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]

Life on the Edge

This piece was inspired by two items. Last week’s Simply 6 Minutes photo prompt (photo below) and the criteria for AWC October Furious Fiction – which were ‘500 words, set in a court of some kind, with a character who measures something, and include the words balloon, rock and umbrella.’ I didn’t submit to either – but kept thinking about life on the edge, of a pin. A little more than 500 words. 

*****

Court, on the head of a nail, said the colourful old man.

Seems a stretch. Somebody’s having a lend!

I gazed around what appeared to be the set of a French arthouse movie. Sumptuous furnishings, gold everywhere, fussy hairpieces and much braying laughter. Overdressed people. Bosoms bled over the top of gowns.

I couldn’t imagine one of my mates setting this up. Hooded and dumped into the trunk of a car and dragged into a strip club, was more their style. This was a step up.

“Are you okay, sir,” asked the man.

“You’re the court jester? That’s why you’re dressed so … flamboyantly,” I said. “Those balloon pants, that loud … harlequin style.”

“The knock to the head addled your brains worse than I thought,” he said. “I am the surgeon, sir. You took a bad fall. And … landed here.”

“And here is?”

“The court of King Joseph of the land of technicoloured haberdashery.”

“The land of … on the head of a nail,” I stifled a laugh. He was quite earnest. Who’d hit their head?

“Or pin. Some others describe it so. We are relaxed about the exact determination and description of our home. We are one of the peoples that inhabit the heads of tacks, pins, and nails.

Oh sir, it is quite the precarious way of life. At the mercy of man and his humours. Pin quakes are common here, as we are often nudged or moved indiscriminately. And of course, we get a lot of drop off. It comes with the territory.”

“That old furphy, falling off the edge of the world. This rock is round, a globe. Scientifically proven.”

We are not the world, sir. Only of the world. A microcosm, the edge of which is unprotected and therefore perilous to the unwary.”

I am a grown man. We are atop a nail,” I said, smirking. “How does that work?”

“A magic I cannot explain. If a man stumbles in exactly the right manner, instead of being impaled he lands atop,” the doctor said. “It is not a reciprocal magic. We are not protected the other way. We believe that our lost have splattered on impact, been trampled underfoot or eaten.”

“What science do you have? Machines, perhaps the power of flight?”

“We understand the sense of these things, but not the devices.” Then smiling, added “we can fly!”

“No bull,” I said.

“We have established contact and sometimes trade with other pin communities. We’ve captured flying insects over which we assert some control. Dandelions are useful too. Beautiful, but fragile and whimsical. Used mainly by the more adventurous type and prone to disaster.”

“Have you tried flight by umbrella?” I offered “Using updrafts and thermals?” The doctor shook his head. “They could be kept at the ready at the edge of your … nail. A last second grab and someone could land safely on the earth.”

“An intriguing idea,” he said. “We have tried lowering brave citizens to the ground via bucket. It is, however, fraught with danger. We run out of rope before achieving success. The distance seems immeasurable and the winds daunting.”

“And telescopes? If you could look more closely at mankind …” I said.

“I gather you mean a device that allows us to distinguish detail, like the zoom glass used for tiny stitches,” he said.

“I guess so.”

“The outside world is so large and so immediate that all is a blur. To stand at the edge of a nail or pin and gaze outward is to witness a kaleidoscope of murky colour, with no clear lines. It causes severe nausea in most,” he said. “I believe that disorientation contributes to the numbers lost.”

“So, what now?” I asked. “Can I return home?”

“Definitely, sir. When you are ready, we shall farewell His Majesty and then shove you off the nearest edge,” he said. He looked quite cheerful at this, with his thumbs hooked into his belt, bouncing on his toes.

“Hang on!”

“Oh, don’t you mind. It will be nothing to you. Once you step off, you’ll immediately regain your usual earthly parameters.”

“I’m ready,” I cried.

After shaking the hand of the indolent king, the doctor led me through the courtyard to a sign that read No further, on pain of death. Ominous.

“Farewell, young man. Just one step and you will be home.”

“Thank you, sir,” I said as we shook hands.

With confidence I placed one foot over the edge. And as my second foot began to lift, panic hit. Stepping blindly, I landed on solid ground.

“Phew,” I exhaled.

One more step and I stumbled over a piece of wood. Arms wind milling for balance, I settled heavily onto a large nail.

“Bollocks,” I whispered. [791 words]

Animal mosaic

Simply 6 Minutes – I’ve never seen the like!

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

#simply6minutes

Funny-WTF-Meme-Pictures-Part-1-17

“Can you tell us what happened here today?”

Well, I was late to the party. Herds came from everywhere.

Apparently the humans had been here in droves early in the day.

They’d camped for hours, set some campfires, laughed and sang.

They’d cooked up some food – we could smell it for miles.

It’s why we all stampeded out here in the first place.

There were holes in the ice – how men catch their dinner. Fish, you know.

There were these huge barrel things, leaking brown water.

When the men left, the herds converged – looking for leftovers.

And man, they feasted. There were guts everywhere, and fresh fish kept jumping out of the holes.

But the strange thing is what happened to them that drank that liquid.

They came over all weird like and began mooing and swaying.

Some fell over, and then others fell over them, and then they were all braying.

And some fell into the holes – well their legs did, and they broke.

It was mad crazy and like, I’m glad I got here last in the end because I’ve got a family at home.

If I’d broken something, I’d never be able to hunt. And I’d never escape the hunters.

My wife would kill me too.

I’ve never seen anything like it.

I had mentors in that herd, and they had lost all self-control.

Terrible.

“Well, thanks buddy. That’s eye-opening news right there.

“Who’d want to be a human anyway, hey?” [244 words, 6 minutes]

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.