What Do You See? Blasphemy

7274B1DD-0114-412E-B146-8DC16CEB38F9“This is blasphemous,” the high priest cried out. “Those who defaced the holiest of our shrines must pay for their evil deeds.”

“Yes, your Holiness,” one of the squires said in deference. “What would you have us do, sire?”

“Round up all of the usual suspects,” the high priest said. “The Jews, the Muslims, the pagans, the Africans, and the non-believers.”

“And once we have them rounded up?” asked the squire.

“Fool!” admonished the high priest. “You get them to renounce their false gods. Get them to accept Jesus as their Lord and Savior. Get them to repent, to convert, and to atone for their sins and for this act of blasphemy.”

“What if they refuse to renounce, repent, convert, and atone, Your Holiness?” the squire asked.

“Then you must do what must be done,” the high priest said.

“Sire, do you mean…?”

“Yes, that is precisely what I mean,” the high priest said. “Let those heretics and blasphemers spend an eternity burning in Hell.”

Written for this week’s What Do You See? Prompt from Hélène Vaillant.


What’s In The Box, Mom?

252565DF-284E-43AF-82E4-13B9D0C1F586“That salad was delicious,” Stan told his mother. “What was that meat in there? I’ve never tasted anything quite like it.”

“It was the meat from a conch shell,” Arlene said.

Wherever did you get that recipe, Mom?” Carolyn asked.

“Do you remember when your father and I went island hopping last year in the Caribbean?” Arlene asked. “We met an old war buddy of your father’s on St. Thomas. He lives there and he took us to a restaurant that specialized in conch. I persuaded the chef to give me a few conch recipes.”

“It’s really good, Mom,” Stan said, “but why did you ask Carolyn and me to come here tonight? You said you had something important to show us.”

“Yeah, Mom, the anticipation is killing me,” Carolyn said.

“Okay, let me go get it,” Arlene said, as she left the dining room. She returned a few seconds later and placed a square, gift wrapped box in the center of the table. “Voila!” she said.

Stan and Carolyn looked at one another and then looked at their mother. “What is it?” Carolyn asked.

“Read the card,” Arlene said.

Stan reached over and open the card attached to the top of the gift-wrapped box. “It says, ‘Robert, Your Loving Husband. Always Together.’ What does that mean, Mom? What’s inside the box.”

“I finally, after six months, had the courage to pick it up,” Arlene said, a big smile on her face. “Your father’s ashes are inside that beautiful box.”

Written for this week’s What Do You See? prompt from Hélène Vaillant. Also for these daily prompts: Word of the Day Challenge (delicious), Your Daily Word Prompt (wherever), Ragtag Daily Prompt (island), Fandango’s One-Word Challenge (war), Weekly Prompts (anticipation), and The Daily Spur (inside).


346C702C-64B8-4B8B-979E-1667DECC26C3Chris knew that she was not the same person everyone thought she was just a few years earlier. She had changed. She had changed to be the person she always knew she was. She wanted to believe that she had evolved. And while most people she knew would acknowledge that Chris had changed, not everyone would concur that she had evolved. In fact, some who knew her thought that the change Chris had gone through was a serious mistake.

Chris was born a caterpillar, and just as a caterpillar goes through a process of metamorphosis, so to did Chris. But in Chris’ case, the metamorphosis she went through was not from caterpillar to a moth or a butterfly. It was more, she felt, like a moth being transformed from a leaf.

She became a completely different person. She went through a major change…of form, structure, and substance. A change not only in appearance, but in character and circumstances, as well. Chris’ metamorphosis was from a human man to a human woman.

From Christopher to Christine.

Written for Hélène Vaillant’s What Do You See? prompt.

Keeper of the Bloom

F1481FBF-F860-468E-9F2C-46A6F7F62B33How many years had it been since she, as a young child, had been plucked from what was a serene and unassuming life down in the valley? It seemed like it was forever ago that she had been chosen as the keeper of the bloom at the top of the tower.

“Even in your youth, child, you have demonstrated the right amount of courage to take on this challenge,” the elders told her when she was a little girl decades ago. “You must be diligent in your duties to care for and water our sacred flowering plant,” they told her. “It was placed there by God for us to demonstrate our love and devotion to Him. Should the bloom fade and the plant die, so, too, will the people of this valley, for we will have betrayed His love and will no longer receive His protection. Do your bidding, child, and all will be well. Do you understand?”

“Yes,” the little girl responded demurely.

“At the end of each day, upon your return from the tower, you will report to a designated member of the Council of Elders to let him know that you’ve completed your daily task,” the elders instructed.

An old lady now, it took her all day to reach the top of the tower, water the plant, and return to the valley far below. But there was no Council of Elders to report to anymore. No elders at all, in fact. Despite keeping the plant at the top of the tower alive, she must somehow have failed. Despite dutifully carrying out her charge over the decades, God had forsaken the people of the valley, and only she, now a gnarled, hunched over old lady, yet survived.

And on this day, as she completed her task and made her way down the steep, winding tower steps, the old lady stepped on the valley floor, looked around at the empty, barren landscape and uttered her last words. “Fuck this shit. I’m done.”

Written for Hélène Vaillant’s What Do You See? photo prompt. Also for these daily prompts: Your Daily Word Prompt (serene), Fandango’s One-Word Challenge (chosen), Word of the Day Challenge (keeper), Ragtag Daily Prompt (courage), and The Daily Spur (report).

We Are The World

0B3DAE7A-9F02-45CC-B9B9-2159E65AF36EMaybe this is cheating. But then again Hélène, in this week’s What Do You See? challenge, says the we can post poetry, stories, or whatever we see/feel about this photo.

And when I look at the photo above, I see a world in perfect harmony. This is what came to mind.

I think I’ll go have a Coke.