Prompt 48 Escalating Humiliation

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Brooke Shaden

This week’s prompt is An Escalating Humiliation

I am going to share a personal story by way of example but you do not have to write about my experience. I would rather you write about your personal experiences with embarrassment. You say something foolish and when trying to regain dignity/composure you end up making things worse. This is something I feel we can all relate to. You don’t have to write nonfiction. I understand that for some this topic might be too painful.

When I was a child I wanted to be a singer. I was quite the little mimic and I was able to adopt a satisfactory speaking voice from a Hollywood actress but I could not emulate singing voices. I had a knack for remembering songs and intuiting lyrics but my singing was comically robotic. No matter how hard I tried to let go I just couldn’t produce human emotion. I practiced daily, rigorously and like most children in the pursuit of a dream I didn’t consider proclivity. I figured I just had to do and it would happen. In the 3rd grade my drama/music class held auditions for the school play. Everyone would participate but you had to try out for the lead singing roles. My decision was totally impromptu the teacher asked “Who wants to sing?” and my hand shot up. Now normally I could remember the lyrics but even with them in front of me I couldn’t “remember” them at all. The class was already giggling before I even opened my mouth (which took quite a long time for me to do). When I started to sing it was much worse, my little robotic voice forcing its way over the laughter and jeers of my classmates. The teacher told me I could stop but no apparently I couldn’t I had to finish out the song. That was bad enough of course but the teacher pulled me to the side after and told me she was going to put me in the very back of the chorus and instructed me to lip synch the whole performance. I was never allowed to sing in class again! I was also forbidden to participate in PE because of my poor coordination (didn’t I need PE to help that?).

Inbetween

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Your fingers like lit shadow puppets

Draw my gaze from the shiv

That has repossessed your tongue

Between the sheets we hemorrhage

Two dejected boats slipping beneath

A nitrogen-rich border into the bowels

Of an unwitting and uncompromising sea

I can feel the tug of our conjoined anchors

The slow death of an inarticulate drowning

We are not ready to exchange definitive needs

We are not ready to retract furious limbs

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Why must you address me in third person?

She is a penitentiary that holds without citation

She is a soul-threading parasite with a taste for meat

She is me but you don’t have the gall to say it

So you insinuate through euphemism

I suffer your silences and your carefully worded parables

Knowing that I lack the necessity to stake my claim

Knowing that you are not better for knowing me

Knowing that I have made you brittle and infirm

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How is it that I in living have become

The antithesis for life?

Is my weight more than Atlas can bare?

Do my footsteps incite thunder?

Or do I sink into a daily grave

Roots so vast and deep that they leave

No space for dual occupancy?

Prompt 47 Street Art

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Jeff Soto

Today’s prompt is an intermission. As some of you may recall we were doing a series of 20 prompts. The series was designed to assist in story-writing. At present we only have one person writing a story but that’s okay because as I mentioned at the beginning you could treat each prompt individually just as we have always done. We have (if I counted properly) 9 prompts left in the series. At the end of the series Prompt will of course continue so no worries!

Today’s prompt is Graffiti/Street Art. Your job is to go outside and take a picture for inspiration. I don’t care if you take images of statues, city murals, children’s sidewalk drawings, graffiti, or whatever. You can stop with the image if you are an artist or photographer but if you are a writer then write what the piece makes you feel. From my post you will see I didn’t write a poem about street art in general I used the words as a prompt, so everyone’s entry will likely be very different this time.  I have your back if you couldn’t get out Isadora has taken photos for you! Yep the numbered ones are hers except the angel which I took and the saint and bunnies which Sam took. There isn’t so much interesting graffiti in my area and we were limited to a certain area since I was on foot with a 6 year old haha. I have named the photos 1-20 that way you can easily identify which photo you have used. You are free to share the photos on your blog. You are also free to modify the photo(s) in whatever way you see fit. You do not have to post the photograph with your prompt if you’ve used one of mine just specify which one somewhere in the post.

There was one image we couldn’t take at her elementary school written on one of the buildings is “Dead Angels” The text is very faded but the words really stood out to me. You are free to use this also.

Pictures found here

http://www.befunky.com/gallery/mindlovemisery/public/

Mister Linky Here

Prompt 46 Bitter Loathing

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This week’s prompt is bitter loathing. Know anyone who cannot let go of a grudge? Who continues to hate and behave hatefully? Who remains consumed/obsessed with a specific person and/or specific event? Have you found there is someone that even after years you still cannot forgive? A person that brings out the worst in you? A relationship that even if long extinguished leaves the taste of grapefruit in your mouth?

Prompt 45 Festering Jealousy

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By: Sammy Slabbinck

Jealousy isn’t an emotion we like to discuss much less acknowledge but most of us have experienced it. We’ve been subjected to the jealousy of others and we’ve experienced the painful insecurities that engender it.

I don’t have siblings of my own but I was a little competitive with my closest cousins for some siblings rivalry can take a very dramatic/tragic turn. I had a friend who felt so inferior to her older sister that it destroyed her from the inside.

There is romantic jealousy sometimes based on actual events/behaviors sometimes completely irrational

Friends can experience jealousy and in adolescence competition over sexual and romantic interests is common.

Sometimes people idolize or obsess over a celebrity, authority, or popular person

Pageants and other types of competitions or sports are also something to consider

For this prompt feel free to write a fictional piece that way you can really exaggerate the experience

Prompt 44 Immobilizing Paronoia

caras-1Caras Ionut

This week’s prompt is immobilizing paranoia. Having Social Anxiety Disorder I am entirely too familiar with this state. It starts innocuously enough with me glamorizing an impending social event. I always imagine it going well with me having various opportunities to “impress” and/or “connect”. When my imagination takes a supernatural and/or heroic turn I try to ground myself with more realistic depictions. My rehearsals invariably take a negative turn where I envision vivid rejection scenarios. Hurt by the rejection I become angry. I haven’t even stepped foot outside my house and I am screaming and in tears. The person is obviously a monster who delights in torturing me! Why else would they invite me out only to reject and humiliate me?! It’s no wonder that after a few hours or days of this I become so terrified of the impending engagement that I cancel my plans altogether. This doesn’t just happen when meeting friends or potential friends. I get equally worked up at the prospect of meeting family and healthcare professionals. Even talking to my mom on Skype is an agonizing prospect as I imagine her asking questions I’d rather not answer (How much do you weigh? Is a question she seems to prioritize over How are you? Perhaps they are synonymous?). Though I am getting a little bit better at managing these self-defeating and offensive thoughts I still retain that sense of overwhelming anxiety (sometimes conversely I am socially engaging and confident but that is rare mode indeed haha). I associate this feeling with the fear of failure/rejection and I think most of can relate to that fear. I also think many of us have let a fear get the better of us. Substance abuse can also induce paranoia as can mental and physical illnesses. (8)

Prompt 43 Supernatural Lust

tumblr_m73yd3ordz1rxekheo1_1280Today’s prompt is supernatural lust. There are no rating restrictions but please make a note if your entry is graphic. This is #7 of 20 the first in the series was Unavoidable Pain. Only one participant seems to be using the prompts to create a story but I thought I’d still give a reminder. I can extend the number if needed so let me know if 20 is insufficient. When this series is completed I will of course continue with the prompts so no worries but I wanted to offer a series for people interested in creating stories.

The most obvious example is the incubus/succubus dynamic

Some people become romantically obsessed with works of art (either the creation and/or the product remember how Pygmalion fell in love with Galatea?)

In some cases the chemistry b/w two people is completely overpowering as to cause madness and obsession

Some people experience an amplified lust for life (some times it’s drug or mania-induced sometimes it comes from a more internal/innocuous source)

Hypersexuality

Zeus and his sexual conquests

Bacchanalia

Vampires and blood lust

The sick twisted lust of serial killers

Wired

orcrypt3Tomorrow I have an appointment with yet another therapist. I find it difficult to write poetry when I am stressed in this way. I can’t very well speak in metaphor during my appointment so I need to get my brain in conversational mode. That is why I have decided to tackle the alternative prompt and discuss my experience with the internet.

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As many of you already know I met Sam online. We lived 8000 miles apart, in areas not heavily frequented by tourists. The odds of us meeting without the internet were even slimmer than the nearly improbable circumstances that brought us together in the first place. For that reasons alone I am grateful for technology.

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I didn’t have a personal computer until 1999 but I remember when computers were introduced to our school library I suppose we had computers before for typing but I mean computers with internet capabilities. Until then all my research was done using the card catalog. We actually had to scour books for information! Old school research is I imagine something like archeology extremely tedious despite interest (well occasional interest not all research papers are fun). I had a Nintendo and my mom’s old Tandy. I wasn’t exactly cutting edge. My interest escalated when my friend got connected. She was able to talk to people from other parts of the world. More importantly Sweden. I had quite an acute interest in Sweden. I was saving up for money to visit convinced that my soul mate resided there (I was right).

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What was my life like before the internet?

High school started out pretty well for me actually. Middle school had been unexpectedly dramatic when I became oddly involved with the most popular boy in school. I was ready to leave that life behind. During the summer I had lost weight and updated my wardrobe (for the weight loss). I was practicing yoga daily and I felt happier and a little more confident than I had ever felt in any of my previous incarnations. You are absolutely mistaken if you think that my improved appearance was in any way a sign that I wanted to become popular. I had my one friend which was all I needed. I didn’t want to date the aforementioned popular boy had put me off romance. Unfortunately the fact that I was the prettiest I had ever been and ever would be was not much of a deterrent to would be suitors. I turned them all down. All I wanted to do was play My Little Ponies lol Seriously my friend and I got together after school and played like little kids. Parties? Drinking? Boyfriends? Pfft. Some time in the 9th grade I discovered Sylvia Plath and I started to read voraciously, a little later I discovered Arthur Rimbaud and I started to write.

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When I lost my only friend I became depressed, suicidally depressed. I had always spent all my time at home in my room (even with her we rarely left the house). I even ate meals in my room. Even being happier didn’t make me normally sociable. I talked to the pictures on my wall, I exercised, I rearranged the house regularly, I wrote, I read. That was my life. I can’t imagine that I would go out and seek human interaction if I didn’t have a computer. Truth is I never sought human interaction all that much. People are at times drawn to me but finding people who share an abiding connection is not easy. Online the freaks are out in full force lol I actually mean that in a good way. I started sharing my poetry which had been private outside of school assignments. I believe my writing has grown as a result of increased discipline and exposure. Skype allows me to see and talk with my mom who now lives 8000 miles away. The internet hasn’t been all bad. I don’t think I would be able to produce a book without it!

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The internet hasn’t been all good either. I have an avoidant personality and an obsessive one besides. That I have to wrestle with computer addiction shouldn’t be a surprise. I really could stay online all day and have done so. I have had periods where I am so consumed with writing (that is mostly what I do) that I have forgotten to eat, sleep, shower. When I used to chat (on groups for the mentally ill) I neglected my life and marriage. I no longer chat in real time. Even online I suppose I am slightly on the anti-social side but it helps me to stay a little more balanced. Getting caught in a fantasy or alternative world is very easy when you are severely Depressed and desperate for an exit from the pain this is you. I think many of use spend more than 2 hours online myself included. Yesterday Sam, Isadora, and I played Go Fish with actual cards. That’s important. Actual should comprise more of your life than virtual (call me old-fashioned and a hypocrite because I haven’t gotten there yet). The movie Wall-E is hauntingly prophetic.