Simply 6 Minutes – one face in the crowd

A field of sunflowers were all but one face forwards. One lone sunflower faces toward the camera.

Sunflowers

A life spent huddled in the crowd. Somewhere toward the middle, but often trailing behind.

Individual dreams not allowed. A herd mentality encouraged.

For a long time I didn’t wonder if there was anything else. It never crossed my mind.

I couldn’t see further than my own footprint in the sand, with a  peripheral sense of others.

But we all faced forward and did our duty.

We were blind.

***

One day, I tripped on some unevenness. That stumble broke my reverie.

The crowd walked around me, taking a sideways step to avoid collision.

Not one body reached down to pick me up.

I watched them retreat, then looked around me.

Nothing to the left. Nothing to the right.

***

I completed a turn so I was facing behind, from where I had come.

Fields of dreams, towering castles, lowing animals, buzzing insects.

I had been unaware and now had awakened.

I turned to look forward. I was unrestrained. I was freed.

***

What could I do? No boundaries. A wealth of unknowns.

Endless opportunity.

Freedom. [173 words, 6 minutes]


Thanks to Christine for this weekly challenge.

Simply 6 Minutes Challenge Note

  • Set up a timer or sit near a clock so you can keep track of the six minutes you will be writing.
  • You can either use one of the prompts (photo or written) or you can free-write.
  • Get ready and write for 6 minutes, that is it! Can you write a complete story? Can you think of a new Sonnet? Can you write 400 words? 400? 500? There are no restrictions on what kind of writing you do, but you should try to be actively writing for six minutes.
  • After you are done writing, include your word count and then post back to this page #Simply6Minutes or include your link in the comments section. Pingbacks are enabled.

Simply 6 Minutes – Breathless

An old, disused, railway track, covered in moss leading upward into mist and trees

Wow! It took my breath away, and so I took a moment.

What usually takes my breath is a punch to the stomach, daredevil drops from height, too cold, too hungry, too scared.

I was in a hurry and under pressure, with no time to appreciate nature, but I stopped.

Not too many years ago, happy people on exciting holidays would have traversed this track. Gasped in awe at the drop away, delighted in the natural features all around. Pointed out deer, birds, bears – who knows.

I looked at the track veering away into the distance, into the mist and imagined different times.

I remembered a loving, carefree family. Kisses and playtime, cakes and lemonade. Living parents.

That was so long ago it was as if a dream. Or something read in a book.

Books. Dreams. Not all lost, because I always had a novel in my backpack. It took up precious space, but it made life bearable. And there were plenty of pristine libraries in my travels. Nobody looted libraries.

The moment stretched, and I breathed deep.

Then I tightened shoelaces, sipped some water, hitched the pack higher on my back and began to pick my away along these now dangerous tracks.

Into an uncertain, but almost definitely treacherous future. [6 minutes, 211 words]

*  * * * * * * 

Thanks to Christine for running this challenge.

How it works:

https://christinebialczak.com/2020/07/14/simply-6-minutes-writing-challenge

  • Set up a timer or sit near a clock so you can keep track of the six minutes you will be writing.
  • You can either use one of the prompts (photo or written) or you can free-write.
  • Get ready and write for 6 minutes, that is it! Can you write a complete story? Can you think of a new Sonnet? Can you write 400 words? 400? 500? There are no restrictions on what kind of writing you do, but you should try to be actively writing for six minutes.
  • After you are done writing, include your word count and then post back to this page #Simply6Minutes or include your link in the comments section. Pingbacks are enabled.

Simply 6 Minutes – Soft Skin

image-6

What can I say that hasn’t been said

Grow a thick skin, give up or play dead

Friends say they’ve the hide of a rhino

I’m the absorbent amphibian

I should have evolved with experience and age

But somehow my heart keeps on breaking

Like a child I stand there and quake

A weakness I wish I could shed

I need to develop thick skin as an armour

Against a hard world, to protect

Soft and porous not a warrior makes

So I struggle, absorbing sharp barbs

When I lay on death’s bed, finally armour-plated

Hardened, impervious, insensitive

By that time I’ll not care, pushed aside all despair

And laugh in the face of the haters

Until then, I will work on the callouses

A hard shell, tough hide, unfeeling

Until then, I don’t know how to live in this world

Without constantly shrivelling [6 minutes, 144 words]

***

Thanks to Christine at Stine Writing for this weekly challenge. To write whatever you can in six minutes using the prompt provided.

Simply 6 Minutes – Look at me

#simply6minutes

I am beautiful.

On the surface, so tough.

On the inside, soft as velvet.

See my soul fly, with the wings of a butterfly.

See them flutter.

See them float.

See the display of colour.

In my heart

I am fleet

I can float

I can touch, soft and tender, on fragile petals.

In the world

I am hard

Tough as leather

Thick as tree trunks.

What I touch breaks

My steps destroy

My feeding needs, rapacious

Yet, I nurture my young

Wish for their future

for a lightness, love, safety

The freedom to fly,

bright as a butterfly. (99 words, 6 minutes)

Simply 6 Minutes Challenge Note

https://christinebialczak.com/2020/07/14/simply-6-minutes-writing-challenge

  • Set up a timer or sit near a clock so you can keep track of the six minutes you will be writing.
  • You can either use one of the prompts (photo or written) or you can free-write.
  • Get ready and write for 6 minutes, that is it! Can you write a complete story? Can you think of a new Sonnet? Can you write 400 words? 400? 500? There are no restrictions on what kind of writing you do, but you should try to be actively writing for six minutes.
  • After you are done writing, include your word count and then post back to this page #Simply6Minutes or include your link in the comments section. Pingbacks are enabled.

Simply 6 Minutes – Demented

#simply6minutes; #flashfiction

Photo prompt for Simply 6 Minutes

They’re always captured by my eyes.

The first thing they notice. How alive. How human.

The pathos.

Then they notice that I’m some sort of hybrid zebra-dog.

I want to say to them ‘pay attention’. I am in here.

Let me out!

Oh, you beautiful girl, they say. Oh, let me get a look at you. You beautiful thing, you.

She looks so sad, someone will add. Smoothing my head and stroking my ears.

I am sad! I’m screaming at you to please help me.

Trapped by a witch’s curse. Tormented by worry.

How are my children. Do they think I’ve left them?

How will I ever return.

One day I’ll bite. And they’ll be all, oh no. She needs to be put down.

And so, I remain patient, passive. I can’t afford to lose it.

But each day passing, means another day without my loved ones.

And them without me. Their mother. Their wife.

Oh, look. I think she’s crying, one says. Do dogs cry?

This one does. Every single lonely day.

And I have to shit on newspaper and eat disgusting crap from a tin.

And communicate with whines and barks.

The witch said, if your husband repairs his way, you will be freed.

I don’t know what he’s done. I don’t know if he will repent.

But if I ever see him again, he is done for!

He thought I nagged before.

He’ll wish I’d never returned. [240 words – 6 minutes]

 

Simply 6 Minutes Challenge Note

https://christinebialczak.com/2020/07/14/simply-6-minutes-writing-challenge

  • Set up a timer or sit near a clock so you can keep track of the six minutes you will be writing.
  • You can either use one of the prompts (photo or written) or you can free-write.
  • Get ready and write for 6 minutes, that is it! Can you write a complete story? Can you think of a new Sonnet? Can you write 400 words? 400? 500? There are no restrictions on what kind of writing you do, but you should try to be actively writing for six minutes.
  • After you are done writing, include your word count and then post back to this page #Simply6Minutes or include your link in the comments section. Pingbacks are enabled.

Simply 6 Minutes – Hear me roar

#simply6minutes #stinewriting #flashfiction

Shattered. In mind, body and soul.

Struggling to find the strength to carry on.

It feels like I’ve been in a car crash.

No warning. The joint accounts are wiped. My BFF turned on our 20 years of friendship, for a man. Mine.

To top things off, he left his grotty skateboard on the front steps of our apartment, which I tripped over as I left for work this morning.

Fuck it all!

I need to find the strength of a lion, my inner tigress.

I weakened in the gaze of a man, enfolded in his virile, very masculine strength. I forgot that I am woman, and I can roar, stomped down on my voice, waved off concerned friends, placated worried family.

As I wait in the emergency ward, sitting on a bed, sewn up and drugged for the pain, I ponder. And reach the conclusion that I gave up, caved. And I need my power back.

Through the observation window, I contemplate the busy corridor and see looking back at me the powerful gaze of a beautiful woman. Clear, hazel eyes.

Shattered parts come together fashioned in the stripes of a tiger. And jump as I realise. That is me.

I draw shoulders back and breathe, deeply. Pick up my phone and text, “You’ve done me the biggest favour. I wish you’d gone years ago. Thank you and goodbye.’

It takes all stripes. And mine are golden, feline. [239 words, 6 minutes]

***

https://christinebialczak.com/simply6minutes

  • Set up a timer or sit near a clock so you can keep track of the six minutes you will be writing.
  • You can either use one of the prompts (photo or written) or you can free-write.
  • Get ready and write for 6 minutes, that is it! Can you write a complete story? Can you think of a new Sonnet? Can you write 400 words? 400? 500? There are no restrictions on what kind of writing you do, but you should try to be actively writing for six minutes.
  • After you are done writing, include your word count and then post back to this page #Simply6Minutes or include your link in the comments section. Pingbacks are enabled.

Simply 6 Minutes – I think I can

#simply6minutes

Decision paralysis.

Daunted by the challenge.

 

Forebears have shown that it is possible.

Paths are clearly marked.

Their generosity of spirit is clear, for all to see.

 

Richness of choice.

Abundance of options.

 

My tiny brain, overwhelmed.

Physicality, tested.

 

I am but a mite at the foot of a behemoth.

To reach that glorious sky. To stand at the top, with pride.

I don’t think I can.

 

My shell is snug and tight. Body protected. Moisture high.

The little snail who could, that’s what they’ll say.

 

I eye the ground ahead. Take the first step.

One slide, in front of the other. 

***

Simply 6 Minutes Challenge Note

https://wordpress.com/read/blogs/166652922/posts/14264

  • Set up a timer or sit near a clock so you can keep track of the six minutes you will be writing.
  • You can either use one of the prompts (photo or written) or you can free-write.
  • Get ready and write for 6 minutes, that is it! Can you write a complete story? Can you think of a new Sonnet? Can you write 400 words? 400? 500? There are no restrictions on what kind of writing you do, but you should try to be actively writing for six minutes.
  • After you are done writing, include your word count and then post back to this page #Simply6Minutes or include your link in the comments section. Pingbacks are enabled.

 

Simply 6 Minutes – If this were Heaven

#simply6minutes #stinewriting #flashfiction

trippy optical illusions

If this were heaven

would I be content

with trippy illusions

and lack of substance.

Perhaps it’s not heaven

but an in-between haven.

Asylum, a refuge

to relax, celebration.

If this were heaven

joy and colour would calm

while I waited for loved ones,

to fall into their arms.

If this were heaven

I’d be excited to meet

authors and actors

who’d passed before me.

What a trip. What a blast.

Shallow, my ass.

Legends never encountered

by this average-Joe lass.

In sub-heaven I could meet

awesome writers who’d inspired

deep thought and introspection

when on Earth’s lonely sphere.

Fulfilled at this way-station

I could then resign

to loving forever

in candyfloss climes.

***

Simply 6 Minutes Challenge Note

Set up a timer or sit near a clock so you can keep track of the six minutes you will be writing.

  • You can either use one of the prompts (photo or written) or you can free-write.
  • Get ready and write for 6 minutes, that is it! Can you write a complete story? Can you think of a new Sonnet? Can you write 400 words? 400? 500? There are no restrictions on what kind of writing you do, but you should try to be actively writing for six minutes.
  • After you are done writing, include your word count and then post back to this page #Simply6Minutes or include your link in the comments section. Pingbacks are enabled.

Simply 6 Minutes – Strike a Pose

Thanks to Christine at #StineWriting for the weekly Simply 6 Minutes challenge. Use the photo prompt to write anything that comes to mind, in six minutes. Submit as is, or quick edits allowed. Enjoy.

Giraffe

You have what it takes, babes. Go for it.

Estelle continues posing and pouting, checking her refection off the glassy surface of the waterhole.

I don’t know, she moans. Jasmine has a better shape. She births all the calves.

Girl, you have the height, the lashes, the ‘to die for’ coat. Perfect natural trout pout. Those wildlife photographers will eat you up!

You really think so? Mmm, okay. Maybe a new lippy though.

Yes, babe. Loud and glorious red. No, a brilliant orange will suit your fur type. Loud and proud, baby.

Oh, Johnny. You’re the best friend a gal could ever have. Will you come with me to the callup?

Yeah, baby. I’m your man and there ain’t nobody can hold a candle to your bodaciousness. Don’t waste those lashes on me, darling. I’m already sold. Strike a pose, and I’ll fill your portfolio.

You got it, darling. [6 minutes, 149 words]

Simply Six Minutes – Divine

Thanks to Christine at #StineWriting for the weekly Simply 6 Minutes challenge. Use the photo prompt to write anything that comes to mind, in six minutes. Submit as is, or quick edits allowed. Enjoy.

Lake Scene

Simply6Minutes Photo Prompt

I lay supine

And dream

Drowse

Listen

Learn

I feel, the tingle of growth, the scratch of life, upon my face.

I hear, the chatter of birds and the susurration of trees.

With open eyes I always see, the faces of friends supporting me.

Gorilla, orang-o, rock faces.

Cloud spirits and water nymphs fill nearby spaces.

To you it seems I am alone. Adrift, aloft on waters, prone.

I am alive. I am alert.

This life to me has depth, has girth.

Eons pass, my friends are quiet. My own visage thins off, erodes.

But I have learned and loved; been enveloped by all above.

Peace and quiet embolden the life that bustles and babbles and keeps me alive.

I lay supine.

In peace.

In love. [6 minutes, 126 words]