OneWord: Five, Game, Sate, Scatter

Five: Across the street, backed by climbing ivy and silver graffiti hearts, is a young couple sitting on a green cement bench. The axis of his world tilting towards hers. A lean to her gravity – to the sunny disposition of her beautiful smile, and all of the kind things that come with it. And then he lifts his left hand, which is covered by a mitten, and runs it along her right jawbone to pull her cold lips to his.

Game: We played a game each night. As a family, while sitting at our kitchen table, talking face to face. The best thing was that for an hour or so there were no phones, no TVs, no invasions from the world. Except, perhaps, the occasional neighbor dropping by for a cup of sugar or an old friend from downstate checking in. It was the four of us and our cards and conversation.

Sate: To sate his desire, and growing appetite, for a slice of Lakeshore Berry Crumb pie from the Grand Traverse Pie Company downtown, Chris went to the trouble of bundling up in his vintage 1980’s one-piece polyester lime-green snowsuit, complete with snap on hood and matching Smith brand ski goggles, gassing up his 1987 Ski-doo and motor-sliding down the middle of M-37. It was, after all, the worst blizzard since the inception of his snowsuit.

Scatter: “Scatter, Buster, before mom sees you on the tile.” The dog sulked backwards to his usual spot in the corner of the TV room. He was safe for now, but unhappy and wanted to play.

Link to, which prompts me with each of the words and provides one minute to write about that word. Sometimes I run long.

OneWord: Patient

She was a patient of life, as it administered its medicine in daily doses of freshly cut tulips on her round oak kitchen table, delivered there by her husband after a rather mundane day at work. Of sunrises that greeted her as she turned right out of her driveway each morning to take her child to fourth grade. And of the feeling of her baby’s beautiful little hands reaching for the stars above on a cold winter night.

OneWord: Adopt, Maze, Clue, Flirt

Adopt: We learn to adopt at a young age. Oh, wait, scratch that. I was thinking that you said, “adapt.” Well let’s adopt a new direction to this post and think about it for a little bit before we get ourselves in more trouble.

Maze: The fog set in and our pace quickened. “We’re going the wrong way,” John said. “The moss on the tree indicates we’re going south. Camp is north.” We’d been hiking for three hours and none of us knew where north was, let alone camp. I kept thinking that I could smell Lindsey’s cooking – camp roast, mashed potatoes, and caramelized carrots – but my mind was playing tricks. Edna tripped on a root, and screamed. My head whipped around to see the commotion. As the maze of hysteria set in midst the evergreens, taller now than their fading shadows, a discord . . .

Clue: “I have no clue what she wants for Valentine’s day!”
“Really? You have NO clue? I barely hang out with you two, and, man, I can tell you she’s been dropping hints like they’re the sun setting in December.”
“Well, nothing. Get your ass to the flower store, make a reservation at Amical and think of something interesting to talk about for an hour other than golf clubs. And get the bracelet at the jewelry store downtown – the one in the window.”

Flirt: She flirted with me like it was her middle name. Like it was the sun. Like there was a bookshelf full of books and a fresh pot of coffee. Like a dog barks at cars. Like when a President of the United States of America dies and there’s a special report on TV. Like she is something beautiful captured in something cold – like a ripe red cherry in an icicle. Like she was being graded by God. Like her parents weren’t watching.

OneWord: Port, Pressed, Playground, Dense

Port: The port of call was 17. She was looking pretty and lean. In her white jeans and light blue tank with a butterfly on her breasts. I watched the world go ’round on her dark-lensed Ray-Bans – sailboat loaded by deckhands, speedboat misbehaving on sunken badlands, sun hanging over the white sands.

Pressed: She pressed the soft inner flesh of the orange against the rotating mound of the juicer. Her knuckles were white. She was standing on the tips of her toes. And the bangs she had just tucked behind her left ear fell in front of her eyes. The juice flowed through the built-in strainer and into the collection glass, ready to be consumed by our hungry little monsters (the children). It was 9am on Saturday morning. Our family was together. There were no youth sporting events or men’s golf leagues to attend. It was just the four of us sitting on the plush pillows of our kitchen nook, eating pancakes and fresh-squeezed orange juice while watching the rain trickle down outside.

Playground: The playground at Pathfinder School – my elementary school in Traverse City, Michigan – wasn’t the typical open field or lot with over-sized toys. It was the wood and all of its components. The myrtle-covered hills, the overgrown wander paths, the elder trees, the soft blanket of brown leaves and the black dirt a farmer would love. I could explore and wander about. I could play games. I could even get lost if I dared to do so.

Dense: The denseness of the flesh of the Honeycrisp apple surprised him as he eased his butcher’s knife through the varying diameter of its body. Still shaken by the rusty blue pick-up truck clipping his dog earlier in the afternoon, his hand was unsteady. The black carbon handle of the knife, which he had just rinsed in the double-basin stainless steel Kohler kitchen sink, was wet. The ball of his right hand, located just below where the index finger joined his palm, was the primary source of pressure on the top side of the knife handle. He leaned into the motion and pressed down harder. His eye twitched. His nose tingled. He sneezed. And then, unknown to him, his hand pressed the knife down through the apple and the index, middle and ring fingers of his left hand. The world seemed to freeze in place as he stared at the grotesque still life depicting two halves of an apple laying open on the antipodal points of what used to be a whole apple, three detached fingertips aligned behind the left apple half and a pool of blood seeping across the backdrop like anti-gravity curtains in an upside down theater.

Link to, which prompts me with each of the words and provides one minute to write about that word. Sometimes I run long.

OneWord: Couch

The couch in the livingroom has a thin film of Yogi slobber. It’s hairy and marred from claws gripping and sharp buttons scraping. But its the couch we got married on. Yes, we got married while sitting on a couch in our living room. It’s not even a full sized couch! It’s a love seat. And our minister, who was on the couch with us, is, according to his mother, June, husky. Sitting between my beautiful bride who was consumed by dozens of layers of crinoline and a plump sweaty semi-stranger was not ideal on a 95* June day. But the couch was important to us.

Our immediate family – six of them – managed to fit on our three-seater couch across the room from us. My sister-in-law (to be at the time) readjusted mid-ceremony and caused the remote control, which was apparently under the third couch cushion, to activate the television. The Golf Channel flashed on at full volume. I did my best not to be distracted during the homily as the immediate family scrambled to mute the television. Their sweaty flesh shifting on and separating from the damp leather sounded like sheets being ripped apart by rabid wolves. Afterwords, even the extended family and friends who were seated outside on the small community lawn along Eighth Street on couches they brought, said they could hear the commotion and feared that I had defected to the “Divot side.” I thought, at the time, that the “Divot side” wasn’t very clever. But what else are non-golfers going to say?

OneWord: Transport, Sinking, Silk, Umbrella, Force

Transport: To transport oneself into the shoes of another takes more effort than simple observation. One must not only be able to appreciate the struggles and triumphs of that other person. Those are easy and visible. One must also be able to . . .

Sinking: I have this sinking feeling about the red blinking voicemail indicator light. ‘Who left the message,’ I wonder. My sweaty palms stick to my coffee cup as I try to lift it to the dry lips of my already over-caffeinated body. It gets this way at work. Sometimes. Not always.

Silk: The seam of her black silk stockings caught my eye. The grip of the delicate lace on her thigh. From her heel up her leg, the vision made my heart beg, just a little, to be bigger, to pound faster, to outlast her. Her silk legs. Her lace flesh. She was a delightful sight.

Umbrella: The dark green golf umbrella that spanned six feet above her damp ponytail created a small haven of calm. Her feet were wet, she was running out of good gloves and was worried that her bra was showing through the light colored shirt she thoughtlessly chose to wear on this predictably rainy day.

Force: The force with which the wave hit my broad hairy torso stung like a giant had was slapping my cold naked flesh.

Link to, which prompts me with each of the words and provides one minute to write about that word. Sometimes I run long.