Pulling Back the Sheet



We have visited many countries, stayed over in many hotels and hostels and these days, in private rooms and homes to let, and yet somehow my wife has never seen a bedbug until now.

birds rest in thick reeds
a scream as heron visits
this migrant hotel

For Haibun Thinking

No Blemishes


Blemish? There will be no blemishes!

Picture that empty bay full of beautiful sailboats. Speedboats. Water skiers. Jet skis. In other words, folks having fun.

Those hills? Picture them lined with hotels. Nice highway leading in. Power lines. Gas stations. In other words, civilization. Carved right out of the damned wilderness.

As the chairman of the permit process, you’ll always be in our hearts. We’ll name a street after you. Also a park we’ll build after we clear out a lot of that forest there. There will always be a suite for you in the best hotel, with special hotel assistants haha to help you with your every need.

We understand that getting the permits signed is a tough business. You’ve got to deal with the other board members. For that reason, we’ll not only reward you financially for your time, but provide enough extra for you to use convincing them to go along with us. Plus, we’ll give you a little piece of the total casio action.

Instead of “blemish,” let’s agree on the word “beautify.”



For Pic and a Word


now in warmer times

some birds no longer fly south

to us they vanish


For Haiku Horizons


“Present your present to him.”

“Now, Sir?”

“Presently. After they present arms.”

“That should present no problems, Sir.”

“No, but I have presentiments. I won’t be present when you do it.”

“Don’t worry, Sir. The present to present is present. Sir”


For Daily Prompt

Can’t you see the sign?


“Halt. Who goes there?”

“What? It’s me. Jerry.”

“You can’t be in here.”

“I’ve been taking this shortcut for ten years. It’s an empty parking lot.”

“Mr. Jones told us to lock it up.”

“Mr. Jones has a damned car. He don’t have to walk to work.”

“Just the same, he said to close the gate and lock it. Nobody gets in.”

“Ever since nine-eleven, everybody is locking every gate they’ve got. It don’t make any sense. There ain’t a terrorist in the county. There ain’t a Moslem in the county. Even if there was, what would they do in an abandoned parking lot?”

“Don’t matter. We’re locking it all down.”

“It’s bad enough I”ve got to climb over the fence. I ain’t going around.”

“Mr. Jones says shoot on sight.”

“Mr. Jones is crazy.”

“He may be crazy, but he’s also the the mayor, the owner of Jones’ Guns, and the principal of the dad-burned high school.”


Photo by Sascha Darlington
For Sunday Photo Fiction

X-ray reveals hidden artwork behind Picasso painting

Do we strip off the Picasso paint and keep what’s underneath?

Naturally, the crucial consideration is, which would be worth more? I’ve done a quick poll.

Poll results:

  • 20% – Strip it down because then it would be “the painting that got stripped of its precious Picasso painting just for this trash,” which would be worth a lot.
  • 31% – Keep the Picasso because then people would always be asking you to strip it down so they could see what’s underneath and it would be worth more that way.
  • 15% – Strip it half down, so people could see some of both paintings and then say that their five-year-old could do better than either.
  • 34% – Just don’t give a damn



My wife and I were raised in homes that believed in modern-day revelation. Our lives were organized in important ways around revelation.

In the bustle of modern life, away from our childhood religious communities, we slowly lost our faith. We came to miss the guiding hand of revelation. We felt rudderless, if I may mix my metaphors.

So we decided to provide revelations for each other. If the candle was lit, a written revelation was to be found under it.

We got off to a rocky start. To my wife it was revealed that she’d look better as a blonde, and wearing four-inch heels around the house might be a good idea, especially near bedtime. To me it was revealed that I was a jerk. That nobody likes me, including my wife.

To my wife it was then revealed that I’d be stopping at the Pole Heaven Lounge on my way home after work. It was revealed to me that if another car was in our driveway, I was to just keep on driving.

More revelations followed, until the candle began to assume some of the blame. Our experiment ended when the candle burnt down our house.

Now we are homeless. No candle, but we decided to continue with the revelations, in the belief that knowing is better than not knowing. Ignorance is not bliss in our case, but longing.

Now, if one of us finds the spread-out front page of a free newspaper covering our shopping cart, underneath it will be a revelation scrawled on butcher paper with a pencil stub, emphasizing love and forgiveness. Not necessarily of each other but, you know, avoiding the truth.


For Weekend Writing Prompt