#writephoto — The New Clear Winter

1198C816-52F2-422B-BF6E-38A73A541C38The village elders had talked about the prophecies, but most people thought it was just more incoherent mumbo-jumbo. The elders spoke of how, several centuries earlier, the Lord, in His wisdom, had unleashed a torrent of destruction because His children had lost their way. That global devastation brought on what the elders called “The New Clear Winter.”

The stories talked about how the thick, dark clouds of The New Clear Winter blotted out the light and warmth of the Lord, causing famine, illness, and widespread death due to what the elders named “The Torrent of the Lord.” Only the hardiest people survived the freezing temperatures and darkness that enveloped their home planet.

“There will come a time of Light, Warmth, and Salvation, which the Lord will bestow upon His faithful flock,” the High Priest proclaimed. “The prophecies say that He, praise our Lord, will part the clouds and let shine His warmth and white light that will bring about the end of The New Clear Winter and will restore His blessing upon our home.”

The people in the small village looked up in awe. When they saw the blinding white light shining down from between the bare branches of the trees as the dark clouds began to dissipate, they fell down to their knees and prayed thanks to their Lord, feeling blessed that the prophecies were right.

What they couldn’t possibly know at that time was that the return of the sun, without the benefit of a thick atmosphere to diffuse the star’s intense heat, would soon fry the planet and cause it to be no longer able to sustain life and become totally uninhabitable.


Written for this week’s Thursday Photo Prompt from Sue Vincent.

FFfAW — What Do You See?

96afaf32-1954-4b89-a5fd-a58b647a3a85“I see a cute and cuddly teddy bear reaching out for a hug,” Rachel said.

“I see God peeking out from behind the clouds, gracing us all in His glory,” said Anita.

“I see a map of Europe and Africa,” Robert said.

“I see thunder clouds forming and a thunderstorm coming,” Jimmy said.

“Have you no imagination whatsoever, Jimmy?” Rachel asked. “Surely you see something else when you look at those clouds.”

“They’re clouds, Rachel,” Jimmy said. “They are made of drops of water that are too small to see, which have turned into a gas called water vapor. As the water vapor goes higher in the sky, the air gets cooler. And that causes the water droplets to start to stick to things like bits of dust, ice, or sea salt. And that’s how the clouds form. Then the wind moves those clouds across the sky, constantly changing their shapes.”

“You really need to get a life, Jimmy,” Rachel said.

(161 words)


Written for Priceless Joy’s Flash Fiction for Aspiring Writers. Photo credit: Jodi McKinney.

#writephoto — The Great Outdoors

c4f26af9-3fc6-4e23-a7e4-7c6c8f2a3a65“What a stunning sunset, Josh. Isn’t it beautiful?” Sara asked. “Look at how much dimension there is to the sky with that layer of clouds. It’s so dramatic.”

“This is pure madness, Sara,” Josh said. “It’s cold and damp and it’s nothing short of crazy to go tent camping in the beginning of January.”

“Oh come on, Josh,” Sara said. “Let’s think of this as an adventure.”

“Spring, summer, or fall would be a good time for a camping adventure,” Josh said. “Look at those bare, spiky tree branches. That, and the freezing temperature, doesn’t exactly inspire spending a night in the great outdoors.”

“Grab some of the tree branches that are on the ground and let’s build a fire,” Sara said. “Once we light it up, we can cuddle together in front of the fire and it will keep us nice and toasty.”

“Nothing like igniting a fire in front of a tent on a cold, wintry night to generate a little warmth,” Josh said, smiling for the first time that evening.


Written for Sue Vincent’s Thursday Photo Prompt. I know Sue described this picture as having been taken at dawn, but it fit better into my story as being taken at dusk.

Also written for these one-word prompts: Nova’s Daily Random Word (dimension), Fandango’s One-Word Challenge (madness), Daily Addictions (damp), Ragtag Daily Prompt (spiky), and Word of the Day Challenge (ignite).

#writephoto — The Calming Clouds

339D1947-3C7F-4C84-B11E-DDE647BE625BDarren stormed out of the house, slamming the door behind him. Concerned, his wife ran outside after him and found him standing there, hands on his hips, staring off into the sky.

“Darren, what’s wrong? she asked when she got to his side. She reached down and grabbed his hand. “What’s got you so upset?”

Darren continued to stare at the sky. He saw the sun shining through the gray clouds, illuminating the bare branches of the winter trees. After a moment he sighed and said, “I’m sorry, Liz, but I just get so damn angry every time I watch the news. The man took an oath of office in which he swore to preserve, protect, and defend the Constitution of the United States. But everything he does, ever word he utters, is detrimental to the country and its citizens and violates the oath he took when he became president. I find it relaxing to watch the slow movements of the clouds across the sky. I brings me peace.”

“Well, you deserve some peace and relaxation, that’s for sure,” Liz said. “And as to Trump and all of his rich, corpulent political sycophants, and corporate fat cats, their corrupt and despicable manifestations of amoral behavior will be judged appropriately by the court of history.”

“I hope you’re right, honey,” Darren said, “but in the meantime, I’m at peace just watching the clouds float by.


This political fantasy was written for Sue Vincent’s Thursday Photo Prompt. I also fit in these one-word prompts: Word of the Day Challenge (oath), Fandago’s One-Word Challenge (detrimental), Your Daily Word Prompt (relaxation), Ragtag Daily Prompt (corpulent), and Nova’s Daily Random Word (manifestation).

Happy Anniversary

ABC15485-4D66-48CD-8F8C-89357D324357The first thing that impressed Ann when she and her husband walked into the posh, downtown hotel room were the beautiful lace doilies on the desk and the bedside tables. That was until Michael called her over to the window and told her to look out.

“Oh my God,” Ann exclaimed. “This is stunning. Look at the city with the twinkling lights from the skyscrapers peaking from behind the wispy, low-hanging clouds. This hotel is some discovery,” she said to Michael, squeezing his hand tightly.

“I wanted to surprise you on this, our fifth wedding anniversary,” Michael said, bending down slightly to give Ann a kiss. “And best of all, I scored great tickets for tonight.”

“Oh, Michael,” Ann squealed, “I’ve always wanted to see a Broadway show! Which show?”

“Well, it’s just a little off Broadway,” Michael admitted.

“Oh, off-Broadway,” Ann said. “Well, that’s cool. I understand that there are some very avant-garde shows that are off-Broadway.”

“Yeah, well it not exactly a show,” Michael said. “I got floor seats for the Knicks game.”

Ann looked at her husband and said, “You’re taking me to a basketball game for our anniversary? Seriously?”

“It’s my anniversary, too, you know,” Michael said.

“And your last one with me,” Ann said.


Written for Teresa’s two prompts, Three Things Challenge, where the things are discovery, lace, and basketball, and for her Worth A Thousand Words photo prompt. Photo credit: carloyuen @ pixabay.com.