Time For Adventure

It’s time to respond to this week’s Six Sentence Stories prompt from GirlieOnTheEdge — and this time the prompt word is KEY.

And since time is so EVANESCENT M-W’s Word of the Day — and the Ragtag Daily Prompt is GULCH, I’m throwing in responses to these two prompts as well.

TEMPIS FUGIT

“I tell you, my friend, ‘Tempis Fugit’ : that’s the key to understanding and making the most of this life. Time is evanescent, deciduous, fugacious, fleeting, transient…and we who wish for bold adventures must seize the moment and pack it full ‘ere it escapes us forever.”

“So what do you plan to do about it?” his friend asked.

“Ah, therein lies the problem; we may dream but between our desires and our deeds a great GULCH is fixed.”

Seeing his friend looking puzzled, he elaborated: “Gulch…as in canyon, gorge, gulf, flume, ravine, abyss, chasm.”

“You know, pal, if you spent less time studying the dictionary, you’d have lots more minutes to try those bold adventures you’re talking about.”

Bold adventure image from MoteOoEd — Pixabay

Not My Fault

The Ragtag Daily Prompt this morning is APPARENT. Well, I’m feeling like doing something light today, and since I missed yesterday’s prompt, GAME, I’ll cover them both in this fictitious bit from a sports reporter.

TURFFORD FLUBS TODAY’S GAME

Attempting to distance himself from the blame for his lame game today, gofer Reuben Turfford suggests that his contact lenses were sabotaged by an opponent.

Turfford explained that several golfers were together at a party the night before and during the evening his eyes became sore, so he removed his contacts and set them on the table. He then headed for the gents’ room. “I’m certain that while I was out of the room, one of my opponents tampered with my lenses, warped them somehow,” he claims. “I was still rather bleary-eyed this morning and didn’t notice the difference in my lenses until I tried to hit the ball in today’s tournament. Otherwise I certainly would have won.”

When asked to comment on this issue, his closest opponent Mike Strikem denied the accusation. “Yes, we were all together last night,” he verifies, “But no one touched his contacts. I’m guessing it was his overindulgence at the party that caused his poor game today. At times it was quite apparent that Reuben’s judgement was bleary, not his eyesight.”

Since Turfford wisely tossed his warped lenses right after the game, this explanation remains unverified.

A Day’s Journey

The Ragtag Daily Prompt this morning is TRAFFIC. Here’s a little verse in response:

rush hour traffic
streams of weary communters
snailing homeward

Today We Bury My Sister

Donna died of a drug overdose on November 28, two days after her 66th birthday. Her middle son, James, had her cremated within days, but it’s taken while to arrange burial of her ashes in her daughter Barbie’s grave. Barb died back in 1989, from what likely would have started as cervical cancer. A sad time for us all; Barb was just sixteen and full of life.

Being a Saturday morning, the traffic on the highway between here and Moose Jaw will probably be light. We’re to meet at the cemetery at noon to bury the urn holding Donna’s ashes, then we’ll have a gathering in remembrance, which will take the form of a family picnic in the park. I don’t expect it to be a large gathering, as she lived in her own circle of friends so a lot of her nieces and nephews hardly knew her.

Donna and I were close when we were young — as close as siblings can be when they live in different homes over 100 miles apart — but as an adult she and her family lived here in SK while we moved East and lived in Ontario and Quebec. Coming back to SK, I was only able to locate her a few times. So, sadly I’ve only seen her four or five times in the past thirty years — mainly at family funerals.

I haven’t had anything to do with her Rob & Jason, her oldest & youngest sons, since I spent a few days with Donna when Barb died. Sad when families get so estranged, but my husband and I chose a different path — lifestyle if you will — and lost contact with them. Hopefully we can get a bit more acquainted today.

The Neighborly Man

Recently I started reading a book titled EMBRACING OBSCURITY. The author, Anonymous, writes about how, in today's society, we're apt to feel we must be a SOMEBODY if we want to count at all. I haven't read far, but I gather he's saying we need to abandon dreams of being Big Names and settle for  being ordinary people. As Edgar Guest aspires to in this verse...
The Neighborly Man

Some are eager to be famous, some are striving to be great,
some are toiling to be leaders of their nation or their state,
and in every man’s ambition, if we only understood,
there is much that’s fine and splendid; every hope is mostly good.
So I cling unto the notion that contented I will be
if the men upon life’s pathway find a needed friend in me.

I rather like to putter ‘round the walks and yards of life,
to spray at night the roses that are burned and browned with strife;
to eat a frugal dinner, but always to have a chair
for the unexpected stranger that my simple meal would share.
I don’t care to be a traveler, I would rather be the one
sitting calmly by the roadside helping weary travelers on.

I’d like to be a neighbor in the good old-fashioned way,
finding much to do for others, but not over much to say.
I like to read the papers, but I do not years to see
what the journal of the morning has been moved to say of me;
in the silences and shadows I would live my life and die
and depend for fond remembrance on some grateful passers-by.

I guess I wasn’t fashioned for the brilliant things of earth,
wasn’t gifted much with talent or designed for special worth,
but was just sent here to putter with life’s little odds and ends
and keep a simple corner where the stirring highway bends,
and if folks should chance to linger, warn and weary through the day,
to do some needed service and to cheer them on their way.

From his book,  Collected Verse of Edgar A Guest
© 1934 by The Reilly & Lee Company
Image from Pixabay

Blackbirds in the Lilac Bush

The Ragtag Daily Prompt today was LILAC. I’ve been doing some serious thinking today and decided to share my thoughts in a story of sorts.

Image by koala0815 — Pixabay

The Lilac Bush

One day a lilac sprout appeared on this earth and began to stretch toward the sun. Soon the sapling attained a nice size and sent out branches, attractive and green, with the promise of a heavenly lilac scent every spring. As it bore larger leaves and spread out more branches people found it a sweet shade from the hot sun.

However, blackbirds passing by discovered the shrub and began using the branches as a regular perch. I suspect they saw themselves as ornaments. Mingling among the blooms the birds even picked up some of the lilac scent. But they were not happy campers, those blackbirds; they tended to be a contentious bunch. Some were especially harsh, constantly picking at the birds on nearby branches.

In time the lilac seemed so dotted with blackbirds that folks hardly saw the flowers. Here and there people may see a purple bloom, or catch the lilac scent, enough to realize there was a bush there. However, all those squawking, squabbling birds definitely spoiled the beauty of the shrub.

People started to say, “It’s ugly! Cut it down.

Others protested “There really is a lilac here and it is blooming. Can’t we rather shoo away those dreadful birds? Why should the world be deprived of the beauty of lilacs because there are blackbirds?

“But they like it so well. They’re always coming back to this shrub. Let’s get rid of it and we’ll be rid of the blackbirds.”

“Are you sure?”

Jesus told his followers that Kingdom of God was like a mustard seed; tiny when seeded, it would grow and become a great tree. So great that the birds of the air would lodge in the branches. (Matt 13:31-32) Over the years many different birds have settled in the branches of this great tree and claimed to be residents of the Kingdom, bringing many different dogmas and and so much strife.

Some years back John Lennon wrote a song about how wonderful it would be if we’d wake up one morning and there’d be no more religion. He was definitely thinking of all those squabbling blackbirds. But really, how much would change?

There are and always will be blackbirds. All-wise and inclined to squabble, many will perch in the tree of religion because it’s a handy shelter. If that tree were to disappear they’d find a different shrub. Race. Ethnicity. Color. Nation. Education. Military might. There’s always some reason to lord it over your neighbors and squash them.

However, don’t most of the world’s religions teach their disciples to respect your fellow man, at least in principle? I can’t speak for any others, but Jesus taught his followers to help those in need, care for the weak, turn the other cheek and live at peace. In spite of the extremists that make the headlines, virtue and beauty still bloom. People do get glimpses of the real tree; a bit of loving kindness still perfumes our air. Take that away and what would be left in this world?