Meeting for July16th 2022

Suzie was the only one who wrote and achieved all words in her writing for the writing prompt.

Writing Prompt: Theatre, Shaft, Husband, Colon, Locate — July 16, 2022

The theatre is dark inside, too dark to see anything. I follow my husband’s lead by the touch of his sleeve.  Halfway down the aisle, he halts. Shafts of sunbeams glow at his feet. Next, the giant movie screen lights up sending more bright light rays. I stumble, fall hard on my butt and feel a sharp pain in my colon area.

I wake up startled and feel the hot sun burning my fair skin. I locate my surroundings and see I’m sitting on a bright yellow tube in the middle of my large swimming pool at my beautiful Italian Villa. My lover smiles over at me.

__Suzie Hagen

12-7-2021 -Prompt – Begin or End Response with wasn’t that Dramatic?

Well, that was dramatic!

There it was. The red oblong box on the wall with the clear glass bubble in the middle. I’ve always wondered how it works. The white letters read “F I R E”, however, I have yet to see one inside the clear glass bubble. What happens? Does it break open? Do I hit it? Do I pull something? Maybe there is something like the “axe” inside the “Staff Door”. Hmmmm, I wonder if it squeaks? Good thing someone left a chair near the red thing on the wall. I could climb up on it and look inside. Why is it so high on the wall? Does it sense heat? Perhaps we could get a “staff member” to come through the “Staff Door” and give a demonstration on how to use the red thing with a glass bubble on the wall. I’d need a lighter. Maybe I could ignite a paper towel or lots of paper towels to see how it works. Oh, I know. I’ll put the paper towels in with the paper in that yellow paper basket and light it all. Oh look! It’s starting to flame. Pretty! Here I’ll move it, so it is under the red thing with the glass bubble. Gee, what’s that sound? Oh, I bet that’s a fire alarm.

 Why are sprinklers running inside this room?

 What’s happening?

Why is that lady running?

Eileen Detloff

12-14-2021 Prompt – Describe Best or Favorite Childhood Toy

“Describe favorite or best toy.”

It was end of the Great Depression and the start of World War II — we weren’t poor, but there wasn’t much discretionary spending money. Ronny and I were lucky in 1941 because dad, Lloyd, hadn’t been drafted yet and he could build anything with wood and copper. Ed and Edna Ellis, our neighbors, loved kids but had none of their own.

So dad and Ed got together, unknown to we brothers, with dad’s tools in his shop long before Christmas. They designed and made a real, to our eyes, machine gun for each of us. The guns were swell. We thought they were actual size; they rested on tripods and were just the right height for us to “man” while sitting in the Bermuda grass or on the rocky ground around our house dad had just built.

We swung them right to left and back through a wide field of fire while cranking out the loud chattering noise that Ed and dad had invented. Not having real bullets or bandoliers to feed in the breech wasn’t a big deal. We could fire them anytime we wanted and never ran out of ammunition. Our boy imaginations were vivid.

Not even Billy Perrine, “the rich kid across the ditch” (Rillito Creek) had anything to match our beautiful machine guns dad and Ed had made.

Donavin Leckenby


I remember some toys from my early childhood, one of the earliest was a stuffed elephant. I did not remember when I got it all there is a note in my baby book that says it was one of my presents from my first Christmas. Why an elephant? I was born in 1943 the year the Disney movie Dumbo premiered. I guess that made it a logical choice or maybe a memorable one. My parents loved the movies perhaps they saw it and acted. I had the elephant into my twenties.

It wasn’t my favorite toy NO! My favorite was a dollhouse I got for Christmas when I was 7 or 8. It wasn’t a fancier built by hand one, but a Montgomery Ward model made out of tin with a plastic family and furniture.

I loved it. Perhaps that is where I first began telling stories—as I sat on the floor and made-up pretend lives for the family that lived in my dollhouse. I even remember my grandfather sitting down on the floor with me and listening to my stories, even becoming a part of them.

As I played a computer game today, I saw an image that looked like that dollhouse and all those memories came flooding back, and I was that seven-year-old child again.

Christine Howard

Nov. 30, 2021-Prompt – My Best Friend is a Ghost

“My best friend is a ghost”

My best friend has broken his ties with mortal life. He once lived in the Middle Ages and fought with the Knights Templar. On a crusade to the Holy Land, he was struck down in a bloody battle. He has wandered the earth ever since. I recently returned from Oak Island in Nova Scotia where my friendly ghost appeared to me in a dream. He gave me a blessing and calmed my worries about my own demise, telling me that paradise was in my eventual future. I thanked my dear friend and bade him adieu.

Tom Rutherford

11-22-2021 Prompt: Leftovers Concoctions or Creations

This week with Thanksgiving soon on us a prompt relating to the holiday was chosen. The orginal prompt was: Describe the best leftover creation you’ve ever concocted. Make one up if you never stooped to using Thanksgiving leftovers for a month after the holidays. Whether it’s a sandwich with all the ingredients or desert mixture with six different pies, make it awesome and make it tasty.

The group is always told your response whatever it may be is the right response. Any who read these responses will realize it isn’t always about Thanksgiving or a typical holiday meal.


The two of us enjoy a large Thanksgiving dinner with all the trimmings. There is no such thing as a small two-person turkey. Even after giving the dogs a share, the leftovers barely fit in the fridge. For the following week we work on finishing this fridge full of food. We have sandwiches, we have cold plates, we have vegetables, yams and potatoes. Normally we don’t have dessert, but this week we have dessert everyday including pumpkin pie, trifle and chocolate cake. We’ve tried every combination of these staples, fried them, microwaved them and mixed them all together in traditional combos like bubble and squeak. Finally, we put everything into a big soup pot, which we boil for hours to get another week’s worth of delicious soup for our lunches.


Stephen Smith


Supper that evening along Puget Sound’s Henderson’s Inlet was made with leftovers from the previous days of our survival training hike. Richard Glover’s mother, the original hippy in 1953, would’ve nodded her approval of our recipe.

Ingredients: two good sized bay oysters simmered in their shells on our fire’s coals the previous evening; my hat’s crown brimming with stinging nettle tops plucked before yesterday; a couple of “tortillas” rolled from cattail root starch and protein without the stringy fibers; softened rose hips; and white alder wood ash condiments instead of salt and pepper.

Richard thickened the cattail paste and rolled each of us a couple of tortillas on my metal canteen’s side.

The nectar poured from the oysters was simmered again in the large gaper clam shell on the coals as we’d done the evening before. It absorbed each nettle top dropped in while softening tiny hypodermics holding formic acid. Sting neutralized, our potherb was ready.

We chopped the oysters into random bites and stirred them into leftover cattail flour and some simmered nettle. That mix made our stuffing, a la sans turkey or whatever bird. My arrow had missed the ruffed grouse poking its head out of the beach forest next to where we picked up the oysters.

Several frozen then thawed soft rose hips with tough seeds removed formed a kind of sauce with oyster nectar and wood ash.

With all those good eats who had room for pie? We chewed down on sculpin sushi, graced with neither rice nor seaweed, for dessert.

Donavin A. Leckenby


I’ve done a lot with leftovers over the years. From Sandwiches to enchiladas to soup. But one of my all time favorites is mashed potato pancakes. A hit every time!

Meleesa Stevens


Contemplating the diverse ingredients, I had left over after our Thanksgiving dinner I looked in the fridge bewildered.

Turkey wasn’t going to be one of the ingredients as the twenty of us had picked the bird clean, no stuffing or green bean I casserole left either. I had a cup of jellied cranberries, the wild rice I hadn’t needed for my stuffing, an extra package of cream cheese and about one-half cup of chopped pecans.

I stood considering my unusual food stuffs and had a flashback to an appetizer I’d made for a neighborhood gathering in the summer. Three of these items were in the recipe for the appetizer: the wild rice, the cream cheese and the chopped pecans. The only difference being the recipe called for mango chutney and I had none of it, but surely the jellied cranberry would be a good substitute.

I combined the cream cheese with the wild rice and jellied cranberry. Added some spices and put my bowl in the refrigerator to chill. Before our evening meal I formed the chilled mixture into two-inch balls and rolled them in the chopped pecans.


Christine Howard

11-16 -2021 Respond to the word Fly

Those fireflies are so magical! I remember going camping in Ohio on a river. The air was warm and moist-unlike where I came from namely Seattle. Moist meant cold and rainy…so on with my story…The dark rolled into our camp space and the forest was full of twinkling lights. Never having experienced this phenomenon, I was dazzled! Another nine-year-old called from their camp site to “catch them and put them in a jar” Well, the new world order had just begun for me. The firefly was my muse. I painted pictures of them. I wrote poems. I did research on their gift of light. Oh, how I love those fire flies.

Carol Taylor


Observing eagles, hawks, falcons and vultures can reveal to a careful watcher many unique variants of avian flight.

How long might one watch a vulture and never see it flap those black edged wings with gray primaries?

How fast must you search the sky to glimpse a peregrine falcon stooping at near two hundred miles an hour?

One may watch a marsh harrier skimming just two feet above the reeds and sedges then pounce on a frog or mouse. It’s hawkish white tail base absorbed into the green-black of the watery swale.

Watching eagles should thrill everyone. Quite lucky persons may spy a working imperial Aquila, whether white bald or golden bronze. Balds mug ospreys to steal their trout servings and sacred goldens tear three-black-tipped jacks from tops of their spy hops as they try to escape becoming rabbit meals for nestling eyas eaglets.

Soaring and diving are only imitated by humans and poorly at that. All natural flight is magical but I’m empty and sad because it’s not a skill of mine.

Donavin A. Leckenby

3-3-2020 – Ocean, Cars, Wind

I wasn’t lost, I just didn’t know where I was going. And other than the circles I had been driving in for the last hour, I had no direction. AFI, awaiting further instructions—suddenly, the instructions came. My phone connected to the car radio, dinged.

Highway 5 rolled along the ocean’s edge with barely room for a shoulder, but every few miles there was a scenic view pullout. I stopped at one of these and read the text.

“Death is the only way out.”

Well, then . . . this obviously wasn’t going to be easy. I stepped out of the car for some fresh air, hoping that a blast of oxygen would help me think. The wind was stiff, bracing. After filling my lungs with the salty air, I returned to my task.

Five miles down the road, I spotted my target—a run-down, weathered shack with a hand-lettered sign that read  “Death.”

Karen Hydock



Outside, the wind blew like it was frantic to get somewhere other than where it was. I wished it would go—to that somewhere as it was taking me in memory to the day ten years ago when a tornado loomed in my rear-view mirror as I drove my junk-pile I called a car home.

It was a 67 Chevy that had seen better times, but it was what I had. It couldn’t outrun the storm bearing down on me. I could only hope for the best.

There was no best. The brutal beast that is a tornado sucked my vehicle up. Whirled me around and threw my head against the window. I succumbed to darkness.

When I regained my senses. I scanned the area around me. The sun shone, and a rainbow graced the sky.

But how in God’s name did I get in the middle of the ocean?

Christine Howard

2-25-2020 – Just a Few More Steps

By now, it was obvious it would be long after sundown when I exited the forest onto a road. Wouldn’t be much help — the sky was moonless. I was eight thousand feet elevation on a south face of the Wallowas at the top of Mule Peak. My pickup was five thousand feet and six miles below.

I’d placed a portion of ashes near this lookout where she almost froze to death. My objective accomplished, all that was left was to hike back down the meadow, long in shadow from our star sinking beyond Oregon’s Cascades into the Pacific, and then through the timber. I knew the forest below was choked with bug-killed blow-down. This project had been risky. But travel below the open in the dark would be dangerous.

I fell frequently. The pin and screws put in three months earlier to fasten several pieces of my left femur back together held. Thank you, Jesus and surgeon. I tripped and crashed for hours in the opaque blackness. Went a mile the wrong way before realizing was holding the Garmin GPS upside down. Stupid!

Finally, I came out on an overgrown road remnant from past log skidding — good! I thought, just a few more steps, and quickened my pace. I body slammed the locked door of my dark blue Silverado.

Damn— it was dark.  =|;-)}

Donavin Leckenby


The Rive Gauche and the Arc de Triomphe- Magnifique! I am delighted with my first trip to France. The cramped space of the airplane, the long journey, and the steep price of the hotel are still worth it. I now look up at La Tour Eiffel- the jewel of Paris, a sight I’ve longed to see, one previously only seen in travel brochures. I wait in line for a chance to view the “City of Light” from the upper deck. Just a few more steps, and I’ll begin the climb. Then, up and up, I go -just a few more steps. The hot summer sun is beating down on my souvenir bereted head. Just a few more steps, I tell myself. My legs are cramping- I need to stop and rest. “C’mon old man,” a teenaged American tourist blares, “It’s just a few more steps.” Sweating and panting, I finally reach the top. What a view! -it was worth the struggle. This is great, but how do I get back down, as the elevator is out? I see the same bratty kid look at me and say:” Get goin’, it’s just a few more steps.”

Tom Rutherford

2-11-2020- Write about your most unique experience in or about a wedding.


… My 6th wedding day!  The first had been to my high school sweetheart.  After 3 months she told me that she was leaving me for my cousin.  My cousin’s name was Sue.

After a short recovery period I married my next door neighbor.  She was older than me and stored her teeth in a glass of Polident beside the bed.  I just couldn’t abide that!!

I met number three in Las Vegas after a night of drinking.  It was a quickie wedding followed by a quicker divorce.

Number 4, Betsy, was a truck driver.  She left to pick up a load of lettuce in Yuma I guess driving that ‘refer’ truck cooled her ardor for me ‘cause I never saw her again.

Number 5 was to a lovely lady, beautiful and well mannered in every way.  We had absolutely nothing in common.

Number six and last wedding ended with my wheel chair bouncing down the church steps.  My final thought was of the wise words of my old grandfather.  “Beware women who ask if you have life insurance.”

Bob Kelly

1-28-2020 -Bird, Clock, Whistle

“It’s been a while since we’ve met. I’ve been coming here looking for you. Is everything ok?”
She asked with so much concern. It’s the concern I’ve been avoiding for many reasons but the most important being my own grief.
“I’ve been around,” I replied without saying anything at all.
“Well, I am happy to see you here today. You know there’s been something on my mind. When we first met, I noticed your wedding band. Can you tell me about her?”
I looked down at the connection that I dare to forget, but the memories naw at me in starvation. I smiled to myself. Instantly I was transported to the time that is ingrained and deeply embedded in my story.
The day was not out of the ordinary. The sun was hidden by the many rain clouds that cover the city this time of year. I look down at my watch to check the time. My momma always said that I should keep the clock, as she can’t always keep it for me. That was when I was a young boy, but I’m a man now. It’s my first year at university and I’m already late.
“Excuse me,” I heard a woman say just before she place her fingers in her mouth to whistle for a taxi. It’s funny, in two little words I could hear how beautiful her voice was, similar to a birds song

Gayla Nikols