Henley the Bearded Dragon (Poetry Competition)

Wiki photo

Grey and pretty, frilled and scaled,
with blood around her head,
at first I couldn’t ascertain
if she were live or dead.
“Some bastard hit her”, I did cry,
“And left her on the road to die.”

Continue reading “Henley the Bearded Dragon (Poetry Competition)”

April Short Story: Winner

Thank you very much, Nym, PapaG and LW, for your entries, which I enjoyed immensely.  Well done!

Nym: Magical thinking

An excellent take on the fairytale, Cinderella, which flows nicely and is an absorbing read (you are good at dialogue, Nym; tricky stuff, in my opinion). I expected a happy ending (almost obligatory in such a tale), but still found the final paragraph surprising and delightful.

PapaG: Worlds Apart

This is a difficult and painful subject, but a good choice for the theme.  It is usual to attempt to include the required words seamlessly, but I liked the way ‘orange peel’ is used as a conspicuous introduction to the story; very effective.  A poignant, affectionate and sensitive portrayal of Auntie, PapaG, with sprinkles of humour.

LW: A Very Short Story for Bilby

I had my doubts from the beginning about the wisdom of this inter-species union. It is an odd match, even bizarre, one may say, which makes for a wildly imaginative and entertaining piece, well suited to the theme. I think you could go for a trilogy, LW; this story has legs!

Continue reading “April Short Story: Winner”

The Scales of Justice (March Creative Writing Competition)

He didn’t know why he’d agreed to go on the bloody walk. He was bored by the routine, the domestication, the girl; however prettily packaged.  He watched her pick up the house keys which shared a ring with a miniature red penknife (nail file, corkscrew, scissors, blade) and an antique silver whistle, made in England, with some stranger’s spit lurking inside; useless things, worthless sentimental nonsense. He had never understood her attachment to memories. Continue reading “The Scales of Justice (March Creative Writing Competition)”

In the Bleak Mid Winter: October Short Story

She sits in the armchair smoothing the worn fabric. There is an old key on the table. She focuses on the key, clears her mind of grief and allows the happiness to surface and grow like a flame. On this special anniversary, she is weaving magic in the moonlight, plaiting strands of memory to bring them back to her.

“I’ll see you tomorrow, my darling. Don’t be late!”  He smiles, play growls, and kisses her enthusiastically.

She watches him walk to the car and waves as he drives off.  After she has locked the front door and put the key back on the table, she makes a fuss of Jed, tops up his water and climbs the stairs to bed.

 Beyond the kissing gate, the gravestones are rimed with frost, glinting in the sunlight. Her dog looks handsome this morning, sporting a red kerchief and making the best of it. He would rather be about other business, but he keeps pace with her careful steps along the silver path, towards the church door.

Her bridegroom whispers, “You look beautiful, Mary, just like a snow queen.”

Continue reading “In the Bleak Mid Winter: October Short Story”

Winner: Fifteenth Photo Competition


Thanks very much, Charioteers,  for your excellent and varied entries.

Araminta:  Pollarded trees and chimney

I like the moody light in this photo and the chimney looks splendid against the trees.

JanusArborial Abundance

This one reminds me of an Impressionist painting.  I love the fresh lime foliage and lacey effect.

OZ: Jacarandas beside the Brisbane River

The wild exuberance of the Jacarandas contrasts beautifully with the formal landscaping.  Good photo.

Sheona: Trees in the Tatras

An interesting and unusual interpretation of the theme; reminds me of my other home where dead trees were transformed into bush furniture.

Nym: Tree and weather vane

This charmingly eccentric photo is a delightful surprise.

Christopher: Cherry Tree in Ueno Park, Tokyo

Lovely contrast between the silky grey of the tree trunk and spectacular blossom.

Bravo: Shadow of tree on church (?)

Clever interpretation; a most pleasing photo.

Low Wattage: Summer noon and Winter dawn (diptych)

Brilliant seasonal contrast. You could have entered this in John’s competition, LW!  I’m sure trees ‘work’ in their quiet way.

Rick: Metal tree in Budapest

An inspired tree, imo, which I’ve privately named ‘The Weeping Tree”.  Shame there were so many people, as I would have loved to see the whole sculpture.  Does it  ‘chime’ on a windy day, Rick?

Soutie: ‘Beach’ trees

Nice title, Soutie, and a fun take on the theme. This would raise a smile from me at first sighting, but I’m not sure I’d appreciate it as a permanent fixture!  (Thanks for the non-entry coral tree; very nice 🙂 ).

……… and the winner is ………

Continue reading “Winner: Fifteenth Photo Competition”

Fifteenth Photo Competition

Be it majestic, beautiful, stark, straight, bent, riven, ailing, weeping, or occasionally troublesome, there is one near you (hopefully). At this time of year, it may be undergoing a dramatic change in appearance. It doesn’t matter what it’s doing, I’d like a photo of it please, on this thread.

The subject is Trees.

For those of you with Entish inclinations, please take a leaf from Janus.

Entries by midnight 15 September.