full dark moonless night
forest silent emptied out
the loss wounds my soul

for Sunday Writing Prompt

new job

when i got this job, they told me i’d be a “guardian” and i thought wow. big step up from my position as bag boy at the vegetable stand. come to find out, i walk a route around the keep three times a shift to confirm the dragons are still there and haven’t flown off or been stolen. the rest of my time is spent cleaning dragon poop out of the lairs, dodging blasts of flame in my asbestos guardian suit, and filling troughs with dragon chow. once a week i do a count of the eggs, adjusting the temperature on the warming blankets depending on egg age. when the eggs hatch i’m the one feeding the infants dragon formula from cast-iron bottles with nipples made from hollowed-out gneiss chunks. the good news: i’m ripped.

do dragons ever make friends with guardians, seeing as how we feed them, babysit for them and clean up after them? no.

for Sunday Writing Prompt


two puzzle pieces fit.
they are soul mates.
humans are puzzles of a billion pieces
and when two humans meet some pieces fit.
the scale for soul matedness runs from minus a billion
to plus a billion.
good fits of bad pieces and bad fits of good pieces
and vice versa.
fifty years is insufficient to do a full fitting but
a quick fit of a few good pieces is most thrilling.

for Sunday Writing Prompt

Dear Diary

First of all, I apologize for calling you Dairy yesterday. I feel sheepish, no, cowish.

School and everything else is out due to the virus. I am left to my own devices. But what are my devices? I wear braces but I can’t spend my days trying to clean the food out of them. I’m allowed an hour a day on my phone, plus another couple of hours I sneak. My fork and spoon are devices, and my fingers, all of which I use more than I should at the kitchen table. Are my cats devices? Is my little brother a device? Am I to devise devices?

Bottom line, I’m leaving myself to my own devices.

for Sunday Writing Prompt


young man alone
has not connected with the usual suspects
not with father mother sister brother
not with classmates before or inmates now
a complicated mind, his, with puzzle-piece edges all around

in a complicated society there is a rule
it takes a little luck
and now
he meets another man with edges that fit his own

for Sunday Writing Prompt


is a slow mother a bad mother
folks warn me and my brothers she is slow
nobody says she is bad
some just say she is stupid or retarded
none of these are good words
she is slow to answer
she is slow to puzzle things out
so is she a bad mother
my brothers and me are all right
we go along and get along ok
we aren’t slow
we love our mother
now that we are bigger, we are getting in more fights about this

for Sunday Writing Prompt


sick wolf dies alone
its last thoughts unshared by mate
nurse wakes me for pills

for Sunday Writing Prompt

Phone Call

“Michael, it’s Aisha.”

“Aisha. It’s been twenty-three years.”

“Quick response. Have you been keeping track?”

“No … Yes… I mean …”

“I’ve been keeping track too. I saw you on Facebook this morning and had an impulse to call. Not the first impulse.”

“Wow. I… I’m… Where are you?”

“New York. Twenty-three years older. Married. Three kids. Program manager. You?”

“Still in San Francisco. Married. Two kids. Still a software engineer … So, you’re … Well, are you happy? Everything good?”

“Everything good.”

“Same here … Although you know, I’ve only felt like we felt, just that one stretch of time in my life. When we were together.”

“Yes. Once in a lifetime. True love. But it’s not a feeling that lasts. We both knew that.”

“Romance. An illusion. It would never have worked. But still, that feeling. My God.”

“Pain and exultation. Seeing you on Facebook, I had a sudden flashback …”

“Pain and exaltation. Me for you.”

“That’s you and your words.”

“Seeing me on Facebook, though, old and haggard. Embarrassing.”

“Baloney. Forty-five and still good-looking. Promise you’ll never google me.”

“You’re beautiful as ever. More so, with the wisdom of age.”

“You have googled me … Should we keep in touch, a little more than that?”

“This is hard but also kind of wonderful. I don’t know.”

“Talk to your wife about it. It is hard but I’m glad I called.”

“Me too.”

For Sunday Writing Prompt


fun tundra train ride
caribou won’t cross the tracks
their migration stalled

for Sunday Writing Prompt

butterfly effect

one dimension over

i chose a different college

different major

different job in different city

met a different woman


different kids

different travels

different grandkids

many of the same mistakes    same choices    same outcomes

the butterfly flew    out    out    out    back    back    back


For Mindlovemisery’s Menagerie