Crimson’s Creative Challenge #29

Wacton church window

No one hears the screams in the night. Everyone is oblivious to the agony. But if you listen closely, you will hear.

The quiet scream of the wick as the candle burns, crackling in the dark night. Soon, the sunlight rises and the torture ends but merely a reprieve.

As the flames are blown out, the smoke winks at the candle.

I’ll be back, it seems to say, for you tonight. Be ready.

The candle will be ready.

Are you?

(81 words)

If you are interested, the prompt is linked below.

Welcome to my weekly challenge—open to all—just for FUN, FUN, FUN

Here’s how it works:

Every Wednesday I post a photo (this week it’s that one above.)
You respond with something CREATIVE

Here are some suggestions:

  • An answering photo
  • A cartoon
  • A joke
  • A caption
  • An anecdote
  • A short story (flash fiction)
  • A poem
  • A newly minted proverb, adage or saying
  • An essay
  • A song—the lyrics or the performance

You have plenty of scope and only two criteria:

  • Your creative offering is indeed yours
  • Your writing is kept to 150 words or less

If you post a link in the comments section of this post I’ll be able to find it
If you include Crimson’s Creative Challenge as a heading, WP Search will find it (theory)
If you tag it #CCC others should be able to find it by ‘Searching’ in the WP Reader (fingers crossed)

Here’s wishing you inspirational explosions. And FUN.

Prompt: Crimson’s Creative Challenge #29


Love. War.

Recipe for Love


Image from Flickr | Photo Credits: vacivity

Thank you, everyone, for coming here today. For being here for me and my family, and of course, for Maddison, Maddy to our friends and colleagues. Or Mad-dog to those who knew her wild and adventurous side.

I don’t have any more wonderful things to say about my wife. Indeed, many of you have done that just now, sharing beautiful stories. Slices of her life. Pieces of her.

No, instead, I have something different to say today. Things about our marriage which are not beautiful, nor wonderful. Some of you might even be, how should I say, surprised?

Ten years ago, Maddy and I graduated from the same university and we got married. But our fights started even before we got married. And since then, we have never stopped quarrelling.

In fact, you can even say it became worse. Enough to last until we are fifty. Strangely, we fought over food the most. Probably because we are both terrible cooks. And neither of us wanted to cook.

Darling, is there anything you want for dinner, she would ask. I’m fine with what you want, I would reply.

As we figured out how to work in the kitchen, shouts and screams were common. As was the smoke alarm. There were days when we ended up having only burnt instant spaghetti for dinner. At 11 o’clock.

But as her battle with her cancer continued, to the point where she could only lie in bed, these fights were the only thing still meaningful in our lives. The only thing that was still normal in our house.

Darling, is there anything you want for dinner, I would ask. I’m fine with what you want, she would reply.

But things were different. Shouts and screams were no longer common. Neither was the smoke alarm. And I would end up feeding her instant spaghetti, the only dish we learnt how to make.

Funny how these are the things I remember about Maddy. But in the end, it is these little things that made up our lives.

So what if we have enough quarrels to last until we’re fifty? That dream is never going to come true. How I wish I can hear them again. Even just for one more time.

Originally published in LitUp

This piece is difficult to write because so many things came to mind. How do I get the words down without losing the emotions? This story has been sitting around for almost 3 months now and have gone through many rounds of edit. I can no longer figure out what works and what does not. Is it too melodramatic? Does it lack the impact of the message? Is the theme strong and clear enough?

I decided to submit and crossed my fingers that the editor is willing to. The editor, DiAmaya Dawn (talented lady of many crafts, by the way) of LitUp was kind enough to accept and publish it. So what you are reading is the final product, which I hope is a touching message from a spouse.

Am I Human?

Illustration by Michal Dziekan

I am cheerful.
I am jocular.
Only when I am
with people.

But on paper,
I don’t know
how not to be sad
how to show happiness

My previous happy event
seemed surreal,
my next happy event
is nowhere in sight.

I am simply
an empty vessel
with heavy heart.

And worse of all?
I don’t know
how to function
like a normal person.

But I know
how to curl up
like a baby,
or how familiar
that sinking feeling is
in my chest cavity.

So don’t talk to me,
don’t console me,
just walk along
to see what I see.

That’s all I ask for.