Watching the Dice Dance

white hot heat on a Texas day

boys gathered in the shade

of a deserted alleyway

watching dice dance

and passing the time

each waits for a chance

ready to roll anytime

“seven” was the lone sound

as the dice danced on

the ground

“craps!” the others cried

In the shaded alleyway

collective joy amplified

during their child’s play

**

Words

Words are birds

that take flight

with everything you write

they ride the wind

all free to fly

in the blink of an eye

into the blue sky

words travel as far

as the north star

and as fast as a race car

civilizations built on words

by nerds

who believed they could fly

like birds

***

The Delivery Man

Clint’s apartment offered a panoramic 10th story view of Portland which could be enhanced if one desired by looking through the telescope on the deck.

The telescope was a Gskyer 70 mm with lots of interesting attachments. He could watch ants climbing up a lime tree in someone’s backyard five miles away if he felt like it. His favorite attachment was a 5×24 Finderscope and mounting bracket with cross hair lines that helped locate objects and subjects. He spent many pleasant hours looking at the world unfold outside as he sipped 18 year-old James Buchanan’s Special Reserve Blended Scotch Whiskey.

He was single and a successful day trader who worked from home. He didn’t like being around other people. Crowds made him uneasy. He didn’t mind one-on-one conversations with friends or strangers however. He was well-educated and graduated top of the class at Webster University, a national top ten business college. His soft spoken voice could calm people in distress and hold people’s interest when he told a story.

His rugged good looks turned more than one female’s head in admiration. Yet Clint never had a girlfriend, or a boyfriend. Never. His adopted parents never pressured him to date and often went out of their way to help him avoid large gatherings… like school. His adopted mother was a special education teacher who home schooled him when she came home from work. He absorbed knowledge like a sponge, but seldom showed emotion. Joy, or anger. Grief, or elation. Happiness, or sorrow. It was his poker face that made some people a little uneasy when around him. That, and his pale blue eyes, which seemed to sparkle with an unknown energy that suggested an icy presence lurking inside.

Money was no problem for Clint. He was very successful at investing his money in the market, and had over a million dollars in savings. His problem was entertaining himself. The television and the internet provided entertainment up to a point, but the day came when it wasn’t enough.

Clint adopted the persona of a deliveryman. He would bring surprise packages to houses, apartments, motel and hotel rooms, and businesses. He purchased numerous deliveryman outfits with different company names on the back and his front pocket. He wore fake glasses. The contents of the packages varied; some were bombs, some were piles of cash, some were just pranks using jack-in-the-boxes. He always felt calm about his deliveries regardless of their contents. It was a strange feeling for someone who experienced very little human traits.

One day while peering through his telescope, Clint watched a little drama going on a few miles away and near one of the many bridges below. One of his talents was lip reading. Despite turning their heads away from him at times, Clint pieced together what they were fighting about in minutes. It was enough to inspire him to deliver a special package to the house later that day.

He pulled up to the house in his General Delivery van and brought his package to the front porch of the house. It was where he saw them arguing. He calmly drove back to his apartment and went outside to his telescope. After lighting up a joint he inhaled deeply, savoring his favorite strain of cannabis, Grand Daddy Purp. Grinning in anticipation, he peered through the 400mm lens he had substituted for the 70mm and settled in for a long wait.

Two hours later the occupant of the house, a woman, stepped out onto the front porch. She peered around as if looking for someone, but the street was deserted in the growing dusk. Then she looked down and saw the package. It was the size of a shoebox and was wrapped in brown paper with a yellow ribbon and bow. There was no card. Her name wasn’t on it. She looked around again, straining her eyes against the withering light. Eyes back down. A step towards it. Clint imagined how hard her heart must be pounding as she neared the package. She hovered for a moment over it then bent down. Fear and curiosity crawled across her brow as she contemplated the package.

Finally she reached out and pulled the ribbon…

This was the part Clint enjoyed. Life, or death? What would it be? He knew she was risking everything. If the package killed her she’d never come up with the ransom money for her only child, a daughter. Still, in her desperation she hoped the package contained good news.

Clint watched, squinting in the growing gray sky, as she opened the top and pulled out the wads of money. Twenty-five thousand dollars in cash! Enough to get her daughter back.

When the man came for the ransom she had it. A moment later her daughter was freed from a car parked nearby. The man left without a word. As he got into the passenger seat of the car Clint took several photos with his wireless camera attachment to his Gskyer telescope. It would help him find the man so he could send him a package too. One without money in it.

The end.

Humanity Lost

Diversity and equality are building blogs for successful civilizations

as history so clearly tells us in somber tones meant to sound wise

but those qualities are often poorly concealed lies

of patriotism meant to fool the hoi polloi

into treating democracy like a Tinker Toy

Nations rise and fall on realities

versus ideologies

in the end, humans can’t live in peace

we’re no one’s masterpiece

**

The Skywalk’s Story

Two campers huddled by a fire trying to stave off freezing temperatures at the lower rim of the Grand Canyon one night, when they saw quite a sight…

an old Indian was walking on air beneath the bright moonlight, casually strolling alongside the ruby red ridge without making a sound, and not even looking down…

One camper told the other who was his brother that the man they saw was Levi Levi of the Hualapai, the last great chief of the Mountain Tribe who still protects his people and gives them pride…

and who inspired a source of income that is now worldwide…

… called the Skywalk, a trail shaped like a horseshoe with a steel frame and a glass floor, to some tourists delighted horror, with sides that project 70 feet from the rim, it’s an attraction that brings them in

and the two campers let the fire dim, as they slipped into sleep dreaming of walking Skywalk’s scenic rim.

****

The Champion

The Roman arena on display with the blood of humans and animals on a scorching August day…

we see a massive iron gate rise and out strides two gladiators in armor with killer eyes, ready to find out which one dies…

the blistering heat from the sandy arena floor shimmers on their swords as they walk through the gore and stand before the emperor, listening to the crowd’s roar…

“We who are about to die…” is drowned out by the crowd’s excited cries from spectators with blood in the eyes…

the emperor gives a slight nod and sat down, and the combatants turned around until they faced each other in the open ground, weapons held high, both hoping the other would die…

metal rang against metal in the raging heat, as each athlete refused to retreat so that blood covered each from head to feet while spectators passed out in the terrible heat…

finally one of the men clove open the other’s head, striking him instantly dead, leaving the victor the champion for the day, a title he’d be forced to defend again and again until his last day

****

The Celestial Diner

Satchmo singing”What a wonderful world” in a corner of the 1950’s themed diner that never closes down

a mythical diner that attracts great musicians and singers from all around

Jelly Roll Morton rubbing elbows with Duke Ellington at the red bar

the two legends watching Buddy Holly perform from afar

Little Richie, Jerry Lee Lewis, and Fats Domino

hanging out but looking for somewhere else to go

Roy Orbison and Elvis Presley

looking over at Billie Holiday and Peggy Lee

Diane Ross and Janis Joplin playing Liar’s Dice

while old Blue Eyes, Frank Sinatra, tries to be nice

so he can stay in this musical paradise

A Word For My Readers and Fellow Scribes/Bloggers

It’s been a good year for continuity as I’ve been able to post something – a poem or flash fiction – every day since January 1st, 2019. It’s crazy to think I’ve passed the halfway mark of this year, and am still slogging along – for better, or worse.

I want to take this moment to acknowledge my readers and fellow scribes/bloggers for stopping by and visiting. Your interest makes this blog possible. I’m currently at 286 followers and counting…

About some of my followers/fellow scribes:

One of my favorite followers and fellow scribe has a blog called FictionistaFlash Fiction/Musing of Darnell Cureton

Another favorite follower (ahh heck! They’re all my favorite followers!) is the blog called Monkey’s Tale that features fellow scribes Richard and Maggie, from Calgary, Canada.

Another favorite follower, Matthew Richardson (from England) is a prolific and much-published writer. His blog has a little of everything from haiku’s to short stories.

Another delightfully diverse blog is Ray of Sunshine with beautiful poetry by fellow scribe Priyamvada.

Another fellow scribe and prolific writer is H.K. Gayshir whose blog artpends offers daily poetry and art.

Another fellow scribe, Melody Chen, has a blog called HEARTBEATINGWINGS with inspirational poetry

I have a list of other great blogs that I highly recommend checking out on the right hand side of this page under BLOGS I FOLLOW.

To my readers and fellow scribes/bloggers,

Thank You for your interest, encouragement, and camaraderie

Write On!

Little Red Riding Hood in the 21st Century

(184 words -Flash Fiction/Poetry)

They called her Little Red in Sedona, Arizona where crystal-gazers told the fortunes of tourists who came to see the famous red sandstone hills beauty, that explodes in orange and red splashes of brilliant colors when the sun rises, or sets.

Little Red was from the barrio on the wrong side of town, a collection of homeless people who gathered around, helping one another, like a sister and brother, to survive in a merciless economy of the 21st century…

The local homies who respected her gig of taking from the rich and giving it to the poor, had a good rapport with the Harley-riding Little Red who stayed ahead of the law gaining the awe of all the local gangs…

One day Little Red went to see her grandma who lived by the sea, to see if everything was the way it was supposed to be, when she discovered an anomaly that led her to believe an imposter was there to deceive…

Little Red hopped on her Harley and headed for open country determined to be free from the constraints of fairytales and history.

***