In our online community at My Smart Puppy, we've been writing speed drabbles recently. Drabbles are short pieces of writing that are exactly 100 words, and we've been starting with a given word for inspiration and writing our drabbles in 15 minutes or less. This is a great warm-up and confidence building exercise and is lots of fun, especially seeing how we all write such different selection from the same starting word.
The starting word for this drabble was Wig.
I had no talent for either, but music would be far worse than art. If I took art, only the teacher would see my failed attempts. With music, other students would hear me. The very thought made me squirm with premature mortification, so, with a sigh, I signed up for drawing.
The teacher set a stuffed owl on the table. After a panicked, “I can’t draw that!” I soon got lost in a world of the owl, my paper and my pencil. Forgetting my lack of talent, I contemplated and drew… and discovered a new love.
Thank you, Mrs. Wiggins!
Here is my owl drawing, done when I was a senior in high school. I wish I could find Mrs. Wiggins to thank her for the inspiration she passed on to me.
The word for these two drabbles was Alone.
Alone drabble #1
It’s one of those sometimes difficult relationships. With quality time, there’s respect and even love; without it, things deteriorate quickly into annoyance and judgment. It’s not like those friendships that seem to remain strong even when years go by without close contact. This one needs attention and nurturing—which is easy to overlook until the tension level has risen.
With time to connect, though, there’s fun, enjoyment, laughter, a ready smile. Joy in the little things, a feeling of peace in the quiet moments, spontaneous fun.
It’s time for me to get reacquainted with myself, to spend some time alone.
Alone drabble #2
The hurry slows, the nagging feeling of “ought” diminishes, time spreads large and wide ahead of me, full of potential without pressure. Raindrops patter on the windows, gentle notes of a wordless lullaby, not lulling me to sleep but calming the frenzied swirling of my thoughts, washing tension away. My senses seem clearer, like the freshly washed air; my mind is both quiet and poised with anticipation, savoring this time, ready to either dance with birdsong or to quietly contemplate. As the oughts fall away, the possibilities gain substance and beckon me forward to step into my life with delight.
This drabble was inspired by Power. I spent more like twenty minutes on this one.
It creates or destroys. Builds up or tears down. Reveals truth or spins lies. Heals or hurts.
To keep from damaging, diminishing or desecrating. To stop that gossip or barbed comment before it slips out. Is there anything harder?
To encourage, comfort, make a difference for one life that ripples outward for years, for a lifetime…
To build connection rather than distance, bridges rather than walls, love rather than hate… this is all the realm of a small yet powerful part.
To tame the tongue and to use it well… that is power - the sort of power I'd like.
Two days ago I woke up early and went right out for a walk, then wrote this-- over 100 words, so not a drabble.
I pull a heavy sweater over my pajamas , slip my feet into my Crocs, and step out into birdsong—Cardinals, Robins, Titmice, Chickadees awakening the day. Heading up my driveway in soft-soled stealth-mode, scanning the still dark woods, I spot three sleepy does just as they spot me- and leap to their feet, causing me to startle momentarily.
I continue, Canada Geese and Chipping Sparrows now adding their calls to the growing concert. A Spruce stands tall and black against the glow in the Eastern sky as a Red-bellied Woodpecker lilts past. I pad silently, drinking in the dawn.
The crown of a Maple turns green, then suddenly all the gray gives way to shades of abundant life, and more birds merge their voices with the joyful announcement of morning. I turn homeward, surrounded by the songs of Phoebes, White-throated Sparrows, Bluebirds and more. The day has begun, and I am ready to join it.