Cold Crow- Heeding Haiku With Chèvrefeuille – February 3, 2016 – Classical

Cold Crow

cold crow needs flower

seeds and bugs feed death and life-

flower needs cold crow



View original prompt here.

261 Extracted Words – The Tease – January 2016

January 2016

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAI write flash fiction, non-fiction, essays and novels. This month’s Tease is from a novel in progress.

“What’s it going to be today, Mr. Man? Shower? Bath?” She preferred that he shower, but Austin liked baths. As long as he did one or the other daily, and included a shower thrice a week, she didn’t push too hard. It was a fine line with Austin. The harder she pushed, the harder he pushed back. But he needed guidance and that escalated the tension, creating tough choices. In her parent group, Trish spoke about choosing useful battles, if able. But so often, the battles chose them.

An acquaintance gifted her a parenting book once, when Austin was about six, written by a Hollywood couple with zero child rearing credentials, other than their fame. It only took three pages for the authors to state unapologetically that most kids on the spectrum were misdiagnosed, even suggesting that some parents sought an ASD diagnosis for their personal benefit. She had immediately tossed the book in the trash, along with a spoiled head of lettuce, Austin’s wet bed pads and the scum that she scraped out of the dishwasher tray. The golden couple had their beautiful images plastered all over the cover so she gave them an extra shove into the garbage, face first. There was no incentive for obtaining a fabricated diagnosis. Autism was no bucket of fame. If anything, spectrum disorders manifested in secret, the secrets of parents, siblings and the autistic children themselves. Who could cypher the mysteries inside a child such as Austin?

Her son grunted his choice. Bath. She turned the water on. Hot. He liked it hot, even in August, just as she liked her coffee.



Twigs- Heeding Haiku With Chèvrefeuille – January 20, 2016 – Revising Taigi




fallen leaves sift moon

shadow branches scar the wall

as I watch Luna



View original prompt here

Flash Flood- Heeding Haiku With Chèvrefeuille – January 6, 2016 – Movement

Flash Flood



cloud bursts on butte

primes the watershed sluice box

tumbling rivers sprout



View original prompt here

Autism and the Healthcare Profession – Some get it and some don’t.

A holiday experience reminds us that when it comes to helping individuals on the spectrum, some health professionals get it and some don’t.

On December 30th, my son suffered the first seizure of his life. Three hours later, he suffered his second. After two days and a battery of tests at Sacred Heart Hospital, it was determined that his seizures could probably be handled by proper levels of medication without any lasting trauma. (Very good news, considering the litany of scenarios that ran through my mind when I first saw the street in front of his house jammed with aid vehicles and EMT’s). But that horrifying, hectic, fatiguing 48 hours reminded me and my wife once again of something we learned early on in our nearly two decade journey with our son through the world of ASD – when it comes to caring for individuals with autism, it’s clear who gets it and who doesn’t.

The following is a chronological step-by-step listing of individuals (caretakers, first responders, nurses, doctors and techs) and how they handled their encounters with my son on December 30th and 31st. Each is followed by their grade [get it/don’t get it]. If it helps, think of this as pass/epic fail.

His staff during both seizures – calm, effective, empathetic – get it.

EMT’s in home – overwhelming, far too concerned with procedure – don’t get it.

EMT’s in transport – Caring, helpful, able to adapt to my son’s needs – get it.

Emergency Room, adult side – Doctors and nurses, confident, competent, helpful. – get it.

Emergency Room, pediatric side – not helpful, annoyed (many sighs, frowns and rolls of eyes), couldn’t stop staring, blamed the system for delays and setbacks, worst experience of the entire two days – don’t get it.

Eighth floor nurses – helpful, underestimated his behaviors but quickly learned to value our assessments – get it.

In-hospital transport – careful, fun, attendant – get it.

MRI nurses – helpful, listened to our advice on his behaviors when waking up from sedation – get it.

Dr.Hasan – quick, direct, caring – gets it.

Hospital Doctor doing rounds attempted to interrupt EEG procedure (even after being asked by one of the techs to wait a moment), reacted childishly to being told her paperwork would have to wait. – doesn’t get it.

My son’s doctor – got him admitted quickly during a code red – always gets it.

I really didn’t want to start my new blogging year with a negative post, but hopefully, those who don’t get it will learn from my words or, at the least, re-visit the reasons why they joined their profession in the first place. And for those of you who do get it, words can not express our gratitude. Thank you.


Around the World Without Leaving My Blog – 2015

My year in blogging – in color.   OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

The following is a cloud I created containing all of the countries from which someone viewed my blog during the last year. Larger fonts represent nations with more numerous visits, smaller fonts represent those with less. Outside of the expected visits from my own U.S.A, totals leaned toward Northern Europe and South Central Asia with individual countries like Finland and India making big, fresh splashes.

As always, my thanks to every visitor, near and far.



                                         United Kingdom

     Finland      Philippines                     Japan

                                                Germany             Canada

              United States

                 South Korea  Indonesia  Pakistan  Norway Spain Russia
European Union  Zambia  Greece  Singapore  Cyprus  South Africa


                                Sweden  Chile  Nigeria  Belgium Netherlands

                   France        Australia

     Czech Republic  Denmark  Thailand 
                                                                           New Zealand

The Tease – December 2015

December 2015

I write flash fiction, non-fiction, essays and novels, but the majority of my pieces are short fiction, the classic short story. This month’s Tease is from one such story, and just so happens to be set on Boxing Day.

He would have preferred a room with windows, but a hocked laptop only gets you so much when you insist on the Davenport. He hears rustling in the hallway and cracks the door to the extent of its security latch. A gaggle of old women with bulging bags of Christmas wrap are waddling toward the elevator, proud of their Boxing Day discounts. Even the day after Christmas requires tithing to the gods of retail. He closes the door and presses the do-not-disturb button, invoking its red lamp. Returning to the cartel cart, he opens the peanuts, washes them down with a half-empty glass of Canadian Mist then picks up a slab of cashew brittle. Twelve dollars, so what. He’ll never get the bill.

The nuts are soft and the sugary mix shatters into a mass of sweet splinters. Heaven. Sure, he thinks, the streets of Heaven could be confection laced. Makes more sense than gold. If there was anything Jesus wasn’t interested in, it was gold. He probably would remedy our holiday, consumer orgy with less X-Box and more Tiny Tim. “God bless us everyone,” he smirks.

“You can steal from Dickens to get started, Puppy. But you’ll hate yourself if it’s in the final draft.”

He jumps with the words from the uninvited guest. Brown, syrupy spittle oozes from his lips as he lurches forward, catching the bedpost. His heart drums away.

“Who the hell is that?”