Missing Workshop

I’ve put my writing workshop on hold for the summer, but I miss the weekly writing we do. There’s something about honoring that time to write.

I do less without the group.

So today, I’m using a prompt I found elsewhere to write a few sentences to tuck away for a future story or poem.

Prompt: Sizzle

The sizzling skin didn’t bother me, nor the roasting toes perched on the end 
of the beach chair. I baked intentionally, thriving in temperatures most people can’t stand. I was a child of the sun, ignoring warnings of cancer and wrinkles, spending hours with a book propped, an occasional glance at the sea.

Even though I take care these days, slathering myself in sunscreen, I dread summer only for the whirring of air conditioners, temperatures that cause condensation drips on outside windows. Inside, I am chilled to the bone, air blasts like endless jabbing pins. I wrap myself in blankets, only to shed them outside where once again I find comfort in sweltering days and nights, when even my flannel pajamas feel right.


I’ve always thought of myself as a patient person, though recently I’ve realized, um, maybe not.

A chronic digestive issue has about worn me out. Over the past few years, I’ve tried various routines in hopes of fixing it and living a normal life. But I never seem to give the programs much of a chance. After three or four days with no improvement, I’d say, “See, it’s not the gluten. Give me a roll!” or “Well, it can’t be dairy. I want ice cream.”

Finally a month ago, I told myself a little self-control might be necessary. And though this particular diet isn’t any fun, it seems to be working. No dairy, no sugar, no wheat, no bad fat, no alcohol, no chocolate, no fruit juices, no corn, no tomato sauce, and limited raw vegetables. I know. What’s left?

When I first started, the hardest food item to give up was Gummy Bears. Yes, ever since I spent three years in Germany as a teenager, I’ve been addicted. But I think I’ve finally moved past my craving.

I’m hoping I won’t need to give up everything forever, but I am giving it enough time to give my belly a rest. And if I do need to give it up for good, I will.

There must be a life lesson in this somewhere.


No presence here.
A stillness, when two people
share space. No children
romp, no dogs pant or shed.
Books stay stacked, dishes
washed, no messes or toys
clutter floors. You listen to quiet
that seeps under door jams.
Only a ticking measures
seconds gone by until another
hour reminds you to rise, move,
participate in the day. Yes,
you must participate in the day.