BlogBattle: Exotic ~ #Poetry

#BlogBattle: Exotic

October 2020 Blog Battle

Our word this month is:



New Magic

Merlin no longer walks the halls of Camelot
Where Arthur lost his love
Where Knights search for the Holy cup
Dark castle walls crackle with magic
Old lightning storms echo through forest glades
Whispering spirits can be heard, worry not,
time will return, new magic will be found
Blown in by eastern winds
Exotic sounds beat against your eardrums
Foreign yet fresh, east meets west
Blending, folding into new ideas
New religions, new magic from old…

©anitadawes 2020

#BlogBattle ~ Conceal

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#BlogBattle: Conceal

Image by Pexels from Pixabay

He heard the sound the minute he walked into the dining room to start work removing the ugly fireplace.

A faint scraping sound echoed around the room, but where was it coming from?

His mind returned to the job in hand, the removal of the totally unsuitable faux marble fireplace. He swung the large club hammer at the bolster chisel to separate the cheap surround from the wall. Seconds later, the scraping sound set his nerves on edge. He winced.

“Don’t be daft…you’re imagining it!”

But every blow he made was answered by the sound that seemed to be coming from the walls.

Once the fireplace lay on the floor in pieces, he started to carry the pieces out to his truck. Each time he returned; the noise greeted him. 

What began as curiosity and amusement, slowly turned to annoyance and he couldn’t decide what to do about it.

He had to be imagining it, for he had moved in six weeks ago and not heard anything before now.

Maybe he should just ignore it.

Instantly, as if it heard his thoughts, the slightly louder sounds seemed to argue with that idea.

He slowly walked around the room, pausing at each wall but annoyingly, he heard nothing.

Three of the walls were brick, but the one adjoining the kitchen was a partition wall, plasterboard on a timber frame. He remembered building it the week before, and if there was anything trapped, it would be in that one.

It was getting late, and he was hungry. Whatever was going on would have to wait until tomorrow. As he turned to leave, the noise began again, and the sense of urgency was palpable.

He reached into his toolbox for his utility knife and approached the partition wall. Carefully, as he couldn’t remember exactly where the power cables were, he cut a sizeable hole and using the torch on his phone, he stretched his head through to see what the wall might conceal.

He could hear something moving about. He tried to see what it was, but the hole was too high. 

Minutes later, after cutting a hole at ground level, a small, bedraggled cat crawled out, barely alive.

But how had it managed to get trapped in there?

©Jaye Marie 2020

August #BlogBattle ~ Tea

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#BlogBattle: Tea


August 2020 Blog Battle

Our word this month is:


Image by congerdesign from Pixabay

Most people rave about coffee…

“I wouldn’t drink that stuff if I were you…”

I looked up at him, my cup of tea on its way to my lips, wondering why he bothered with his objections. “What stuff are you referring to?”

“Tea… filthy stuff, it’s got more caffeine in it than coffee. Can’t be good for you…”

I wanted to ignore him, refuse to become involved in yet another tedious argument, but found myself speaking. “I read somewhere that tea is good for your heart and your blood pressure. Which is more than can be said about the muck you drink!”

He snorted like a pig. “That’s a load of rubbish! Has to be, it’s just a load of old leaves…”

“Very special leaves that come from the Camelia shrub. Did you know it was once so expensive it was kept in locked boxes?”

“Best place for it, if you ask me…” He reached for the tv remote. I had him on the run.

“They have been drinking tea for 2000 years in China, and then there’s the Japanese tea ceremonies…”

“Still no reason for you to be guzzling it, though…”

As I stared at him, he looked at me, with what I thought was a flicker of defiance in his eyes. Oh no you don’t, I thought.  “If you want any supper tonight, you’ll be a dear and go and put the kettle on… and don’t forget to put the milk in first. Just the way I like it…” 

©Jaye Marie 2020

#BlogBattle ~ Wretched

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#BlogBattle: Wretched


July 2020 Blog Battle

The word this month is:


(Dictionary definition)

Living in misery
Attended by misery and woes
Inferior in performance or quality
Very unpleasant: deplorable

For the past two weeks, it has been a case of all the above, since Anita, the head of our family had a nasty heart attack. She also had pneumonia, which was complicating matters even further, but due to the corona virus lockdown, we were not allowed to visit her in the hospital.

So for seven miserable and wretched days we worried our socks off at home, wondering what was going on and how Anita was feeling.

On the third day, we managed to acquire the number of the telephone, which was conveniently right next to Anita’s bed, which enabled us to speak to her and find out how she was feeling and what had been happening. This contact was a godsend for all of us and went a long way to keeping us from self-detonating!

Anita is back home now, but the misery is still present, although not as intense as it was before, as she is still very ill. She has extensive damage to her heart and as yet no way of knowing the exact prognosis. There is a waiting list for the MRI which will ascertain the damage, but until that day arrives, wretched will unfortunately be the order of the day…

BlogBattle ~ Liberate #Poetry

#BlogBattle: Liberate

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Share your work. Read that of other writers. Blog Battle is a monthly writing prompt to inspire writers and entertain readers.


June 2020 Blog Battle

Our contribution for this month!

Image by Pixabay Poem by Anita Dawes

Basic Rules:

The Prompt Word will be given the First Tuesday of Every Month.

Post your story by the 30th of the Same Month.


  1. 1000 words max (give or take a few)
  2. fictional tale (or true if you really want)
  3. Any genre that fits within PG-13 (or less) Content – let’s keep this family friendly!
  4. Your story must contain the randomly chosen word(s) and/or be centered around the word meaning in a way that shows it is clearly related.
  5. Go for the entertainment value!
  6. Put a link back to your #BlogBattle Short Story in the comments section
  7. Please tweet and otherwise share your battler buddies’ stories across social media.
    1. Use the hashtag #BlogBattle when tweeting all the stories so we can cross-share.
  8. Have fun!

#BlogBattle ~ Brooch #Fiction


#BlogBattle: Brooch



Not so cheap.


A handful of dress jewellery brought at the Portabella market.

I liked the look of the brooch, faux pearls around the edge and a faux sapphire in the centre. Ten pounds the lot, a bargain, I thought.

I decided to pay quickly and take a closer look when I got home.

The toothless smile from the vendor sent shivers down my back, the look in his eyes none too pleasant. As I hurried away from the stall, I had the feeling something was following me. I turned a few times but nothing untoward could be seen. I would rather there had been, the unseen worries me more.

Always had a vivid imagination, my mother often said. As a writer, I need a good imagination, so I didn’t knock it. This feeling often brings on a new story.

I jumped on the 49 bus, half an hour and I would be home. I sat opposite a very old woman wearing shabby clothes. She was staring at my bag.

I thought I heard her say, nice brooch.

Again my mind skipped off on some speed dial imagination. It so often runs like water. Not all can be held in mind. It’s a case of catch what you can, write it down or lose it.

I must have dropped the strange feeling on my doorstep for I felt better once inside my cosy flat. Thomas, my ginger cat, welcomed me home. I scratched behind his ear and went to make coffee.  I checked my purchase to find that the brooch had a small nine carat gold mark on the back. Jesus! I had found a treasure…

That night I placed it on my bedside table after writing down all I could remember about my day.

I hoped to sleep like a baby but awoke in a cold sweat. The old lady from the bus had stepped into my dream. She told me that the brooch belonged to her mother and that she wanted it back. It was the same voice I heard on the bus. How could she have known the contents of my bag?

How could I give the brooch back to her mother, I’m sure she must be dead, judging the old woman to be about eighty years old.

It was my half-day. I decided to take the brooch back to the vendor, hoping he could tell me more about it but not looking forward to the toothless smile. I walked up and down but couldn’t find his stall. Maybe it was his day off.

I asked around, no one seemed to know who I was speaking about.

One chap said, ‘we have never had anyone like that working here and I’ve been here for over ten years. I’m sure I would remember the person you describe.’

Now it seems I am stuck with the brooch. Maybe I should throw it into the river, like some ancient votive gift to a God, hoping he or she could spare me from a ghostly visitor trying to retrieve her brooch.

Maybe I shouldn’t worry. Ghosts cannot hurt you, can they?

It is gold after all…


©anitadawes 2020


By Shifting Sands the Castle Stands… #BlogBattle @RachaelRitchey



#BlogBattle is a weekly short story/flash fiction challenge using a single word for inspiration.


By Shifting Sands the Castle Stands

The golden legend of Moreka

Tells of a stolen castle

That cannot be found by outsiders.

One chance, you could step within its fabled walls.

The faith of an innocent,

Childlike belief may one day get you there

After following the clues that change daily

Shifting landscapes, the teasing glimpse

Of a distant turret to keep you hoping

That one day you may step inside its golden gates.

When the mist is light, the road ahead short

Remember, each step you take turns your head around

The legend states it can be found

By one who has a clear day to see

To run, to grab the one chance given

To one who sees the golden gate shimmer…

©anitadawes 2020

#BlogBattle: Vivacious #Poetry




To look into the face of a sunflower

Is to see creation, full of wonder

The need to dance, to smile for no reason

Other than their sheer beauty.

I also think of Vincent van Gogh

The dark places his mind took him

A fevered mind that tore at his flesh

How hard it is to capture perfection in oils

If he could see them now, he would know

He had captured those smiling dancing faces

for those of us who have eyes to see.

The moment he put paint to canvas

His sunflowers will forever smile at those who pass by

Daring you to feel anything

other than joy when leaving the gallery…

©anitadawes 2020

#BlogBattle ~ Bucket #Poetry




They say at my age of 85

The days of wine and roses are over

They may be right, however

I live ten minutes from the beach at Southend

Each day I insert myself into the world

I sit with my toes in the sand

Watching people with their children

Playing let’s bury dad

This it seems, leads to a great deal of laughter

I count the days lucky

When a stranger stops to speak awhile

A gift from the Universe

This morning, I have risen extra early

I want to see the sunrise

With luck, I will have the beach to myself

As I walk barefoot along the sand

I am drawn towards two abandoned blue buckets

Sandcastles forgotten, weekend trippers

Long gone home

I sit holding one of the buckets

With no spade to fill it, I use my hand

I turn it over and instantly felt transported

As if by a time machine to my 8-year-old self

The first time standing on sand

The sight of the sea, so large

I remember thinking it had no end

It was rolling away from me to touch the sky

I know better now, as I wait for the sunrise

Wondering how many more I can fit into my life

Before I am called to that blue hour I see before me…