Photo by Matteus Silva de Oliveira on Pexels.com

Play this while you read https://youtu.be/g6A0BR5F2zk Click on then return to read.

He kissed me tenderly but clung on for a second too long. His eyes looked with suspicion, as a frown formed between his brows. I had to be firm in my resolve, and not back down. Blinking hard I reached out cold fingers and let them graze his cheek, my lips formed a believable smile as fleetingly his bottom lip quivered. With a straight back and a composed air I waved goodbye and watched him enter the beautiful modern building. Jack’s first day at nursery was the hardest. He beamed like a lighthouse when I arrived to collect him.

Photo by Wendy Wei on Pexels.com

That was my response to Charli’s prompt.

April 29, 2021, prompt: In 99 words (no more, no less), write a story using the phrase, “hit the road, Jack.” You can interpret the phrase any way you like — road trip, goodbye, or story. Go where the prompt leads!

Respond by May 4, 2021. Use the comment section below to share, read, and be social. You may leave a link, pingback, or story in the comments. If you want to be published in the weekly collection, please use the form.

go here to join in. https://carrotranch.com/2021/04/30/april-29-flash-fiction.com/

Tell me, did you play the song? Does my post remind you of another first day? do chat leave me a comment I love to connect.

Play this it is the best way to know how she felt when he was gone.

Hit The Road Jack.

Today I pick up a prompt from Charli at the Carrot ranch, Thank you Charli.

April 22, 2021, prompt: In 99 words (no more, no less), write a story about earthing. Put a character’s hands, feet or body and soul into the earth. Who needs recharging? What happens between the interaction? Go where the prompt leads!

Respond by April 27, 2021. Use the comment section below to share, read, and be social. You may leave a link, pingback, or story in the comments. If you want to be published in the weekly collection, please use the form.  Rules & Guidelines. Press here to join in or read. Press here

Simple pleasures.

It’s time, to stop and stare as yellow paints the fields. Nature’s beauty shines. Drink in the hypnotic sway let it warm your soul. Remember that elegance has a sharp edge, for all its grace and beauty it is not to be walked among.

Rape is full of allergens, it will ulcerate skin, if you forget the country code … and walk through the farmers crops. like a fisherman’s lure, a fly dangled before you dancing on ripples. You can be grounded by its colour, mezmerized by the sway, let the earth paint your soul. Breathe and enjoy, the simple pleasures.

They say not to use cliche`s but ‘all that glitters isn’t gold,’ would have fit this post nicely, or ‘beauty is skin deep.’ But we writery people know not to commit such sins 🤣 Did you celebrate earth day? Dig your toes in the ground? Let me know in the comments what your thoughts are.

Making a connection with this beautiful earth.

For-get-me-not

The sun tricks the flowers to bloom with its false brightness, low shine that hits the glass, lights up the smears and makes dust motes dance, as winter sneaks back in.

Frozen!

Spring is sprung …Or Is It

Poetry using Kennings.

I am a thermal floater ,

A finger flutterer,

Calling for a takeaway treat.

I am an alarm screecher,

A lesson teacher,

Not sneaky,

you know I am near.

A rampant rodent scoffer

A gliding hunter

Keeping farmlands clean.

I am an Auditory mesmerizer,

With my soaring cries,

I am a sorcerer in disguise.

I am beauty,

I am a Red Kite.

Only sleeping.

By Ellen Best March 2021

Picture from  https://pixabay.com/

I took the childlike kenning and inserted the concept into a freestyle poem, I believe it made this creature come alive. Another new route for me inspired by Lynn Whitehead from the Suffolk arts link. I like to play with what I feel safe with and try new forms, at least I try, … but did it work?. How do you push the invisible boundaries? I would love to know, talk in the comments below I will respond double quick.

Where Has Time Gone

Where has the time gone?

Me in 2008

 It seems like, in a blink of an eye or a twitch of a nose,

Our shape alters and our skin unfolds.

All at once looks take on a different role,

Putting us on another journey, aiming us towards a new goal.

Only now, at this late stage of life do we find out,

if we have worked hard enough on the true us.

For now we rely on what we have on the inside.

Our kindness, personality, empathy and fun.

Can we attract others to us because we are,

Good to be near, have something worthwhile to say

Have we worked hard on ourselves over the years,

Accumulated knowledge that others can’t wait to hear.

Where has the time gone …  in a blink of an eye.

Will I have done enough, before that last goodbye.

To be remembered for what I became.

 Not a face with wrinkles,

some long forgotten name.

By Ellen Best 2021

This came from me finding the above photo, it seems like a few weeks since it was snapped but the mirror tells a different story. I held my face in both hands and wept.

Age is nothing but a number, and our looks are only skin deep, these are well-worn cliche’s but they are the truth. Who we are is what carries us through to the end. Men are beginning more and more to do the same, work on their outward appearance. Women especially, work and have for centuries, on how to present themselves. Learning about the best clothes for our shape, which makeup will cover our flaws. After all first impressions count, we have friends to make, Husbands to attract, jobs/positions to win.

Should that be taught? How to work just as hard on the inside, maybe from infancy? Self matters, the substance of you will one day be all you have left. I am not suggesting that things are not changing, there is a lot of work being done in schools and homes aimed at teaching self-worth, and bravo to that. But the way we look needs to be … something we do secondary to the way we feel, think and express ourselves. To become a good human being is to love who you are. So when life has taken that youthful glow, stretched once supple flesh and slowed us down … we can still hold our own, we will be worthwhile and have something of value to offer. Getting us to believe that is what needs to come next.

I would love to hear your opinions please leave a comment I will answer them all.

Thoughts Of my Valentine.

You are the smile on my face, the tears cooling my tea,

you are the hot bottom snuggling up next to me.

You fill me when I am empty and feed me funny lines when I am sad.

You make me laugh when I say, love you as I kiss you goodnight,

You answer jolly good and put out the light

You are the one that said “You’ll do” On a beach in Oahu.

and they my love, are some of the reasons why

I am still so in love with you.





My take on a love letter tailored to fit. Have you ever left a love letter or composed a poem for your Valentine? Answers in the comments please, I love to know and reply to each one.

What Is The Colour of Christmas Mummy? And Finding My Sanity in Lockdown.

Inside a tiny house, nestled in the suburbs of London. Emma looked up at her Mum. “Mummy the sunshine in my picture,” she said pointing to the drawing on the fridge door. “It is sunshine colour, isn’t it? The grass, with Daddy and Mummy, it is grass colour… isn’t it?” A frown shaped her face as she waited for an answer.”That Orange” Emma poked the pencil into the paper, “It Is an orange Orange isn’t it.” Emma’s neck was stretched to its full length, her lips pursed and a chubby hand holding a colouring pencil was pointed at her drawing. Mary dropped to her knees beside her daughter. Intently, she looked into her eyes and explained about colour and how a few had the same name as the things she drew; like Orange and lemon. Emma and her Mother drew and labelled a colour chart, while her little brother straddled Mary’s hip. They learned the colours of the clothes in the laundry bag and the cushions on the sofa; though Emma’s wings threw in some confusion. During the day they sang songs and told stories, together glued tissue paper rainbows to add to the already crowded fridge door. Mary and Joe Carpenter, went to bed that night almost as tired as the children. They were both happy, knowing that tomorrow would be Christmas. The anticipation of the excitement on their children’s faces, the reactions to the parcels beneath the tree. Though not many, each one had been chosen with love, and need in mind.

On Christmas morning Emma skipped into the Kitchen. “What colour is today mummy?” Mary lifted her head, wearing a huge smile. Her eyes crinkled as they met that face. Her five-year-old was clutching pencils and pursing her lips. Her hair knotted from sleep; her giraffe under her arm. Mary’s pride shone from her face, as she wiped her forehead with the back of her flour encrusted hand and bent to her daughter’s height. “What colour do you think it is?” Emma screwed her brow and as if contemplating the world and left the room.

Within the hour Mary had worked her magic, children clean, fed and playing nicely. Food cooking nicely and preparation almost complete. Mary wriggled and hummed to the music on the radio as she cut the last sausage roll. She wiped her hands on the tea towel stuck in her waistband. Throughout the house, the air was thick with the scent of pastry and cinnamon and the sounds of happiness. The little girl’s question forgot; in the excitement of the day.

Tom crawled up the hall chasing his new train blowing spit bubbles; giggling as he went.
Dad burst through the front door stamped his feet and brushed a light dusting of snow from his hair. Joe’s nose was red and he rubbed his hands briskly to warm them.”Kisses” he called as he smacked his lips and waved mistletoe above his head.”Kisses I want kisses” he roared. Emma and Tom rushed to be lifted in a sloppy lip smacking embrace.
There were lanterns, twinkling lights and paper decorations dangling from every space in the little house. Carols rang out from the kitchen radio and sparks snapped against the guard on their open fire. It looked a perfect Christmas to him.
Dropping everything Mary ran to join Joe for a kiss; Singing as she went. Flour covered kisses ended in chuckling and tickles. With all four sat breathlessly on the floor. Emma looked up into her Mother’s eyes and quietly said
” I think the colour is Christmas mummy.”

During the weirdness of 2020 when the world went a little bit mad, and I admit during the lockdowns I did too, and needed a way to refocus like many did, I took to Zoom.

my own scribbled picture

I joined the Theatre for my first ever virtual workshop. With guidance of our creative director, actor and teacher Lynn Whitehead We wrote scripts and radio plays.

Some of us narrated, some were characters and others of us wrote. All of us worked as a team. We made soundbooths under duvets, in wardrobes, or padded dens. Tim our ( on loan) sound magician, stitched and spliced the recorded voices, added the backing tracks and effects. He worked on it for days to transform our groups efforts into a complete piece.

The writing, producing, directing etc, all happened in different places. Not once did we leave our homes or meet in person. ( To be rectified at a later date)

We fulfilled the remit set to deliver a 45 min recording for people to listen to over the Christmas period,( possibly, huddled around a snapping fire). We planned to finish with a collection, something for everyone, and let people see the Theatre still came alive, despite 2020s pandemic.

A group of tales linked in a framework that visitors to the Theatre website, and the local radio could log on and listen to. This story became one of the tales we turned into a dramatized piece.

Below is the finished article I hope you take the time to enjoy it. Tap the next three words to listen.

Merry Belated Christmas.

Here I raise a glass to you all, co-co-conspirators, followers, friends and visiting readers. Supporters of the arts.

Do leave me a comment I love to chat.

#12Christmas2020things

The twelve things of this years Christmas are in picture form above.

Number 1

My favourite ornament, it has not changed I just stupidly adore my thoroughly modern Angel. An angel in a red coat with a swanky bag. She watches down from above my books, keeps an eye on me. When Christmas is about Angel takes up a different spot. Overlooking the whole affair, smart with tidy dark brown hair. Her coat a ruby shade of red, like santa’s, it has been said her wings and heart shaped bag glisten in the Christmas lights. She is my favorite ornament by far. If Christmas was still to be Christmas she simply must be there.

Number 2.

Charlie. Is a poem I wrote and love it so much.It encapsulates the spirit of kindness of which this weird year I have seen quite a lot. So for your delectation, get the tissues and be prepared to weep.

Charlie wasn’t keen on Christmas, because of the paper, the lights and all the waste, He didn’t think it good to eat so much, when others went hungry, It soured the taste.

Charlie loved wearing Granddad’s flight jacket, the best ever Christmas gift, Grandma said he wore it each day, walking back from his overnight shift.

The coat was cumbersome and heavy, if zipped it came way past his throat. His arms needed to be longer, the leather smelt of tobacco, the wool a dirty old Goat.

But, Charlie could fit mucky Ethel, underneath it when the rain soaked all her card. Or the snow made her fingers go blue … as she sat in that old butchers yard.

He could fit a curled up ham sandwich and an apple from Grandma’s dish, Deep inside the wool lined pocket. So Charlie, he made a new Christmas wish.

He wished that all people had bedrooms, a place to rest their head. That mucky Ethel could have a bath and a coat to hold over her own head.

But Santa, he did not come calling, to the people who lived on the street. Instead he hoped they would have their own Charlie, who would give the shoes from their feet.

Number 3.

My favourite Christmas coat, I feel like Christmas is here when I wear it. I secretly long to be the Angel in number 1.

Number 4.

Christmas Horror stories, These Books, ‘Horror Anthologies’ are the perfect introduction to short snappy stories to be told around the fire. The fact that they each carry one of my own tales inside, makes them even more special. I hope to scare family over zoom this year, but of course, you could buy them as gifts if you wish. A new book is on pre order coming soon Wings and Fire.

Number 5.

Snow! Writing Merry Christmas in snow, building a snow man and sharing it even if it is only on Zoom; would be magical. It will be in the lap of Mother nature but I have asked Santa and I have been good.

Number 6.

CRACKERS! Yes I know but I do not mean me, or the ones with Cheese. I mean who could have a Christmas weird or not without a cracker to pull, a joke to read and a tacky prize. No they are in my Christmas 2020 regardless of weird.

Number 7.

A TREE. no matter how big how bright or how simple, a decorated tree is simply a must. As is a glass of cream brandy liqueur, Michael Bubl’e on the speakers and plenty of giggles. It is just what I want to do and so should you.

Number 8.

The grandchildren, We can not have them all so we will have none. But Christmas without there faces would be the unhappiest place for me. The one above is Ivy. we have two expected in spring and the chronological list is this.

Merlot 15, Flynn 14, Ivy 5, Mabel 4, Matilda 4. Penelope 3, George 18months. How could we have Christmas without all of these. So we will eat breakfast together and I will tell stories and jokes and we will do this while they open our gifts under their own trees.

Number9.

Santa and this one is special, another will never do. Santa has stuck by me and taken me through the bad times and delivered the goods. He will be with me at Covid-19s Christmas. We on a normal year have a tradition. We find a day where we can get as many family together and have our ‘Best’ Christmas celebration, 2018 we managed 19 guests. We have, food and drink, crackers and silly hats, music and laughter. Our tradition of the table game, secret santa. Each household brings, a male gift and a female gift, two children friendly ones each for under £7 each. each plainly wrapped with M,F,C on the package. After dinner the pile (to which I have added extras), is put in the middle; with my santa for luck (santa guides the dice). The die is rubbed and kissed the air thick with anticipation. Each of us take turns to throw, you need a double 6 to collect a gift. This continues until the pile has gone. At this point you can donate, or stick. Players usually donate (if a child has not won a parcel) then we begin again. This time, any double thrown, of any number can now steal. The packages have treats, silly things, and booby prizes inside. We laugh until we all have wet faces and gasp for breath. Not covid appropriate, or safe for 2020, so this year it will be sorely missed.

Number 10.

A phone, TO call up Mother, and people who do not have mobiles or wifi. yes they exist and I will not leave them out.

Number 11.

My bird feeding regime begins in earnest usually with a poem about feeding the birds, With no children to share in the feeding this year I will video myself singing Mary Poppins famous song (I can not sing) Feed the birds and send one to each family household so they can see the birds get fed and Grandma Duck is still bonkers enough said.

Number 12.

My rock/pebble painting, represents a song and the year where saying I love you has been there to replace hugs and kisses that we all are still missing.

Thank you YouTube

Which is your favourite of my #12Christmas2020Things did you like best and what will your celebration miss. answers in the comments, I am dying to know.