Sunday Photo Fiction: Der deutsche Holzschnitzer (The German Woodcarver) #amwriting #flashfiction

Thanks to Alistair Forbes for hosting this week’s SPF.

Credit: © C.E. Ayer

Jacobus was a talented Holtzschnitzer (woodcarver) as his Papa and Opa had been before him. He gazed at the fine ritter (knight) he had geschnitzt (carved) on the remaining panel of set of doors in the St. Mary Magdalene’s Kathedralen (cathedral). He was greatly pleased by his relief die Schnitzereit (carvings) and the subject matter. His Opa would have been proud, he had been the most exceptional Holtzschnitzer of his time.

When Jacobus was four, his Papa taught him everything he knew then, sent him around Europe to train under Meister der Holzschnitzerei (woodcarving masters). At the prime of life, Jacobus was in Paris working on Holzschnitzereien (woodcarvings) for the king of France, schnitzen (carving) reliefs and figures for a generous wage.

Jacobus was even more talented than his Opa had been and enjoyed that the subject matter in many French Kathedralen weren’t so limited due to the Renaissance influence in art. His next project was a die Schnitzereit of Mary Magdalene. Not a relief but a carefully schnitzen (carved) contrapposto* figure with a rounded body, full breasts, and hips.

These were the Holzschnitzereien found in Italian churches and not the old Gothic churches of his homeland in Deutschland. Jacobus grinned as plans for the Mary Magdalene took shape. He grabbed etwas Pergament (some parchment) off a table nearby and began to sketch.

*Contrappasto – “Is an Italian term that means counterpoise. It is used in the visual arts to describe a human figure standing with most of its weight on one foot so that its shoulders and arms twist off-axis from the hips and legs (”

©Mandibelle16. (2018) All Rights Reserved.

Photo Challenge: Poem – Alouette –  “Papa’s Hands” #amwriting #poetry 

Thanks to NEKNEERAJ of MindLoveMisery’s Menagerie for hosting this week’s Photo Challenge prompt. 


Credit: NEKNEERAJ- MindLoveMisery’s Menagerie

——–We sit at home eat,

Soft pasta with meat. 

Mama taught me to make food. 

I was a child small,

She yelled and she called —

Me  — incapable and rude.


They weren’t angry words. 

But words of fear learned. 

Didn’t want to test Papa, 

She wanted perfect, 

He wanted perfect.

None desired his open hand. 


At such a thing as,

Messed up pasta.

A girl couldn’t help, she learned — 

To make it right or —

Face rage for bad food. 

Mistakes, not to make, she yearned. 


But no one’s perfect,

And she preferred.

To leave home with her husband.

With two small children,

Became immigrants. 

Living with hope in new land. 


Shops in a district,

Cultural foods listed. 

Buys groceries for family. 

As do her neighbours.

Here are diverse words.

By leaps she sees life expands. 


The whole family’s glad,

No one’s smacked or mad. 

Homeland missed but no regrets. 

She holds her baby, 

Of two, to her face.

Smiles and says, “I’ve no regrets.”


Her child won’t have to —

Cook or be perfect. 

Or be slapped to the floor, 

 By Grandpa who thought, 

It’s how girl’s learned; not

That his hands bruised and abused. 


©Mandibelle16. (2017) All Rights Reserved. 

Sunday Photo Fiction: Poem – Italian Sonnet – “Pushing Daisies” #amwriting #poetry #flashfiction

Thank you to Alistair Forbes for hosting SPF.


A Mixed Bag


Little Lana, stood with her Mommy saw —

Flowers thought, “daisies,” over grave grew tall.

Thought Dad was here, never saw him at all.

Mom had tearful eyes, emotion made her raw.

Why’s Daddy pushing Daisies, where’s my pa?”

Lana asks fragile Mom; had heard phone call —

Nana said Dad’s, pushing daisies, new calling.

Mom cries at question, by the grave she bawls.


Pushing daisies, what did that mean? Girl knew —

Not the phrase, but thought it’s Daddy’s new job. 

Papa came, Lana asks, “Why Dad now grew —

Daisies? Wasn’t doing business his job?”

Tears trailed down Papa’s eye, his nose he blew:

“It means your Dad is dead, to heaven flew.”


©Mandibelle16. (2016) All Rights Reserved.

Sunday Photo Fiction: The Elephant in the Shed

Joshua saw his Papa going out to the brick shed. He saw that Papa left the door ajar. He knew Papa and Nana would be mad at him for taking a look inside the shed, but Joshua couldn’t help but peek.

Joshua gazed in awe in the shed. There was an elephant inside, chained up by his leg. 

Terrified brown eyes stared down at Joshua as Joshua placed his hands gently on the elephants trunk and started to pet him. The elephant closed his eyes in delight. Joshua whispered to the elephant that he would come back and set it free. He also named the elephant George.

Later, when Nana and Papa thought he was asleep, Joshua went on his phone and called his Dad, who was in disbelief. Everyone went out to the shed the next morning, Papa laughing at Joshua’s suggestion that he was keeping an elephant locked inside.

Papa hesitated opening the door and Joshua’s Dad took the key from Papa. To Joshua’s Dad’s surprise when he opened the shed, a great elephant stared down at him sadly. Joshua went and hugged George before his Dad could stop him.

The police and a special vet from the zoo were called out to Papa and Nana’s farm and George was set free. Once his chain had been cut off, George trumpeted and began to flap his ears. He waved his head joyfully.

“How could you do this, Dad?” Joshua’s Dad asked Papa. 

“It was something beautiful that I could keep.” Papa admitted. “I never wanted him to leave and I could never let him free because someone would know.”

Joshua’s Dad shook his head at Papa. “Dad, an elephant isn’t meant to be held captive and he needs to be with other elephants.”

Later, Joshua’s parents took him to visit George at the zoo. “Is George free?” Joshua asked his Dad. “Yes, unlike Papa and Nana,” Joshua’s Dad replied. ” George will never be a wild elephant but he’ll be happier at the zoo with other elephants around.” 

Joshua watched George play, happy George had elephant friends.



Alistair Forbes

Thanks to Alistair Forbes for hosting SPF.


©Mandibelle16. (2016) All Rights Reserved.