Tag Archives: love



Jim Earl headed to town bright and early, his patience waning at getting Ginny to her doctor appointment. The antiquarian white-knuckled the wheel at “2” and “10” as if loosening his hold would end disastrously.

Passing drivers never suspected that cowboy hat brim covered a dome with only a few remnant hairs. Jim Earl kept laser focus on the road ahead, his love’s ailments outweighing his own.

An undetected stroke brought on oxygen-deprived dementia, except Jim Earl never went to the doctor himself. Not even his beloved realized. Getting lost that day was the first of many times to come.


100 Word Challenge – patience 





Filed under country noir, creative non-fiction, writing


“Owww, dammit!” Glenda howled, hopping on one foot and landing to limp on the other. “I’m gonna feel that later.”

Kicking that cedar stump was one way to take out frustration felt for Don. “It ain’t hurtin’ him none, though,” she told it. Controlling his behavior came as easily as conquering invasive plant infestation. Chopping at it soothed her feelings little though.

“I may never forget what he said, but I better get over it or cut him out of my life. Just like this non-deciduous crap I’m fighting here.

Except the Kudzu of her heart she fought even harder.

100 Word Challenge – guilt


Filed under creative non-fiction, life, writing

Burnt out


Alex Ridgway via Flickr

As with most of my fiction writing, this post was based on truth with the blanks filled in by my imagination. Even though I didn’t know her personally, this short story was written in memory of my cousin.

The couple met at a mutual friend’s party. Her hair was the fiery kind of red matched only by the passion in her partner’s heart. That long mane was the first thing that attracted Kathy to her — the kind of locks that stood out in the crowd gathered in such a small apartment — her eyes drawn to it like the proverbial moth to a flame. If love at first sight was true, then this was it. Kathy felt she’d found her soul-mate.

Their relationship was quite risque for the time period, and neither of their parents approved. Society itself generally disapproved, as if it was anyone else’s business. The women were willing to keep their connection under wraps as long as they could be together, and every moment in each other’s arms was worth the pains it took to conceal their love. Social constraints meant those feelings were kept a secret.

No hugs held too long in the open, no kisses except those on the cheek between “friends,” and certainly no hand-holding anywhere but behind closed doors. The conservative public wasn’t ready for same-sex couples to live comfortably as such, so they referred to one another simply as roommates.

Up to that time, there was no verbal spokesperson in the public eye. Celebrities suspected as gay who served the communal archetype — the Freddie Mercurys and Martina Navratilovas — were cast off in private conversations as the “exception to the norm.” Basically, they were pitted as unacceptable. Kristy McNichol was an American television sweetheart who kept her personal life to herself. A major star like Rock Hudson had to live in secrecy until his untimely AIDS death surprised and awakened the nation. Living “in the closet” was an idiom of the future. There was no OUT magazine yet, hardly a concept of being “out” to most heterosexual people.

And keeping up appearances of a double-life eventually took its toll on Kathy. She was determined to live her truth, but her pleas to be an openly gay couple went unrequited. She couldn’t keep her feelings contained, this bold love inside trying to burst her body wide open with its intensity, and her temper flared as hot as her love’s crimson hair. Arguments got out of hand and grew more frequent over time, putting pressure on the couple’s once blissful bond.

Returning to an empty house one day, with her girlfriend’s belongings gone and her life stripped bare, was too much for Kathy to handle. The woman’s fierce nature was weakened immeasurably by the blow.

The burden on her soul became too much with her father’s untimely death from a heart attack upon return from a vacation when carrying heavy suitcases at the airport. That final gust extinguished the remaining will she had to survive. It severed what she felt was her final connection.

Kathy’s mother knew her daughter’s depression well and rushed to check on her one day when phone calls went unanswered. She found Kathy’s lifeless body in the driver’s seat where she’d poisoned herself by vehicle exhaust within the garage’s confines. People say there is no loss greater than that of a child, and her mother bore witness to that truth.

Society’s rules were too imposing, and her daughter was gone. No more secrets to keep. No more lies to live or tell.  And one less woman’s ardor to control.


*Another Studio 30+ writing prompt – “her hair was the fiery kind of red” from Joe Scott’s post at Mostly Harmless Drivel.


Filed under fiction, writing