Archive for the ‘Fragments’ Category


17 March, 2009

I don’t write here (which is a shame, because I should); but just because I don’t write here doesn’t mean I don’t write. To wit:



13 February, 2008

It was rainy all today.  Waiting at my bus stop tonight, the air was filled with a hanging drizzle – like small raindrops that had forgotten their way to the ground halfway there.  There was a large puddle where the road dipped, and when cars would drive through they would send walls of water out on either side.  The puddle-water would also splash up to form large drops on the car, on its undercarriage and its sides.  The water coming off the cars would evaporate, forming a thicker mist in the already saturated cold air.  This thicker mist would cling to the cars and train behind them when they drove, until the cars stopped at a red light, when mist would exude from the car uniformly, surrounding each car and creating tendrils in the headlights, giving the impression of headlights that clouded the world rather than illuminating it.  Eventually no more water all the droplets would run off a car or have turned into dissipating mist, and each car would be free of its cloud.

More Palindromes

9 February, 2008

“Wolf flow” (sounds scary, though I don’t know what it is)

“Draw a ward” (maybe a magical instruction?)

Both of these sound like they need some more words in them to be really good.   So maybe they’re just seeds of some longer palindromes.

Further thought: palindromes are pretty cool units of language.  Repeating a palindromic phrase any number of times creates another palindrome — so “wolf flow wolf flow” is a palindrome, as is “wolf flow wolf flow wolf flow” and so on.  (I wonder if there’s any palindrome that still makes some sense after an arbitrary number of repetitions….)  Also, if one considers two palindromes ‘A’ and ‘B’, combining them yields a new palindrome as long as A and B are in palindromic order — ABA will be a palindrome, as will will BAAB or ABAAABA.  Somewhat mathematical bits of English, palindromes are (which maybe explains why nerdy folks like them so much).

New Palindromes?

30 January, 2008

“A mall llama”


“llama mall”

(I haven’t seen these anywhere else — and so was pretty pleased when I came up with them.)

Only in dreams

20 January, 2008

I normally don’t have dreams (or don’t remember them upon waking), but this past week or so was different.  I had a number of dreams – bad and good – that stayed with me upon waking.  Somewhat reformatted for clarity of reading, here they are.


Write Club

15 December, 2007

I’ve been having a good time the past few weeks writing stories of exactly one hundred words long along with a number of others over at Viking Cat’s site.   Given the minimal effort in writing such a short short story, the return is very high.

Constraint breeds creativity — pretty much all the stories posted there weekly are better than they have any right to be.  Plus, every week there are a few that really hit home for me.

It’s also nice to have a well posed, externally generated, writing task every week.  Keeps me brain’s creative writing muscles exercised.

A Play

16 September, 2007

A friend of mine had a birthday party recently.  He encouraged people to bring one-act plays, which would then be performed (script-in hand, not memorized) in front of the group.  I wanted to write something myself, and wanted something that wasn’t quite a standard play.  The best way, I thought, was to add some improvization elements.  So I came up with what is essentially a MadLibs-style play.  After taking audience suggestions for the blank words, a trio of actors performed the play without any prior rehersal.

The performance ended up being funnier than I could have imagined.

I’ve uploaded the Word Document of the play below:

A Very [adjective] Play

Edit: trying a new link to the play:

A Very [adjective] Play


6 May, 2007

People have different reactions and relationships to the shows they watch or games they play.  For me, my reaction in seeing this particular Perplex City puzzle card was that the six words in all caps and underlined would be good as sestina keywords.  So here it is: my ARG-inspired poem.


I wrote a haiku while eating some fruit

8 April, 2007

Plums are like cherries
Only a little bigger
And they taste diff’rent


29 March, 2007

            Was there to be true love & sunshine for the princess?


            The ampersand didn’t particularly like the sentence.  But who was she to complain?  It was good, honest work, and they couldn’t all be Shakespeare.  The ampersand would be a little sad to see it go.  Nowadays, her main employment was on standardized, sanitized marquees or hand-written signs.

            As she headed home, the ampersand wondered if she had always been this lonely.  She had usually been a few words apart from the other written symbols – except for the few times when she got within waving distance of a period.  The signage work only made it worse, as there was almost never anyone else around (except perhaps a flighty apostrophe, with its head in the clouds).

            The ampersand could even remember some times when she had been happy for her separation from the others.  The steadfast and diligent period had revealed in his gravelly voice that he hated the times when necessity required that intimate work with quotations.  The single quotation, while a little smarter than his double-quotation brother, was equally as stuck-up.  The period had then expressed his opinion that he would trade any of his easy work with quotations for a hard run in sentence with a semicolon.  Not that the period was impartial – the stop and pause punctuation usually stuck together.

            Putting the keys on the hallway table, the ampersand turned on a light in her apartment.  Dusk was just beginning to settle when she decided that this would not be just another night of staying in with the cats.  Less than half an hour later, the ampersand had changed into a dress that took advantage of her curves in a way that her work clothes did not.  She was picking up her keys again, ready to meet someone new.


            She hadn’t ever seen him before.  He looked young and lost in the bar – clearly working up the nerve to talk to her.  She wanted to talk to him too, but wasn’t sure if her being forward would scare him off.  What the heck, she thought, may as well try.

            As she sidled up next to him in the corner, a look of fear and relief flashed across his face.  They shouted smalltalk over the music and burble of other patrons’ conversations.  Eventually he suggested getting some coffee, and the ampersand beamed acceptance.


            “Do you go out often?” she asked over a slowly cooling third cup of blackish ooze.

            He had explained his job as the interrobang was to be a sentence-ending punctuation combining the functions of an exclamation point and a question mark.  ‘What’ was the signature phrase of his job.

            “Go out?  Not much,” the interrobang smiled slightly to show that he was both joking and earnest.  “I’m not terribly busy with work, but I don’t always feel entirely comfortable around other, more established punctuation or other symbols.”

            She liked him.  She liked the precision of his use, the concision in his form.  He may have been different, but he was more than that: he was special.

            The interrobang looked at the ampersand.  “I would like to go out with you again.”

            Her eyes focused on the rim of her coffee cup.  “I think ….”