Sunday Photo Fiction: Practical Juliet


Thanks to Alistair Forbes for hosting SPF.


SPFJuliette
Credit: A Mixed Bag

*****

O, Romeo, Romeo, wherefore —

Art thou Romeo?Why are you here?

I’m not interested in death for love, clear?

I’m a smart girl and you’re kind of boring.

You talk about love, I’m just passed fourteen.

I think that I’ll ‘live,’ a little more, dear —

Before I settle; I’ve no choice, you hear,

Dad will kill us both if you insist more.

*****

So leave me be, a young girl who is free

Keep your responsibility, see —

I’ll spend time with the girls and when —

I’m twenty, I’ll choose the richest guy known,

Who’s nice to me; there’ll be no bloodshed then.

Go play with your friends, be young, O Romeo.

*****


©Mandibelle16(2017). All Rights Reserved.

Collage Prompt: Poem – Tankas – “Not Perfect and Better For It” #amwriting #poetry #fiction 


Thanks to MindLoveMisery’s Menagerie for hosting this week’s collage prompt.

——-

Credit: MindLoveMisery’s Menagerie

——-

Poor little Anne tried,

So hard to fit in; she can’t —

Conform to their look.

Sense of presence in her glance,

Terror; they don’t know freedom.

——-

Yet Anne tries and tries,

To be a cardboard box just —

Like all the others.

Left alone at recess eating,

Ripe oranges, she’s exotic fruit.

——

But they don’t invite —

Her to their parties, Anne cries,

She doesn’t see why,

She has to be so different,

A plant from foreign soil torn.

—-

Anne grows into her —

Self; she stops being afraid,

Sees her beauty is —

That she’s unique not like all,

Those other girls, loathing her.

——

In grade school there’s this —

Small boy painted in war paint,

His Dad went to war,

He didn’t return home, saddened —

Anne helps him; he remembers —

——

So years later they’re —

Attached — those girls all want him.

But his friend is his —

Love; she was with him,

All along; the handsome man,

Love’s different, not perfect Anne.

—–

Though she struggles hard,

Hoping for female friends, he says,

He loves imperfect her,

Because she doesn’t have to

Be ‘like them’; she can be good.

——

Then she starts meeting —

Others, women who become —

Her tribe, with her guy.

The gazes of jealousy —

Double, but Anne doesn’t care.

——-

Anne is as a bird,

A swallow singing sweetly.

She’s lively, vivid;

Her eyes shine bright; he loves his —

Anne, contently, completely.

——

©Mandibelle16. (2017) All Rights Reserved.

Fiction: Cinderella and Her Diamond Heels #fiction #amwriting #cinderellamythmaker 


Thank you to Anne at I Think, I Say, I Do and Theresa Baker – Lab Notes for hosting the #cinderellamythmaker Cinderella: Collaboration Project.


cinderella-washing-floor
Credit: http://www.giphy.com – Cinderella Cleaning Bubbles
Cinderella could feel her back begin to ache as she washed the floors by hand. The mansion she now cleaned had been her father’s mansion before her stepmother poisoned his tea. Her stepmother had convinced her father’ s old solicitors that Cinderella was too young to take care of the mansion when she was twelve-years-old. The vile woman had claimed Cinderella’s home for herself and her two spoiled daughters Giselle and Monique.

Cinderella wouldn’t legally be able to have the mansion back until she was married or twenty-five-years-old. She knew her stepmother wouldn’t allow either to occur. Her only hope was to be able to have enough money to afford the solicitor her stepmother had offended.

Her stepmother had refused to marry a well-known solicitor after Cinderella’s father had passed. She knew he was the only one who would take a servant’s case to get back at the stepmother. Until then, Cinderella’s jailor would keep the house and Cinderella as a slave working in it.

She finished washing the floor pleased as they shined. Then, her homely stepsisters walked across it with muddy shoes. When one tripped, both Giselle and Monique began to hit Cinderella. She pushed them away and they kept walking, calling her names. She had to rewash some spots on the floor but she didn’t care. Cinderella had a secret and it was going to free her from the tyranny of her stepmother and stepsisters.


A lonely beggar wandering past the front gate had seen Cinderella crying last night. She had

cinderlla-beggar
Credit: Wikipedia – “Tha Man With The Twisted Lip” by Sidney Paget
wanted to attend the ball and with the beggar’s surprising magic powers, he had granted Cinderella’s wish. She realized, however, the beggar wouldn’t be granting this wish without thinking about his own well-being. She could see he was a crafty man and wondered what he was up to, why he would grant her such a request.

He’d created a beautiful frothy blue gown for Cinderella to wear with the most stunning diamond high heels she’d ever seen; Cinderella had a thing for gorgeous shoes. They were so wonderful Cinderella asked if she could keep them after the night ended. The beggar had agreed with a mischevious smile.

Cinderella had a purpose in keeping her diamond heels. She had planned to sneak out of the house in one of her mother’s old dresses and sell her priceless heels to higher the solicitor who so despised her stepmother. She wanted the mansion and what was left of her father’s fortune, especially her sizable dowry, which her stepmother couldn’t get at no matter how hard she tried.

Moreover, Cinderella’s stepmother didn’t know about the money her father had illegally acquired on the black market. It was hidden away in offshore accounts only Cinderella knew about. She couldn’t access them until the day after the ball which was her twenty-fifth birthday.


cinderella-ball-gown-2
Credit: http://www.es.AliExpress.com – Classic Cinderella Prom Party Gowns
Cinderella had attended the ball and knew the prince liked her as soon as he saw her. There was a glint in his blue eyes and he had this charming lopsided grin. She hadn’t meant to let him go so far with her — but then they did.

“I really like you,” he told Cinderella, “You’re much more fun those other girls who want to be my wife but won’t put out. Plus, you’re intelligent and make me laugh. Most of the other girls are too scared they will appear unladylike.” She’d giggled surprised at his comment and Cinderella found herself liking him.

She gave the prince a playful punch. He was entertaining but she knew she’d never see him again. Cinderella gazed up at him and said, “Look, this is a one-time thing and that’s all you’re about all going to get from me because I have a curfew. I’m not allowed out often.”

“I’m ‘the prince,’  I can overrule your curfew or any other rules your father has.”

Cinderella sighed, “Sorry, you can’t. I mean it, I have to leave.” Cinderella ran off

cinderall-gown-3-escaping
Credit: http://www.es.AliExpress.com – Classic Cinderella Prom Party Gowns
before her gown disintegrated and she was left in rags. She swore when she realized only one of her diamond heels had been lost. She’d left one behind while running from the prince but she needed both of them to afford the solicitor. Frustrated she went home and cried herself to sleep.


Then, the prince announced the following day, every young woman in the kingdom needed to try on the diamond heel left behind by the girl he desired above all others.

Cinderella rolled her eyes because she thought the prince was daft. Many women in the kingdom could have the same size feet. She thought about her missing shoe and the beggar, how she was sure he’d been up to something when he granted her wish. She thought the shoes might only fit her feet due to the beggars magic.

The beggar knew Cinderella valued the shoes above all and that’s why he let her keep them. It was strange she would lose track of such beautiful shoes because she loved them so much and had never had shoes this nice before. She knew the crafty beggar had to be responsible for her lost shoe. He probably made the prince fall for her and so that she wouldn’t be able to return to her plan, to sell the shoes and retain her birthright. The beggar had seen the shrewd woman beneath her simple wish. 

Cinderella had only been interested in going to the ball because as she was cleaning outside, she recognized the beggar was a powerful wizard in hiding, who had the power to grant wishes. She hadn’t sought to meet the prince but to be provided with a beautiful dress and shoes she could sell to escape. She was upset about ending up with only one diamond heel.


cinderella-diamond-high-heels
http://www.lelong.com – Newest High Heel Diamond Wedding Shoes

The following week the prince and his servants arrived at the mansion. Her stepmother tried to lock her in a closet but Cinderella had hated her stepmother for many years. She’d had enough of her tyranny and punched the old bat, knocking her out then stuffing her in the closet.

Cinderella hurried down the stairs in one of her mother’s old day dresses. She interrupted  Giselle and Monique trying with all their might to jam the shoe on their chubby feet. Cinderella feared her beloved shoe would shatter.

“Careful that’s a diamond shoe,” she cried bringing out the shoe’s twin, slipping both shoes on, doing up the straps, and parading around in them both for the prince to see. He was confused a moment because Cinderella appeared out of place in her outdated dress but he had her brought closer to him by a servant.

The prince gazed into her face and then moved her long hair out of the way to find the tattoo of a bluebird on her upper back. He declared she was the girl from the ball and she would be his new mistress.

“I’m delighted to see you again,” he said to her with a flirtatious raise of his brows. “You’d be the perfect bride but I’m guessing you have little wealth or dowry to go along with your shoes. On the other hand, you’re much less maintenance than any other girl who nearly fit your shoe.”

Cinderella huffed and being as polite as she could, asked to speak to the prince in private. She explained her entire situation to him concerning her stepmother. She told him how priceless her shoes were, that the mansion was legally hers, and that she had a large dowry along with whatever money her stepmother hadn’t used from her father’s wealth; it turned out to be a lot, more than her stepmother had ever realized. Cinderella smirked, it was so like her father to hide more of his money.

Consulting his advisors, the prince decided Cinderella would make a fantastic bride who would add considerable wealth to his kingdom. He sent for the bishop and they were married immediately. A large public wedding followed months later and the stepmother was forced to retire to the countryside.

The prince was generous and gave Cinderella her father’s mansion (with the

cinderella-off-shore-accounts
Credit: CNN Money -Offshore Tax Havens
deed in her own name) as a wedding present. He married her sisters Gisele and Monique off to two of his dullest cousins but kept their dowries for himself.

He didn’t know about the money hidden in offshore accounts by Cinderella’s father and she decided not to tell him. She was no idiot and decided that every woman, even a princess, needed  ‘get away’ money.


The prince was pleased with Cinderella and was happy to have found a princess who was fun and learned quickly. She was smart and helped him increase the value of his kingdom by increasing taxation on the peasants and middle class. Unfortunately, a revolution broke out in the country around the same time, disturbing their happiness. The king and queen were beheaded along with many other nobles.

Cinderella had grown fond of the prince, she was certain she loved him. They

cinderella-the-prince
Credit: http://www.pinterest.com
had two twin girls together and it was lucky Cinderella had kept secret the money in her father’s offshore accounts. She used the money to escape to the US and start a new life with her family. The prince wasn’t upset Cinderella had hidden the money. He praised her for being shrewd and prepared for an emergency situation he hadn’t foreseen.


Life was rougher in the US but the money Cinderella had kept hidden allowed the prince to become the owner of several factories and make his way in business, mass-producing expensive shoes of all kinds for woman and men. Cinderella helped him design shoes woman paid hundreds and thousands of dollars to own.

cinderella-heart
Credit: http://www.pinterest.com
Their twin daughters married well and a century later the Prince’s ancestors would bring out Cinderella’s diamond heels, showing them off as precious heirlooms. In the end, she hadn’t had to sell her diamond heels. Cinderella was allowed to keep them before they married in public. She’d told the prince, “Promise me we never have to sell my diamond heels. If we do I’ll disappear and you’ll never see me again.”

The prince knew Cinderella was a savvy woman who could easily slip away and by then he loved her more than he wanted to admit; he granted her request. He learned that day and later taught his grandsons in America, “Nothing comes between a woman and her shoes.” And that’s how Cinderella and her prince lived happily ever after.


©Mandibelle16. (2017) All Rights Reserved.

Saturday Mix Flash Fiction: The Weeping Willow and The Rabbit #amwriting #flashfiction #talltales


Thanks to Bastet for hosting Saturday Mix on MindLoveMisery’s Menagerie. Today’s theme is ‘Tall Tales.’ 

——

Credit: GSK 16

——-

The sky was falling in large drops of blue glass. The weeping willow was the first to notice so she cried. Her tears gathered creating a river with the drops from the sky. 

A mighty rabbit hopped by, he was a bit confused as to where all this water was coming from. 

“Ms. Willow why are you crying a river?” he asked. 

“I’m a weeping willow and the sky is falling haven’t you noticed?” 

The rabbit nodded, “Well yes of course it falls. Each time it rains, snows, or hails, the sky falls.” 

“You need to stop crying. You’re going to drown everyone in your tears. I’m the  king of all animals, you better listen to me.” 

“Why?” 

“My friend is a massive blue ox named Babe. His friend named Paul chops down trees for a living.” 

The willow immediately stopped weeping and the rabbit’s triumphant roar was heard throughout the forest. 

——

©Mandibelle16. (2017) All Rights Reserved. 

Friday Fictioneer: Field of Broken Dreams #amwriting #flashfiction 


Thanks to Rochelle Wisoff-Fields for hosting FF.

——

Credit: Liz Young

—–

I was out to meet my friend who lived nearby when I found this ravaged mannequin head. Her exquisite hazel eyes and pencilled brows, lifted towards the sky as if mannequin heaven was there. 

In reality her mutilated head lies in the tall grass. A used beer bottle leans against her face, an empty red cigarette package nearby. 

If she was alive I think she’d be wondering how she ended up here? Why she wasn’t the modelesque mannequin in the window display for Holt Renfrew or at least for H&M. Who had tossed her out like refuse and left her to this fate? 

Count: 91 words

——

“Boulevard of Broken Dreams” By Green Day

—–

©Mandibelle16. (2017) All Rights Reserved. 

Flash Fiction for the Purposeful Practitioner: Grandpa’s Fish Pond #amwriting #flashfiction #fiction 


Thanks too Roger Shipp for hosting FFftPP.

——

Credit: Sora Sangano – http://www.unsplash.com

——

Phallon watched the fish swim in the pond his Grandpa had installed in his backyard. He enjoyed visiting his Grandpa each Saturday. Grandpa had put the pond in because young Phallon loved the fish so much as a toddler; ‘fishes’ had been his first word. 

Now he sat with Grandpa who asked him about school and of course the girls in his school. Uncomfortable, Phallon wished Grandpa didn’t ask him about that. 

Grandpa simply laughed,”Phallon, I’m only teasing you. It’s good you have friends who are girls and that there are girls you like. This Jennifer, have you asked her out?”

Phallon’s face turned red, “Yeah we’ve gone to a movie together and bowling. I want her to be my girlfriend but her parents say she’s too young to have a boyfriend.” 

Grandpa nodded a smile on his face, “You’ll find the right one when you’re older. When I saw your Grandma the first time, my heart lept out of my chest. I wonder if I will ever meet that right girl of yours and see you marry her?” 

Phallon felt uncomfortable again, “Why wouldn’t you be there Grandpa? You’re only eighty-one?” 

Grandpa patted Phallon’s hand then squeezed it, “You know, my boy, I’ve been sick a long time. It’s a battle I’ve mostly conquered, but my strength is waning these days.When you get married someday, think of your old Grandpa, okay?” Phallon nodded feeling a lump in his throat.

Two-years later Grandpa succumbed. Phallon was sixteen and felt raw inside. He returned to the fish pond in Grandpa’s  back yard. He noticed the fishes were floating and the reality of life made tears wet his cheeks. In the mess of the last two weeks including Grandpa’s funeral, no one had remembered to feed the fish. 

——-

©Mandibelle16. (2017) All Rights Reserved. 

Three Line Tales: A Million Times Better #3LineTales #nonfiction #amwriting 


Thanks to Sony of Only 100 Words, our gracious host of #3LineTales:

——

Credit: Jennifer Pallian via UpSplash

——-

Everyone either loves or hates fruit bread and more often than not, this stiff and solid rock like cake which sits in your stomach as if you’ve ingested a stone, is detested by many people. No matter the tradition or reason we bake/eat fruit bread at Christmas, it is a custom many of us wonder about; I can honestly say, however, there is only one fruit bread in the world I love because it tastes wonderful and is nothing like any fruit bread I’ve ever tasted before, or will ever taste again. 

Grandma’s fruit bread wasn’t like traditional loaves of fruit bread because it was soft and tempting as I believe, any kind of bread should be; inside her bread was sugared and candied fruits much like traditional fruit bread, except my Grandma’s fruit bread was melt in your mouth and we used to toast a small slice or two for breakfast during the holidays and have it with becel; the buttery, sweet, soft bread was delicious and makes me hungry thinking about it; Grandma’s fruit bread was not traditional fruit bread — it was a million times better.

——

©Mandibelle16. (2016) All Rights Reserved. 

Poem: Free Verse – “A Congested Mind” #poetry #amwriting 


http://www.pinterest.com

——–

They call it the unknown

The future lying before you. 

No matter if you’re psychic, 

No one knows what happens. 

There are varied scenarios,

Ways it could play out, 

But truly we don’t know the future

It’s a mystery creeping forward, 

And it pulls us along on our knees.

Whether we go willingly, 

Or go kicking and screaming;

Time marches in to the beat,

Of father time’s own drum. 

****

I don’t know what’s coming, 

I know worrying won’t help. 

I think sometimes I try to give advice, 

Reassuring myself in kind. 

There are bright possibilities, 

Hoping people become, 

More kind than they are mean to each other. 

Pray people look-out for each other, 

But sometimes I think society is self-centred. 

I admit to such fault and others too,

But I’m still fearful;

When I think of a year or two ahead, 

I’m afraid what if it’s not the right plan? 

Experience deftly taught me,

Plans are dim outlines of reality. 

Mostly, life goes where it goes

And God only knows where or why. 

Leading us through dark valleys, 

Into trenches with piercing bullets flying. 

Into classrooms with screaming kids, 

A gunmen on the loose. 

He leads us through to people, 

Whose power makes one nervous. 

How even democracy isn’t safe —

A tyrant could rule all. 

Maybe the world will surprise me, 

But I fear for the little person. 

*****

My own personal fears weigh heavy, 

Though others bear pains greater. 

Of lawyers and cases, 

Of corruption and crime. 

Those crimes we deem terrible;

Those crimes brushed under the rug. 

Greed and all those other sins,

Abhorred but freely ignored. 

Though I can never say what’s worse —

My own flaws or imperfections

Or those I’m faced with. 

Stress shows through cracks, 

Egg yokes running. 

No one likes raw eggs except in cookie dough

The future is overwhelming. 

But at least they’ll still be cookie dough, 

And I don’t know why —

I’m particular and observant

Why I know it’s better to be alone

Than be truly alone with another. 

Why I wait for that spark

Why I wait for the morning dawn. 

A smile in his eyes which is genuine

Wherever he is. 

But maybe happiness is a puppy

Paws following me on the hardwood, 

Barks at random sounds. 

The glory of a puppy skidding down —

The off leash trail and wheeling;

Turning around to jump on me, 

To pick her up when she’s tired. 

*****

My bones are stiff and ridged

My dreams fall to despair

So many books and writers, 

And not anyone can compare

How to rise above the masses, 

Or fill your own niche contented. 

But perhaps one could be something

Success in small moments. 
Afraid and weighted

Need to cry, tears unshed, 

Because disease is cruel. 
Even if Heaven is the end of the tunnel,

So many words are left unsaid

The timing of it all, does it work? 

I feel alienated

Though I try hard to keep the connection

It’s all in your planning Lord;

So must I say, your will be done.

——-

©Mandibelle16.(2016) All Rights Reserved. 

Flash Fiction for the Aspiring Writer: The Sun’s Ascent


Thanks to Priceless Joy for hosting FFftAW:


sunset-ff
Credit: Footy and Foodie

Words deserted her as fire shot across the sky. She welcomed sunrise casting brilliant light into the dawn, while purple-tinged clouds of white still held wisps of night’s inky black guise.

Beautiful sunrises were evocative for her and could easily bring forth a memory. They had the power to make her eyes hunger and delight, to forget her words. A sunrise’s influence kept her caught in a distinct moment of enjoyment, while at the same time, lost in thought.

The rising sun also inspired prayers of thankfulness. It was a raw moment in nature, primordial to her being. No matter what she was experiencing in life, the sunrise momentarily healed her. Sunlight glazing across the dawn sky mended her body, alleviated her suffering. 

Above all she thought, the hope a sunrise brought was vital. Each day it rose, she was graced with another day to do better and be better. To her, this sense of hope was most profound. It was why she cried, tasting the salt of her tears, as the sun finished it’s ascent.


©Mandibelle16. (2016) All Rights Reserved.