Impossible is two letters too long

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I’ve never been one to shy away from a challenge.   I have lived under the premise that if it’s worth having, it’s worth fighting for, and that has served me well.  Like removing the word “can’t” from my vocabulary, I also try never to utter the word “impossible”.

When my dad was still with us, not a day went by that he didn’t mention the phrase – where there’s a will, there’s a way – and I adopted that idiom rather quickly.  I learned my survival skills and my desire to succeed by heeding the wisdom of that small string of words.  By keeping that will fed and nourished, the two letters that may have impeded the possible slowly fall into the alphabet once again and all things are attainable.

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(image credit: 123freevectors.com)

When I begin any new task, the thought never crosses my mind that I will fail at that particular undertaking.  The final product may not be the desired result, but a reasonable facsimile is still an encouraging beginning.  I dive headfirst into the endeavor and face the dragon head on because the reward comes from trying.  Failure can only come from not attempting the initial project.

All things are possible and the only time I will use the letters “I” and “M” are to say I’m going to try my best!

Here’s to you Ms. Dickinson

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The Daily Prompt got me again….POW, right in the kisser.  Here’s what they want: National Poetry Writing Month is nearly at an end. To celebrate it, try your hand at some verse.

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Air flows in circular patterns,

over the crushed brown grass.

Blades slowly stretch from the earth,

as Spring has finally come to pass.

Trees blossom and new life grows,

reaching from outstretched limbs.

Birds crest on upward drafts,

they are the promise of summer’s warm winds.

The chill of the night air recedes,

giving way to the heat of the sun.

Mother Nature has blessed us,

Her beauty is not to be outdone.

Cat pee and a reason for change

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Yesterday my aunt, my brother and I spent many hours cleaning out my mom’s house.  She is still currently in hospital awaiting the news of where we will be able to find her new forever home. On Friday, the remaining three cats (from the beginning number of six cats) were taken out of the house and surrendered to the OSPCA for adoption.  As much as my mom loved those cats and her two dogs, we had to make the decision to do the fairest thing for them and allow them a chance at a life with a new family.  My brother is still currently fostering the two dogs.

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During the clean out, I realized why I will never again have a cat.  Cats have three basics tasks – eat, sleep and evacuate their bowels and urinary tracts.  With six different litter boxes in the house, I’m still perplexed as to how a cat can fail to execute the one task a cat is meant to master.  Without getting into horrific details, there are pieces of furniture that were removed from my mom’s house that were more saturated with cat urine than a lifetime of litter boxes will ever be.

It was a cathartic experience throwing things out that my mom had been stock-piling for the apocalypse.  I wasn’t sure how I would feel getting rid of some of my mom’s belongings, but the overwhelming smell of cat made the job much easier, and much quicker, than anticipated.

We still have one more floor to tackle, but the truly important stuff from that house is comfortably tucked into her hospital bed awaiting our visit this afternoon and a chance to breathe some fresh air during a trip to a potential retirement home.  The rest of the novelties are just things.  Sure, there are items with great sentimental value that will find a place in my home or my brother’s home, but the rest of those possessions are replaceable.  My mom is not.

My muscles will be put to the test again today as we endeavor to clean up the second floor and get the house ready for more people to create memories in that house that will be as happy as the ones we have.  I can only pray they don’t have a cat!

Reflections – a short story

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This was a piece of writing I started a while ago and I’m unsure where I was going with this.   I thought it would be interesting to get some feedback.  Any comments are appreciated.

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The rain was heavier than usual that night and the wind streaked through the trees leaving a trail of leaves and twigs scattering in its wake.  The mottled gray sky seemed to undulate with the motion of the wind.  Torrents of water cascaded along the sidewalk and involved the trash it picked up in its macabre dance.  This was November.  Michael grabbed for the collar of his coat and did his best to shield himself from the icy bursts of cold air.  The gusts of wind tore through his jacket and felt like white-hot needles piercing his skin.  He could vaguely make out the lights of his house in the distance.  Tucking his head down, he battled the elements as well as he could until he reached the all too familiar driveway.  Never before had his living room looked so inviting.  He climbed the feeble steps to his door and inserted the key.  Although he fumbled with it for a few seconds, he still did not hear the sound of the lock disengage from its housing.  Baffled, Michael withdrew the key and examined it to make sure he had the right one.    The wind had suddenly shifted and the rain was now blowing fiercely from behind.  The pockets of cold air swirled around him and seemed to push him from the door.  He fought against the force and once again attempted to get into his sanctuary, but to no avail.  He stepped back from the threshold and peered into the picture window.  The blinds were opened enough so as to afford him a slice of vision into his home.

The rain had not dissipated and, as Michael exerted himself to be able to look inside, the wind knocked him off-balance and toppled him into the yard.  The sucking noise seemed to reverberate in his ears as he pulled himself from the mud.  The wind had increased its intensity and played at Michael like a feline with small prey.  Fighting against the currents of wind and rain, Michael made his way back to the window.  Stepping up onto an empty flower box, he peered into the well-lit room.  The figure of a man was clearly outlined in shadow against the wall of his kitchen.  Michael shifted his position to get a better view and keep himself inconspicuous.  The figure stealthily maneuvered around the room and the shadow began to shrink.  The man was coming out of the kitchen.  Michael crouched until his legs ached in objection.  The kitchen light was extinguished and the man entered the living room.  He had a casual way about him and somehow seemed familiar.  As Michael was able to focus on his face he thought he was merely seeing his reflection in the window.  With trepidation he wiped the beads of rain from the glass.  The image of the man cleared enough for Michael’s vision to accumulate the details and process the information.  He was looking up at himself.  Michael’s balance wavered and he tightened his grip on the ledge.  He could not avert his eyes from the man in his home.  He shared the same mannerisms, the same habits and seemed quite content to be ensconced in Michael’s life.  A jagged streak of lightning sliced through the night sky and the thunder answered back with a rumbling scream.  The intensity of the noise shook Michael on his perch and he teetered on the lip of the flower box.  He struggled to regain his composure and in doing so, reached for the ledge.  Instead he connected soundly with the glass.  The intruder startled immediately and rose from his chair.  Michael corrected his angle and stood to watch the man cross the room to the window.  The two stood face to face on either side of the pane of glass.  The beads of rain continued to follow their winding paths to the ledge in which Michael still found himself attached.  The  look-alike pulled his gaze from the figure outside and turned his attention to the storm.  The teeming rain continued to dance in the light from the distant street lamp as the wind tossed it in all directions.  The man inside took a step back from the window and in one fluid motion, reached out to the blinds and pulled them shut.

Michael’s grip on the ledge faltered and he plunged into the puddle on the lawn.  The water seemed to envelope him as he lay floating in the puddle.  The man inside opened the blinds as if something was out there that he had missed.  Movement in front of the house as lightning crested the horizon averted his attention from the spectrum of light.  His gaze settled on the image of the man in the puddle.  Features similar to his own shimmered in the reflection as raindrops disturbed the peace of the small pool.  Light from a break in the storm hit the puddle and accentuated the eyes of the reflection.  Wonderment turned to fear, and as the rain gathered, the puddle began to flow into the stream that quickly traveled along the sidewalk.

The reflection in the puddle slowly disappeared into streaks of color that followed the current.  The puddle was now gone and so too, the image of the man.  The man inside the house once again glanced into the evening sky and drew the blinds.

My Muskoka, my words….in print!!

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After much anticipation (and many chewed fingernails) the piece of writing that represents my love for the place I call home has been put into publication.  Unfortunately, it does not link to the article without temporarily registering for the e-version of the magazine which means submitting an email address and phone number, but it is available online with that information.

I understand if you are leery of subscribing and the article will undoubtedly be available more readily after the next addition is out, but if you want to see the published piece you can follow the link here.  Follow down the toolbar and click on eEdition. I’m on page 96.

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(and for the first time in my life, I don’t hate my picture!!)

Play it again, Sam

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The Daily Prompt is this: Tell us about a book you can read again and again without getting bored — what is it that speaks to you?

I am slightly obsessed when it comes to Dean Koontz.  I have read all of his books at least once, most likely twice.  He wrote a book in 2003 called Watchers that detailed the escape of two laboratory animals that had an indescribable connection to each other.  One of the experimental animals was a horrendously disfigured failure of a creation and the other was a beautiful Golden Retriever.  Both of these genetically altered animals were blessed with the intelligence and reasoning ability of a human.  Only one was loved and doted on for his success and the other hated him for it and wanted nothing but to kill the dog.

Watchers is a strange premise for a story, but the relationship Travis has with his dog is remarkably touching.  I can honestly say that I have read it at least 10 times and it still instills the same emotion when I read it.  It was the first book I chose to read when my mom went into the hospital.

The emotion and companionship described in the book between a human and his dog pulls at my heart-strings every time I read it and it makes me hug my dog a little tighter.  I only wish she could answer my questions with scrabble tiles as well!!