Emmanuel #Christmas #story




There are people everywhere in this little village of Bethlehem. It was light when we began our journey. My little ones are cold, but they have to wait in line like the rest of us. “There will be a crust of bread soon,” I whisper.  I rock back and forth on my feet to keep warm. My shawl is wrapped around my daughter’s shoulders.  The memory of the day’s sun is my only warmth. “Move along” a soldier on horseback almost knocks over my little boy. My husband silently pulls his namesake close. I know he wants to curse the Romans but even a scowl of discontent will lock him in prison.  A murmur courses through the crowd, ” It is said Messiah will come.” “Maybe this year,” an old priest says in hushed tones. God knows we are destitute and Rome is  an unbearable manacle around our wrists. “Please come and restore peace,” I silently pray. “Lift your face” a Roman holds his rod under my chin. “Were you praying?” I shake my head. “Dust in my eyes, master.” “Keep your pretty eyes open.” He looks lustfully at me. “Get going,” he strikes my husband forcefully on the back.

“There was a chorus of angels,” a message filters down the line.

“Shepherds in the fields saw them.”

“It must have been frightening.”

“Do you know what that means?”

“Our God has heard us.”

“Why are we still in these rags then?”

“Be patient wrongs will be made right.”

“Rome must be destroyed.”

“In good time…”

“Messiah will set us free.”

I imagine life free of this nightmare. Tyranny’s fist gone from our lives. My children will not know oppression as I have. I take a risk and fall to my knees praising God in my heart for His gift of love.

My arm is gently grasped. “Come with me” a voice grazes past my ear. “You will find your family later.”  I am led to a stall.  “Thank you,” I say to the man who has vanished.   I am used to animals so the strong smell doesn’t bother me.  I kneel because I am filled with knowledge that I am in the presence of glory. God is with me in this moment and all the cares of life have been washed away. I get off my knees and spin in a joyful dance. My eyes meet the mothers’.  Her smile is so serene as she holds her precious baby. “Here,” she offers “hold Him.” I am a mother of three,but I feel ill equipped to hold the chosen one. “Yes, it’s alright.” I look in His face. A single word fills me “blessed.” His finger grasps at mine. ” Yes, I am blessed,” I coo. Somehow I understood with no words being spoken what this small child was meant to do. “I will pray for you,” I mouthed to the mother as I looked at my Messiah one last time. “Shalom,” I said as I departed.

It’s as if everything around Him was acknowledging His birth. I heard the words of Isaiah brush by me on a fragrant stream of air. For unto us a Child is born, unto us a Son is given; and the government will be upon His shoulder. And His name will be called Wonderful, Counselor, the Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace. ¹ 

As I walked back to my family, my circumstances had not changed. The Romans were as callous and barbaric as before, but I knew that my life would always be different. “God is with us,” I smiled, ” and He has come as a babe to save the world.”


Jesus came to the world not to rule with iron might but to love in absolute vulnerability. The ultimate gift was given to mankind. This love is more fierce and powerful than any military or political presence. This love sets all people free. It is only in this guileless love that Peace can be found;  only in the Son of man can we be delivered from life’s manacles. SHALOM








Turn Back the Time #fiction #addiction

station clock

I stood before the hands of the giant clock. They teased me as they clicked:

“you can go anywhere in your past

choose but choose fast

before the hand has gone one minute

you will either venture

or quit it.”

I was faced with a genie in a bottle decision. Where do I go? What do I revisit? Can I fix “it”?

In that 30 second time span I chose. “Take me to the year 1968 and the place Haight and Ashbury in San Francisco.”

There I was in a paisley maxi dress with my hair braided. It was me but it wasn’t me. I wasn’t the flower child. My mother was. If I could only save her from this moment where she wrecked her life, my life, my family…

“Can you tell me where Saxi is?” I tried to keep from inhaling the air . The secondary smoke would result in a nasty headache or a “high.”

“She just left with Brad.”

Brad was an innocuous name for a destroyer of life. This creep came into the suburbs to captivate young, attractive women.

“Saxi,” I called as I ran along Haight . I followed a couple of very lost in the clouds hippies. Her eyes barely acknowledged me. The spark that said, I love you sweetie-pie was extinguished.

“Please come home, Saxi.” I whsipered.



I had lived this moment so many times in my adult dreams. “Taxi” I whistled with all my might. I shouted this time holding out a Twenty  which did the trick. Quickly  I grabbed her arm pulling her into the car before she could think in her drugged oblivion.

“Take us to the train station.” I had no desire to have that creep follow us. We were leaving San Francisco and home for good.


The hands moved forward more gently as they shadowed Saxi’s wizened face. Her last, dying words “Thank you for rescuing me sweetie-pie.”




The Haight Ashbury district in San Francisco was known in the 60s and 70s for it’s free love, free pot, free clinics. Long lines of tourists would motor through the district to see the strung-out hippies. I knew several teens who ran away to Haight. Even though their parents eventually got them “back”, they never came home. The heroin addiction in my baby-sitter rendered her an “on again off again “junkie for the remainder of her life.



This week’s writing prompt for Word Press Daily Post was Time Machine.

The photograph of the street sign is from the San Francisco China Times

The Babushka Blessing #shortstory #Ukraine

We had one hour to do a frantic shop for items we could only get in Ukraine. The list from friends was rather long: Hand carved jewelry, stacking dolls, hand painted spoons …

“Mommy we are going to run out of time. Why don’t we split up?” My precocious thirteen year-old daughter suggested. I scanned the park with booth after booth of items for sale. The park was large and everything looked the same.

“No way!” I said in English knowing that my two girls could be swept away in a foreign land in a moment. My limited Russian would be unheard, my screaming in English heeded less.

“We will never be able to do it all.” My 10-year-old daughter chimed in

“Then we will do what we can, first I have to get grivna out of the ATM.” I heard both the girls sigh as I dragged them quickly to a corner of the square.

“It will only take a moment. ” A moment I knew we did not have.

As I left the ATM machine, an elderly Babushka came into my vision. She was so frail and thin as she carried  a woven satchel of groceries that looked like it weighed more than she. With a weak but genuine smile, she looked right at me then at the girls.

Do you ever feel your hand magnetically reach for your wallet when you see someone poor and weak? I knew my husband (8000 miles away) would have growled at me. It didn’t matter. I felt the compelling need to help this frail woman.

I pulled out grivna and gave her the equivalent to  several weeks worth of food. I said a few words  in my very poorest Russian accent. The smile in her eyes could have lit the pavement. Then this woman put her tissue paper-thin hands on my girl’s heads and said a blessing. I didn’t understand all of what she said but I knew it came straight from the heart. She looked me in the eye with a toothless grin as she placed her hand against my cheek then she was gone! I felt washed with something indescribable.

Now our time was even less than it was before. I looked at my watch,  we had to catch our bus to the airport in thirty minutes. The oddest thing happened- As we went to the different tents to check out what was for sale, it was as if a sea parted before us. Each kiosk had exactly what we were looking for and the price was less than we had planned. One man as we were leaving handed me a beautiful handmade wooden necklace. He gestured for me to wear it.  It reminded me of the beauty and strength of the Ukranian people and of the old woman.  I wondered if he knew the babushka.

I was not looking forward to the trip home. Two days of travel is grueling; add two young girls and an injured mother (I had been injured in Crimea.)  We were alone  from Odessa to Vienna to New York and finally LA. I felt like people kept looking out for us. A man helped carry all of our luggage to the plane ,  we needed to hail a taxi in Vienna and someone shared theirs with us to the hostel. All along the way people were unusually thoughtful to the girls and I.

There had been a man trying to escape justice who had hidden in the luggage compartment on our plane out of Odessa. He was subdued (in Vienna) before he could be violent or set off whatever was in his duffle.

When I got home I looked at the necklace hanging around my neck. ‘Oh Babushka you gave me so much more than I gave you. Your blessing got us safely home. Spasiba Bolshoi.’


I just wanted the reader to know that this short story is  true. I wrote this piece a number of years ago and archived it. Based on the current turmoil in Ukraine, I hope to send some blessings back.

The Ukrainian people are a strong, beautiful and creative people. How can anyone want to strip that from our world?

Moon Beast #halloween #shortstory #children’sfiction #amwriting

the beast below

It was long ago when the world was young.The Moon some say was bright and full once or twice a year but then she would be gone for weeks at a time.” My grandmother said with a quiet, serious voice.

I closed my eyes. Grandmother told great stories.

“There were fewer people, no one to protect our world or our universe.  I do not think when Mars chased Luna that he intended to sire a beast. But beast he was.”

“How can such silvery beauty as I spawn repulsion?” she screamed as she flung him into the abyss of night.

“I am sorry, Luna. Please forgive me” the love struck Mars pled.

“Our love created that foul thing. We cannot be together, ever.”

“So Mars retreated to his corner of the Solar System looking each evening for a glimpse just a whisper of her , his  dearest Luna.”

“A star took pity on the child as he somersaulted through the dark. She sheltered him, giving him time to grow. The star did not intend for its kindness to be met with such  hatred. The beast devoured the star and grew strong.”

“You fool he sneered you should have let me die. He shook his fist at his mother,  a piece of the star hanging from his mouth.”

“The beast found himself on a planet called Earth.  It was green,full of life. The beast could not stand the light so in daylight he would vanish. At night dogs, chickens even people would be found missing. None wanted to believe the folk-lore. 

“Grandmother, I simpered how can we be safe from this beast? I will never go outside at night again.”

“There, there child. Listen…

For some time the dark beast  roamed the earth never content with his destruction. He would stoke the earth’s innards and make rocks so hot that it flowed from mountain tops into villages below. It was not enough. The Moon Beast for so he was called by the Universe would grab the sinews of the earth and pull shaking the ground, making worlds tumble.”

“We must stop this” Venus  looked with a jealous side glance at  Luna.

“I have no power over him, none at all,” Luna cried.

“There must be a solution” said the usually disregarded Pluto.

“He has one weakness, have you not seen?” The Sun rumbled. “He cannot be in the light of my rays. Perhaps I could shine day and night.”

“But you cannot Father Sun,” Saturn  wrung her hands.

“Luna, on the nights that you come out our son shrinks in strength. Your beauty makes him sick. Perhaps if you shine each night, he will die.” Love burned in Mar’s eyes.

“How can I destroy my son?” Luna despaired.

“You must” the people of the earth chorused to the Heavens.

“What did Luna do Grandmother?”

“Sadly, the celestial mother put on her silvery shawl to steal herself against the cold night air and kept a nightly vigil. The beast could not stand her light with time he grew weak. Luna too was growing weak. Mars saw it and wrapped his warm arms around her once or maybe twice a month to give her rest. It is said that on dark, moonless all hallow’s eve night’s  very strange things happen. No one knows for sure if the beast died. Luna continues to shine.  She hopes her son is still alive. She sighs in relief each time her dearest Mars comes so that she might rest. Tonight, grandson, if the moon is hidden you must run to your home.  Quickly now and keep your doors locked; I have heard strange tidings.”

The next morning a mournful wail  into the a blood-red dawn. 

“Luna WHYYYYYY?” Continue reading “Moon Beast #halloween #shortstory #children’sfiction #amwriting”

An Immigrant’s Dream #flashfiction #history #statueofliberty


“I see her far away in the distance.” a youngun called.

The tall looming lady was a welcome sight after long weeks at sea.

“Hot meals will be a welcome relief after weeks of soapy soup,” the weary matron thought.

The pretty girl, in the gown, that was beginning to show its wear, wore a tight smile. ” I hope he likes me; there is nothing to go back to if I’m sent back.”

“Will there really be work for the likes of a scrawny boy with naught but two pence to rub together?”

The Lady distanced herself from the expectations.

Today at Friday Fictioneers Rochelle has up whipping up stories on the sea entering New York harbor.

Tear of a Star #shortstory #amwriting #flashfiction

They tried to capture it – my tear

The myth was if you caught one tear of a star you could rule the world.

But they got it wrong.

If you managed to get me, a star , upset I would not cry  there would be natural disasters

The world would vomit its dead, storms would come in like a tide,  the waves would get bigger drowning more people in waves of concrete.

If by chance you touched one tear of mine you would scream in torment.

For though nothing has happened it feels as if your entire body has been dropped into a vat of caustic acid.

Only one could manage a tear – my lover.

Loving arms wrapped around me would calm the waves, put out the fires, stay disaster.

His reassuring voice would put an ice cap on this inferno

As he laid me upon a green/ blue pasture in the universe as he brushed my hair,

I would be sated.

But that time has yet to come.

If by chance you meet this man

send him toward the end of the celestial grove.

For the hour grows late and my patience with humanity is waning

ire and mercury rises.


The Day They Packed My Computer #fiction #challenge

Today they moved the last of my belongings to somewhere. No one would tell me. My family thinks because I am “old” that those things no longer matter or that I will forget about them like I forgot the grocer’s name (last week).

I watched someone fumble with the box containing my type written drafts, hand drawn story boards, and copies of every last radio script.  A tear fell to the ground; no one heard it except Font, my spaniel. My faithful Dell which replaced my IBM Selectric years ago was in another box bound for the place where computers go instead of heaven.

“Don’t worry mom everything is on thumb drives.”

“For what?” I wanted to yell under my carefully tucked afghan. “Can I access my work with my thumb, perhaps my teeth?”

My bony fingers were itching to take one more sweep across the keyboard.

My daughter was dripping with sincerity, “We have you enrolled in a number of classes at the retirement community.”

I can’t tell you how many times over the years I have heard ,”Those who can’t  do… Teach.”

I smiled to myself knowing that I was teaching a number of those classes.

Little do they know that my archived work is auto loaded on my blog. Should be good for hmmm about 5 years. I can still, after all, operate the “Like” button.


The WordPress Daily Post prompt is what would you do Without Blogging? A pox on such a thought. My fictionalized response reflects what I would do….

Photography: “Ive had better days” © L. Moon

Here’s what others would do without blogging:

  1. Masterpiece, it’s all dependent on perspective | weliveinaflat
  2. Digital Detox | MC’s Whispers
  3. Daily Prompt: Life After Blogs| Disconnected | Under the Monkey Tree
  4. Daily Prompt: Life After Blogs | Alastair’s Blog
  5. Go on Actual Blind Dates | Daily Prompt: Life After Blogs | likereadingontrains
  6. Daily Prompt: Life After Blogs « Mama Bear Musings
  7. A Fairy Tale Tribunal | Spirit Lights The Way
  8. Poem – Reboot | Cozy Compulsions @ Midnight
  9. Daily Prompt: Life After Blogs | suzie81’s Blog
  10. Remembering When . . . | meanderedwanderings
  11. Zoe without computers… Shhhh! It would be… | Mad Pot
  12. Daily Prompt: Without | Books, Music and Movies : my best friends
  13. Daily Prompt: Life After Blogs | Retired2Travel
  14. Where would I be without my Computer? | Linda Nelson
  15. Off-Limits… | DG Toons
  16. The Best Ever Backyard Picnic!!! | calliopes lyre
  17. My Computer Is Very Fragile And Emotional | The Jittery Goat
  18. Lonely little Petunia | Hope* the happy hugger
  19. Daily Prompt: Life After Blogs, Momma, Don’t Take My Digital Away! | Overcoming Bloglessness
  20. Daily Prompt: Life After Blogs | Chronicles of an Anglo Swiss
  21. SciFi WiFi | Cheri Speak
  22. Motherhood and Beyond
  23. Without: Neruda’s Take and Mine | windandlaughter
  24. A life without | Angels in stunning astronaut pants
  25. private and very busy | Life is great
  26. Daily Prompt: Life After Blogs | Heron There & Everywhere
  27. Sans PC – CombatBabe
  28. Computer Free… | Haiku By Ku
  29. Life-Beyond-Blogs is Calling My Name | Iam Who Iam
  30. Daily Prompt: Life After Blogs | Basically Beyond Basic
  31. Daily Prompt: Life After Blogs – Rise Again | fibijeeves
  32. Soul’s Music – batteries not required | The Seeker’s Dungeon
  33. Daily Prompt: Life After Blogs – One Day So Far Off the Grid « IF I ONLY HAD A TIME MACHINE
  34. Daily Prompt – Life after Blogs | Kate Murray
  35. What if we had our computer taken away? | Okay, what if?
  36. Carved in stone | Nicki
  37. Life After Blogs | The Nameless One
  38. DP: Poem… WITHOUT (+) = (-) | The Abuse Expose’ with Secret Angel
  39. Without internet. Or energy! | LauGraEva
  40. Unthinkable | djgarcia94
  41. Daily Prompt: Life After Blogs » My Life, My Way, My Words
  42. Daily Prompt: What’s wrong with computers? – Smart Stunning Searching
  43. Daily Prompt: The Postman Rings Not Enough | One Starving Activist
  44. Alienora’s addiction! | alienorajt
  45. Daily Prompt: Life After Blogs | Whimsical Eclecticist
  46. Daily Prompt: Life After Blogs | Life on Ice
  47. Back to the Drawing Board | marsowords
  48. Love me love my Dell ! | heysugarsugar
  49. Without You | clarior e tenebris
  50. Daily Prompt: Is there life after blogs? | SERENDIPITY
  51. Nostalgia | Spunky Wayfarer
  52. Daily Prompt: Life After Blogs| Disconnected | Charron’s Chatter
  53. Disconnect | Hekau: Words of Power
  54. The Day My Computer Breaks Up With Me | Molly Greye
  55. Life- Nice and simple | tornin2’s Blog
  56. A few thoughts to share about blogging and the computer. | TheWhyAboutThis
  57. Ain’t nobody got time for this | Just Musing Around
  58. Daily Prompt: Life After Blogs | Morrighan’s Muse
  59. Daily Prompt: Life After Blogs | flow of my soul
  60. Lappitop…!!! (short fiction): Daily prompt: A life without a computer | the Green and White pages
  61. Daily Prompt: Life After Blogs | Wanderings of an Elusive Mind
  62. LESS computer = MORE birds + books | Hawaii Traveling Mom
  63. Life After Blogging | The Pigeon Blog
  64. Trix are for Kids | A Day in the Life
  65. Daily Prompt: Life After Blogs « Equitherapy
  66. Daily Post ….. Life Without A Computer | Carmela Snelbaker
  67. Daily Prompt: Life After Blogs | Life Before Blogs | Jazrylle Lel
  68. Life After Blogs: | Khana’s Web
  69. Daily Prompt: Life After Blogs | Ruminations from an Introvert
  70. Offline | Polyprotic Amory
  71. Life after blogs | Artifacts and Fictions
  72. Life With No Computer | Real ‘N Random
  73. life is not quite simple | Daily Prompt: Life After Blogs | Reunion
  74. ◙ FB face ◙ | The RunningFather Blog
  75. Daily Prompt: Life After Blogs « The Blogging Path