My ADHD Brain

By Alison Ogilvie-Holme

Welcome to my humble cerebrum. Please forgive the mess. It’s late and my meds wore off hours ago. Had you arrived earlier, I might have offered you clarity and foresight, or at least some room in which to think. Once brain fog descends, order is impossible.

Yes, apologies are piled quite high, right next to guilt, and broken promises.

Lazy. Stupid. Selfish. Why can’t you get it together?

Somehow, self-loathing has become more acceptable than honesty. Labels are meant to stick, after all.

No, I’m not making excuses! I mean, not on purpose. And …

I’m sorry. What were we talking about?

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“(I write) as a means of escape and creative expression.” – the writer

Redemption

By Belinda Saville

A piece of paper affixed to the bulletin board catches my attention and I stop to read.

“Take What You Need,” it says.

The bottom of the page is cut into small strips, a fringe of words on offer:

Joy
Luck
Love
Courage
Redemption

How to choose?

My contemplation is interrupted by the howl of sirens as a police car speeds into the supermarket carpark.

I settle on “Redemption” and pluck the word from the page just as the police enter.

“STOP! Raise your hands in the air!”

I drop the gun, but cleave to the paper.

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“I started writing to help my teenage daughter with high school English and find the joy therein.” – the writer

A Tenderfoot on Horseback

By David Henson

I admire the turquoise day as the buckskin neck tugs the reins through my loosened grip. The hot tongue slaps the burbling stream. Blueberry bushes crowd the trail ahead. The fruits are big as the tip of my thumb! Wait … don’t grizzlies eat berries? Calm down. The horse would know from the scent if a bear were near. Are we upwind or down? The huge head finally rises dripping with creek. I feel a shudder ripple through the flanks. Hooves clop the stony path. How do you make a U-turn on this thing?

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“I write for the enjoyment and with hope of touching a reader from time to time.” – the writer

Saturday Sisters on Zoom

By Tyrean Martinson

We text first: Can you make it today?
The responses: Yes. Yes. No. Yes.
Enough can.
We type in the password, enter the room online.
It is not the same as being together. There are no warm hugs.
Instead, we wave and smile.
We share our lives, laugh together, read scriptures, ask each other questions. We dig deeper than expected. Unearth bits of wisdom, joy, tears.
These women keep me alive on the hard days. Encourage me, remind me to love and accept love, to laugh and to sing.
Prayers are lifted up.
Amen, until we meet again.

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“I write because the words are there, bone deep. I write for those who take refuge in books. I write because I am a writer.” – the writer

The Last Words

By Vijeni

The cool water lapped at her feet, fizzing and bubbling. Waves crashed on to the shore, peeling away the deep brown sands beneath her feet.

Ganga looked ahead, amid the blue sea, was her daughter paddling the gigantic waves on her surfboard.

“Mamma! Look!” she cried.

“I know honey! I am so proud of you!” She had to tell, at least now.

“Ganga, we need to leave.” She turned around, her husband was standing by the shore, a pot tightly clutched in his hand. She walked to him, took it, and emptied the ashes into the water.

“She belongs here!”

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“(Writing) makes me happy” – the writer

Peepholes

By John L. Malone

He drifted into our town selling peepholes from his brown burlap bag.

If you get lucky, he said, you might get a peephole that looks back at the universe the moment it was born or see what happened to those children abducted from the beach on Australia Day ’66.

But mostly you paid your coin, put your hand in and pulled out a peephole. Most did nothing more than show the scene behind it.

One afternoon he fell asleep and we pulled out the peepholes. They were all the same, We didn’t need a peephole to see through him.

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“This one popped into my head as a pome which I blogged but an hour later converted it to a Drabble.” – the writer

New Job, New Colleagues to Avoid

By Tracey Pearson

Every three weeks I’m on shift with, The Mosquito. The rest of the time, I can breathe. I focus on that. CBT taught me positivity. Theory is now practice.

The week our worlds collide, I spray myself in repellent silence. Her questions jab, she’s hoping to puncture my skin.

“Where did you work before?”

“When’s your birthday?”

“Where’s that accent from?”

“What does your partner do?”

It’s not just the interrogative blood-seeking, the truth biopsies, it’s the insect whine of her voice that attempts to drill into my skull with micro precision. I give her nothing, leave her dry.


I write because I love it.

Ghosted

By Diana Diamond

I’ve been crumbed like a pigeon
I’ve been simmered into a crisp
I’ve been ghosted so bad
I no longer exist
The backburner; a familiar place
Cook me into perfection
Leave without a trace

I’ve been ignored into oblivion
I’ve been gaslighted into denial
I’ve been unmatched and crossed out
Blocked and deleted;
Oh, you name it!
I’m a one-hit wonder;
You hit me once then leave me wondering

I’m a heavy lifter
Carrying a dead horse
The horse is riding me
And now I am trodden
A fatal encounter
But to you, it’s all forgotten

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“I write because I can.” – the writer

The Bridge

By Lesley Baker

He still slowed down when he approached the bridge, holding his stick that little bit tighter and leaning into his walk to make it across, his old white dog beside him.

Half-way over the sight of the wildly fierce and defiant dandelions, laced through the bars, overlooking the motorway, stopped him.

Bars that were meant to keep people safe, but they had failed his daughter.

The sun broke through, as he stood still, with tears skimming his face. Ashamed, he wiped them away with the back of his hand, the dog searching his face.

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“I write because it makes me feel alive and helps me to untangle this complicated world.” – the writer

Last Night

By Cheryl Diane Kidder

Five Coronas, a shot of peppermint schnapps, two hi-ball glasses of ice water, his waterbed waving under me, nothing to grab onto. The Lava lamp on the nightstand blue then green, his hair in my face, my hands sliding off his sweat-soaked back. My hips squeezed open like a nutcracker. My right foot completely asleep. The slick between our two bellies, Led Zeppelin’s “Stairway to Heaven,” the tape deck recycling. Not breathing for 20 minutes, my chest arching up off the waterbed. My eyes on the ceiling, stained blue then green. My mouth a perfect O.

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“I write because it’s the only way I have to figure out the world and my place in it. That, and it’s the one thing I’m really good at.” – the writer