Reality of the Thing

The Ragtag Daily Prompt this morning is PERCEPTION

soap-bubble-824565_640I have to think of a balloon, before and after. Or what appears to be a little “planet orbiting in space” and the spot of soap left behind when it hits another object.

One day here in the office I witnessed a very small but rather amusing incident involving my cat, Pookie. My husband had been going through old papers and I ran a large stack through our shredder, filling a black garbage bag full and tying it off, ready for recycling.

Awhile later Pookie was in the office, eyeing that large bag against the wall. Did he see something on the bag that seemed to be moving, or did he simply want to attack that black monster? A moment later he pounced, claws digging into the plastic.

As you know, a garbage bag of shredded paper is mostly air, right? Between the punctures, and his own weight, there he was, hanging onto the bag that was slowly deflating under him. He looked quite bemused for a moment. But the monster, once subdued, didn’t hold his interest for long.

How many fearful “monsters” don’t we perceive lurking in our pathway, yet they end up deflating like Pookie’s bag when we actually tackle them?

Sunshine on the Snow

The Ragtag Daily Prompt today is LOOKING OUT MY FRONT DOOR.

Since we live in a mobile home, with both doors on the same side, the view isn’t any different. However, today we do have a lovely view — with a promise of spring to come. Yesterday morning the temp was -31C first thing; this morning it was -14, so a great improvement. Hubby says it’s +1 C this afternoon. With the sun so bright and warm, our snow is getting soft.

Because we’ve been putting out birdseed, a flock of English sparrows has moved into our trees; we see a lot of them in the caragana bushes outside our front window. As I write this, dozens are scrambling around and under the bird feeder, grabbing what they can.

Come spring when the tree swallows return, I’ll be ready to shoot all these aggressive English invaders before they drive my swallows away. I see a few have already claimed the swallow nest on the garage. By feeding the birds we were actually hoping to attract chickadees and woodpeckers, and one hairy woodpecker does raid the feeder regularly.

I’m not feeling very inspired to write today, so this will have to be a sufficient response. However, while I’m here I’ll mention another writing prompt you might like to try your hand at: Crispina’s Creative Challenge, or CCC. Every Wednesday Crispina Kemp posts a photo as inspiration and you can write up to 150 words, in any genre. Better yet, you have a whole week to do it.

This week’s picture is a rather forlorn old mill. Check it out HERE

Go For It!

The Ragtag Daily Prompt this morning is GO.

To be or not to be?” might be the pertinent question of life, but it’s one we’ve never debated at our house. “To go or not to go?” frequently comes up.

For example, today my husband wants to go to the city, but the thermometer reads -33 C. “To stay home where it’s warm or to go out in the extreme cold and risk freezing my nose?” That is the question — and the answer isn’t hard to guess. 🙂

Interestingly, the post that appeared in my In-Box right after this one was the poem “FLY”, by Bill at The Write Idea. In a flash my mind jumped to phrase, “Go fly a kite.” Common when I was young, it’s probably considered antique by now.

GO is a basic word, yet my dictionary has over a whole page of variations in meaning as well as idioms formed with GO. Makes me think of a mother duck with her bunch of offspring trailing after.

Ducks.IanWilson
Photo credit:  Ian Wilson — Pixabay

Get the go-ahead
Go back on…
From the word go
From the get-go
Go great guns
Go out with
Going together
Go off in a huff
Go for it!

Nice chatting with you. Now I’d best get going…

Ben Wicks and British History

The Ragtag Daily Prompt this morning is ENGLISH

England.David Rock DesignAn ocean of ink wouldn’t cover this topic, but I’m going to tell you about several books I’ve enjoyed. When I was a teen Ben Wicks was a popular cartoon artist, drawing the life of the indolent Andy Capp and his long-suffering wife, Florrie. After he’d immigrated to Canada, Mr Wicks wrote or compiled a number of books centering around World War 2. Great for readers who are interested in British history through the eyes of those who lived it.

Wicks was a boy in London when World War II was declared and one of the evacuees, but made his way back home in time to watch the dogfights in the London skies during the Battle of Britain. He writes about his own experiences during those years, plus he has contacted and interviewed hundreds of other evacuees and shares their stories in his books, No Time to Wave Goodbye and The Day They Took the Children.

The English government feared—and rightly so—that major cities like London would be targeted for heavy bombing. If schools would be hit thousands of children’s lives could be lost. So the plan was hatched: as soon as war was declared all school age children, a number of teachers, also a number of young moms with preschoolers, would be evacuated from London and other southern cities.

It was fruit-basket upset. The children and their teachers marched to the stations one morning, given gas masks, loaded onto trains and shipped into the country. Many inner city children had never seen it before. Small town and country folks with a spare room or two had been ordered to take them in; at the train station it was “come and take your pick” from the weary, frightened lot that arrived. Cute little girls and big boys who could work were picked first. Siblings who clung to each other, refusing to be parted, and children with disabilities had to wait and wait, wondering if anyone would take them in.

I’ve read No Time to Wave Goodbye* and it’s a fascinating collection. The book is written in a positive note, but the stories are frank. Some children made friends for life, while others were starved, neglected, even abused. Some homes found themselves with slum children who’d never learned manners or personal hygiene; some children came from well-to-do homes and found themselves boarded with rustic families in cramped quarters. Many were evacuated to areas where they couldn’t understand the local dialect at all.
*© 1989 by Ben Wicks. My copy published by General Paperbacks, Toronto, ON

Promise Me You’ll Take Care of My Daughter* is another interesting book of experiences, this time those of War Brides who married Canadian soldiers. There were 48,000 women who came to Canada after World War II as wives of Canadian soldiers. Ben Wicks has managed to contact a good sampling of them and has sections of the different aspects of their experiences: meeting their soldier; the wedding day; the good-byes for home and family; coming across; the new home; meeting the in-laws.
*©1992 by Ben Wicks. Stoddart Publishing Co, Ltd., Toronto, ON

He also wrote Nell’s War and When the Boys Came Marching Home, the latter a book about the joy and turmoil returning soldiers experienced after the war was over.

Remembering When…

The Your Daily Word prompt for today is EMINENT:

According to Merriam-Webster this means:
1: exhibiting eminence especially in standing above others in some quality or position : prominent
2 : standing out so as to be readily perceived or noted : conspicuous
3 : jutting out : projecting

Here’s my musing on the topic. Not really a poem, but rather an oldie’s ramble down memory lane

Beaver
Pixabay

Remember “buck teeth”?
Those prominent beaver-like
incisors nobody has these days
thanks to the workmanship
of orthodontists and braces?

And “Leave It To Beaver”
back before the name
became politically incorrect
or considered offensive
even though it was, sort-of,
but that was life back then.

Are you old enough to recall
scenes where and moms and dads
were considered eminently wise
and allowed to advise
their attentive offspring?
That was life back then.