GOLDEN RIBBON

July 13, 2016

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Once far away and long ago a dutiful young servant girl, scarcely 9 years of age, polished the silver candelabra in the music room. Molly, for that was the servant girl’s name, couldn’t help but hear the story being told by the governess to the young master and young mistress of the manor. For there they were, the three of them, seated near the music room’s fireplace. They noticed Molly not at all. To them she was an invisible cleaning service. But the invisible cleaning service had ears. And what’s more, she had dreams.

‘And the Golden Ribbon brought them wealth and happiness beyond their wildest desires,’ said the governess, concluding the story.

Later that night in her tiny attic room, Molly, instead of sleeping, gathered all her belongings and placed them in the tiny pocket of her apron. I’ll find that Golden Ribbon, she thought. And without a moment’s delay, she crept down the steep narrow winding back stairway and flashed out and away under the light of a fat pale moon.

By the time she was 12, Molly had known forests, villages, lakes, fields, valleys, and mountains. She lived by her wits and cleaning skills, but whenever she inquired of a jester or a miller or a blacksmith or a baker or a seamstress about the Golden Ribbon, shrugs and ‘Never heard of it, dearie’ and ‘That be a true stumper to me, missy’ were all she received in reply.

One day it so happened, fair and true, that she came to the edge of a great wide river. The sun was sinking, and Molly’s jaw dropped when she saw a golden ribbon fall sparkling across the water. She sat down heavily.

‘The Golden Ribbon,’ she murmured.

‘That it is, to be sure,’ said a soft musical voice.

Molly turned, and there was the smiling Magic River Queen in all of her sparkling splendor.

‘Come with me,’ said the Queen with a reach of her delicate pale green hand, ‘and I will bring you wealth and happiness beyond your wildest desires.’

For Molly in her long happy life, it turned out to be a promise well kept.

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THE 4 SISTERS

June 26, 2016

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Once upon a time the four daughters of Hemus, the woodsman, gathered in secret beside the well in the clearing at the far end of the forest.

‘Be ye all resolved and with me?’ asked Hermia, the eldest.

Hera, Herilda, and Herippa all nodded in silent agreement.

‘So be it then. Here I have them,’ said Hermia, holding out in her hand four silver beads.

The other three sisters crowded around to get a closer look.

‘Ye really and truly for sure saw the witch?’ asked Hera, the youngest sister.

‘How know ye they’ll really and truly for sure work? Just because ye brought her firewood doesn’t mean she hasn’t tricked ye, ye know,’ said Herilda, the doubting sister.

‘Really and truly for sure I will have a golden door and mirrors circled with diamonds and rubies,’ said Herippa, the vainest sister.

Hermia handed out the beads and said, ‘Place the bead on your tongue and close your eyes and count to three.’

The four daughters of Hemus did as Hermia instructed, and floof! in a poof! four geese flew high and true toward a magnificent palace surrounded by green gardens and gentle falls tumbling into pools of the purest healing water. The four geese sailed in serene beauty for days, and all the while Herippa, the vainest sister, grew more and more worried. She was about to complain about being a goose and not a gloriously gowned princess when floof! in a poof! the four sisters were gowned in glory and ruling the castle. This they did happily for a long time, and they might be doing it yet.

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A POEM NOT ABOUT OWLS OR GOATS

May 23, 2016

this is a poem not about owls

it’s also not about goats

it’s mostly about the way cheese is made

with a small offhand mention of boats

oh milk

oh rennin

(boat)

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THE LITTLE SHAPESHIFTER

May 6, 2016

shapeshifter

‘I’m bored,’ said Wisp, the little shapeshifter.

‘Why don’t you be a horse? You had fun being a horse this morning,’ said Wisp’s mother, Vaporilla.

‘I’m bored with being a horse,’ said Wisp.

‘Well, what about a butterfly or a stork?’ suggested Wisp’s mother.

‘Or a liquid paste,’ added Wisp’s brother, Smokey.

‘Shut up, Smokey’ said Wisp.

While Smokey and Wisp argued, Vaporilla drifted outside and transformed, becoming a tranquil pool in a peaceful glade.

Smokey and Wisp soon grew bored with arguing and sailed off in opposite directions. Smokey became a canoe and flung himself down a nearby river’s rapids. Wisp wavered undecided above a field of grain.

‘I’m bored,’ she said.

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THE SUN CHASER

April 18, 2016

sulphira

One day a long time ago Simple Septimus, the stable boy, asked his master, ‘What is the sun?’

‘A great ball of fire,’ replied the master.

‘Where does it go at night?’ said Septimus.

‘Underneath to its golden palace where it rests and takes refreshment. Now get back to work,’ said the master.

I would like to see that palace, thought Septimus. The door to Underneath must be over the mountain there where the sun goes down.

Without another thought, for more than a single thought was rarely entertained by Septimus, he marched from the stables to the manor gate and out across the valley toward the mountain. When the sun dove behind the peak, Septimus had merely reached the foothills. He dug a trench and slept in it. He sat up puzzled in the morning, for there was the sun climbing up the sky way over there on the other side of the world from the mountain.

Ah, he thought, the sun leaves its palace to start the day over there, but enters the palace over here at the end of the day. I’ll get to the door over the peak before the sun does. I’ve got a good head start.

Pleased, he rushed up the mountain, resting only occasionally when he fell exhausted. At the top of the mountain, he paused and rubbed his chin.

I’ll need a boat, he thought, watching the sun sink at the far edge of a vast ocean he had never dreamed possible.

By the time 60 years had passed, Simple Septimus had become Septimus, the Sun Chaser. His long tangled white beard he wore in a braid thrown over his shoulder. His clothes were tattered, his feet bare. His eyes glittered strangely. Wolves brought him food, as did bears and villagers. Sometimes villagers asked him questions or made requests, for they believed him to be touched with magic.

Made bold by curiosity, one day a young girl seated on a gate by a meadow as Septimus passed by asked, ‘Sun Chaser, have you really visited the sun’s golden palace Underneath?’

Septimus paused, leaned on his staff, regarded the young girl with his glittering eyes. He smiled a strange smile, a smile of bliss, and said, ‘I have been there. It is wonderful. Wonderful.’

Then he walked on.

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TINDERELLA

March 30, 2016

flames

One day long ago in the cold north a farmer awoke when he heard mewing outside.

‘What’s that?’ he said.

‘Go to sleep. It’s the storm singing is all it is,’ said his wife.

Nevertheless, the farmer arose, pulled on his boots, shrugged into his heavy hooded coat, and staggered out into the storm. His ears led him to the stable, where on top of the woodpile he found a basket. In the basket was a mewing baby smiling up at him.

‘The storm singing, is it?’ he said to his wife after he brought the babe inside.

‘Oh, prayers answered then,’ she cried, springing from the bed.

They named the baby Tinderella, and the baby lit up their lives.

For eight years, a more loving, helpful daughter was not to be found anywhere from the village to the mountains to the sea. True, Tinderella never spoke, but her laughter brought joy to everyone she met.

Now it happened that when Tinderella had been comfort and joy to her parents for nine years, a ragged peddler came knocking at their door. When the farmer’s wife opened the door, the peddler said, ‘I’ve come for the basket I left here nine years ago.’

The farmer’s wife staggered at the peddler’s announcement, but fought to keep her wits about her, for she had ever known a day such as this would arrive, and she was prepared.

‘I’ve been expecting you,’ she said. ‘I’ll fetch the basket right away.’

‘Don’t forget I’ll need what was in the basket, too,’ said the peddler.

The farmer’s wife paled. She held the basket, which she had filled with her finest stitchery. Her stitchery was known to be the best in all the land, and she rushed to show it to the peddler.

‘Very fine,’ said the peddler, ‘but not fine enough. I need the child. She’s grown sufficiently to act as my servant. Her powers are ripe. Bring her. I will give you three gold coins for your trouble.’

Tinderella had heard everything from where she hid in the kitchen. She stepped into the front room and spoke for the first time in her life, ‘I am Tinderella. My powers are ripe. Go. Take the basket and my mother’s fine stitchery with you and keep the three gold coins. They are more than you deserve.’

Flames danced from Tinderella’s fingers and swirled at the peddler. He turned and ran, chased by fire until he was out of sight.

And so the farmer and his wife thrived, and because of their loving daughter, they never lacked for warmth in the coldest winters.

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PLUMLY

March 16, 2016

Meet Plumly, a ten year old Earth girl from the mountains of California. She is now dyed blue and wandering the wilds of a world in another dimension.

amazon link for purchase: http://www.amazon.com/dp/B01CFD3GXM

plumly cover

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THE SASH – A NONSENSE POEM

March 8, 2016

He wove a sash of chocolate

He wove a sash of ice

When asked to choose which one to wear

He said, ‘They’re both so nice.

I’ll wear them stuck together

with a paste made out of rice.’

And off he went down the lane trotting like a collie

He paused beside a prickly bush and trimmed his sash with holly

When he was gone for good and all, relieved was his wife Molly

Now she was free to spend all day not being sad, but jolly

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THE WISH KING’S DAUGHTER

February 25, 2016

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The Wish King’s daughter watched her father cross the Great Hall to select a wish from the wish bowl. Eyes narrowed, she studied his kind face. He reached into the bowl and plucked up a single scrap. He read the scrap and turned to the assembled villagers.

‘Damon, the harp maker,’ announced the Wish King.

‘Here! Here, Your Honor, Sire, Sir!’ piped up a little fellow, leaping forward, tripping, scrambling, grinning in his haste to crawl before the Wish King.

‘What is your wish, harp maker?’ asked the Wish King.

‘I would gaze on The Great Tree of The Snow Mound in Dazzle Pool and secure happiness everlasting,’ said the harp maker.

‘Ah, you have thought this through most thoroughly well, harp maker,’ said the Wish King. ‘Amelina, take this harp maker where he would go.’

The eyes of the Wish King’s daughter widened. Her name was Amelina. She had not the slightest idea where The Great Tree of The Snow Mound in Dazzle Pool could possibly be. However, the last thing in the world she would ever do was admit her ignorance.

‘Follow me, harp maker,’ she said.

When the pair had passed over the drawbridge, Amelina said, ‘You have a name, I suppose.’

‘Yes,’ said the harp maker.

‘Good. Keep it to yourself,’ said Amelina.

It took weeks for them to reach the Mountain of Ever Snow. Amelina had cleverly decided that a Snow Mound might likely be found on Ever Snow Mountain. They were fed and pampered all along the way. After all, Amelina was the Wish King’s daughter. She never asked anybody anything, but led on as if she knew exactly what she was doing. Up the snow slopes they went, through forests, by pools, along mounds. But not once did a great tree, a mound, and a pool gather together in harmony.

‘Are we almost there?’ asked the harp maker. ‘You know. I don’t really have to see it. Let’s go back.’

Amelina was about to shrug and say ‘Suit yourself’ when the harp maker fell to his knees and shouted, ‘Look!’

There through a row of spider leg trees was a mound of snow in the center of a round pool of dazzle. On the mound a single great pine tree reached high.

The harp maker danced around shouting, ‘Happy! Happy! Happy!’

Amelina’s face displayed a look of serenity. She thought, After all, I am the Wish King’s daughter.

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PLUMLY COVER

February 4, 2016

My new story will be coming soon. The cover will look like this.

plumly cover

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