SPARK http://getsparked.org get together | get creative | get sparked! Mon, 21 Sep 2020 02:27:13 +0000 en-US hourly 1 https://wordpress.org/?v=5.5.1 Betty Nichols and Jenny Forrester http://getsparked.org/spark45/betty-nichols-and-jenny-forrester http://getsparked.org/spark45/betty-nichols-and-jenny-forrester#respond Mon, 21 Sep 2020 02:08:36 +0000 http://getsparked.org/?p=17924

Betty Nichols
Response

Cherish
By Jenny Forrester
Inspiration piece

I cherish the Bluebird of My Happiness. Beyond myself and even beyond The River, The Writing, The Story of My Story. The Bluebird is Everything. I’m here for her, because of her, and with her. The Wide-Mouthed Underminer can’t consume us, The Gray-Area Gaslighter can’t torch us, The Swirling Chaos Child can’t divide us. There’s a thing about Others and Us. We cherish. They perish.

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Jenny Forrester and Betty Nichols http://getsparked.org/spark45/jenny-forrester-and-betty-nichols http://getsparked.org/spark45/jenny-forrester-and-betty-nichols#respond Mon, 21 Sep 2020 02:05:43 +0000 http://getsparked.org/?p=17921

Betty Nichols
Inspiration piece

I Am Six Souls
By Jenny Forrester
Response

I’m paper to your tree, grass to your leaves, monster to your color, lines and curves and blue. I’m shelf to your mantle and candle and stone. I’m layers, you see? That’s one of me.

Another soul is my mass. I’m large, pink, and watery, and some of the same layered things from my first soul, but sometimes I’m just this. Large. Pink. Watery.

Third Soul is the middle, gregarious Soul. I’m moonlight night and toads and hidden fox. I’m night though. The third night thing. I’m mostly that.

My fourth soul is a small girl getting pushed aside, wishing for more joyful joy but you won’t let me have that. You’re a shamer, some liar, some lord. I’m a fighting child soul. Fierce favorite soul four.

Soul five. More shadow for fierce girl soul. Also my favorite. Like four.

My sixth soul is offset. I do this for survival. I shift so you can’t put me in your box or take me out. You can’t reach me. I love my sixth soul. I love because of my sixth soul.

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Chandra Achberger and Amy Moffitt http://getsparked.org/spark45/chandra-achberger-and-amy-moffitt http://getsparked.org/spark45/chandra-achberger-and-amy-moffitt#comments Sat, 12 Sep 2020 13:55:30 +0000 http://getsparked.org/?p=17908

Chandra Achberger
Calm Chaos
Chemigraph, 5×7 on 1970s Kodak Photo Paper
Response

Home
By Amy Moffitt
Inspiration piece
All I ever see these days is the dust
  and the fur, and some strands of hair,
    the household mementos of our shedding
      and changing, and decaying
        slowly.
And all I ever do is try to address it,
  the dirty dishes, the dirty laundry,
    the cat shit, the ants in the hallway,
      the shower mold and dropped food
        and whatever else the cat has knocked over.
I look at my house and I see dirt
  and dust and death and chaos
    and my 44 years of beating back
      against a force I’ll never defeat.
Today, our imagined dystopia is upon us
  and I sit, sipping a peppery brew
    that someone online said would help
      writing a poem, for the first time in forever.
There is free jazz playing in the other room,
  and my Frida Kahlo candle is lit.
    The sky is seven shades of silver
      and for the first time in a long while
        I see it.
There are instruments I don’t play
  and books I haven’t read
    and stickers, and colored pencils
      and paints, and this notebook
        which I bought in Chicago
          during a writers conference
            eleven years ago.
It’s not my first time courting paradox,
  But I can’t help but wonder
    at the force of death
      that is giving me life,
        that has returned my crumbling house to me

          as a home.

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Note: All of the art, writing, and music on this site belongs to the person who created it. Copying or republishing anything you see here without express and written permission from the author or artist is strictly prohibited.

©2020 Amy Moffitt – All rights reserved
©2020 Chandra Achberger – All rights reserved

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Robert Haydon Jones and Jonathan Ottke http://getsparked.org/spark45/robert-haydon-jones-and-jonathan-ottke http://getsparked.org/spark45/robert-haydon-jones-and-jonathan-ottke#comments Thu, 10 Sep 2020 18:49:11 +0000 http://getsparked.org/?p=17898
Jonathan Ottke
Inspiration piece

Crow
By Robert Haydon Jones
Response

Eustace had always been a Crow. He had also always been a male Human. Part of Eustace would always dangle. When he took flight, something always glinted. It always felt good. He liked feeling so beautiful. Once, early on, he was diving and glinting and preening in the glint — going faster and faster – when, suddenly he was not alone. He was flying in perfect tandem with a companion. It filled him. He smiled – and then deep chortled for hours.

Crows were a minority and that was okay. The wild thing centered in Eustace and all Crows would never be tamed. Only Crows knew that their wild interior was independent and totally in charge. The others never suspected that the force that could suddenly propel a dozing Crow into an arching epitome of beauty suddenly capping off a reckless, exquisite dive with, say, a soothing, surprise, Immelmann Turn, was a dictator. A bad ass dictator.

Still, it was great to be a Crow! Once, Eustace attacked a heavily fortified position and traversed it left-to-right before they really saw him. Then he came all the way back, right-to-left, while they were still discussing him – their response was so tardy and so drunken that Eustace’s companions laughed and laughed and laughed. He had always known he would reverse course and come back. Of course, it was not his decision. That was scary. Very scary. Very thrilling. Very Crow.

 

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Jonathan Ottke and Robert Haydon Jones http://getsparked.org/spark45/jonathan-ottke-and-robert-haydon-jones http://getsparked.org/spark45/jonathan-ottke-and-robert-haydon-jones#comments Thu, 10 Sep 2020 18:48:01 +0000 http://getsparked.org/?p=17895 Image of Frying PAn
Jonathan Ottke
Response

Jiggle Memorial
By Robert Haydon Jones
Inspiration Piece

The idea of his wife suddenly dropping dead, say, just as she was leaning over toward him to ladle out yet another helping of her delicious scrambled eggs, immediately demolished him.

She was just about to turn 80. She and Eustace had left marriages for each other 45 years back. He was a selfish, vain, mean, besotted lover. She had flung herself at him and had gotten so stinking drunk and so insanely stoned that it was literally decades before she understood what she had done.

When she finally saw it, if you had asked her if she would do it again, she would have laughed her deep guttural laugh and said, “Of course.”

Then after a short silence, she would have said, “Of course,” again because she really liked what those words did to her and to him.

Of course, the sudden, interruptive thought had crushed him completely. He had loved her unceasingly all this time, that was the awful truth. When he envisioned her cascading backwards and hitting her head hard on the floor as the stroke snuffed her out, an awful lot came with. The fire department had been good. The ambulance team had been very good. They had even pushed on a tad longer than necessary after they realized she really was gone forever.

In the next milliseconds, Eustace notified the seven children, appeared at the Services, cremated his wife and let the dust settle. Then he was alone. It was awful. All this time, she had been his faithful companion. He was a great lover only because she knew he was.

The eggs were delicious as always. She was a brilliant cook. Eustace wondered if all brilliant cooks were fabulous lovers.

He doubted it but he didn’t know. That vexed him.

Christ, he loved his wife! Maybe a lot more than she loved him! How could he ever take her for granted again? It just wouldn’t be the same if he couldn’t take her and her sweet ass for granted.

What was he going to do? Was he a great lover or not?

 

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Note: All of the art, writing, and music on this site belongs to the person who created it. Copying or republishing anything you see here without express and written permission from the author or artist is strictly prohibited.

 

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Kamika Cooper and Chandra Achberger http://getsparked.org/spark45/kamika-cooper-and-chandra-achberger http://getsparked.org/spark45/kamika-cooper-and-chandra-achberger#comments Wed, 09 Sep 2020 00:58:47 +0000 http://getsparked.org/?p=17887

Chandra Achberger
Inspiration piece

“Will You Come?”
By Kamika Cooper
Response

The journey to Restoration Valley had taken two and a half days. The weather had been perfect: clear skies, pollen-free breathing, and the temperatures reaching a high of 65 degrees during the day. Amina and Fir had packed just enough food and water to sustain them along the way. But sustenance and weather were never the paramount concern. Every time they thought they found a new, safe place to live, they soon found themselves among the hunted, requiring them to go on the run once more. They wanted the safety, and freedom Restoration Valley was rumored to provide. Though they had no idea what that meant – there were only rumors – anything had to be better than their current reality.

Amina, Fir, and some 40,000 other people who looked like them were in grave danger. They had been for some time but were blinded to the truth when the hunting began. They were among those who, for a few generations, were lulled into a false sense of safety by their wealth, privilege, and education. Believing themselves to be equals with the very people they were running from now, they allowed themselves to become too comfortable, letting their guard down too soon.

They cleared the cover that the trees had provided for the last day of their journey and exited the woods to find the lush, steep green hill said to be the valley’s entryway. It was so tall and wide; It looked as if they would need to reach the sky before descending. A reassuring voice entered their minds: You only need to make it to the top. Once there, you will be safe.

They heard yells behind them; Hunters were near. Tired – so very tired – and nearly out of steam, they began to run up the hill. They were halfway up when the first shot rang out. Fir looked as if he might give up. Amina pulled at his elbow, nudging him upward, knowing that she could not descend into Restoration Valley without him. Fire spread across the back of Amina’s thigh. Though she had never felt a gunshot before, she knew this is what had occurred. Fir’s arm abruptly wrested from her loving hand, and all hope was lost. They were in pain, bleeding, vision blurred, and gasping for air when they reached the valley’s top.

All the gunfire stopped.

Light surrounded them, lifted them, and carried them down into the valley. Their wounds began to heal, and as they regained their vision, they saw the most beautiful, smooth structure before them. It looked to be constructed from hematite. The benevolent, soothing voice entered their minds again.

We have healed your injuries, but we understand that some scars do not heal as swiftly. You are free to return the peak if you wish, but know that you are welcome on our ship and our planet. If you are willing, we have come to take you to your new home. There may be many new challenges, but we can promise that they will not be the ones you are facing now, and you will never be among the hunted again. Will you come?

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Amy Moffitt and Chandra Achberger http://getsparked.org/spark45/amy-moffitt-and-chandra-achberger http://getsparked.org/spark45/amy-moffitt-and-chandra-achberger#comments Mon, 07 Sep 2020 16:14:17 +0000 http://getsparked.org/?p=17882

Chandra Achberger
Inspiration piece

Never
By Amy Moffitt
Response

You may forget me,

(you have, in so many ways

and so many times

forgotten me so completely)

but I will never forget you…

 

kneeling in the graveyard

with your tracing paper

using black charcoal

to copy the stones.

 

I walked some distance away

and contemplated you,

long legs folded to the earth,

long arms making moving white lines

against the dark green of

the graveyard bushes.

 

The wind blew,

(or at least I think it did),

and though I know that at that moment

(as in every moment of my life)

I carried shame for what I was not

and disappointment with the world

 

I remember this as perfection,

the most beautiful and pure expression

of whom we would always truly be,

 

you the quiet artist, with the eye for the other,

me the driver, helping you

and standing back on the side of the hill,

holding my breath,

in awe of you.

 

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Amy Moffitt and Lisa Pimental http://getsparked.org/spark45/amy-moffitt-and-lisa-pimental http://getsparked.org/spark45/amy-moffitt-and-lisa-pimental#comments Mon, 07 Sep 2020 16:09:51 +0000 http://getsparked.org/?p=17877

Lisa Pimental
“345”
Inspiration piece

Why You Should Drift
By Amy Moffitt
Response

Look.

The lemon-yellow butterfly

has fluttered by and gently

returned and

dipped its head deep

into the morning glory blossom

again, and again.

 

Listen.

The bird on the porch rail

has the clearest, most

insistent song, it

came from nowhere

quick and bright, and

it sang to your heart

before you saw it.

 

Feel.

The breeze is tracing

a blessing across your forehead,

up your arms,

conspiring with sweat

to embrace and refresh you.

 

Taste – while you still can

the blackberry on your tongue,

its satisfying heft

giving way to a

baptism of new wine.

 

Smell (can you?)

the rain in the air, remember refreshment and

the gift of green leaves,

the sight of running streams,

fat and alive.

 

Don’t cry. Don’t cry.

No one was ready for this.

Ride the waves as they come…

You must drift to survive.

 

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Rusty Lynn and Kathleen Finn Jordan http://getsparked.org/spark45/rusty-lynn-and-kathleen-finn-jordan http://getsparked.org/spark45/rusty-lynn-and-kathleen-finn-jordan#comments Sun, 06 Sep 2020 02:24:36 +0000 http://getsparked.org/?p=17873

Rusty Lynn
“Bubbling Sea”
Response

Listening to Crosby, Stills, and Nash, The Captain, and thinking……

Take This Stranger From My Boat
By Kathleen Finn Jordan
Inspiration piece

Dreaming of drifting in a boat on a bubbling sea
Drenched in wind and blue and blazing sun and
A runaway train streaming from the land
A virus disk wants to be friends
Wants to eat me up…wants to
Take away the breathing of the ocean air
The breathing of the closeness where

“Take this stranger from my boat”
Distance me from it at a bounty’s cost
The cost of hugs, kisses, joined hands and
Work and team and running to the hoop
The joy of being together with special friends and the cheer
and hoots of the game, the arena. the stage, the cherry blossoms…
Take this stranger from my boat
And from all who avoid its encounter
Masked and gloved with bleached hands and troubled faces
Hoping, dreaming, not of a return to the remembered past
But of a new invigorated planet loving and protecting tomorrow.

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Note: All of the art, writing, and music on this site belongs to the person who created it. Copying or republishing anything you see here without express and written permission from the author or artist is strictly prohibited.

 

 

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Kathleen Finn Jordan and Rusty Lynn http://getsparked.org/spark45/kathleen-finn-jordan-and-rusty-lynn http://getsparked.org/spark45/kathleen-finn-jordan-and-rusty-lynn#respond Sun, 06 Sep 2020 02:12:49 +0000 http://getsparked.org/?p=17866 Rusty Lynn
Surprise
Inspiration piece

The Cycle and the Circle
By Kathleen Finn Jordan
Response

Draping blues with shocks of starlight float to earth
Punctuated by drill like shooting edge sharpened branches
Reaching out, sticking skyward, holding earth in place/
Daylight retreats and dusky suspicion transforms the certainty of day
Soon the darkness, soon the cooling respite, soon the hint of end of all
And, perhaps, a chance for new beginnings emerging
As disappearing blue shoots skyward with the whisper of dawn
A not so confident appearance of light, which with the practice of a few hours, will
Blast out sure and strong its rays spinning and darting in all directions
Surprise, another chance, a new day, a what do you think will happen
Begins the cycle and the circle once again.

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