Day 28: January Mindful Writing Challenge

italySmooth, rounded edges of cobblestone, lime washed walls tinted red ochre. Sun-baked bricks. This sunny, chilly morning, Cefalu village in winter. On Via Duomo old women open up their shutters.


Ilona Martonfi

We’re on the twenty-eighth 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:  Some rights reserved by christine zenino

Comments & replies

62 thoughts on “Day 28: January Mindful Writing Challenge

    1. Malek Montag

      Very nice! A lovely, beautiful piece. Full of heat and fire! “The sunshine of your/smile has singed…” &
      “the sparks in the/middle of a fire./Warming, not burning” Great lines, full of life and your trade mark directness! Is it about someone we know? 😉

    1. Brinda




      walking, swaying rather
      and wobbling at each step
      but nevertheless,
      with poise and grace,
      the old man moves forward
      with all his many years
      of life well lived
      seasoned with
      a healthy pride
      and dignity
      that his cane supports
      without effort


  1. Pookie

    I opened the kitchen blind before eight this morning.
    The dawn sky, many shades of blue beyond the scudding
    north easterly clouds, was like an old movie set.
    At last the long drench winter is waning.

    1. Pookie

      Spell check aggg! should have read long dreich winter, a good Scots word pronounced with a soft ch like loch, that means dismal, dreary, damp. But drench would apply to this winter too!

  2. Nicole

    Fire works, cries of joy and gratfulness
    My youngest nephew was born this morning !
    My oldest niece is 35 years old (I have 3 brothers and 2 sisters)
    The delighted first time parents, (proud father 47 and tired mother 39)
    Are over the moon… and all of us too !

  3. Linda

    Lying back in my recliner
    sleepy after three days out on the lake;
    listening to the magpies carolling,
    looking out the window at blue sky
    through a latticework of
    eucalypt leaves and branches.
    Relaxed and thankful.

  4. JulesPaige

    a renga:
    dream facts; (three) top ten:
    states the emotions most felt
    are fear and anger
    fret not though; within waking
    ninety percent vanish quick
    of four to seven –
    the average person is
    said to have – at night…

  5. Maaike Klaster

    Eating Matze crackers that were in someone else’s Christmas package.
    The tears have dried up now.

  6. A.D. Stankowicz

    only at the Delusion Saloon
    do we play out our differences
    like a straight against a flush

  7. John S Oliver

    Waiting Room Magazines

    A few times a year I find myself in the waiting room of a doctor or dentist.
    This can happen more often at the barber shop.

    Usually explore some magazines while waiting.
    Typically I scan it noticing the photos, ads and articles.
    I might read a few articles.

    These are publications I would never buy at the newsstand.
    I would not subscribe to them.

    However my cultural horizons are extended during these visits.

  8. Lizzie Carver

    Resignation in every muscle of the Labrador’s body as my dog capers and crows around him.

  9. larry p

    The corner of my eye
    perceives a bit of fluttering outside.
    Looking more diligently,
    I scour the back yard
    to identify the birds responsible,
    the invaders of my consciousness.
    More fluttering from another corner,
    yet more in the the bare bushes,
    and, finally, I realize
    that I’m only seeing
    a few fugitive leaves,
    having escaped remnant snow cover,
    blowin’ in the wind.

  10. Jean S

    Where you live
    captures dropped thoughts,
    buried memories
    And opens music boxes.

    Moving opens thought tangles
    swirling in cobweb corners
    out dances memory dust
    and cat whiskers.

  11. Andrea

    My small stone for today is the result of my playing with the one I shared yesterday:


    As years pass,
    Me Without You
    begins to complete

    Note: I wanted to italicize the second line, but it won’t let me…

  12. Patricia

    His warm hello.
    The sparkling look in his eyes.
    His soft voice.
    The tiny teasing.
    Our mutual interests.
    My butterflies.

  13. Nerissa

    A pause;
    Emerald eyes on night,
    The Wild is here!
    Spilled out from hedgerow
    Onto man’s land,
    Swallowed up too quickly
    For my wilderness-hungry heart.

  14. Hajra

    I often look up at the sky…
    And I gaze in wonder…
    For how gracefully birds travel…
    No collision…
    No commotion…
    Just simply flying together…
    So it would seem…

  15. Malek Montag

    My Heart’s Delight twisted and writhed under me as I moved slowly taking each curve, feeling my way through damp and savouring dry; penetrating, deep to the very, very end. I passed over her, through bush and over every undulation. Rubber gripped the coarseness of my Heart’s Delight’s being. But when the time came, I had to leave her. I turned. And headed north into Tunstall. Heart’s Delight Road had served her purpose…

  16. De Jackson

    hard as stone

    my writing chair is too hard today
    and my tired fingers don’t want to play
    and there’s too much to do and too little
    time and there’s not enough room for
    these words to shine and dull stones
    make bad riverbeds.

  17. Laurel Regan

    let’s eat a bowlful of summer:
    cherry tomatoes cut into juicy halves
    torn leaves of green lettuce
    crisp yellow peppers, thinly sliced

    let’s eat a bowlful of summer,
    close our eyes,
    and pretend
    it’s not January.

  18. Kathy Nguyen

    the soft taps of icy rain
    outside my window . . .
    even Father’s scattered scrap metal
    in the backyard
    never looked so beautiful

  19. Pamela Niles

    Overhead, a star lit marquee
    heaven above my grounded soles
    the constellation patterns
    dazzling with variety
    each individual star
    quivering or still
    insinuating colors
    a red glint, a blue hue
    the pure white glow
    this play of elfin lights
    like the dreams of my youth
    perceived but never known.

  20. S.E.Ingraham

    Getting caught up finally…
    January 25,2014


    In the dimly lit room, manufactured shrieking is matched
    by a tiny girl’s terrified cries as her father tries to prod her
    nearer the exhibit. It is gruesome in the extreme. Realistic
    plant roots that, when grabbed and yanked, reveal a shrilly
    screaming devil-baby extruding from the ground. Shuddering
    I turn away, more upset by the parental performance and
    the child’s torture than anything I’ve seen on display.

    January 26,2014


    Waking to Sol blasting bright as summer, I am fooled until
    I crack the back door to let the dog out. In seconds, winter
    blows into the kitchen with the force of the polar ice cap
    reminding me, it’s still January and winter’s not even half

    January 27, 2014


    We settle in, content to be cozy in front of the fireplace,
    letting the winds roar around the eaves, as we watch
    television comforting in its familiarity.

    January 28, 2014


    The wind whips me wildly as I stumble from my car to the
    store…It is lit up like Christmas even tho’ it’s just an ordinary
    Tuesday night and I’m only going there to browse for books.
    The warmth I feel is fireplace-worthy at least.

  21. Julie Gengo

    Day 28: January Mindful Writing Challenge

    Butternut Squash

    Soft butternut squash
    peppers and onions dance
    Saucy tomatoes swirl
    Lovely French cider
    Savory sugar kisses

  22. sue

    Two meditations on the cold

    #1 physical
    Hat, hood, scarf,
    ‘til nothing shows but eyes,
    and still the cold is a knife
    in the lungs,
    I retreat indoors,
    Wheezing and coughing,
    Struggling to breathe.

    #2 Mental
    The cold is amber, crystal clear,
    allowing the tiniest details to be seen,
    while immobilizing my spirit.
    My eyes records a hundred small stones,
    but my hands stuck in amber cannot write.

    (to sort of make up for missing a day or two)

  23. Carol A. Stephen

    Jan. 28, 2014

    Am I Not the Whole?

    God, are you then the All? And I the separated one
    who tumbles and rages?
    Am I not the whole? Am I not all things
    when I weep, and you the single one, who hears it?

    from The Book of Hours II, 3 –- Rilke

    How easy it is to suppose
    we are the centre of our universe
    all our questions somewhere hold the “I”.

    When we are embraced by a depth of sadness,
    our world pulls in, shrinks around us, we are small,
    believe ourselves a single voice calling into darkness.

    Is there someone outside listening for our voices?
    Are there words upon the wind that blows, or merely
    echoes of our own cries, come to taunt us?


  24. Nina

    Home in tears, too highly strung.
    Emotional girl.
    He didn’t understand,
    I deemed him cruel, but it was probably for best.

Comments are closed.