Posted in Blogfest Entries, Just for Fun!, Life Writing, SkyWatch Friday

Sunrise Walk in Stillwater: Skywatch Friday

So, a month or so ago, I got a new phone (well, actually, a reconditioned Samsung Galaxy S5, which is plenty new enough for me). Not only does it take gorgeous pictures, but it has a very comprehensive fitness tracking sytem with programs to try – and so, rather spontaneously, I decided I was going to do the Baby Steps to 5K program.

Which is how I ended up on our quiet rural road with my fifteen-year-old son, catching up a workout missed somewhere in waves of rain, watching the sun come up and do lovely things to a sky decorated with fluffy clouds…

So, how about you?
Like what you see here?

Enjoy watching the sky?
Why not join Skywatch Friday?

It’s easy as a passing cloud. Just click here to see the rules, and sign up with your own Skywatch post. Or just browse for more lovely views of the #BigBlueRoom to get you in a more leisurely frame of mind for the weekend.

And may each new sunrise bring you more wonder than the one before!

Posted in Blog Hops and Fests, Nature and Outdoors, Occasional Features, photography, SkyWatch Friday

Things Are Looking Up at Home: Skywatch Friday for May 19, 2017

Not finished skywatching? You can find more Skywatch Friday posts here – it’s your portal to skies around the world! In the meantime, here’s one more from my springtime yard. Keep on looking up!

Posted in Life Writing, SUnday Post

Welcome to My Sunday Monday Post for July 20 21, 2014 !




Wanna know more? Click the icon!

Yes, I’m late – and unrepentant. I had a very full weekend, camping with the kids and several other unschooling families. Sunday was filled with saying our goodbyes, breaking camp, and the nearly four-hour drive home. Life was full of living, and, although I started this post on Saturday, I gave myself to being where I was.

That being said, here’s what’s up in my little corner of the blogosphere

Recently at shanjeniah:

Sunday Post for July 13, 2014Celebrating life and mourning loss; book cover reveal party; Star Trek fan fiction; indecision and growth; ROW80 updates; Celine JeanJean‘s flash fiction;AmyBeth Invernessrediscovered treasures; a poetic offering; and a song.

Coffee and Conversation:

  • The Gift of Grief: The death of our newborn son brought many unexpected changes and challenges – and an enormous shift in my own priorities.

WIPpet Wednesday:

SoCS (Stream of Consciousness Saturday):

ROW80 Updates:


What’s Next:

I’m continuing with my second WIP, Perchance to Dream, a Star Trek: TOS/ Enterprisefanfiction novel, and the second half of a duology.

In the Wilds of Internet-Land:


Life Stuff:

  • This week was all aboutUnschoolers Rock the Campground. Delicious, on so many levels!
  • I reread several stories from my WIP anthology, The IDIC Romance. Revisions, additions, and new stories wove through the weekend, and are still going.
  • I moved forward with the WIP I am beta-reading for another writer. It’s already amazing; can’t wait to see how much juicier it’ll be when she’s done with it! =) 

Want to join the Sunday Post fun?

Breath-Taking Beauty!


Posted in Blogfest Entries, Life Writing, Stream of Consciousness Saturday

SoCS: Bringing the Inside Outside, or the Outside Inside


An early exploration of inside-out living – with a horse skull!

This post is part of Linda G.Hill’s Stream of Consciousness Saturday meme.

Rules and this week’s prompt.

The idea is simple – write a stream of consciousness piece that ties into the weekly prompt.

This week’s prompt is to write a post based upon the wordside” –prefixes and suffixes are just fine.


At the moment, I an simultaneously inside and outside. How can this be, you might ask. Well, I am inside, in a nominal sense – there is a thin layer of fabric and screening between me and the night outside our tent. I can hear the sounds of insects, motors on the highway, and the movements and living of the other campers.

Here inside this roomy yet cozy little home away from home, my children are sleeping, spent from a day spent swimming in the lake, playing with friends, and growing. Jeremiah is breathing softly beside me; his air mattress is closest to mine. Annalise is beyond him, a small tangle of discarded towel, swimsuit, and an assortment of toys – plush friends, the new Monster High ghouls she got as a birthday gift from her best friend, who lives a state away. She just started snoring very softly.

Aside from a few hiccups, I’m having a delightful time. I’ve hung with the kids, and visited with several friends I see not often enough to suit me. I’ve had a swim, made camp feel more like a home, lost myself a bit inside story worlds, gotten a little frustrated when the kids were quick to make messes and far slower to help make things pleasant -and I’ve been just a little beside myself that I’ve paid for internet access, but have been able to use it for only about 20 minutes, because the connection is something beyond cantankerous – if I were the paranoid type, I’d say it was out to get me..

Camping seems to make me more deeply aware of what’s going on inside of me. I’m not writing as much, but I am gathering insight, ideas, connections, and insider information. All of these will churn around, and, on the other side of the trip, words and stories will be born.

For right now, though, I think what I need to be on the other side of is a few hours’ sleep. Things tend to look better, wen I’m snuggled inside my blanket next, watching the stars outside and above through screened skylights…

Goodnight from my inside, outside weekend! =)

And now, the second installment. Shortly after I finished the first passage above, my son stirred in his sleep, and started to talk. This is what he said:


The young warrior magician at 8.

That’s true magic.

He held pure fire in his big hands.

Now that’s magical.”

Jeremiah Burton, not-quite-13.


Now that’s another kind of stream-of-consciousness, right there, and, if we hadn’t been inside a tent with him, I might never had heard it. Cool, eh?

This morning, I awoke rather late, having gone to sleep late, and not sleeping much the two nights prior. What a contrast. Both children were already up and about, and it was quiet, if untidy, inside the tent.

Not so outside.

Children had gathered in the common field, playing Nerf wars, magical games, Monster High, biking, laughing, yelling…a baby’s cry cut through the happy noises – maybe that’s what woke me. I don’t have babies anymore, but the maternal instinct is a powerful thing…I seem to always go a bit on alert whenever I hear a baby cry.

Inside and out, the inside brought outside, is how I’ll spend my weekend. May yours be as delightful and life-filled!

I hope you enjoyed my SoCS offering for this week. Remember, anyone can play, so long as they are willing to followa few simple rules. See you next week, perhaps, for another live-streaming look into the lovely chaos inside my head! =)

What about you? Do you enjoy nature?  In what ways?  Have you ever camped in a group?  Slept beneath the stars?

Do you share my fascination with what’s going on in other people’s heads? Come on inside, and share in the comments section – the water’s fine!


Told you the water was fine! =)


Join in or read more SoCS posts here!





Posted in Challenges and Contests, Flash Fiction Pieces, Story a Day May Challenge

“The Huntress in Moonlight” – Flash Fantasy

The Storyteller Writing Challenge

*    *   *
Are you a Storyteller? What inspires you?
What stirs you to pick up your pen, open your word doc. and write?
I offer TWO prompts for you to CHOOSE from:
 An Image prompt and an Other prompt. 
For this weeks image prompt, tell us what is evoked by this image.
What is this haunting environment? What story tumbles from your imagination?
Why is she there? Who is she?

The Talented Artist this week is – Artist: Agus –

“The Huntress in Moonlight”

Copyright 2012 by Shan Jeniah Burton

She seemed to have forgotten  I was there….

I sat on the wide  branch, my back pressed into the trunk – cushioned and cool where the  mosses caressed my shoulders; rough and warm where my lower back pressed against bare bark –  watching her.

She never seemed to  notice her  beauty,  yet she wore it naturally, with  ownership  I had never seen before.  I couldn’t pinpoint  what differed  from the beautiful, petulant queens of the high school court…Shirana,  Beverlee, and Aspen, who made the boys slobber over themselves like fools, and dismissed the rest of us with something that might have been contemptuous if they didn’t look at  walls and teachers  the same way…

~~ Perhaps  those girls believe  their appearance entitles them to privilege.  I find that attitude most – illogical.~~

I clutched my head,  nearly falling. “H-How —?” I asked, pressing myself backward, as if Tisira was going to attack.

I felt her, now. She was amused – and concerned that maybe she had lost my friendship.   She found me enjoyable and interesting.

She walked a little away, her tank top revealing just a bit of a midriff that was slender and muscular. Her long skirt swayed  with her, and she bowed her head to study her toes, making her short, shiny black bob fall across her face…

She was silhouetted by the enormity of the full moon, which leaning in  as if to tell Earth some wonderful secret….

A sceret about Tisira, maybe……

Without  warning, a small flock of birds winged straight at us.

I yelled, and this time I did fall out of the tree- well, half fell and half rolled, but, still, I hit the ground with a rattling, graceless thump.

When I looked up ,  Tisira  had a small, hawkish raptor  perched upon her shoulder.  She was whispering to it, and the bird seemed to be listening. The rest of the flock circled, then landed in several trees around the edges of the clearing.

“I am not a human high school student,” Tisira said. Although I hadn’t seen her move,  she was  offering me a hand up, which I gladly took.  Hers was calloused and strong, and I noticed a long, fine scar running from the back of her hand to just short of her elbow. “I am a Tacivaarii Huntress.”

In my mind, there was a sense of what that meant, but I could also tell that there was more – much more than I could ever understand.

“You read my mind, and command birds of prey.”

She steadied me as my knees threatened to collapse.

“It’s not reading your mind, exactly.  I could, but I wouldn’t.  I share the strong thoughts and feelings you project outward…..Father says that I always will, no matter how hard I attempt to shield myself. I’m sorry it troubles you.”

She helped me to sit  on a low stump where, hopefully, I could keep from further embarrassing myself with my clumsiness.

“As for the bird, I don’t command her. We have a symbiotic relationship. We share information about prey, when there is mutual benefit in doing so.  And we share feelings, sometimes.”

“Tisira – I don’t understand. About you, about this huntress thing; about reading my mind – or whatever the hell it’s called; about that bird. But most of all, I don’t understand why you’re telling me this.”

“There is something within you that needs to know, Sarah.  You care, and feel, and seek.  We are kindred, in ways that language can’t express.  You’re ready for what I am, and what I have to offer –  a symbiotic relationship of our own.”

That made me nervous. We were a long way from help – there were no houses for at least a mile in either direction. No one to run to for help, no one to hear me scream –

Tisira looked at me with glowing eyes, as the bird cried into the night….

And suddenly, a lynx crouched where she had stood…..

For a moment, I stared, and then a shaky  whisper emerged.

“Wh- what do you want with me?”

Posted in A Round of Words in 80 Days -2012, Life Writing, ROWnd #2, Writing in Freedom

“Life Blooms; I ROW” – Goals Update #4

A busy day today. Up after not really as much sleep as I wanted, to get ready for co-op. Jim got a ride to work, so the kids and I headed to Hannaford and bought the supplies for the flarp we planned to make.

We got to co-op early, and there was a group of church children doing an activity in the room our tweens usually play in. So it was an unusual day, at least for a while.

The project went well…..a bit of chaos, and a bit of panic because the food coloring stained the counters of the church kitchen (thankfully, a good scrub with a little bit of borax on a scrubby sponge fixed that problem.

Making flarp with our Live and Learn Co-op gang!

It was a pretty day, a little unsettled, but the filtered light was good for making the colors of the flowers really pop, and so I got pictures of those.

I had a walk with Jeremiah (a tradition of ours), and another with Annalise and her friend Gabrielle (who was wearing roller skates). The kids had Shield Battles, Simon Says, and a girls vs. boys romp through the church and grounds.

Annalise and friends Gabrielle, Aleia, and Alana create flarp art.

There was ball play, and flirting, and then we came home, and both kids fell almost instantly asleep,. until I needed to wake them to go get Jim, because, at the moment, we are car-sharing, and we were his ride home. ~excerpt from Thursday’s 750words post ~

 Oh, and an invitation to Gabrielle’s seventh birthday party on Saturday…
Flarp fun with Jeremiah, Logan, Nolan, and John!
Where there was a bounce house, marshmallow shooters to make, necklaces and bracelets to bead, delicious foods to sample (Miah loved the veggie sticks, I loved the rice noodle dish, and Lise was crazy over the watermelon).There was a tire swing and a gazebo “shrine”, and the company of good friends, a house filled with interesting things,  and cake and ice cream and presents and love and laughter, and hiding out together, and snuggling, and many varieties of play, and computers and Netflixfor those who wanted them…

Springtime tulips....A welcome splash of color on a cloudy day.

And mostly lovely weather that had only a little, much needed rain…

A busy second half of the week, and, fitting into the spaces around those hours were other parts of living –  home and yardtending; snuggles, hugs, and play; lots of conversation; some stress and conflict and hurt feelings; tending to myself and my family; and shifting to the rhythms of a busier season.
More lovelies!

And there was reading, and writing, and claiming my dreams.

Round 2 Goals:


  • Read at least 3 articles a week from my To Be Read files on computer, and categorize those I choose to keep or share.
  • Completed for 4/11.
  • Read at least 5 blogposts a week (not including my own), and like, comment, and/or share as I am moved to.
  • Completed for 4/11.
  • I read K is for Transplant, and was deeply moved to comment.

  • Create flash fiction, short stories, dialogues, character sketches, alternate scenes, and poetry for  Chameleon’s Dish.  Wander cow trails, and learn these people and their lives more fully.
  • I have had an idea of what may be a far better prologue for my story, and one that will foreshadow some of the important conflicts.
  • I am letting this idea simmer for a while, to dream on and play with, until I can’t wait another moment to write it, and then I will begin!
  • Pull material from 750 words posts not part of the Chameleon’s Dish first draft.
  • I have separated the June 9, 2011 post into one snippet and a complete essay, perhaps needing minimal editing.
  • Create essays, stories, and other pieces based upon these writings.
  • I have reread and done a rough edit of the first original essay pulled from this area.  It seems to need a few additional paragraphs, and some polishing.
  • In the meantime, I will decide whether I want to post it on my blog or look for a market to submit it to.
  • Find all chapters of Blood and Breath.  Input into Scrivener; possibly begin rewrite.
  • I have input Chapter One into Scrivener.
  • Next up is creating a story arc for the rest of the novel, and playing with characters and settings.
  • Finish father-in-law letter and send.
  • I am still allowing ideas to surface and be written out via my A to Z posts.
  • There seems to have been a reason I chose some of the topics, although I wasn’t aware of it at the time.
Gabrielle and Annalise enjoy birthday tire swing fun at Gabrielles's house.

  • Complete the Blogging From A to Z April Challenge.
  • I have written the rough drafts of my posts up to letter V, leaving 5 to write.
  • I have edited, embellished, and scheduled up to P is for Playfulness, leaving 10 posts to complete before meeting the challenge.
  • Create a “flow chart” for posting to shanjeniah and The Unfettered Life.  Use these, and adapt as necessary, throughout the round (with allowances made in April for the challenge).
  • I have posted both flow charts, and will begin easing into using them as I finish  the A to Z writing.
  • My goal remains to be using both flow charts by May 1.
Naomi and siblings Carson and Olivia model for me.


  •  Explore She WritesTwitterStoryDamPinterest;and LinkedIn .  Use, develop, evaluate, adjust.
  • Am beginning to add connections and get braver in posting to LinkedIn, even posting my first link on Thursday.
  • I have pinned a couple of items on Pinterest, to test the Chrome extension I installed last week. Added a new board, Time Images.
  • I joined the Story Dam Facebook Page.  I’ve peeked around a little bit, and will be learning more, and likely interacting more, on future visits.
  • Continue joining hops, fests, challenges, and other community blogging efforts.
  • I have looked at Shah Wharton’s latest Storyteller Writing Challenge.
  • I will let the words and image seep into my awareness for a day or three, then write.  I know I only need to do one, but both tempt me.  I’m a glutton for storytelling, I guess! =)
Jeremiah loves exploring the principles of physics - anytime, anywhere.
  • Comment on and share blogs regularly; share my blogs as widely as seems feasible, and in diverse ways.
  • I realized I haven’t been posting my A to Z posts on the Row80 Facebook page, so will be posting 2-3 there each day until I catch up.
  • So far, I have shared posts up to F is for Food there.
  • I am reading ROW80 update blogs and A to Z  blogs, as I can manage them.  There will be considerably more blog reading once I have finished my fourth book (in progress) of the month, and/or I get all of the A to Z posts written (I am up to V, at the moment).
  • I am mustering my bravery to begin posting links to my writing at the Story Dam Facebook Page and She Writes sites.  Soon, I think!
Marshmallow shooter making!
  • Do 3 guest posts and  host 3 guest bloggers this round.
  • I have posted a note to the ROW80 Facebook Page, seeking guest slots and guest bloggers.
  • If that doesn’t pan out in a day or so, I will write a separate blogpost with my request, and widen it to include The Unfettered Lifewhich would be an ideal place for fellow unschoolers to guest post.
  • I now have three guest posters……next up, working out schedules! =)

  •  Submit at least 10 pieces of flash fiction or poetry this round.
  • I am currently  pondering which pieces of flash fiction and poetry  I will submit to the Pittsburgh Flash Fiction Gazette.  They accept previously published work, one piece at a time.
  • Submit at least 5 essays or lists this round.
  • I am allowing the thoughts to coalesce for my Anything Goes submission on becoming/being a blogger.
  • Continue submitting to hops, challenges, fests, etc.; at least 3 each month.
  • I have submitted once to The Storyteller’s Writing Challenge.
  • I am contemplating posting there again this week, and also to Chuck Wendig‘s Terrible Minds Flash Fiction Challenge.
Those bouncing young Burtons....


  •  Organize all photos on hard drive; move to organized Picasa web albums or delete.
  • I deleted all redundant photos in my download file, after assuring I had a copy of them in my Picasa Web Albums.


  • Add useful articles to my shanjeniah Marketing Articles page.
  • I added two links to this page, with brief descriptions of both.  The first was on Book Promotion; and the second on creating a Rough Sketch of a WIP, which I believe will be useful later, when I create pages or blogs for my  WIPs.
  • Use this information to help define my direction; adjust as needed.
  • I am letting the ideas from the articles I read seep into my awareness.
Birthday cake!


  •  Get Scrivener  downloaded; begin learning by inputting first an essay, and then Blood and Breath.
  • I have input all the available chapters of Blood and Breath into Scrivener, and will next be creating a story arc for mapping out the action in the missing chapters.
  • Use Twitter and Tweetdeck at least one day a week.  Learn more.
  • I am replacing Tweetdeck with HootSuite, which is much more to my liking.
  • Future goals updates will reflect the change.
  • I am running Hootsuite today (Sunday) –  a very, very quiet day thus far…
  • For WordPress, create a running list of questions; work on finding answers!
  • I have created a rough list of questions to start with; next will come the learning the answers part, and, of course, more questions!
  • Begin learning about how to publish ebooks.
  • I have begun reading here.  There is a lot to absorb, so I will be reading in stages.
  • Begin research list/research for  Chameleon’s Dish second draft.
  • I now have the beginnings of a research list. Next step is to look through the links I browsed in the rough draft writing more carefully, and gather them in a central and more accessible location.

  •  Edit all 2009 posts on  The Unfettered Life.  Consider layout and design changes.
  • Both children have been asking for some of my online space to share what they want.  Since The Unfettered Life is intended to be an unschooling/life blog, I am going to begin by creating a page for each of their  creations, and help them to add to them as they wish.
  • This is likely to necessitate a change in layout, which I had been toying with, in any event…
  • Input Blood and Breath and Chameleon’s Dish to Scrivener.
  • The existing chapters of Blood and Breath have been added.
  • Next, I will begin gathering and rereading the chapters of Chameleon’s Dish.  These are all in my possession, but not yet gathered in one place.
  • Clean up computer downloads, documents, photos, and other clutter – move it or lose it!
  • I cleared a number of redundant photos from my Downloads file.
Lovely bits of Gabrielle's home...


  • Add JOY to every day!
  • Thursday: Attended Live and Learn Homeschool Co-op.  Organized and orchestrated group Flarp making activity.  Lots of social  connection with like-minded moms and kids.  Photographed children and spring flowers.  A bit of reading and writing. One-on-one time with both children.
  • Friday: Recovery day from Thursday.  Reading, writing, uploading and editing photos.  Coffee in bed with Jim.  One-on-one  time with both kids.  Home and yard tending.  Worked in my new space.
  • Saturday: Very busy day! Friend Gabrielle’s seventh birthday.  Attended her party; lots more unschooly socialization with moms and children we love, and some dads, too.  Watching Lise and Miah enjoy tire swing and bounce house and time with friends.  On-on-one time with both kids.  Beaded a necklace.  Took a lot of pictures. A bit of work in my space.
  • Sunday: Coffee in bed with Jim.
More tire swing fun!
  • Add movement to every day, too!
  • Thursday: Shopping.  Lots of movement at co-op.  Walks with both children, orchestrating activity,  and cleanup (we rent space in a local church, and so must tidy and put things to rights before we leave if we want to remain welcome tenants (which we do; the space is perfect for our needs – we even have access to a large kitchen and yard).
  • Friday: Half an hour each raking and working in my new space.  45 minutes of hometending.
  • Saturday: Birthday gift shopping.  Lots of walking, swing-pushing, and similar activity at party.  Helped with cleanup.  Worked a bit in my new space.
  • Sunday: One hour hometending.  35 minutes yardtending – raking (nearly done!); dog waste removal, and yard cleanup.  35 minutes working in my space – it’s coming along, and I plan to post progress pictures on Wednesday.
  • Add self-decorating to every week!
  • I decorated myself with a necklace and headband on Thursday.
  • I wore the necklace I beaded on Saturday until bedtime.
  • Add more of my passions to each day, in as many ways as I can manage.
  • Thursday: Social time with like-minded people of varying ages.  Photography – children and flowers in bloom.   Writing. Planning and orchestrating an activity. Time with both kids.
  • Friday: Home and yardtending. Reading and writing. Working in my space.  Editing photos.  Coffee with Jim. Time with both kids.
  • Saturday: More social time.  Celebrating.  Photographing children and decor.  Beading.   A little working in my space. Time with both kids.
  • Sunday: Yard and hometending.  Working in my space.  Reading and writing.  Editing photos.  Goals update.  Coffee with Jim: snuggles with both kids.
Girl eats Dandelion, #1
  • Add all these for my beloved others, too!
  • Jim: Coffee and conversation.  Flirting.  Being on time or early when picking him up from work.  Home, yard, and childtending.
  • Annalise: Snuggles.  Sharing in her imaginative play.  Helping her with reading and spelling. Conversation.  Arranging to go to Gabrielle’s party, and giving her the freedom to choose the gift.  New Littlest Pet Shop friends.  Pushing her on the tire swing.  Bringing beading supplies home so she can bead when she wants.
  • Jeremiah: Snuggles.  A soda while out shopping.  Answered his questions about driving.  Conversation.  Hanging with him at the party when he wanted me nearby.  Beading together.  Helped facilitate his cooking.  Honored his sleep patterns, which are currently a bit out of sync with everyone else’s.
Girl decides dandelion is not for her!

I am loving this writing. I am making myself a happy, peaceful place in which to focus my writing energies, and less removed from the life of the rest of the family. I can be nearby, even carry on conversations with the children, but still have a measure of privacy and room to myself.~ Excerpt from Friday’s 750 words~

I am so glad I realized I needed a writing space, and that there was this little tucked-away corner of the house just collecting debris……

had no idea I was going to write a flash fiction piece for this one. I couldn’t find a way to begin an essay on vision; maybe I’m not quite ready for that.

Everything I wrote felt like lecturing.

So I deleted, and it occurred to me that what I was meant to write about was Henry and Nockatee.

And that is what I did.

Every time I write one of these little pieces, I connect more fully with the characters, and in a more visceral sense.

Maybe it’s because so much needs to be accomplished in a very small space. Maybe it’s because I’m not trying to create an entire novel, just to create a vignette.

It occurs to me that doing a slew of these BEFORE starting a novel would give me a much better sense of the characters and their interactions and motivations.

OOOH! I want to do some of these as the basis for each scene in Blood and Breath’s missing chapters…

If each scene is an embellishment of a flash fiction story, there will always be a degree of conflict and resolution, and probably tautness, too!

~excerpt from Sunday’s 750 words~

 And now, for five more fans…please, step forward, and take a bow!
Posted in Challenges and Contests, Flash Fiction Pieces, Writing Samples

Storyteller Writing Challenge – First Effort

Achingly lovely and evocative....letting it sit here for a work itself into my soul!
For this week’s picture prompt, tell us what is evoked by this image.
Where is it? What story tumbles from your imagination?
Who’s looking over at the winged woman? Who and what is she?
Are you human, demon, bird? Is she?
You decide.

Sarjyn and the Kingdom of Man Above

She had been told, as all the women among the Soarers had been, that the Kingdom of Man Above contained marvels such as they had never seen; the chance for love and passion such as they, in their narrower, baser lives, could never know with the men of their own kind…..

Sarjyn had never found her life or the men she shared company with lacking, but it was not given for any Soarer to refuse the Summons, once it had been made.

And so she had gone, as she was expected to, as she had always been told she must, when her time came.

Up past the place where the clouds separated her from the welcome embrace of the harboring earth, to the heavy dwelling place made by the Men Above.

Above the clouds, it looked very different, without the glitter the sun and moon cast upon it from below, giving it a glistening and otherworldly framework made, perhaps, of air and clouds.

But here, above, with nothing to shield it, it – hunkered, squat and ugly, a brooding thing of damp and slimy stone. Within, rather than the loveliness of arching and open skies for their flying, there were only chambers above, made for men to take their pleasurings, and large bare rooms below, where the women of the Soarers were kept, in rows of beds stacked four high, all staring without seeingl and tended by the shrunken, twisted, gray-skinned females who must be native here.

The lines that connected them to the central well from which the imitur potion dripped had been nearly invisible. Her eyes had not caught them in time, and, were it not for the scent, which she could never forget, she would be as hollowed and desolate as the others –

The others –

No.   She could not think on that further. That way lie pain that might sever her from her senses. Later, she would feel what must be felt, but there was nothing to be done for those tens  or perhaps hundreds of thousands of Soarer women, slowly dying, their wings molting and useless as they were consumed by the imitur and the alien children who had been seeded within their trembling and insensate bodies.

But she – she had not simply entered at the main, imposingly arched gate, as the others must have.  Among the Soarers, Sarjyn was known for the torrent of her questions, and the drive she had for answers.

No, she instead made herself as insubstantial as the mist, in the way the Huntleader had helped her to feel within herself, so very long ago, now….and found a likely crack to slip through, so that she could watch without being noticed….

And she had seen the women,  some who had once been friends, or lovers, or both, and recognized the scent of the poison that had nearly extinguished all life below, when she was but a child….

Sarjyn slipped away, remained the fog until she was past where she could be reached, and, only then, shed the Spiritform and arched herself into a plummeting flight, away from the horrors above, and back to the joys and peace of life amongst the trees, the fields, and the lower skies anchored still to the earth, to warn her people, so that no more would journey to the Kingdom of Man Above, and a life that was far worse than death.


TIMED WORD ASSOCIATION: Treacle, Bloated, Yesterday.Write whatever springs to mind from these three words, in 3 minutes: No cheating or editing! Lets see what happens.

Choose from these genre: 
Fantasy, Horror, Romance (or a combination)
As always, poetry or prose is fine for either prompt-type.
Your word count must range within 20 – 700 please.



Yesterday, it all became too much,  and I had to do something – anything, else I might implode into the same nothingness I always see in so many of the eyes here.

The treacle they insist on feeding us in this bloated monster they call a school is deadening us, little by little,  piece  by piece, making us over in its own soulless vision, churning us out like  we were products on an assembly line, and nothing more.

No more.  The assembly line is broken beyond all repairing –