Tag Archives: word challenge

Word Challenge (Abysmal)

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Entry to this week’s weekend writing prompt!

Sisyphus descends a spiral staircase connecting heaven to hell. He’d been demoted at his job and now tasked with lugging a square boulder up and down the steps. Along the way, he encounters the ghost of Virgil who remarks that his situation had taken an abysmal turn. Sisyphus inquired if his situation was truly more futile than before. The task remained endless, yet rest proved monotonous for nothing would change and he’d lapse into ennui. Virgil guffawed and then gifted Sisyphus a clock so that he’d suffer equally in mind, body, and spirit.


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Word Challenge (Pestilence, Mordant, Actuate)

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The Delphic oracle prophesied that a great pestilence would sweep over the land, cleansing it of all the weak and the corrupt. To hide the pronouncement from the masses, the Grecian king appeased the soothsayer with sacrifices of his most prized possessions each year. The stakes crossed the line however when the oracle wished to see the king’s stallion. Outright refusal would not suffice and so a plan was actuated to replace the steed with a lesser stock. Manes were trimmed, muzzles cleanly waxed, and calves embronzed to imitate the true prize. On the day of the offering, the king unveiled the nigh indistinguishable impostor to the gasps of the court. The priestess starred for a hard minute before replying face in palm.

“I thought it taller and nobler, but I see now its dense backside. A blind ass would have done better.”

Her mordant wit flew over everyone’s heads.

Word Challenge (Risque, Board, Fever)

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A priest traveled abroad to seek an answer to an age-old question… what is the good in life? Along the way, he encounters a bard, a grandmaster, and a doctor in a tavern. When inquired, the bard pined about love blossomed and then lost, the grandmaster dramatized his rise and fall from power, the doctor lamented on duty and suffering. The priest quoted a passage from God but the three laughed it off. That night, the bard dreamt of risqué encounters with men, the grandmaster of bloody pieces on a chess board, the doctor of fevered patients in nooses. Sunday morning dawned and the three men attended confessionals, each pouring their hearts out. The priest nodded and forgave each of their sin, accepting an indulgence for their penances. After the service, all parties left and continued along their merry ways. The priest took off his collar and donned a tie.

Devour

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Entry to this week’s weekend writing prompt!

The Buddha happened upon a starving beggar. Offering a parcel of bread, the vagrant instead absconds with the entire loaf. The next night, the Buddha returned to find two beggars in the same spot. He offers another loaf but they fight over the right proportions. On the third night, four beggars demanded their share. The Buddha splits a loaf into four equal parts but the small portions lead to discontent. On the fourth and final night, eight beggars awaited their free handouts. The Buddha leaves a sack of flour on the ground with some water. The octet spills the cup as they devoured the sack and left retching.


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Lollygag

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Entry to this weekend’s writing prompt! Image courtesy of Artem Chebokha

A grasshopper ambled towards a road’s edge. Looking both ways, he saw neither car nor cyclist approaching and decided to cross. Half-way in, a thought struck the creature that his kind never explored the path to see where it led. A simple ninety-degree turn would do… As he lollygagged under the open sun, a bird swooped down and ate him.


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Hubris

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Entry to this weekend’s writing prompt! Image courtesy of Artem Chebokha.

“Who is first amongst equals?” Socrates asked.

“I am!” stomped Earth. “Without me, there is no ground for arguments to stand on.”

“Boooo!!” howled Wind. “Did you lift that bit from Water? Or did you get mud in your ears?”

“Stop blowing smoke!!!” roared Water. “No, I mean… stop with the nonsense.”

“Hahahaha” cracked Fire. “Water, I thought you’d be the most fluid. Never knew you’d rather be air-dried cough cough 😊”

Socrates rolled his eyes and sighed “I’m appointing Aether as first. Rest of you…  get a planet.”

“What hubris!” the four exclaimed.


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Dream Coil

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Entry to Sammi’s weekend writing prompt! Image courtesy of Artem Chebokha.

I long for the sea in a bygone time,

but arid sands now cover my lands.

Who’d thought that spirits don’t die,

waiting for bells to sound last knells.

Yet hope remains among liminal currents,

two strangers dream of beautiful expanses.

So I coil my arms around wishes and desire,

nudge them together and watch with eager.


 

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Catch the Sky

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Entry to this week’s Sammi Scribbles! Image courtesy of Artem Chebokha.

I saw to capture the sky.

Effortless was light on my eyes.

Till brush met canvas and paint smattered.

Refusal spoke winds, clouds stuttered.

So I took my easel and colors aside.

Closed my eyes and tried to hide.

For night would fall and heavens slumber.

Snuck back out, clandestine plunder.

And by morning’s break, the masterpiece complete.

Gasped the sky, thought I had cheat.

Not ineffable,

but very difficult.


 

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Word Challenge (Possess, Pies)

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The old decrepit house on Willows street was said to be possessed every Christmas eve. An eerie fog would gather around its gated premises and the normally dormant glass globes by the broken windows would glow a menacing red. Its previous inhabitants, a young family who settled in several decades ago, had been driven mad; the couple wound up in separate asylums and their children orphaned. Curiously, all the members had developed an aversion to pies of all things. The father’s insane ramblings oscillated between the gift of a divine custard and the devil’s hellfire that incinerated it. The mother reenacted the preparation of the same meal that would always end with an iron mold placed in the oven. The two children had night terrors about utensils and cutlery. The police couldn’t make heads or tails of the case until they hired an exorcist to treat the afflicted. When the priest finished his work, he asked the detectives, “have you found the friend?”