciting the passions of the mob against the moderate, thoughtful customs of their times.

So you decide. Is Donald Trump a demagogue? And is that a good or a bad thing for America and for the world?

Previous A to Z Challenge 2019 posts:


50 Word Thursday

228F92D8-5AA0-4DBC-9B4F-A57734879996“I don’t understand why you gave the scarecrow a happy face,” Dana’s father said. “It’s supposed to scare, not befriend crows.”

Dana walked up to her creation. “Why are you smiling?” she asked. After a moment, she turned to her father and said, “He said he loves his job, Daddy.”

(50 words)

Written for this week’s 50 Word Thursday prompt from Teresa (aka The Haunted Wordsmith). We’re supposed to take the picture from John Collins at, and the line “Why are you smiling?” from Beyond the Field by River Dixon, and write a story between 50 and 250 words, in 50 word increments.

FOWC with Fandango — Prescient

FOWCWelcome to April 4, 2019 and to Fandango’s One-Word Challenge (aka, FOWC). It’s designed to fill the void after WordPress bailed on its daily one-word prompt.

I will be posting each day’s word just after midnight Pacific Time (US).

Today’s word is “prescient.”

Write a post using that word. It can be prose, poetry, fiction, non-fiction. It can be any length. It can be just a picture or a drawing if you want. No holds barred, so to speak.

Once you are done, tag your post with #FOWC and create a pingback to this post if you are on WordPress. Or you can simply include a link to your post in the comments.

And be sure to read the posts of other bloggers who respond to this prompt. You will marvel at their creativity.