Ava’s Garden

In May it will have been twelve years since I started growing it. The garden in the backyard is my pride and joy, although I never let anyone in. Its rows of foxgloves and its exquisite maple tree whose branches teetered over the fence and onto the street behind it, were my getaway. The lilacs in rows, the roses growing up the fence, the greenery perfectly placed. It’s all mine. Until, about five years ago. A family had moved in across the street, a young couple and their eight year old daughter. In the sixty years before I had the garden, no one had wanted to stay in that house for more than a year or two. It had never been a home, just a house.

I didn’t care much for neighbours anyways, I had no business with their small talk and brunches. I had no business with the new neighbours until the day their little girl knocked on my door with a smile on her face and a pie in her hands. “Hi! My name’s Ava, and my family just moved in across the street. We baked you an apple pie!” she announced. I thanked her, and sent her off as the sun was setting. I placed the apple pie on the coffee table and let its sweet scent smother the halls of my home; from the breakfast nook to the window seat of the spare room.

I woke up to the scent of apples and fresh fallen rain, the classic recipe for a good day. The smallest things set my days on their paths. The lack of adventure that they held, left little to be enjoyed; so details like a storm or a bird’s song put my days in the right or wrong direction. I made my way down the ancient mahogany staircase that I knew so well, while the dew strung cobwebs outside my windows twinkled in the sunlight like  stars on a string of twine. I then made my way to the garden, and watered a couple of sections, as the sky had done my work for me.

The rest of my day was not so picturesque. I made an omelette and drank my tea while filling in the sudoku of yesterday’s newspaper. I devoured the second half of my Edgar Allan Poe complete works book, and drank another cup of tea. The sun had started it’s journey to the other side of the world, leaving a deep rosy sky, splashed with coral here and there. All of a sudden, there was a knock on the door; it was Ava. I opened the door to her ear to ear grin and a look of excitement. “Hello Miss! I saw that you have white roses growing out of the corner of your backyard and I just wanted to say they are so cool! I’ve never been allowed to grow my own garden and my parents are much too lazy to keep up with theirs.” She spat out. “Well thank you very much Ava. I’ve been growing the garden for almost twelve years now.” I replied. I had an idea in the spur of the moment. I was hesitant to vocalize it. “Would you like to see it?” I blurted out. Her eyes lit up right as she said “Could I?”. I nodded and led her to the rickety barn wood door.

I pushed on it lightly, and it opened with a creak. We stood in awe, eyes wide, like we were both seeing it for the first time. White roses surrounding the perimeter, and sunflowers touching the sky; it was beautiful. Ava looked up at me grinning, and I gave her a nod. She ran into the garden, and for once I didn’t care about the flowers getting ruined, as long as the garden was making someone else happy.“Can I climb it?” she said pointing distinctly at the tree. “Of course”, I smiled back. She climbed and climbed until she teetered over the fence on one of the trees branches. She looked at me, looked back over the fence, and giggled; as if she was looking at a whole new universe.

695 words.

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Just Another Friday

Prompt: Drink post

Jim was a simple man. He enjoyed his dog, his friends, and a good classic Coors light. Or at least Coors was in his opinion, good and classic. Every Friday he headed out with his friends to discuss the events of the week, and drink a few beers. This was second nature by now for a simple guy like Jim. One Friday, Jim’s friend Vincent decided to tag along for drinks. Drinks with Vincent were never truly a good time. Vincent was pretentious in all aspects of his life. He only wore pants that cropped at the ankle and used long nonsensical words just for the hell of it.

Friday rolled around and before he knew it Jim was sat beside Vincent at the bar, as Vincent refused to order anything but a margarita; with no tequila. The hours passed and Jim had ordered five rounds of shots and two of his usual. Vincent attempted to make small talk. “Jim, how are Maudie and Stephen? I’ve missed them terribly. Although you know they do shed horribly.” he complained. “Yeah they’re fine ol’ buddy they just never liked you.” Jim muttered.  “Oh Jim! How I’ve missed this banter. I don’t get much of these jokes from my usual companions.” “Vince were at the bar can you please have a proper drink or just be quiet?”

Vincent ordered a margarita. Then two. Then three. Then four. These men had never gotten along more than they did when Vincent was well into his fifth margarita. “Ive missed you so much.” teared Jim; well into another round of shots. “Ive missed you too. You may lack intellectual depth-” “What did you just call me?” he growled. “I didn’t call you anything I  just said that you lack a slight intellect that my other friends posess. That is all.” Jim staggered out of the bar the second the words left Vincent’s mouth, drinks were never truly good with Vincent anyways. Just another drink on another Friday was how he struggled to compile his opinion. It was time to go home to Maudie and Stephen anyways.

350 words

Sam and Leah’s first date

Prompt: dialogue post

He shuffled into the shop, his green rain boots leaving puddles behind him with every step. The exact same could be said for his matching coat. He looked like a husky puppy after a walk in the rain; not in a husky way though, in an aloof way. He ordered an americano and shuffled back to the table by the window. Leah walked in “Hey Leah!” he waved, embarrassingly. She smiled and sat down across from him. “Hey Sam. Quite the weather today huh?” Of course it was quite the weather. Easy for her to say she still looked put together. “Yeah the rain sucks. I mean– not sucks. Uh its raining a lot though.” Nice one Sam.

“Yeah, kind of relaxing though isn’t it?” she asked. No, in fact Sam wasn’t the least bit relaxed. “I guess. If you like rain its okay.” He didn’t mean for every back and forth they had to be painstakingly awkward, but he always replied to questions with answers that sounded like more questions. It made no sense to anyone but him. “So…….” He tried his best to bring in a new topic of conversation, “What do you like to do for fun?”. Ah, his first coherent sentence of the date so far. “I draw boats.” “Boats?” he wondered aloud. “Boats.” she replied, as if she’d never been so sure of anything in her life. “I’ve gotten quite good at them. Canoes, sailboats, catamarans you name it. ” she added. “The funny thing is, I’m a terrible artist. People seem to think I’m quite good, due to my skill of drawing boats.” Sam was speechless. Who draws boats constantly for fun? “So its fun. I guess I do it for fun then. How about you?” He had no idea what to say. His only hobby was playing the piano, as if that was even in the same universe of uncommon hobbies as drawing boats was.

“I, uh, I guess I play piano?” Sam muttered. There they sat. The coffee shop, a rainy Wednesday evening, and nothing to discuss but Sam’s cliche hobby, and Leah’s otherworldly one.

293 words

The Pond

Prompt: descriptive. writing about a landscape/painting.

The water lay on the banks as flat as paper dolls on a little girls desk. The banks engulfed the water, cornering it in long grass, willow trees, and an abundance of lillies, roses, and peonies. Lilypads freckled the surface of the water, as flowers peeked out from under them. The lilypads were grazed by the ends of the willow branches and the edges of the grass that neighboured close by, and the sky had been matched to the lilacs that grew beneath it, like the ocean blue mimicking a clear sky.

The ponds only humanly obstruction was a wooden green bridge that looked down on the water, connecting the gardens on either side of it. Somehow, the flowers had encapsulated the bridge as well. They grew on the top of its rails, as if arranged by a florist. The pond and its banks were every colour of the rainbow and more, mixed until they reached the perfect consistency; and sprinkled sparingly. Under the bridge the water went on forever, it reached the ends of the earth and formed a waterfall off the edge. The flowers stretched to the sky and touched sunsets on the other side of the world, exchanging sparkling colours. The clouds in the ponds very own lilac sky, had been unraveled and torn apart time and time again, they were twine with frayed edges.

The sunflowers and the foxgloves contested as to who could grow taller, who could reach the branches of the willow first. The trees laughed, and carried on in pursuit of bringing shade and breeze to their friends down below.

“The Undiscovered Artist”

Prompt: Choice post

There it was, as it had been for the last eight months. My black, leather bound, and covered in a thick layer of dust; journal. Of course the inside was completely and utterly empty, as i was too nervous to write in it. I was tired of writing my thoughts on loose leaf, and the book looked at me as if it was praying for ideas dressed in ink to be written on its many pages. I picked it up. I picked up my pen. I dusted off my journal, and started writing. Nothing important, nothing special, simply my feelings, thoughts and questions. It felt right, to be writing again.

The book was almost half full, it was bittersweet. I didn’t think much of my accomplishments in the form of stories, paragraphs, and poems, I had no reason to. As the days went on, I was less reluctant to write in it. In fact I picked it up at least twice a day. This book was my escape to all that existed beyond wonderland, oz, narnia, and all worlds in between. The book helped.

Only a couple of pages were left, and i was as hesitant to write as the snow was to finally melt and let in spring. But I wrote; as a survival method of sorts. As I turned to the last page, I couldn’t think of a single word to put down, so I doodled a few flowers. Those turned into drawings of animals, and buildings and people and skies until I had no room left to squeeze in another daisy.

So, I headed downtown to what wasn’t the bookshop but the art supply store, and purchased a journal of a different kind. This one was less bittersweet to start, and much easier to complete.

300 words

“Sooner rather than later”

Prompt: The power of assertiveness

Words are never going to be the same to everybody. This leads to great interpretations of stories, endless trains of thought, and the wonderful retellings of them that can be carried through centuries. This sadly also leads to everything and anything being taken offense to. Everything people say, even if it is in advocacy of a good cause, will be deconstructed and reconstructed over and over until someone has found a way to take offense to it. This leads to endless fights (most of them online) about fundamental human rights. I feel that people need to stop doing everything they can to fight others, and that they must simply come together to support what they believe in.

 

For example: The long lived women’s rights movement. Women and men alike have been fighting to end sexism for a long time now; but a fair amount of the time it isn’t hard to find girls putting other girls down. By this I mean, using critical terms, shaming other girls, and all in all putting them down. In a time where standing together is dangerously important, seeing people who want equality as their result, fighting each other; greatly saddens me.

 

The only way to be stronger is to stand together, and as I see it, we aren’t quite there yet. We cannot let anger get in the way of peace, as it has been for all of history. It is easier to yell and fight and argue than it is to join hands and try to understand others views; but it needs to be done. Sooner rather than later, now or never, we need to come together.

 

274 words

“The Peoples Song”

Prompt: M.C. Eschers ascending and descending optical illusion.

A world as run down as they come, a world full of sky, clouds and little sun. There are no books, There are are no songs, nothing exists, to pass the days so long. They speak in poems, speak in rhymes, but no one notices, because no one tries. The tower of brick, and wood, and stone, is a place that a few of them dare to go. They have heard the legend, the devastating tale, so they hold on to life as if it’s going stale. The one piece of writing they are allowed to read, speaks of a tower, where sadness is a seed. They plant it there, it grows and grows, until none of it is left to show. The rhyme starts here so listen along, and you too, can hear the people’s wistful song:

 

The passers by

The alarmed unit

May not get why

The people do it

 

The people are

The ones who walk

Always there

They never talk

 

Not a word is

Spoken from them

The words are where

Their sadness stems

 

From dawn to dusk

From morn to eve

The people walk

Because they grieve

 

They’ve lost someone

They hoped to keep

The people walk

Until they sleep

 

The stairs they climb

Do not go up

The stairs they climb

Will never stop

 

The stairs don’t start

The stairs don’t end

And soon these people’s

Backs will bend

 

From sun to moon

From light to dark

The people walk

To heal their hearts.

 

The few th

 

By: Evi Milanovic

250 words.

“Brains in your head, and feet in your shoes.”

Prompt: Reverence for Books and Reading:

A doctor without a PHD and an abundance of simple yet intricately formed rhymes were the stepping stones of my childhood reading experience. Since birth I was listening to and later on reading these poems, stories and lessons, all told by none other than Dr. Seuss. My list of idols consisted of Thing 1 and 2, the Lorax and Sam I am, as they taught me lessons about life that it seemed like no chapter book could at the time.

At the age of five I had memorized One Fish Two Fish Red Fish Blue fish and was correcting my parents when they got words wrong. Everything my mind could escape to was just a page turn away, the who’s in whoville, the truffula trees that needed protecting, and the fox in socks. They all had something important to tell me, something it felt like they wanted me to remember and to carry on. It’s almost as if Dr. Seuss needed all of us kids to know that we could do anything no matter how small we were, to speak for those without a voice of their own, and to quote the man himself, “you have brains in our heads and feet in your shoes, you can steer yourself any direction you choose”. He ingrained these morals in our brains through the stories of an elephant, a travelling who and a little Lorax who speaks for the trees, but as we mature we’ve taken these stories with us, unknowingly. They teach us to stand for equality, to try to save the environment, and to help others. To this day I still believe that these little stories have taught us all lessons beyond what any chapter book could.

 

By: Evi Milanovic

287 words