The Corvid Clan

Tracy, the blogger over at “Reflections of an Untidy Mind” has just presented the blog-o-sphere with a new once-a-week writing challenge:

magpie-4661322_640Introducing – ta-da! – Corvid – 2020.
You can check out the details here, but basically you’re supposed to post something once a week about modus operandi of the family Corvidae.

Like the Borgia bunch and other nefarious family groups, this is a clan of clever, scheming thieves, including crows, ravens, jays, and magpies. But if you want to say something nice about them, I think that would be okay, too. Even the blackest of families have an occasional white sheep.

Blue Jay.croppedRaven

Recipe for Seasoning Spring

Good morning everyone,

The Word of the Day prompt this morning is ADVICE.

Coincidentally, blogger Bill at The Write Idea has given a bit of advice this morning in his haiku about “releasing the dragon.” READ HERE. I decided to take it, and find a dragon I could release.

I have quite a number penned up (pardon the pun) in notebooks, hoping to someday be set free. Yes, it’s time to open a few gates! I grabbed an old journal full of scribbles, turned to the back page, and found a raw poem I jotted down a few years back. I touched it up with a spritz of polish on the scales, did some filing on a few toenails, dabbed a dash more colour on some spots — and now I have my dragon ready to present to you, dear readers.


Take the wonder of a blue sky,
add the blessing of warm sunshine,
bar the blasts of bitter wind,
but allow a few warm zephyrs
to tease the icicles to tears
till they splash the winter-killed
grass with a rousing message.

Add a number of misting poplars,
a sprinkling of meadowlark trills
and a path bordered by catkins.
Whisk yourself into this mix
some inviting March morning;
and marinate in the delights of spring.

children balloons

Puss’s Purr Alarm

Good morning everyone,

The Ragtag Daily Prompt this morning is PURR
The Word of the Day prompt is HELPFUL

I can’t blame Pookie for my 4:00 am rising this morning; I just couldn’t sleep. One of the woes of old age, I gather. But this little verse, my quickly crafted response to the prompt, applies from time to time. I suspect only a cat lover will truly understand. 😉

This persistent purr
in my ear at 5:00 am…
Helpful tones from Mr Pook
a soporific song to soothe
and comfort my weary mind?
Not a chance!

Rather, this gentle gesture
his “Get up and feed me” tune;
those accompanying pats
may seem as tender touches,
but I don’t kid myself:
the alarm is sounding.

If I continue to malinger
this beginning bland hint
will morph into a full-fledged
song-and-dance routine
that will definitely
prohibit further sleep.

Prior planning the key
to sweet dreams; if I long
for a long, restful night,
I must ensure my puss’s purr
stays on the other side
of my bedroom door.

Scott Payne  —  Pixabay


Assorted Viruses

Good morning to everyone reading this. I’m writing this at 6:30 am and the dawn hasn’t touched our eastern sky yet, but our days are getting longer and warmer. The predicted high for today is +4 C — quite tropical for Feb in SK.

This has brought on a bout of SPRING FEVER in man and beast. Our cats wanted to go outside early this morning and see what’s happening. Once the sun is up they’ll want to be outdoors for hours.

The Ragtag Daily Prompt this morning is VIRAL, a word with several different connotations.

Spring Fever isn’t a virus but it affects a lot of people, for all that. There is much concern worldwide for the latest Corona-virus and the possible epidemic it may become. On the other hand, it may be just like other influenza strains that render a lot of people sick for a few days, but only those with extremely compromised immune systems will die from it.

There are the viruses that spread across the internet, fuzzing up our communications. Many users find their systems compromised or hacked into by some virus or other.

And there are posts that go viral. Do you wish you could write something brilliant that everyone wants to comment on and share with their own readers, their friends and relatives? Have you seen a post topic that went viral?

One time a blogger and his wife were having a baby and he posted about their process of choosing a name. Should they give their child a traditional name or go with something trendy? That post got hundreds, if not over a thousand, comments. Readers everywhere were either offering suggestions or writing about the unique to just-plain-wacky names they’d encountered.

Johnny Cash was right with his song, A Boy Named Sue. When you give a child a weird name, you raise a fighter. As I read that post I felt so sorry for children who have to live with some of those names, like Mainline, Heroin, Cocaine, Kleenex.

Some parents have taken a normal name or word, and given it a twist, like Orangejello and Lemonjello, pronounced O-RAHN-je-lo and ley-MAHN-je-lo, Male and Female pronounced MAH-lay and FAY-MAH-lay. It was mentioned that these names come from immigrant parents; their grasp of English is poor and in their own language the words sound quite pleasant. However, their child will have a lifetime of correcting every single person who ever sees their name and pronounces it the way it’s spelled.

Some parents decorate their child with a name, while other names originate in a parent’s personal statement to the world. Like the girl named Breathe — because the mother wanted her daughter to not rush through life, but remember to stop and take a deep breath. By the same logic, Think, Breakfast, Smelltheroses and Agoodnightsleep could pass — but please don’t! And please, no political statements like Impeachtrump.

I suspect these parents never had to live with going to school day after day and hearing classmates snicker about their name. Yes, we’re supposed to live in an enlightened, no-bullying society where everything’s accepted; in reality kids still mock what they see as “weird.” As Johnny Cash sang, “I tell ya, life ain’t easy for a boy named Sue!”

Anyway, it was a very interesting and enlightening post; you can see why it went viral. So many names; so many opinions.

By now the sun is up and I shall go and deal with the Spring Fever at our house.

A Proper Moustache Takes Time

The Ragtag Daily Prompt this morning is MOUSTACHE, or MUSTACHE (American spelling.)
“Guys are lucky because they get to grow mustaches. I wish I could.
It’s like having a little pet for your face.”

Anita Wise

OpenClipArt — Pixabay

Goodreads supplies me with this neat little quote about Hercule Poirot:

“Shall I say that he interested me because he was trying to grow a mustache and as yet the result is poor.” Poirot stroked his own magnificent mustache tenderly. “It is an art,” he murmured, “the growing of the mustache! I have sympathy for all who attempt it.”

From Surprise! Surprise!
by Agatha Christie

The Bedazzled Shopper

The Ragtag Daily Prompt this morning is EVANESCENT

The primary meaning of this word, according to the Oxford Dictionary:
soon passing out of sight, memory, or existence; quickly fading or disappearing.

Which makes me think of last Christmas. Do you remember it? So this quickly composed verse shall be my response to the prompt.

The Bedazzled Shopper

Whither fled the season
of good cheer, holly and ivy,
red bows and candle glows
and don’t be a Scrooge,
spend, spend, spend!

How did the tinselled trees,
twinkling lights and
red bows vanish evanescently
in December’s puff and stuff?
A distant memory now

as to my wondering eyes appear
all these chicks, fluffy cute,
and pastel plastic eggs
pulled from their nest in
stockrooms, with the signs
Sale! Sale! Sale!