Posted in Prose, The Writer's Life, WAKING JAY'S MUSE: (Poetry & Prose)

OUT ON A LIMB FOR LOVE (a short story in 50 words)

out on limb

We’d laughed about it. They’ll come around. Onct it’s born, they’ll ‘cept me.

Suzie waits, bag packed.

Straddling the limb, I reach for her window.

She’s waving me away. Why? I lean.

Suzie’s Pa’s shotgun rams my chest. “Law pertects the homeowner ‘gainst trespassin’, niggah. And God—He fergives the Christian.”

 

Posted in JOURNAL: UNPLUGGED, UNEDITED, UNDERSTAFFED

JOURNAL ENTRY: September 8, 2017

Image result for labor day

LABOR DAY

OVER BREAKFAST, SUNDAY, I HAD THE FOLLOWING DAY all plotted out. The cute weather gal promised the mercury would climb to 105, Fahrenheit, so LABOR DAY morning there would be no meditating in my garden swing; a half-hour at my work desk would have to suffice. Then, after an hour of working out, and a shower, I’d be cramming the rest of the day to the brim with writing.

Wait, Jay! The rest of the day would NOT be crammed with writing. You’d be setting the timer for fifteen minutes. some already know what would happen when the alarm went off. The rest might want to glance at this: THE DEVIL IS IN THE DETAILS –as soon as you finish this post. To both groups, let me, by way of a thumbnail sketch, say that every quarter hour I would leave my Oasis-of-Writing and enter the Sahara Desert; that is, four circuits around the inside perimeter of the front of my house. Only then could I re-enter my air-conditioned oasis, sip my coffee and write.

To date, I don’t believe I’m OCD. I can’t guarantee tomorrow.
Continue reading “JOURNAL ENTRY: September 8, 2017”

Posted in I TOSS THEE THE GAUNTLET

THE 100-WORD CHALLENGE

Dear Reader:

I’ve a challenge to toss you. (Call it a gauntlet.)

imagesI READ A BLOG POST YESTERDAY by a blogster/friend who, try though she may, could not muster up the enthusiasm to follow the goals she had set for herself.  Been there, and more time than I’d care to admit! And if you’re human–especially if you are a human involved in creativity, I daresay you’ve visited that wasteland of procrastination and fading dreams yourself.

SONIA G MEDEIROS … this is for you … kind of an addendum. Yours was the post I read yesterday for which I left a comment. The comment must have lacked the degree of merit I’d desired, else it wouldn’t have been niggling at me the rest of that day and into the evening. In a nutshell what I advised you was, pretty much, to overcome your lack of enthusiasm by being enthusiastic. I think I had a fancier–at least wordier–way than that of saying it. Continue reading “THE 100-WORD CHALLENGE”

Posted in JOURNAL: UNPLUGGED, UNEDITED, UNDERSTAFFED

JOURNAL ENTRY: August 25, 2017

                                                            FITBIT: THE DEVIL IS IN THE DETAILSThe timer clangs to my distant mind with a sound a battered boxer hears, signaling his ensuing slaughter. I shoot out of my chair like an automaton, and begin striding my four laps around the perimeter of the three rooms that form the front of my house. I used to close the drapes, but now I don’t bother. At first, Sirius, my Shih Tzu, had nipped at my heels as I strode through the living room, past my TV, where I made a 45 degree turn down the hallway, and he yipped as I marched through the kitchen and turned again to pass my work table—home-base—and begin my second lap. That was then. Now the savvy pooch stretches out on the couch, only his eyes following me, lazily, as I circuit past him. 
                         
             There have been times, I’ll admit, that I didn’t hear my 15-minute ding—whether I read or typed right past it, or forget to reset the timer for the next 15 minutes once I slipped, panting, back into my chair. But it wasn’t often, for it meant 8 laps at the next ding. Continue reading “JOURNAL ENTRY: August 25, 2017”

Posted in JOURNAL: UNPLUGGED, UNEDITED, UNDERSTAFFED

JOURNAL ENTRY: August 19th, 2017

      When you’re awakened by a text message at 6:32 in the morning, it can’t bode well.  My parents raised me to never call anyone before 9:00 AM, and my wife and I indoctrinated our four children with the same social wisdom. There were no cell phones when I was young–hence no texting to apply the 9:00 AM rule to. In fact, cell phones were still in their infancy until my kids were well into their late teens. Cell phones back then cell phonecarried the heft of a size-12 brogan, and  texting wasn’t an option. Lest I lose my point in this morass of communication media, it still follows that you don’t call anyone before 9:00 AM, just as you wouldn’t pound on a person’s door at that ungodly hour.

       And in this enlightened age, you certainly don’t text anyone at 6:32 in the morning, unless … Continue reading “JOURNAL ENTRY: August 19th, 2017”

Posted in The Writer's Life

Down & Out in San Antonio (Part IV)

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THE WINKING MR. TARSDALE

 

“Barry recommends you highly, Mr. Squires.” The graying, short-cropped head and appraising face leaned to the side in his chair and scanned me. “You’ve got the shoulders of a swimmer.” He winked.

“Well, I … ” I shrugged, probably blushed. It was true I had worked out regularly before Barry and I moved to San Antonio, and I suppose I was considered well-built. Since the move, and the shortness of money, I’d resorted to push-ups, sit-ups, lunges, and sundry other movements. Continue reading “Down & Out in San Antonio (Part IV)”

Posted in The Writer's Life

Down & Out in San Antonio (Part III)

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 HONEYMOON’S OVER

 

          Sept. 20, 1962
 
On Monday, September 10th, I received a letter with my unemployment check. No foreplay, it got right down to business: “Mr. Squires, you are in receipt of your final unemployment check. I hope you continue with your efforts and are successful in securing employment.”
 
What it didn’t say, but implied, was, “You are now another state’s liability.” Continue reading “Down & Out in San Antonio (Part III)”

Posted in The Writer's Life

CUT A FELLOW A NEW BREAK?

 

Time to take a ten-fingered grip around the neck of my WORDPRESS Blog Title, “Septuagenarian Journey,” give it a full-fledged throttle. If it lives through it, I need to take it as a sign from the high gods of the blogosphere to Journey or get off the pot.

I think it’s been over a year I’ve been ON the pot. I’ve cleaned myself out of some tired notions of what my blog should and should not do. I wiped my brow, ’cause some of those notions were hard to get rid of. And now I’m ready to start having a good time.

Having a good time doesn’t mean eschewing the serious, or alternatively, skipping along to the dainty ephemera. There should be some nourishment underlying both the heavy and the light.

I have a couple more good years before I’ll need to change the title of my blog to “Octogenarian Journey.”

So why not let the good times begin? As long as you allow me a week or so to shake something out of this head o’ mine, and sweep it into some sort of order.

Until then … look before you flush.

Posted in PUSHING THE PENCIL, POUNDING THE KEYS

GOOD, EVIL and WARTS

Good and Evil

I watched an interview with Justin Bateman on the Today’s Show Monday morning.  He was hawking his new movie, which marked his directorial debut.

As writers, we’re all cast in the role of director with each story we write.  Tuck that in the back of your mind (or, not—since it’s pretty obvious).  I’ll get back to it momentarily.

Anyway, either Natalie Morales or Savannah Guthrie—one of the two I always get mixed up because they look like they could be sisters—was interviewing Justin Bateman.  Now, in this movie he played a school teacher who was coaching a group of kids for a spelling bee competition.  The character was apparently pretty hard on them because one of the questions Natalie or Savannah asked him was, “your character was pretty mean, wasn’t he?”

“Well,” said Justin, “I don’t know that I would call him mean.”

And, what followed is the theme of this post:

By the way, I don’t even remember what words he used to justify the behavior of his character—mainly because I was getting ready to go to the gym (which at my age isn’t a vanity but an essential) and I can’t say I was paying a lot of attention.  Anyway, the words, themselves didn’t matter.

It was during a stint on the treadmill that the thematic worm began to burrow into my noggin.  It came up for air a couple of times during crunches and again during curls.  Knowing the worm’ll find no ingredients in that gray sponge to help it turn it into a butterfly, I’m going to yank it out now and take a good look at it.

And, here goes: Continue reading “GOOD, EVIL and WARTS”