Tam and the Silverfish

Early morning, alone, on the carpeted floor, exercising and stretching

Enjoying the time to do something good for myself when

The corner of my eye noticed swift movement from under the TV

Heading in my direction

Super-human abilities kicked in immediately as I

Popped into the air from a semi-seated position, did a

Twist to face the floor and the flat, silver, leggy bug that

Moved to the spot I had vacated and


The Silverfish will not terrorize earth’s denizens again


May 23, 2020

The Start of a Story

At the Writers’ Group Meeting last Saturday, the prompt was: Write a story in 15-minutes, using the Western Theme, either historical or modern.  Include at least one of three objects: terra cotta pot, glove, and or a boot, if not all three.  We had about 10-minutes to edit…

Christmas Hinkle pulled on her well-used, right boot slowly, thoughtfully, while thinking about the upcoming gunfight at the Alright Corral down the street.  Then, the left boot ate the appropriate foot before she stood up, ready to take the next step.

Before leaving the hotel room, Chris poured the left-over water, from the glass that the hotel gave her the night before, into a large terra cotta flower pot in front of the window looking over the Main Street of bustling Dodge City.

She opened the door, while double checking her holsters—low-slung and strapped on her denim-covered legs.  Chris had cleaned her four hand guns before going to bed last night.  She liked keeping the two 45’s in the holsters and the two Derringers under her arms in mini-holsters, because she never knew when there wouldn’t be time to reload.

Femininely stepping down the wooden stairs and looking down into the lobby to see who was there, Chris made her way into the hotel’s restaurant for breakfast.  It could be her last, she’d make it a good one.  Entering the eating area, her senses heightened when she heard the voices of her longtime enemies, the murderers of her parents and brother.  She had tracked them down during the past three years, talking with Rangers, sheriffs, and anyone else she could think of to help her seek justice, but nobody seemed interested.  After discovering the killers in the Fort Worth area of Texas, she found an old gunfighter to teach her how to shoot fast and true.

She trained determinedly for months, shooting anything and everything, including hunting game.  Then the old gunfighter had given her his lucky pair of gloves, not too thick, not too thin, and made of deer hide leather.  Chris had intentions for the gloves, other than wearing them.  She and the gunfighter parted company and she traveled to her prey’s hunting grounds, where they gambled, robbed people living out by themselves, and caused hate and discontent.  Why the Rangers weren’t interested was beyond her.

She approached the murderers last night in the saloon, after keeping the saloon owner from escorting her (a woman) out of the building by poking a Colt-45 in his face.  Chris took the old gunfighter’s gloves and threw them down in front of the three killers, on their poker table, and told them to meet her at the Alright Corral at 10:00 the next morning or she’d come hunting them.  They laughed, but with her hand gun pointed at them they agreed.  All the men sitting around in the saloon smirked and one said he’d make sure they wouldn’t run away from a woman.

That was last night, now for breakfast…


Poet in the Guard Shack

My younger sister works as a security guard and when Christmas is over, it gets very boring, so to perk her up I asked her to write about it in poetry.  Here they are…

Sitting in My Little Guard Hut

Sitting in my little guard hut,

Hardly anyone coming or going, but

My mind wanders to and fro:

Grocery lists, to do lists, time passes so slow.

The gate opens, “Oh! Some excitement now,”

but men are just working, so I crinkle my brow

and concentrate on writing this poem

to pass the time until I go home. (sigh)


Power Outage

We have a power outage today.

So, no heat in my guard hut and I may

freeze to death from the inclement weather.

I wished for double socks and an additional sweater.

But I’m stuck here and therefore I must make do

so I ordered from Doordash (they bring food to you).

Two cups of hot tea arrived after awhile.

My hands on the hot cups thawed me out and I smiled.

I just might survive today without getting sick.

I’ll know tomorrow if the hot tea did the trick.

I Have a Story

(I don’t have much to say lately, but my little sister has been telling some of the interesting things that happened in her life.  Here’s the first one she gave me, about our parents before they died.  I lived through this via video chat from across the states.)

The year finally came.  I began sharing my home with my aged parents and a close elderly family friend, whom I called “grandma”, so I could look out for their well-being on a daily basis.

One November, my father proclaimed his idea for the four of us to draw names out of a hat and buy that person a Christmas present.  That way, we’d all receive something nice for Christmas and still stay within our budget.  Grandma and I liked the idea, but my mother made it very clear to us that she wasn’t going to do anything for Christmas, and we shouldn’t, either.  My mother had Alzheimer’s.  In spite of her unreasonable bullying, Dad, Grandma, and I decided the three of us would do it and Mom just wouldn’t participate.

Christmas morning, the three of us gathered around the Christmas tree to open our gifts.  Mom stayed in the other room watching television.  Grandma opened her gift first.  Being in her 90’s, she was slow and my father had to explain what her gift was.  While they were engrossed in this, talking loudly because they were both hard of hearing, my mother suddenly entered the room, walked directly over to the tree, grabbed the present meant for me, and went back to her room.

Dad and Grandma completed their discussion, and Dad announced he wanted me to open my gift next. I told him that Mom had come and taken my gift and I handed him his gift to open.  After my father had opened his gift, he told me to open mine, having forgotten what I’d said.  Again, I told him that Mom had taken my present for herself.

“Well what did you let her go and do that for?” He exclaimed indignantly. “Go get it back!”

I went to my mother’s room, and she had just unwrapped my present and was admiring it, like a happy child.  It was something my father had picked out with my approval to be sure I would enjoy my present.

I said, “Mom, that’s my present. You chose not to participate, remember?”

She said, “Well everyone should get a gift at Christmas time, and this is my gift!”

I returned to Dad empty-handed and angry. At that time, I didn’t understand Alzheimer’s or dementia and just felt that my 88-year old mother was a bully and a mean-spirited prankster.

“Well? Where is your gift?” Dad demanded.

“Mom won’t give me the present. She is determined to keep it,” I replied angrily.

At that moment my mother appeared again in the room and she and my dad began arguing over my present.  By that time, Grandma was alarmed and loudly talked across them, asking me what was happening.  I had to raise my voice so she could hear me over Dad and Mom.  It appeared that all four of us were in a shouting match on Christmas morning in front of the Christmas tree.  This was not what Christmas should be like!  And none of us were giving in.

Finally, Dad took the present away from Mom’s hands and shoved it angrily at me.  I was angry, because my mother stole a Christmas gift that was meant for me.  Dad was angry because I had let her take it in the first place.  Mom was angry because she didn’t get to keep my present.  Grandma was angry because she was hard of hearing and nobody could explain what was going on loud enough.

We all separated silently to our individual rooms and shut the doors behind us.  My mother had made sure that if she didn’t want Christmas, then we weren’t going to have Christmas, either.

All the joy and happiness that should accompany this holiday was successfully snuffed out.  Over the years, Mom continued to fight me over putting Christmas decorations up, but I still did.  We never exchanged gifts again for Christmas as long as Mom lived. Mom and Grandma passed away a few weeks apart a few short years later.

Looking back on it, it was funny.  But at the time, Mom, in her dementia, believed I was an enemy and she had the need to control everyone, even in illogical ways.  It was very sad.

Doofusity Strikes Again!

Picture this:

You’re baking delicious pumpkin pie cake bars. Everything is mixed in, poured into the baking dish, put in the oven.  Two minutes later, while wiping the counter, you see a can of pumpkin, unopened, shiny… your brain thinks… what exactly is in the oven right now?  Then overdrive… pull out the dish, and realize, yes, it’s lighter than normal!  Fortunately, it’s not cooked, just slightly warm. You energetically mix in the pumpkin and reinsert the dish in the oven.

Moral: Don’t forget the main ingredient!