Day 23: January Mindful Writing Challenge

stormknock out punch
trees fall
in a winter storm


Nancy May

We’re on the twenty-third day of the January Mindful Writing Challenge – please post your small stone in the comments below.

If you’re not already signed up, our 31 Days of Waking Up daily email package was designed to accompany you during this (or any) month of mindful writing. Keep writing!


image: Attribution Some rights reserved by blahidontreallycare

Comments & replies

63 thoughts on “Day 23: January Mindful Writing Challenge

  1. laurie granieri

    Fumbling for house keys, cold, cut metal against dry fingers, the day remains on the porch, and I turn my back on it, climb the stairs.

  2. Brinda


    morning chants gallop
    through the pleats of air
    the air feels fresh
    along each nostril

    fingers still numb
    eyelids flicker
    the spine curly
    and rigid

    burning seat bones
    wobble sideways
    shins cramped
    and shoulders stiff

    taking a plunge
    into the neons lights
    of the unknown
    trapped gas gargle

    the notes, grave and tedious,
    fade in the suburbs
    of cognition and logic
    blank spots dance

    fresh air cools
    the rivers of emotions
    bubbling to the surface
    all asking permission to be


    1. Jean S

      Lovely comparison –gems are stones.

      So direct and so meaningful.

      Thanks for helping me dwell into deeper thoughts on metaphors.

  3. Dorothee

    overcast morning,
    cup of coffee &
    page of small stones
    from other places:
    hello, day
    (really enjoying today’s new stones, half moon and porch moment and all)

  4. Susan Sleepwriter

    A leaf suspended in web;
    the clicking of paws on the path;
    the papery hiss of wings
    in the air just above my hair.

  5. JulesPaige

    an acrostic renga (without line spaces):

    rendering the hows and whys;
    oughts and rules to live
    pointed to, oft ridiculed;
    honored sometimes after death
    energized by faith
    told any who would listen
    slates could be cleaned


  6. Patricia

    Practicing for my exam this evening. Seldom before were the clouds so interesting. They all move with a different speed and even the ones that seem to stand still advance a lot faster than my assignment.

    1. Jean S

      Cloud watching is like feeling the wind on your face,
      Ever a new experience to loosen the thought tangles.

      Good luck in your studies.

  7. Nicole

    This morning started as spring
    Sky and clouds lined with pink
    Birds singing happily
    The air filled with budding spirit
    But rain and grey are back
    The tree’s big branches are dark
    With this ready to be used nest
    For when weather is at it’s best.

  8. Ray

    neighborhood public library patrons –
    half wandering homeless:
    seeking refuge from environmental elements,
    seeking refuge from boredom/ignorance,

    reading books –

    half wandering retirees like me:
    seeking refuge from boredom/ignorance,

    reading books –

    both have rights to public space

  9. Karen Schorno

    I live in the Land of Extremes
    weather and seasons occupy much
    thought and conversation
    even the sky must compete…

  10. Lindy Fly

    The Gift Plant
    finally settled in.
    2 years, a couple of major moves…
    It came compact, blooming with sympathy.
    Gorgeous, green succulent like leaves
    originally from Africa.

    The plants barely made it
    coming in behind, cancer, dying mom, boyfriend
    come and gone, fatal cat traumas,
    Pretty Boy Floyd survives
    as do the philodendron, spider plants and
    a couple of poinsettias.
    Almost lost the one
    from a Christmas so long ago it
    looks like a bonsai, missed by a house sitter.

    Things settled down, settled in by December 2013.
    Hot summer in Africa – and on mudroom windowsill,
    the long lanky stems,
    (trimmer guilt shrugged off for months)
    quietly began blossoming, hot
    brilliant orange clusters
    on each one.
    ah Life!

  11. Daphne Radenhurst

    Trees on the skyline
    Spread out their branches like fans.
    Behind them,
    Scudding clouds
    Tinged with gold,
    Reflect the setting sun.

  12. John S Oliver

    Noticing Necessities

    My material world is flooded with extra things.
    So what is really needed for survival in this life?

    Let me consider several perspectives.
    The essential items are water, food, clothes, shelter and medicine.
    When camping the priorities include pocket knife, hatchet, bedroll and canteen.
    The homeless man treasures his blanket, coat and stocking hat.
    Subsistence farmers need a hoe, plow and seeds.
    Refugees desire a tent and cooking pot.
    Those rebuilding after hurricane need construction tools, tarps, gloves and chain saws.

    These are necessities.
    Yet our houses, malls and storage units are filled with non-necessities.
    I am not advocating severe simplicity.
    I am encouraging greater awareness.

    Honestly for most of us our real needs are met.
    Most of our wants are satisfied.
    So let us become more grateful for what we have.
    Let us reach out to give generously to those with real needs.

  13. Pookie

    gentle diplomacy
    strong feelings
    desperate feelings
    tentative suggestion
    quiet negotiation
    fragile agreement
    fear eased a little
    hope nurtured a little

  14. SM Jenkin

    At Chatham station,
    beneath the leaking pipe on
    platform 11, a moss-soft green world
    blooms and flourishes;
    encircled by the rainwater moat.

  15. Maaike Klaster

    Rain. Visible drizzle and the occational PLOINK!

    Sharp rhythm of hoofs on asphalt and the proximity of horse make me go: “Mmmm!”

  16. Sharon Black

    An empty house: I click the door behind me,
    hang up my coat, read your note
    ‘Gone to Ben’s’
    unfold the afternoon ahead of me
    like a freshly laundered sheet,
    lay it on the floor unfolding, unfolding
    smoothing out every crease and seam,
    righting corners unfolding, unfolding
    spreading acres of Egyptian cotton
    till every room’s asleep, dazzling and white –
    and I’m in bare feet padding through
    the silence and the light.

  17. Malek Montag

    On the train as it rattles homeward bound. Heart still beating in time with the clatter after many travails and trials. My fingers, still stained by dirt from the day, pull open a book. And the world withers on the vine. Words cast in ink rise and play a harmonious melody. The sweetness of literature. The entertaining enlightenment cleanses my soul. Calmed and enriched. Not bad going for a train trip.

  18. Pamela Niles

    hearing her paws approach
    feeling their weight
    push into my lap
    side to side
    my thighs = her dough
    one long OM
    one short meow
    we breathe and knead
    in unison.

  19. De Jackson

    forever catching up…

    throwing two stones in opposite directions

    Jan. 22

    there is no sun today, yet
    no rain; just gray, as though
    this slated sky has nothing left
    of worth
    to say.

    Jan. 23

    sing me something,
    shuffled tree, send roots
    down deep into these cobbled
    places. see the grass spring up
    in surprising tiny places? that’s
    hope. you grab it. i’ll get the rope.

  20. Paul L. White

    At last the cold has settled in
    And I, beforehand, did begin
    To work the chores which must be done
    While weather brings us warmth of sun.
    And this was s’posed to be the time
    When I could sit and cast my rhyme;
    But I am feeling slightly faint–
    Though not enough to even taint
    The Satisfaction which pervades
    My soul in triumph for its shades
    Of steady, strong Accomplishment
    Which thoughts of Lazing do prevent.
    So, here’s to you, my Merry Friends–
    And, now, sweet Rest my bed portends!

  21. larry p

    On a Pooh plate, it seems,
    glops of mashed potatoes,
    smothered in beef/mushroom gravy,
    can have many uses.
    They can be pushed aside
    to reveal, Christopher Robin or Tigger;
    they can be moved from one plate section to another,
    and thereby, hide Christopher Robin or Tigger;
    and even, now and again,
    they can be thrust toward one’s mouth,
    where they can be consumed,
    or failing that, can colonize
    the empty spaces in one’s lap.

  22. Kathy Nguyen

    our bodies know
    the rhythm of rain
    and yet . . .
    this afternoon
    I am startled
    by whispers of your love

  23. Jo Beall

    As we step forward, the path behind vanishes…

    Sand painting scattered by winds to the sea.

    Rainbow bubbles floating up to the sky,

    promising a magical mystery tour.

  24. Julie Gengo

    Friday, January 24, 2014
    Winter’s Glow – #smallstone
    Day 23: January Mindful Writing Challenge

    Winter’s Glow

    January winter glow
    Bare branches sway
    Shadows dance on the pavement
    Trickles of warmth bounce off blue bottles

  25. S.E.Ingraham

    January 23, 2014


    They bounce into our house as if they own the place,
    filled with attitude and curiosity and pure pugliciousness
    —bundles of buffed ebony, tap-dancing nails, bulging chocolate-
    drop eyes…and all of it set off with those ridiculously cute,
    inquisitive faces; flat enough to bite a wall…

  26. Carol A. Stephen

    Jan. 23, 2014

    Whatever image you take within you deeply,
    even for a moment in a lifetime of pain,
    see how it reveals the whole—the great tapestry.
    –Rilke, Sonnets to Orpheus II, 21

    In this moment, I am searching
    for answers still hidden,
    one great image of what it all means.

    This is the unanswered question
    just beyond each knotted thought.
    Which cord will unravel mystery?


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