Muddy Girls

Muddy Girls

Sky’s Falling Girls Make Mud Pies

Photo by Daiga Ellaby via Unsplash

“Lacy! Gimme that mud bucket! Is Sky over there? Is it spitting out mud?! We need more mud for these pies!”

Lacy looks towards her bossy twin, tilts her head, and casually skips over to Missy with Sky in the muddy bucket. They have mud pies to make.

“Here! You ain’t gotta be all direct about things, Missy. I could’ve heard you all the way down the Chattahoochee River. You need to learn how to talk to people. Didn’t Mama tell you that? Didn’t Aunt May?”

Lacy, the quiet one, usually the one to smooth things over when things got out of control, has been frustrated with her twin sister for a few days. This one event lit an already fiery flame within her. She was tired of Missy and someone had to let her know. Totty follows close by. She wants to see what her two big sisters have brewing.

“All’s I said was to bring the bucket over and look after Sky too. That was a great big ole piece we pulled from behind Ms. Ruby’s shed. I don’t want us to lose it.”

“You oughta go’on and apologize, Missy. Don’t be so bossy all the time. It ain’t ladylike.”

Missy sucks her teeth, rolls her eyes, and blows out a raspy breath. Lacy stands her ground. Totty reaches for her sister’s hand and squeezes it. They both watch Missy struggle to make amends — to admit wrong.

“Okay, Lacy. I’m sorry. I shouldn’t have been so demandin’. I was excited. Can you forgive me?”

Lacy looks at Missy, searches her eyes for truth, and finds it. She accepts her sister’s apology. It is pie-making time.

“Okay, I accept it. Just — you mind your manners and don’t let it happen again or me and Totty’ll go right on home.”

The girls scoop mud up by the handful, plop it into three buckets, then spread the contents in three pans. Each lump is layered atop the other and within minutes, an ultimate mud pie is made. Totty jumps at the opportunity to stick her fingers in the gooey dirt, then slaps it across her face.

“TOTTY! Whatchudoin’?!” They both scream at their toddler sister, reprimanding her for being curious. “YOU ALMOST ATE SKY! That’s not for you to eat, Totty. It’s for us to build muddy sky pies with.”

Totty shrugs her shoulders. She shakes the mud at her fingers sending muddy bits flying into the air. The sky changes color. What was once a sinner’s yellow is now a saint’s orange. It is getting late.

“We better get movin’,” Missy exclaims.

“Right. Mama will have our hides if we don’t beat the crickets’ song and Ms. Ruby’s porch light.”

The three of them run as fast as they can, buckets of muddy sky piled upon each other, dirty clothes and pruned fingertips are signs of a good time.

The night is tailing them and Sky fades to black the moment their shoes meet the front door.


Originally published in The Weekly Knob via Medium.

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Your Labor Day Smile

Caison thinks he’s a big boy. He even put my slides on the right feet, no help from anyone. The kid is growing up far too fast.

 

He’s also into taking out all of his toys at once and not playing with any, in particular, he just likes to show me that he can do it. Then, we practice putting all of them up again and guess what he does? You got it! He takes them all out again and smiles or laughs while he does it. And since I am a big kid, I laugh or smile along with him. Good times. Nothing but good times.

Here’s hoping this day has been a labor of love for each of you.

Peace and blessings.

Featured Poem of the Week

Susan Brearly

She brings with her, wisdom, experience, and the gift of gab within various forms of writing. She is unafraid to share what needs to be shared, regardless of its content. What she has given to A Cornered Gurl cannot be described. With each piece, new eyes set their sights on our small community and there’s no doubt that we will continue to grow. Her poem Syncopation is this week’s feature.

Syncopation

Photo by Jon Tyson on Unsplash

Ah, my heart.
Jumping, fluttering, pausing
In syncopation.

A defect, 
modern science informs.

Lying still 
hear it, feel it
Reminding
every moment
This is the SPARK

Life, the gift

Death lingers, 
lingers in the pause, the void,
between this beat and the next.

A child’s terror
Knowing.

Listen
MY BREATH, MY HEART
It stopped.

No, they say. 
Your mind, it’s there.

Again. 
Again.
Again.
Night after night.
Terror.
Certainty.
Death is near.
Death is here.

Passion’s embrace.
Remember, heart says.
You are fragile
in this flutter
in this pause
in this deep murmur, the silence in the space between breaths,
an echo chamber of the universe
that whispers, “death is near, death is here.”

Whispering, “choose . . .”
Life?
Or Death?

I choose to move.

I run.


Thanks, Jennifer Kindera for this great article

*Children who are telling you about their very real physical experiences need empathy and the full gift of your attention and time. Believe them; believe in them.


Originally published in A Cornered Gurl via Medium.

lettre d’amour

musical selection: anita baker|giving you the best that I got

lettre d’amour

fiction


“Save my baby!” I am shouting. I tell the doctors to save you, let me die. They will never know how I planned for your arrival, the gift of you to this world is much more than I can give it. “Save my baby!” I am shouting again. They hear me. There are tubes everywhere. I place my hands on my bloody stomach. I feel you. You are alive. You are kicking frantically, aware that it is time. I will die today. I will die today and this is my love letter to you.

You are the single most important thing to me in this strange world. I claimed your fingers. I already know your feet. You are perfect — my blessing. I used to pray for your father’s presence, for him to spend time learning you as much as I have. It is up to you now. I love you more than the open sea, salty to its taste, but refreshing on a hot summer’s day. I love you more than the lying lover trying to persuade his faithful mate to take him back. I love you more than… this last breath.

Ahh…
Flat___________

The lights go out, I can’t hear the doctors. I can’t see them. I only see you. I only see you — crying in front of shattered glass, windy trees, and the roar of the truck as it collides with us. I am dead.

You are alive.
They saved you.
You are here.

This is my love letter to you. This is my love letter to you. This is my love letter to you.

Zuri, you are my life’s greatest work.


Originally published in The Junction via Medium.