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  • Warming waves 

    Crossing the void 




    Incising infinity 

    Eyes on our Earth 

    Espying earlier epochs

    To detect

    To discern

    To disclose

    Light must 




    Baring truths

    • Hello,
      There’s plenty of alliteration and assonance in your poem. I had to look up the meaning of synergy – a word I’ve sort of understood for a long time, without being able to pinpoint the meaning. Your poem certainly ‘produces a combined effect greater than the sum of its separate effects’, Well done.

    • Unique style striking poem-gives the image of a ray of light coming down

    • I love how your poem gradually builds from beginning to the end – “baring truths”. Good job.

    • Hi Alexis, I enjoyed this poem. The structure of it, the short lines, and the simplicity. Very well done:) Thanks for sharing.

    • I love this poem. The alliteration, assonance and short lines give the piece a great rhythm and energy which the words speak of. I liked the title and the final line of light baring the truth.

      Well done and thanks for sharing.

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  • They walk beside us. Stiff, stern, unyielding. Their faces are blank and I can’t tell – are they for us or against us? Mama says their job is to protect us, but I can’t help but wonder…do they like their job? Do […]

    • No exaggeration here. A very good glimpse into a not so distant pass.

      • Thank you, Sue, for reading and commenting on my story. And you’re so right…this historical event is not that far behind us. I only wish we’d come further than we have.

    • Oops – typo! ‘Past’!

    • Hi Patty,
      That was a great take on the prompt. Your narrative from her young, scared and startled pov was moving. I especially like how loud the heels were in the quiet school. Chilling image because a school is usually noisy. The fear and confusion over the guards, the tomato, the racial slurs, all of this is hard to read as we watch an innocent child hurt by inexplicable hatred.
      You kept the narrative going throughout and the tension just builds as the story moves on. The fact that they have to start in the principal’s office, so already being treated differently from the other kids sends home how tough school is going to be for these little girls.
      Really well done!

    • Hi Patty
      Congratulations on a beautifully written story. The emotions and tensions related to this true incident in history are so well portrayed in your writing. Well done!

    • Hi Patty,

      I just felt chills reading your story! Wow! A captivating interpretation of what might have happened. Your pacing was excellent as you build towards the climax and the end. Thanks for sharing this piece.

    • Great job on what might have gone through a young person’s mind on that important day. I love how the sensory details (the sound of her shoes on the floor, the oatmeal in her stomach) made me feel like I was there with her.

  • Image: https://unsplash.com/photos/YriuRFYUP0I?utm_source=unsplash&utm_medium=referral&utm_content=creditShareLink

    Loretta was skipping down the steps, leading to the little park behind the mosque. A man was […]

    • I’m not sure what happened at the end here – what is the rainbow? and what happened to Loretta
      was she sleeping with the boss and she uncovered some shady dealings? and got fired for it?

      just think something is lost in translation .

      The opening para – and particularly all the people described , seem not to have any bearing on the events that unfold in the shop .
      I’m sorry – I’m just really confused by this story. or rather the ending .

    • Hi Bogdana,
      I liked how you used the prompt.
      I agree with Kim; the closing scene was not clear to me either. Was your MC shot by the policemen and flew through the window? Was her cell phone tracked by her ex-boss? Did her cell phone explode?
      I enjoyed the plot; there’s a lot packed in 500 words! I believe a larger word count could help you to develop it into a more detailed version. I’d love to see that. 🙂
      Thanks for sharing. Keep it up.

    • I understood most of what happened: she committed suicide at the end? Some of the scene changes were too abrupt. For instance when she stood in front of the office, I thought we were still at the bar. I agree about the opening paragraph, you could lose some of that. I think you wanted to point out that the police would not be worried about her. Good story! Keep at it!

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  • Lucy Wethersby-Higginsbottom was not privy to the complaints on the local kind, caring Neighbourhood Watch site. You know the kind. Where virtue signalling is second to none.

    Anybody know the homeless woman that […]

    • Hi,
      The story was easy to read and the topic was an interesting choice. I enjoyed reading your story. The ending could easily have been another scene in the story instead of the reader just being told (show, do not tell). Thank you for sharing your story.

    • Oh my Ruth. This is a little gem. I love the circularity of the story, beginning with the critics’ assumptions and closing with the truth. So poignant and a sharp reminder not to judge a book by its cover. I especially like the matter-of fact style of the story, while telling such an enormous tale of grief and the struggle to go on with leading a worthwhile life. Did I mention I loved it? I loved it.

    • This is a lovely, if sad, story and as Susan said, a great reminder not to judge people based on appearances and assumptions. Lucy sounds like such a wonderful person, undeserving of such an end. I’m glad she had Poppet to care for her, as no one else did. The narrative and prose are well done, the story reads easily has great pace and flow. Well done and thanks for sharing.

    • Hi Ruth. Your story is a wonderful peek at the other side of a homeless person. One that we often don’t see although we may try to imagine who they really are. I did find the ending a bit sudden. I needed to be led into her demise and felt that the point you were trying to make in the story – don’t judge, was already made and didn’t need that punch at the end. I agree with Mara – a bit more showing in that last paragraph would allow the reader to be more immersed in your MC’s plight. Well done and thank you for sharing.

    • What a lovely and sad tale Ruth, and told with such care. I love how you ‘answered’ each unsubstantiated claim. A beautifully told story; well done.

  • I breathe in a belly breath. “Brady, Blythe again?!”

    My eyes shadow as his shoulders shrug. 

    “She is a FRIEND — a gal pal — give me a kiss — I’ve got to go.” His tone veils in vexation.

    A quick buss on my che […]

    • Great story and very well-written. I loved the scary vibe of this story. The main character’s voice is great and I thoroughly enjoyed reading it. Ending is a little vague, but it works in this case. Thank you for sharing.

    • Excellent. Poetic and intense. I’m a little annoyed that there’s not much I can offer in the way of things to second glance at. Because it is so well-written.

      I didn’t like… glaring at his protected password protecting Brady’s privacy. Simply because it pulled me out of the flow with protected/protecting so close together. Maybe alter one?

      I also had trouble thinking of a broken balloon. A burst balloon, yes. Or a whining balloon. But broken balloon… I’m not sure about that.

      And that’s all I’ve got. Because, start to finish, it’s a great short story. Thanks for sharing.

    • Ooh I liked this story! It makes me want to know what the consequences are going to be, lol. No criticism, except to say that I agree with the above comment on the use of protective/protecting word choices. I think if you used maybe, protective and hiding , instead? Other than that, I very much enjoyed this story. Good job on the creepy factor!

    • Loved the point of view you took with this story. I felt right there along with the narrator. And the line “With care, I transform pale into a pastiche of pulchritude,” was by far my favorite line.

  • Impetuous, wonderfully alone, smiling and proud he rides the dunes, passing them swiftly, sitting upright between the horns that, on each side of him, end in an upward spiral. The bike, Goldie, is a 1956 6T […]

    • Hi
      What a brass, bilious bully you have wrought: bold as brass hiding in the bright light. CA

    • Seyi replied 3 weeks ago

      Hey Ana, this is such a brilliantly visual piece. Plenty of words new to me (thanks for ‘dreamcatchers’ in this context and of course for ‘heterodoxy’.) I loved ‘He takes to the road like giving his soul to the arms of a lover,’ especially in view of his intentions. This phrase opens a door into the mind of your hunter. For the longest time. I thought he was searching for sexual partners, even after the ‘revenant’ line. Another chilling piece of writing. Well done, and feel better soon. Best regards, Seyi

      • Hi Seyi,
        I’m happy you liked the visual quality of it, as the story came to me as an image. I think the MC could be an interesting character to write a bigger piece on, will think about it. Maybe that could clarify wether he’s a lust killer or something else… As usual, thanks so much for stopping by!

  • The Old Man had a secret.

    Barbara, his wife, and my Mother had a closely guarded secret recipe for Turkey which he proudly carved every Thanksgiving.

    Renowned throughout our neighborhood in the small town of Los […]

    • Thanksgiving disasters would make a great anthology of short stories! Poor Mom and I can’t believe the dog didn’t suffer some ill effects after eating all that bacon. But I bet next year was bigger and better to make up for this one. Good job on this one. Enjoyed it!

    • Thank you Sorchia! I’m glad you enjoyed this tale about a breaking bad Turkey Dinner.

    • I loved this comedy of errors, Charles, the proverbial Thanksgiving to Remember, when anything that can go wrong actually does. This was such a fun read, thanks for sharing!

    • Hi Charles, growing up in Australia I have never celebrated thanksgiving:) I enjoyed your story – you have so many from your youth. I find your semi-autobiography-type stories are always very entertaining. Poor mum is all I can say. And oh my gosh, poor guinea pig too. Well done, you made me smile.

      • Thank you, Jane. I’m glad you enjoyed it! Bummer about no Thanksgiving in your neck of the woods – it’s my favorite Holiday next to Halloween. Lots of yummy food with apologies to the unfortunate Turkey.

    • Hi Charles,
      That was a fun story! I love how quirky and humourous your characters are. You had me at your title, it was a sure-shot attention snatcher. I loved how you described the effects of Mom’s cooking on the neighborhood, it made me smile. I especially loved these lines – “Wives often had to deal with sullen husbands and argumentative children who would suddenly refuse to eat the wholesome meals placed in front of them.”
      And who tries to give a pig spa treatment in a toilet! 😂 Seriously, that part had me in splits. What a day, I can imagine Mom’s dilema. The ending was sad and funny too. Poor Star! Amazing story! Thank you for sharing!

      • Thank you Amrita. I’m glad my story cracked you up. Thank you for reading it and for your supportive comments .

    • I’ve been lucky enough to be present at an American Thanksgiving dinner. I wish we celebrated it here in South Africa too, because I love that it is celebrated by everyone, regardless of religious belief or non-belief. Your story was a hoot and I felt for the poor mother, having to deal with one disaster after another! And yet, she pressed on past the point when many others would have given up! Well done, Charles, as always! – Rachel

      • Thank you, Rachel. I’m glad you enjoyed my story and found it funny. Thanksgiving is one of my favorite holidays. It’s a shame it’s not a universal holiday.

    • Charles – Well done as always. Favorite part was the spa treatment. 10 of 10 again, man. Thanks for sharing! – Matt

      • Ah yes, the fate of “Porky” was pure tragicomedy. I’m glad you enjoyed my story. Thanks for weighing in, Matt.

    • Fun story, Charles.

    • Hi Charles,
      thanks for the good chuckle. This is incredibly funny. You are quite the storyteller, I wouldn’t mind going out for a beer with you -alcohol free for me! Sure I’d be amused by your stories 😀

      • Hey Ana, thank you for the feedback! I’m glad you enjoyed my Thanksgiving Tale. It is my goal to write stories that are entertaining and fun to read. So I’m happy this one worked for you.

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  • The brass key weighs heavy in my hand. My ears celebrate the click as the key pivots in the lock. Swinging open the golden oak front door, I step off the veranda into the dim foyer. Dust motes dance in the […]

  • Steam rises in ribbons from the surface of the lake. The sun shimmers behind this screen, casting the world in a golden glow. “Shall we?” Douglas smiles at Mina, his auburn curls crushed by his fishing cap.”Of […]

    • UH-oh…. I love this story. Your descriptions are very poetic and I can see this lake before my inner eye. The mood between Mina and Doug is relaxed and then suddenly turns icy when Doug reveals the lake monster. Very well constructed.

    • So fun and then it got REALLY interesting! Well done. 😀

    • The thing local legends are made of and never told to others.

    • It starts out as a beautiful day and ends with a monster. I really liked the paragraph where they go out on the water – I could really picture the wind and the racket. Great job.

    • Nice ending. You left us wondering whether they let the monster go and save the legend or bring him in and end it. Nice fish story. Good job.

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Sharmayne Riseley

Profile picture of Sharmayne Riseley


Active 3 days, 15 hours ago
Short Story : 3
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WTC : 4
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Dialogue : 0
Flash Fiction : 30