Monday, January 31, 2011

in the tropics

She lies alone in bed, stares in the darkness of the room and listens unwillingly to the howl of the snowstorm outside. She pulls the thick blanket over her neck as she feels a tad shivery. It is the middle of winter, and yet Ronnie's mind is in the tropics. Jason has been in her mind a lot.

She remembers him from forty years ago. He was the only one who looked her way, the handsome basketball player of the school team. He was tall and lithe and when he played he was so agile that his image is forever ingrained in her memory. Over the years, she has come to love watching basketball and it never failed that one or two players would remind her of him, the way he moved and sometimes even his looks. Tall men had been attracted to her even when she only stood at a little bit over 5 feet. Once, she dated one of the more popular basketball stars from the national league, but, however handsome and rich he was, he never measured up to what her perception of Jason was. She had heard that he had gone professional and longed to see him on television, remembering how he looked like when they were young: the soft soulful gaze of his eyes, the shy smile of his red lips, the awkward way he waved "hello" at her that day.

She has always wondered, as she still does, how it would have been. Why, when finding these old friends and classmates, it is him she longs to see again. Maybe now she won't be as shy to talk to him, unlike in high school. Maybe now she can make him laugh; maybe now she can find out what he is like right now.

And then there are the what if's. What if she was the go-getter that she had become? What if she had been bold enough and encouraged him more? What would it have been like to hold his hands. To gaze into his eyes. To kiss his lips. To feel his skin next to hers. To make love with him. There were so many possibilities that she would never know. And she longs to be back, so she would find out. All these years, it was Jason. The torch she thought was forgotten, a product of a brief flirting, a brief smile, a brief invitation. What if?

She lies in bed every night, thinking how it might have been with him. Was Jason the one that really got away?

Saturday, January 29, 2011



and the judge in disdain sees the verdict,
that is decided by the tired jury.
so the charge has now been dropped
and the criminal goes free.

Thursday, January 27, 2011

PROMPT: write about someone from the past

November, 2008:

I received an e-mail today. The sender, ST, wrote: "ASF is asking about you, can I give him your e-mail?"

This was rather unexpected and I asked myself where this was coming from. Now, ST is a glib kind of person, meaning he talked big, in a rather boastful way. I tried to think back: did I in any way let out anything about ASF? As far as I knew, I had not discussed him with anyone, other than saying he was the star of the basketball team when I was graduating from high school. Of course, everybody, especially the girls knew ASF, and who wouldn't.

There's a signal from Sanny on the YM messenger. I logged on.

Me: What's this bullshit you're playing with me about ASF?

ST: It's true, he e-mailed me. He said "Can I have VMM's e-mail?"

Me: How did he know about me? My screen name does not indicate anything about my real name.

ST: Well, I sort of asked him if he knew you.

Me: Why would you do that?

ST: Just to find out if he knew you. Why? Are you hiding from him?

Me: No.

ST: Were you his girlfriend in high school?

Me: What kind of stupid question is that? I didn't have a boyfriend in high school. Did you personally know ASF when you were in high school?

ST: We knew the same people.

Me: Did you know who his girlfriend was back then?

ST: Yes.

Me: Who was it?

ST: You!

Me: ST, you are full of bullshit!

ST: hahahahaha. It wasn't you? Well, I didn't really know who his girlfriend was that time. But he was very popular, he had to have a girlfriend.

Me: Well, then?

Several weeks after that, I stopped communicating with ST nor did I want to have anything to do with the alumni group he had established. To my surprise, he sent me an e-mail, wherein attached was an e-mail from ASF, asking him for my e-mail address.

ASF and I did not as much talk in high school. The encounters I had with him could be counted with the fingers in my one hand.

First encounter:

Cynthia, Aida, Neri, Lourdes and I were in a vacant room on the second floor, singing. The school athletes were practicing downstairs in the quadrangle, as well as the PMT's and the boy scouts. VA took a break from their PMT routine and came up with RC. We were talking about our Physics assignments. Then some students came up to use the other vacant rooms. ASF passed by with his team mates, saw VA and Cynthia and they talked. He was standing by the door when I decided to leave the room to see if the canteen was busy.

I paused right beside ASF, looked up at his face and said: "My, you're very tall!"

I remembered that he smiled at me and said, rather shyly, "Hi!"

Second encounter:

A few weeks later, one afternoon, my classmate ZM and I were walking past the registrar's office and ASF was with some of his classmates. He ran and stopped right in front of me, effectively blocking my way.

"Hi," he said.

"Hi," I said while he started walking backwards.

"Are you coming to see the game?" he asked mentioning the name of a school that I didn't catch. He was talking about a basketball tournament that the school team was competing in.

I would have wanted to come with some of my girlfriends but the pressure of doing well in school had a lot of constraints on me. Plus I would need extra money for bus fare which I knew I couldn't have, so I shook my head.

"Can't." I continued to walk, ZM in tow.

"Will you pray that we'll win?" he asked, he's behind me now.

I looked back, and looked at ZM. I smiled at ASF and I said "Sure!" Suddenly he was gone.

"He likes you," ZM said.

Third encounter:

Three days later. The basketball court was being prepped for a game with a school from out of town. We were having recess and Cynthia and I were in the hallway passing time. ASF, holding a notebook, approached us. Cynthia gave him a big smile and they talked.

After a few minutes, he turned to me.

"Vikki, are you going to watch the game this afternoon?" he asked. This surprised Cynthia, her eyes round in amazement.

"Yes, we're going to watch," Cynthia said to him and was about to say more when ASF said to me:

"I promise my first basket will be for you."

I pointed a finger at me, my eyes inquiring, Me?

"Yes, you."

"Just the first?" I had to make light of the situation. Cynthia's jaws dropped on the ground and needed picking up.

"The first five," he said smiling. That's when I noticed his eyes. Looking at me. Me! And I noted the uneven lower front teeth. And his lips were red. And he was slim. And he had fair skin, well, compared to mine.

Cynthia recovered from this surprise. "Why not all?"

He laughed and said "see you". As he walked up the stairs, he looked back and smiled.

Cynthia turned to me: "What was that all about?"

"You heard him, first five baskets for me." I strutted back towards the classroom, like a peacock showing its plumes.

Cynthia, dear Cynthia, told the first girl who passed by.

That afternoon, at the game, Cynthia and I stood on the second floor hallway just above the canteen, where we had the perfect view of the west end basket. Our school's team scored first. It was him. He was looking up scanning the building until he saw me. And he shot another basket. And I cheered. For the team. Until I got my five baskets.

And Cynthia said, "I didn't know you're his girlfriend."

"I'm not. I hardly ever talked to him."

We went downstairs to buy Coke. Some girls from third year afternoon section, gave me a snide look and whispered loud enough for me to hear, "ASF's girlfriend."

And I thought: I am?. Hah! My plumes just got more colours!

Tuesday, January 25, 2011


the seeds of hatred
they can grow like a wildfire
nip the bud right now!
plant the seeds of love
let it grow and fill your heart
and let peace rule us.

Monday, January 24, 2011


Megan feels a tad playful tonight. And giddy.

On her shopping spree on the weekend, upset that Larry wouldn't see her, guess who she saw at the classy jewelry store at the mall? Yes, Larry himself. And he was looking at engagement rings. She had been feeling both ecstatic and nervous since.

When Larry calls her that morning to say they were going for dinner that night, she sort of plays it cool, making him wait while she checks her Outlook calendar. Of course she is free, and she even makes a hesitant "Uhm...ahh..." before she says "Okay."

She and Larry have been dating for several months now. Dating as in having sex, either in his apartment or her condo. They go out for fancy dinners, why, they even went on a weekend trip to one of his friends' cottage.

As Megan twirls around before the floor-to-ceiling mirror in her bathroom, (checking to see if her pantyhose was perfect, no creases on her dress, the like (why, she even went to the salon to have her hair done as well as her make up!), she has visions of Larry kneeling down, in front of all the patrons at Truffles, and asking her to marry him. She looks at herself in the mirror, tries out again her "shy, cute smile" and places her right hand over her cheek.

"Oh, Lar," she says, raising her eyebrows just so. She places her hand now over her chest as she imagines Larry taking out the diamond ring he had purchased for her, "Oh, my God! This is so unexpected!" But she couldn't say it without the grin on the corners of her mouth. Megan is extremely excited.

The door bell rings. Larry is at the door, holding a bunch of pink roses, her favourite. He compliments her, "That's a beautiful dress, but of course, it's beautiful because you're wearing it." Megan giggles, nervously, as she has practiced all day.

At dinner, Larry rarely speaks, but would occasionally touch her cheek with the back of his hand. When they were having their main course, he reminds her of that new position they tried the last time "we had sex" and how much he enjoyed having her "that way", then he looks at her like he is ready to do her right then and there. Megan starts to feel horny and wishes Larry would already drop on his knee and propose. If he keeps this any longer, she might have an orgasm by the end of the meal.

Larry orders port for their dessert. Then he takes Megan's hand.

"Meg," he says and Megan thinks, Okay, here it is.

"Meg, I'm getting married." Megan smiles. Wow! this is a different approach to a proposal.

"I've proposed to my girlfriend last night and she said yes." Larry says this with a smile.

"What?" Megan says. "I thought I am your girlfriend." She almost couldn't hear herself.

"Well, you're my girlfriend, sort of. But I think of us more like lovers. I enjoy having sex with you, you're so game at everything."

Megan is stunned.

"What I'm driving at is, I hope we can still... you know...get together once in a while even when I'm married."

Saturday, January 22, 2011

in the donut shop

For the fourth time, this time with the Tim Horton's store manager as witness, Olivia repeated her order, "Cinnamon-raisin bagel, lightly toasted, double butter, please."

"Anything else?" the cashier asked, also for the fourth time, then looked at the manager who nodded in approval.

"Large green tea, bag on the side, please," says Olivia, rolling her eyes at the exercise.

When her order came, for the fourth time she received a small cup of green tea with the bag in it, and milk, and a maple glazed donut with a slice of cheese.

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

laundry day

angora sweater:
does it go in the dyer?
that is the question.
socks, drawers and such
towels, bed sheets and what’s this?
yuk! smelly sneakers!

Monday, January 17, 2011


My fear

When suddenly the flow of words stops and
Runs dry not the inkwell but the ideas;
It lurks around
This unwelcome friend who
Empties your mind and
Renders your vision

Be glad when you can
Lick and
Overcome this menace by just
Continuing to write and
Kick its butt once and for all.

Sunday, January 16, 2011

in the casino

Percie, my secretary, is both nervous and ecstatic. She’s never been to a casino before. The casinos set up at fundraising galas don’t qualify as casino. This one here today is the real one, where you sink real big money in that goes in the pockets of the owners or the government officials. This casino has waitresses clad in skimpy clothing. This casino has cameras all over the ceiling and walls and security men rounding the floors periodically, like every ten minutes. This casino has security men checking patron’s ID’s and purses.

“Ma’am,” the burly looking security guard slightly bows his head upon recognizing me. I open my purse for him to inspect it, but he smiles and says, “It’s okay, ma’am. I know you.”

Percie clutches her shoulder bag close to her body, a skinny security guard motions for her to place it on the table for inspection. She looks at me. The first security guard tells him it’s okay, “She’s with Ma’am.” Percie turns her nose up at the skinny guy.

“Well, that was nice. Who are you, Ma’am?” Percie says mockingly.

“I worked at the Front Desk before they had the casino. The secu’s know me,” I tell her.

“Oh, my God, there’s so many people!” she exclaims.

“Yes, and it’s only three o’clock in the afternoon.” I walk ahead of her and she follows me. I show her where the slot machines are.

“A dollar? Who comes here, millionaires?”

“Chinese, mostly, and businessmen,” I say eyeing a half empty Black Jack table.

“Are you going to play?”

“Of course, that’s why we came, isn’t it?”

“Well, I just wanted to see what a casino looks like.” Percie’s eyes follow a passing waitress with a large tray loaded with beer, wine and other drinks. “Wow, you’d think she’s going to bed with those clothes. Why didn’t she just take everything off.” I laugh.

“Pers,” I say as I fish out a $50 bill from my purse. “Here, sit and play this machine here.” She sits on the stool in front of the slot machine that has pictures of cherries and variations of the casino logo.

I show her how to work the slot machine, explaining how the winning, or losing, works. She puts in a token and presses the button for one token plays. On her tenth token, she wins a few more tokens which she immediately puts in her little bucket. She smiles. This goes on for a few minutes before she tells me, “Go, don’t watch me.”

I walk over to the Black Jack table where there are now only two patrons, all with less than a hundred dollar worth of chips and the dealer starting to deal a new set of cards. I sit on the centre stool, hand the dealer a $50 bill and he gives me ten pieces five-dollar chips. I place three of them as my bet. The patron on my left bets all his chips, the man on my right bets only some of his. The dealer deals the card. I get two aces and place them face up on the table. I split my bet and the man on my right place a bet on my one card. It wins black jack, the other got an eight of diamonds. I motion “stay”. When the dealer opens his cards he has 24. All bets win. The dealer deals again.

On the fifth deal, Percie sits beside me. The dealer asks her if she’s playing. She shakes her head and tells the dealer she’s with me. He looks about and seeing not many people around us, lets her stay.

“How much did you start with?” she asks.

“Fifty,” I answer without looking at her.

“And you have now, wait…" she counts my chips, "$350?”

“Yes, please be quiet.”

“Wow, you’re good.”

I get fourteen on this deal and scratch the surface with my fingers for him to give me another card. I get a five of spades. Percie watches intently as the dealer opens his cards. He has eighteen. He promptly gives me my winnings.

“Let’s go, Cynne. We’ve won already,” she says.

“Why,” I look at her briefly, “did you win in there?” I jerk my head to the direction of the slot machine.

“No,” she says. I know what she has done. She would’ve cashed in whatever token is left before I have left for the Black Jack table. “Can we go.”

“Okay,” I say, “one last bet.” I place all but one of my chips in front of me as the dealer prepares to deal again. Percie’s eyes widen in horror.

“Are you nuts? You’re already ahead and you’re betting all your money?”

I show her the remaining chip worth $50 and hand it to her. “Go cash it and wait for me at the door.”

She takes the chip, stands behind me and says, “I’ll wait for you.” She looks sad, sorry for me wasting the money that I didn't have in the first place.

The dealer waits for me to open my cards. They were an ace of spade and a Jack of Hearts. Black Jack. The dealer promptly gives me twice the equivalent of my bet. I get up as I gather my chips, all but for one which I push towards the dealer. He smiles and say “Thank you.” It was a $100 chip.

“Stay, you’re on a winning streak,” the man on my right says. “Lady luck’s going to get mad at you if you leave.”

“It’s just beginner’s luck,” I say. “I always quit when I’m ahead. ‘Tis the same with gambling.”

I hand Percie the chips and she merrily dashes away to cash them in.

I meet Percie at the door. She looks upset. “Do you know that you gave the dealer $100 for a tip?”


“But that is just too much!” She says as she hands me my $850. I hand her $300 and very discreetly hand a $50 bill to the burly security guard at the door as we leave. He smiles and slightly bows his head.

“Who are you,” Percie says between her teeth. “Mrs. Santa Claus?”

“Pers, it’s not my money. I only invested $50 in that game. At least I got my money back. That money I gave away, and this with me, it's not mine.”

“I just think you are too generous.” She pouts. I chuckle.

I give the doorman $20 as he whistles at a cab for us. A woman, in her late thirties, seemingly nervous and upset, approaches us and talks to Percie.

“Ma’am, do you think I can hitch a ride with you to the bus stop?” The bus stop is about a ten-minute walk.

Percie looks at the woman from head to toe. “Why?” she asks.

“I just had a bad day. I lost all my money on the roulette and I don’t have money for taxi.”

“Well, that’s what you get for gambling,” Percie tells the woman. “I don’t know, ask her, she’s the boss.” She motions to me.

The woman looks at me, her eyes pleading. I see her earlobes bearing the marks of her earrings. Her wrist has a white line around it, where her watch would have been normally. Her left ring finger has the same mark. Only a simple band remains in one of the fingers in her right hand.

“Sure,” I say. I motion for the woman to sit beside the taxi driver.

Percie rolls her eyes and waves her arms in exasperation. "Why don't we just let her shoot us right here?"

Inside the cab, Percie tells the driver that the woman is getting off at the corner. I ask the woman where she lives and before she can answer, we reach the bus stop and Percie promptly tells the driver to stop. The woman scrambles to get off without thanking us. Percie rolls down her window and yells at her, "Thank you very much, ha?"

"Gheez, Pers, let go. The woman's already down on her luck."

She rolls her window up and laughs. "How ungrateful, couldn't even say a simple thank you."

"Ma'am," the driver says shaking his head. "That lady is a professional gambler. I give her a ride almost everyday. Some days my passenger wouldn't let me because they're afraid she's a hold-upper. But I know her, she's addicted to the casino."

Saturday, January 15, 2011


There are things in my garden that you can't touch
First the roses and wisterias, the dahlias and irises
The ivies and impatience, as well as the costas
And in the sweet peas, you'll find the viper's nest.

Friday, January 14, 2011

the dinner guests

Elizabeth wakes up from her long nap on the sofa; she must have been really tired to have had napped for more than three hours and had it not been for the doorbell, she probably would have slept until morning. She looks at the clock, walks towards the door, stretches her arms as she lets out a big yawn at the same time as she opens the door. It is her good friend Leah, holding a bottle of wine, and her husband Bobby, holding a bunch of store-bought flowers.

As the two visitors say "Hi", Elizabeth suddenly remembers that this is the night she's having them for dinner and that there's virtually nothing in the fridge.

Thursday, January 13, 2011


The frozen snow on the fields along Lynden Road sparkled in the light of the full moon. It seemed the stars were scattered along the fields instead of being in the sky above. It was after midnight and although tired from an entire day at her photo studio, Jemma tried to concentrate on the hilly road. The minus twenty-five windchill made for treacherous driving on the highway and she knew this slopy farm road would be more treacherous. Large patches of black ice had formed and she still had three kilometers to drive before she reached the farmhouse.

She gripped the stirring wheel when, going down a slope, her tires slid and the car made two full turns as it reached the valley. Thankful when the car righted itself, she continued driving. It would be a long and slow drive but she knew she had to be very careful and patient.

At the top of the next incline, she saw right away the glitter of a pair of eyes ahead. She expected a deer, as they were wont to wander this road but she was surprised to find a coyote standing in the middle of the road.

"Come on, Wiley," she moaned as the car neared the coyote, "get the hell out of there, please!" Amusing herself, she said with a chuckle, "Beep! Beep!"

Jemma put the car gear on neutral so that it slowly approached the coyote who wouldn't budge. When she thought the car would hit the animal, it slowly walked to the side, its eyes still fixed on her. Jemma breathed a sigh of relief. The wind blew and flecks of snow fell down from the bald trees.

She kept her high beams on and spotted a family of raccoons up ahead. Two large ones and three smaller ones were feeding on the remains of a squirrel. They didn't move a muscle as she neared and only did so when Jemma pressed the car horn. She continued driving thinking all the critters had moved to the side but she winced when she felt a slight bump in her rear tire as she drove past. She felt a shiver in her spine knowing it could be one of the small ones. She dared not look back lest her car ended up in the ditch.

At the same time that she heard the scratching noise, the angry faces of two large raccoons appeared in front of her and could hear their wailing. In confusion, she hit the brakes but the car jerked and the motor died. Luckily, she had reached the part of the road where there was no black ice. The animals kept scratching at her windshield. Turning on the wipers did not faze them. Suddenly the coyote jumped on the hood of her car and snapped one of the raccoons and in a flash it was gone. The other raccoon jumped off and Jemma immediately restarted her car.

The rest of the drive, although patched here and there with the dreaded black ice, was now uneventful and Jemma started to relax, although the image of the angry raccoons still gave her some chills. But she was thankful for "Wiley" for rescuing her and she promised herself to be more sympathetic to the cartoon character next time she joined her children in watching cartoons.

At the turn on Jerseyville Road to her farmhouse, she glanced at the open field to her right, covered with thick ice that took on the colour of bluish gray as they glistened in the moonlight. The coyote sat atop a tall mound on the icy field, its sillhoutte, with its prey by its feet, exactly in the centre of the moon that loomed large in the sky. Jemma stopped her car, awed by the beautiful image. Her exhaustion suddenly gone, she grabbed her camera and, lowering the passenger side window a few inches, snapped pictures of the precious scenery.

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

the newspaper boy

"I don't want to do this anymore, Dad," Billy says as he pushes his mom's shopping cart down the pavement.

"But I thought you said you wanted to do what I do for a living," his dad says back to him.

"Yeah, but you're making me do all the work! And I don't get paid."

"I'm teaching you," his dad fishes out a paper from the cart, rolls it up and throws it at the porch of the house, "how money is earned, so you'd learn to spend wisely."

Billy continues to push the shopping cart, its little wheels wobbly from the weight of the thick dailies. Two boys, in hockey uniforms, walk past them, lugging their large hockey bags and hockey sticks that make them almost trip. The end of one hockey stick hits Billy's cart and then his leg.

"Look at those bastards," his dad says. "All they know is play hockey, they wouldn't know how hard life is because their parents protect them by sending them to hockey camps." He throws another paper at another house's balcony. He misses and the paper scatters about on the steps. He continues to walk while Billy pauses, torn between going back and put the paper properly or just continue on.

Then his dad walks back and puts his arm around Billy's neck and musses his hair with his other hand. "But us, we're going camping in three days time, how's that, huh?"

Billy looks back at the two boys with their hockey gears as they blended in the darkness behind them.

"I'd rather go play hockey," he mutters under his breath.

Tuesday, January 11, 2011



my motivation:
accomplish something worthwhile
like writing a book


type all the letters
let the words in your mind flow
fight this writer's block

Monday, January 10, 2011

the hotel

The Hotel

Sonja stood a good distance as she watched the large metal ball as it swung and hit the brick facade of the old hotel. Seemingly defiant, only a few bricks budged and fell and the same thing happened at the second hit. The third time, however, the structure just crumbled to the ground, all of its broken concrete and distorted metal and broken glass reduced to one great heap of rubble. It took a mere fifteen minutes.

The workers erected a makeshift fence around the rubble, and posted a NO TRESSPASSING sign. When everyone else had left, Sonja walked towards the fence and stared at the remains. She bent down to pick up an errant red brick and threw it down the heap.

She was glad the hotel's gone. She was relieved at its demise.

Twenty-five years ago, her dreams ended inside that hotel. Twenty-five years ago, Armand left her because of what happened at the hotel. Twenty-five years ago, five young men, sons of rich businessmen and high profile politicians, took away her dignity, her life, her dreams, her love. They did it in that hotel. They tried to bribe the workers, the police, everyone. But Sonja stood her ground. She fought the giants in order to obtain justice, as her beautiful face appeared in the newspapers the common folks rallied around her. And the powers that be listened. Not one of the five was spared. Justice came and exacted payment for Sonja.

Ironic, it was. The families of the criminals paid her a handsomely sum. Now she is rich. But money could not buy back her youth, her innocence, her dreams, her love, her life. She was there when all five were placed on the electric chair, one by one. She watched them die, the same way they had watched while they took turns pillaging her body.

There was no forgiving in her heart. And yet there's no happiness either. The memories still lived in her mind, but she was glad the hotel's gone.

Sunday, January 9, 2011

the year that was

In January, in an attempt to re-capture my writing muse, I started to follow this blog. Although I had modest success in that I started to write something meaningful, I almost abandoned writing. This was because in the spring, a very good friend, also a writer, told me my stories had no "kick" in them, no real conflicts in them, which made for uninteresting read. I felt so disappointed so I decided to not write anymore or strive to get published. That's how much I respect this friend and her opinions.

During the summer, we had a family crisis, in that my son's marriage fell apart and he came to live with me while he tried to fix his life. He has two boys and they stayed with him at my house four days every week. The care of these children fell on me and I used this as an excuse not to do any writing.

But I still found myself writing snippets almost everyday, especialy after spending time with the boys, listening to them, doing things with them. There was one day when the eldest during one of our conversations said "they killed my dreams". The sadness that gripped me was unexplainable listening to that being said by an eight-year old child. That's the inspiration for my take on the prompt "the interview" . Paragraphs 12 to 22 were a variation of our conversation one beautiful Saturday afternoon as we sat at the park.

There are some people who like my writing and have been following my blog and had wondered why I seldom posted. Then I remembered what my boss in my first job told me one day when I told her my teacher in high school once told me I can never be a writer because "my essays were flat". Antonia, my boss, who was educated as a journalist and came from a family of writers and scholars in the Philippines, said, "Just because one person say you're no good, doesn't mean you are. Everyone has an opinion. So I say now, you're good, and if you keep at it, you will become very good. That's my opinion. Will you take heed?"

So I kept on writing, posting on my blog every now and then. And when my other friend, Writer's Block, came and visit, I'd dash over to Daily-Writing Practice and take on the prompts. And I even started writing poems again, and learned to write 'haiku'. Of course, I have met you, guys, albeit online (for now).

My goal for 2011? For now, I strive to write at least 1,000 words everyday. And before the holidays, I looked at my old files, more specifically, the novel I had been working on and damnit I want to get at it and finish it. And maybe NaNoWriMo in November?

Saturday, January 8, 2011



haven't i warned you about this before?
that although you don't see my nose twitch
just don't make me angry or don't piss me off
or else you'd know that i'm a bad witch.

Friday, January 7, 2011

the concert

the concert

Watching her was a dream come true. In her black velvet gown, she sat on the edge of the high stool, delicately brushed her hair aside with her beautiful fingers, and when she sang the first few notes of "What are you doing the rest of your life?", I cried.

Her voice was half a note lower than 30 years ago, but it didn't matter. For the mere price of $275 I got to see her and hear personally the greatest voice of them all: Barbra Streisand.

Thursday, January 6, 2011

the first

The anomaly does not escape Kalan 's keen eye and it is the first thing he notices of this man who claims to be Father Richard.

The priest takes a pack of cigarette from his pocket, shakes it and a stick peeks out of the pack. He puts the stick between his lips and places the pack down on the coffee table in front of him. He takes the small book of matches from the table, the one that came from one of the restaurant near the church, The Queen's Plate. He sucks the cigarette and blows out the smoke.

"Sit down, Kalan. You know you're not going anywhere soon, so you might as well be..shall we say, friendly? At least?" Father Richard says as he motions Kalan to sit on the arm chair opposite him.

"Who do you work for, and who are you? What do you want from me?" Kalan hisses.

"The documents that Patty took at the church. They're not complete. I reckon you have the rest of it."

"What document are you fuckin' talking about?" Thoughts run through Kalan's mind, trying to figure out what the sonofabitch is trying to say.

The door opens, the person wearing the heavy coat enters and motions at Father Richard. He pulls from his right pants pocket a car key. And that confirms Kalan's first anomaly: the real Father Richard kept his car key in his left pocket because he was left handed. This impostor is definitely a right hander.

But what of the face? Plastic surgery?

Then it occurred to Kalan: Father Richard has a twin?

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

boarded up

Kalan ’s jaw drops in surprise and confusion at seeing Father Richard, or whoever it is that looks like the dead priest, as he hugs in greeting the figure in heavy coat. They stand in the middle of the yard talking, their boots buried knee-deep in the snow, the snowy woods in the background. He sees Father Richard glance towards him at the window, doffs his hat, smiles and waves. He completely forgets about the door behind him that has opened. He tries to lift the levers of the window when he hears a click and he feels the cold touch of the barrel of a gun against the back of his neck.

“No, you’re not going to do that, my boy.” It is the white-haired woman.

As Kalan turns around, he finds two huge men looming over him and quickly hold him by the arm. He tries to fend them off without success.

“What the f*** do you want from me? Who the f*** are you?”

“Just call me Mrs. Doubtfire, my boy.” Mrs. Doubtfire smiles and Kalan realizes that indeed the white-haired woman is the spitting image of the movie character.

Presently, Father Richard and the figure in heavy coat enter the room.

"Lose your gun, Patty," Father Richard says smiling. "The boy's harmless when he's unarmed."

"Stop calling me 'boy', you idiots!" and Kalan pushes Mrs. Doubtfire, or Patty , before the large hand of one of the men could grab him by his neck.

Father Richard waves the man off and motions for everyone to leave, as he settles on an armchair covered with a heavy tarp. He lights a cigarette and blows smoke circles towards where Kalan stands.

"Who the f*** are you?" Kalan asks.

"I'm Father Richard, Kalan. Don't you recognize me?"

Kalan bobs his head, in disgust. He knows this guy is a fake. He knows Father Richard. He has known him for as long as he can remember. He knows the lines on his face, and of course, he has, or had, a birthmark which this guy doesn't have.

Kalan turns towards the door in an attempt to leave. Father Richard holds his right arm up, palm facing Kalan.

Yup, Kalan thinks, he's a fake!

And as Kalan walks back towards the man who claims he is Father Richard, the incident at the boarded up brick house in Cabbagetown comes back to him. Now he is positive. Father Richard is dead and this man is stepping in to walk in the dead priest's shoes.

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

the storage room

mem'ries, old and sad
locked away perhaps for good
and not to be missed.


old knick-knacks galore
and the rest of my whole life
in a cold, dark room.

Monday, January 3, 2011

the bedroom

the bedroom

“Thank God for Fabreze!” she mutters while she sprays the bare mattress. The right side slightly sinks in, Jacques' spot during the last three years. Not a problem, she would just have to turn it over and the mattress will go back to its form even though it might take a few weeks. She turns on the electric fan and directed the air towards the mattress. She fetches from the linen closet the new bed pad she has bought and the new sheets that she wants to use. The new blue and white linen sheets that match the new curtains she has installed on the window. Already, she has thought of a name for the bedroom: the blue willow room. It's not her bedroom, it's THE blue willow room.

She lightly pats the top of the mattress with the palm of her hands to make sure it is dry when she hears a knock on the door. She clucks her tongue, annoyed at this intrusion. She walks out of the bedroom, er, the blue willow room, thinking where she would position the three-foot floor vase. She opens the door.

“Hiya!” It is Jacques.

“Oh, it’s you.” Jacques pushes the door and enters.

“Kinda hard to get rid of me when I’m just across the hall from you, n’est-ce pas?” he teases her.

“What do you want now?” she asks, not really hiding her annoyance.

“Have you got milk? I need some for my tea.”

Sunday, January 2, 2011



My Sister and I

She's two minutes younger, and she is taller
She is fertile and I am barren
She smiles a lot, my face is a frown
Although when I want to I am the better clown.

She is plump, I am slimmer; she is rough, I am calmer
She creates with her hand, I am more the thinker
She likes her men younger and with full head of hair
I like mine older, and the balder, the sexier.

She speaks three languages, I speak seven
I've been around the world, she lives in Spain
I can cook up a storm, from soup to dessert
She can, too, literally, because she's a witch.

She's very friendly, and I am more reserved
She talks incessantly, whereas I sit and wait
She loves diamonds, gifts from her exes
I make do with pearls, real ones and fakes.

She spends her money like it's going out of style
I work my ass off and must until I die
But we love each other for we are sisters
And I'll give her my money if she'll let me spend hers.

Saturday, January 1, 2011

new beginnings

new beginnings

all decorations have been removed and stored
the christmas tree's folded and boxed
and he gives me the news that he's decided to move
ah, how better to start the new year and my mood.