How to begin. small stone Day One.

Satya writes: Today is the first day of our month-long Mindful Writing Challenge. How do we begin?

‘…how do I begin?’ Dear sir, you simply begin. There is no magic method of beginning. If a man standing on the edge of a swimming bath and wanting to jump into the cold water should ask you, ‘How do I begin to jump?’ you would merely reply, ‘Just jump. Take hold of your nerves and jump.’
~ Arnold Bennett

Jump. Just write a small stone.

Then tomorrow, write another one. No magic method. Just take hold of your nerves and pick up your pen.

Here’s mine today:

the golden ghost of our tulip-shaped lamp on the window – grey street, grey sky – New Year Day’s light already draining away

It’s wonderful to see so many small stones being posted in the comments. I enjoyed Dorothee’s video small stone today, and seeing angie werren’s notebook. Keep them coming. Do feel free to include your websites if you like, and visit each other’s blogs and support each other.

Oh, and Happy New Year!

For last year’s words belong to last year’s language
And next year’s words await another voice.
And to make an end is to make a beginning.
~T.S. Eliot

*

‘Sweetpea’ by uncoolbob

Comments & replies

260 thoughts on “How to begin. small stone Day One.

  1. Tanja

    When you sing you begin with Do, Re, Mi… she said. Not necessarily. Sometimes the melody sounds nicer if you hum the first few notes and start singing at the middle.

  2. Keith Wallis

    Christmas bows out,
    its blustering garishness
    discarded
    like the glossy paper wrapping
    around the box of chocolates
    the choice ones
    consumed.
    The New Year bounds in
    like treelights in the sales
    promising much
    when the time comes.

  3. johncroxon

    Sun glints through the salt speckled coach windscreen as the green and pleasant lands blurs past the window, the blue sky seems fresh, crisp and clear, a sleeping passenger stirs briefly before drifting back to sleep, whilst underfoot the steady thrum of the engine breaks the silence of the new morning.

  4. Kaspalita Thompson

    For the first time in weeks I can see the top of the hills. The grey stone beacon is white in the morning sun. The few people are flecks of ink on a page, dark spots moving along the ridge.

  5. Bill T

    Curtains.
    Rapunzeled, a black cat scales.
    Their tresses, floor-length and dour,
    scent of incense. They crave an open
    window, to whip them
    into seduction, make them
    pin-up girls for peeping
    Toms. Expose themselves,
    and the bland riot
    of my living room.

  6. weaversjournal

    A golden point behind dark branches, swells into a ball of fire, rising over the coastal horizon. Clear sky is streaked with pink yellow clouds, and sunshine lights the tree tops. 

    New dawn, new day, new year. 

  7. random

    A small statue of the elephant god Ganesh sits in the desktop of the taxi, nice young guy and I reach safely then a butterfly form in the field from my newly planted sprouts wrong season right season?

  8. Elizabeth

    Theday is here, A new year is born.
    hazy sunshine filters through …..
    I must clean the windows !!

  9. Helen Moat: Stories in the Peak

    Our star dips slate roofs in luminous mercury; then flings a shower of silver confetti. Same old, same new

  10. Annie

    Little tree, shone so brightly for the past few weeks,
    Shines this morning with a different light,
    Bathed in sunshine, such an infrequent visitor of late,
    Your fairy lights pale before the might
    Of the celestial fire.

  11. Elizabeth W

    -The day is here , A new year is born.
    Hazy sunshine filters through……
    I must clean the windows !

    1. Catherine van Vliet-Saivres

      Happy New Year to alll the Small Stones Writers… Libby, this one is very nice.

  12. Jo Bell

    Porridge steaming
    in a bowl as yellow as egg yolk.
    Smoke from the chimney,
    clouds expanding as they pass;
    warm sun in January.

  13. Claire Zoghb

    A ball of light slides earthward.
    Hidden, the moon wanes.
    Awake past midnight —
    Must be a new year.

  14. Sheila Hollinghead

    Blankets wrap me in warmth;
    Still the relentless cold seeps through.
    Only weak rays peek through the window;
    Dense gray fog drapes over the world outside.
    The light dims, yet morning comes with the new year.

  15. estrella05azul

    I wrote a few exercise small stones yesterday, thinking back on December 2012. I’ll include those as well 🙂

    – Fresh pine resin aroma fills the air and lingers on long after people got off the bus with their future Christmas trees.

    – The cats’ fur feels so much softer after handling the authentically sharp fake pine needled Christmas tree.

    – In bed, under fluffy warm covers and a purring cat by my side,
    my cup of mint tea tastes like bedtime stories from when I was four.
    Only now, I do the reading myself.

    Day 1:
    – After your alarm clock goes off and fills the morning calmness with the sharp beeps of waking up to reality,
    the very moment when you have to tumble out of bed – is when your pillow and quilt feel the warmest, softest and comfiest they’ve ever felt before.

  16. nan

    sweet voice
    of Thich Nhat Hanh
    on the video
    and tiny slow flakes flying
    outside the window glass —
    physical expressions
    of invisible happy peace
    vibrating inside my heart
    on New Year’s Day

  17. Word in the Hand

    Fire works
    Fading Moon drifting through clouds of aftermath
    Fireworks
    against the darkness; sparkled screams letting go of Old Lang Syne
    Fire works
    burning a bright hope into the New Year

  18. Rachel White

    Awake groggy, a single shaft of sunlight
    strokes my face with warmth.
    12 noon – first morning passed in a dream.
    Happy New Year!

  19. Jacqueline

    River of Stones 1: Solid boot prints and the snake patterns of tyres mingle with the soft pads of early morning visitors. January 1st and the muddy path at Shorn Wood shows the history of passersby.

  20. Prittiwi

    Plaintive mew,
    Two paws on knee,
    Four paws fair and square,
    Purring and kneading,
    Mutual content.

  21. Deborah Harvey

    Empty glasses, bottles. Olive stones tumbled on a plate. The remains of crisps crushed underfoot. Vestiges of a forgotten civilisation.

  22. Word in the Hand

    Maybe it’s not about being happy
    It’s about being Blessed;
    And knowing that you’re Blessed
    Even when you’re unhappy

  23. anew2013

    Clear, irregular tendrils of cold
    Each reaching for the earth from the rooftop
    Beneath the heaviness of white powder

  24. John Oliver

    The day starts with an overcast morning again like a curtain of grey above. The few remaining leaves rustle in the light breeze. And the squirrel buries the surplus acorns from the sidewalk.

  25. Dawn Z

    In my studio, empty eyes stare through me, the winter scene showing through them.
    What wonders will I see focusing on the jewel between them?

  26. Lori

    One sound, the hum of the computer fan. Two, the tick of the alarm clock on my desk. Three, the sound of the cat cracking kibble. Four, the low rumble of traffic outside. Five, my tinnitus, singing over everything. Six, my own breathing. Seven, the chirrup of a cat no longer hungry for food but for affection.

  27. Kay

    Generous blue skies offer a far more inviting day than those recent intermediate colourless landscape hues #smallstone

  28. Jill

    As I write, you wait. You begin so patiently, watching and waiting, still and quiet. Sometimes I even forget you are there, other times you forget and fall asleep. When you can’t wait anymore, you whine quietly, shift your weight from one foot to the other, or you nudge your nose into my leg or put your head into my lap, or sometimes even offer me a toy, reminding me you are there–waiting. (To see the picture: http://thousandshadesofgray.wordpress.com/2013/01/01/smallstone-day-one-jan-13-mindful-writing-challenge/)

  29. Adara Bryn

    Yesterday’s coppery leaves still cling to the branches. This morning’s raindrops hover next to them… shimmery, silvery cleansing droplets. Both just waiting for the right moment to fall, to reach their next state of being upon the Earth.

    Fall, embrace, become.

  30. Katherine Mercurio Gotthardt

    Folding table next to my desk,
    thinly cloaked in old, sticky-backed fabric budding in mauve roses and bosky leaves, protecting ten years of petrified acrylic beneath,one dried artistic explanation atop another. That’s where I feed the cat. The room smells like fish.

    (Thank you for this exercise. I’m going to edit and then post some of these on my poetry page, Weaker than Water.)

  31. Leslie Waugh

    Asphalt unrolls underneath us
    as we fly by a hawk perched on a bare branch.
    In his stillness, he surveys the lake
    unfurled in front of him
    like a sapphire carpet
    studded with diamonds.

  32. Robbie Burton

    Unhurried clouds travelling
    eastward: long thin indigos,
    small fat creams edged with grey.
    Behind them blue space, unmoving
    to the earthbound eye.

  33. Raquel Castellón

    The day goes on slowly. I like the feeling, it give me the opportunity to be aware in a different and wonderful way.

  34. frankie carboni

    The cousins’ dog
    comes wheeling and bounding among us,
    his bark a great bursting hymn of joy,
    his yard broom coat whiskery and coarse,
    the love on his tongue
    rough, indiscriminate and unquestioning.
    He lifts and lightens the day.

  35. Anonymous

    Living on the farm means that many mornings I am pulled from my slumber by the piercing sound of a single shot from the rifle of a hunter. As the sound dissipates, floating down from his perch at the top of the ridge the other morning sounds rise up in answer. Cows calling, birds excitedly chirping, the brassy honking of the donkey and impatient horses demanding to be fed.

  36. Peggy

    A pink jet trail is drawn through the light blue early morning sky.
    I wonder where those New Year’s travelers are going, so early?

  37. Larry Piper

    A gaggle of late-night revelers,
    returning home in a white SUV at 9 a.m.,
    pause during a right turn,
    and bid me, and my little dog too,
    a raucous Happy New Year.
    I wave back, but my little dog ignores them,
    intent on hurrying home to breakfast.

  38. Ida from Central PA

    All sizes. All shapes. All colors – red, brown, black, white, yellow and even blue. All hunger. Recognizing their hunger, putting aside their differences, all come together to eat. The lessons we could learn from nature.

  39. Marion Ueckermann

    Although my eyes don’t cooperate, determined to remain oblivious, my ears are already listening to the world around me. Different birds call out to the morning sky. Toowit-toowoo, sounds one I do not recognise. A dove coos, echoing the unknown bird’s call. Another adds its shrill chirp.

    Beside me, Wally, our dog, breathes heavily. I turn my head and open my eyes to see his ears sticking up above the line of the bed. He’s seated at the bathroom door, waiting for my hubby to exit.

    It’s 2013, yet it sounds just like any other day, any other month, any other year. None are different from the rest. Life goes on, the same as it always has.

  40. sylvia

    New year’s breakfast – candlelight shines through honey, all bronze and gold, as it drips slowly from spoon, the last drop reaching up.

  41. Jessica

    Dishes, Together

    She stretches her small hand, swallowed
    in suds. With one short huff,
    I blow white foam everywhere.
    A cluster clings to her ragged bangs
    and she asks for more.

  42. Jeannie

    Away for a week I
    return, aware immediately
    I am home,
    the space inhabiting me with each breath.
    I wear my small house as a
    blanket, or a skin which
    expands to rooms,
    windows, a kettle on
    the kitchen tops of
    my bones,
    security in the flow
    of my blood
    between the walls.

  43. Jeannie

    Electricity cracks rhythmically
    regularly.
    A bouganvilia branch is resting
    against the fence of my complex.
    It breaks the current two
    gardens away where I cannot
    intrude.
    Cannot restore the flow or
    redeem the quiet.

  44. Alyson Hurst

    Wonderful to read so many small stones, really inspiring.

    and here is mine to share ..

    The squirrel scurried across the lawn, scrabbling to find food that the birds had dropped from the birdfeeder above. No birds around to bother him.

  45. Anonymous

    Table strewn with dining debris.
    Slumped in the corner in a comfy chair.
    My New Year, My New Year

  46. Amanda Fontaine

    A New Year, bright with promise and new beginnings has been snuffed out. The flickering candle of his breath is gone, but what remains is a beautiful laugh, a stunning smile, a sweet soul, and a forgiving spirit. In his ascent to Heaven, we are left bereft by his abscence, but what he taught us lingers, and the stunning pain is overshadowed by glowing memories.

  47. Mary

    douglas fir accepts a final watering
    poinsettia shouts, “look at me!”
    magenta snap dragon sits deeply.

  48. Linda Wisniewski

    Quiet, all is gray and white, waiting today for friends to arrive. Outside my window, brown leaves cling to the oak tree’s branches, flutter in the wind. A hill covered with bare brown tree trunks, white snow three days old blanketing the ground, hiding the sun each morning.

  49. Sue

    The waves roll across the shoreline as the redshank burrows its long beak into the wet sand. Out in the bay, a pair of cormorants perch on a rocky outcrop, drying their outstretched wings in the winter breeze.

  50. Laura

    Aching eyes behind their lids. And the blackbird is calling goodnight. Put your coat at the foot of the door, it’s going to be chilly.

  51. Jill Windle

    As the fresh ocean wind blows the cobwebs of the night before away, the sun bounces of the water, promising the calm of another new beginning.

  52. Jill Windle

    As the fresh ocean wind blows the cobwebs of the night before away, the sun bounces of the water, promising the calm of another new beginning.

  53. Julie @ Anglers Rest

    The gate to the church yard was open and the sign that said no dogs was barely visible. We had Alfie our Border Terrier with us and decided to ignore the rather poor sign. We would simply walk through the small churchyard and out the other side. Alfie was a good boy and simply walked gently with us as if sensing there was a need for respect.

    There were very few gravestones. The majority had been placed together two deep against a back wall. Why would you do that? How can anyone possibly read the stones? Furthermore, is that respecting those commemorating on those stones? I think not.

  54. Lynne

    Beams of rich sunlight bathe a sunning Bulldog and my back. The blustery breeze awakens the chimes and rings in a blessed, alive, never before lived year. Gratitude for what is gone, what is, and what will be.

  55. Steenie

    A day of TV, no time to reflect, in need of remembering and time to forget. The new year is upon me, it’s come round so fast, I wish I had the power to make great moments last. Today i feel tired but tomorrow I will revive to begin this inward journey, to live, to love, to do more than survive.

  56. Lynne

    Beams of rich sunlight bathe a sunning Bulldog and my back. The blustery breeze awakens the chimes and rings in a blessed, alive, never before lived year. Gratitude for what is gone, what is, and what will be.

  57. Margo

    Here, but not accounted for. I’m writing in my notebook. I shall check in and read every day.

    I have enjoyed the variety and want to say to MHF how much I love his/her stone.

  58. Sabin Bailey

    As I slept, my daughter visited in my dream..although her body is ash…she walks into this new year with her son, and with me…love never dies.

  59. Julia

    Head in hand, he turns the pages of his book. His hair flops over his eyes. He is so serious – he is mostly a man – but somewhere inside he hides that mischievous boy with the infectious laugh.

  60. Createavity

    Endless blue sky, breathing in crisp New Year air

    Dappled sunlight, reflecting on a reborn soul

  61. MHF

    Still, the scent of jasmine incense
    Still, the yoga mat laid out
    Still, the mala beads, rice and water
    Still, the split second within savasana
    Still, after all the day is done.

  62. Charlotte S

    Cold little fingers
    lay on my cheek
    Little teeth like chicklets
    little rosy lips
    Scrunched up little nose
    one little dimple
    The best way to wake up

  63. Veronica Roth

    Walking down to the village the wind feels like a whisper. There is new birdsong in the hedges and, if you stand still and look really closely, you can see the tiny puff of birdsong in opaque white against a blue wash of sky.

  64. Catherine van Vliet-Saivres

    In France between Poitiers and La Rochelle, a small place where I grew up: Saint Martin de Bernegoue… The village has a novelty, a genuine “distributeur de baguette” but today, January 1st, no bread available…

  65. m. lorigami

    the day will be altered by early morning dreams. there was a beautiful old house with old, hand-stitched quilts draped over couches, smoothed over beds. we were there, you and i, and i pulled you down with me onto one of those beds, my arms wrapped around your neck, cheek touching yours, my mouth close to your ear so the whisper of “i’ve missed you so much” would belong only to us; not even the air would own it. you didn’t say a word, but a tenderness that never existed between us blossomed in my chest and echoed — as you can only know in a dream — in yours. my first thoughts this morning were of you; i hope that whereever you are, you are well.

  66. Teresa

    Turn of the New Year-
    a morning moon lingers in the sky

    Today
    I watch the apple light
    as it bathes the air and the frosted leaves
    of the holly tree

    So golden – we all become fresh and new

  67. Teresa

    Turn of the New Year-
    a morning moon lingers in the sky

    Today
    I watch the apple light
    as it bathes the air and the frosted leaves
    of the holly tree

    So golden – we all become fresh and new

  68. Heartful

    The neighbours’ barbeque, rusted round its oval edges, makes a basin of last year’s rain water, reflecting a tilted sky.

  69. steelepierce

    On the road: foggy mountain, grays and browns in a veil of white. The hum of tires on highway and slow slap of wiper blades.

  70. Amy Bogue

    Morning sunbeams peek through the fabric of the curtains from behind, casting warmth upon my skin. I am alive.

  71. Jane B

    First day of 2013. It isn’t raining for the first time in days. A wonderful concert from the Muzikverein in Vienna. Sunshine and music contributing to feel good factpor.

  72. Cynthia

    New Year’s Frost

    Indoors, streamers of smoke
    From just blown out candles
    Float to the ceiling,
    While outside,
    Under a mulberry tree
    Not yet shorn of last year’s leaves,
    Stars perch above the branches,
    The breath of a dog
    Drifts silently moonward,
    And juniper wood smoke
    From a neighbor’s fireplace
    Curls into the night sky.

    – Canyon Wren –

    http://canyonstones.blogspot.com

  73. Burnt Umber

    frosted window pane
    Luminous narcissi
    a crumpled Harris tweed jacket hangs from the corner of the door

  74. Anonymous

    Pelting rain against my window
    Halo of fog hovering
    Bare tree branches stretch
    And I awaken to another day
    Filled with wonder.

  75. Cathy

    While they wait he scrapes a shovel across the ice and slides the net into place. Then the satisfying slapping of sicks and pucks hitting the fence, pinging the crossbar, and sometimes, even entering the crease.

  76. pencils and erasers

    faded christmas rose petals falling on my kitchen table-compost or potpourri-destiny is not for them to decide

  77. Anonymous

    Floral-scented foam lathers and floats along my skin
    Warming and awakening me to the new year
    First shower
    Fresh start

    – Maureen Bailey

  78. Debbie Grace

    Faithful green tree-companion standing quiet witness as she and her sisters have for so many blessed years.

  79. Cathi Christmus

    Grey, cloudy sky; misty rain dampens my walk.
    Cheerful lights still wink at me from the house on the corner.
    I look forward to turning mine on when I get home.

  80. Janice Windle

    Outside the window

    The sky has reappeared between fanned branches: piebald bark marked in dappled gold, shadows shining blue. A deluded crow perched on the top twig is trying to sing that spring has come already.

  81. Amanda Fontaine

    My son, four years old
    With bright blue eyes
    Doesn’t understand today’s holiday
    Probably doesn’t even know
    What day it is, but he does know
    The rapture from the bubbles
    In a soda, the glory of a
    Red loop-de-loop straw and the
    Promise of the next two seconds
    Instead of the resolutions
    A New Year brings

  82. Terri E. Fizer

    Instead of ignoring my chapped hands as I usually do, I apply lavender lotion: soothing, familiar, and reassuring, it is a good scent for my daughter to remember as mine.

  83. Debra Mauldin

    January 1, 2013 Small Stone
    By: D. B. Mauldin
    Rain and fog blocking my view, no birds chirping, no squirrels eating, nothing to see, just the constant sound of rain falling gently.

  84. Debra Mauldin

    January 1, 2013 Small Stone
    By: D. B. Mauldin
    Rain and fog blocking my view, no birds chirping, no squirrels eating, nothing to see, just the constant sound of rain falling gently.

  85. Amanda Fontaine

    A pencil tinged morning
    Turns into the afternoon
    Far sooner than I expect
    As afternoon darkens into night
    I am struck by the silence
    By the crackle of wind as it passes
    By the pristine sorrow of this
    January night
    Sometimes the most beautiful thing
    In the world is reveling in
    A little bit of pain
    The sting teaches you, reaches you
    At that moment, it’s the only thing
    That brings change
    That brings healing
    That brings happiness

  86. PCNiles

    Found on the ground:
    a small Pine Siskin.
    Head tucked under wing,
    just a tiny bundle
    of soft downy feathers,
    still warm,
    huddled on the cold damp ground.
    My hands and heart could not save him.
    This New Year’s Day death is nothing less
    than a new beginning for one small bird.

  87. Gillian

    The precious winter sunlight highlights the clusters of cobwebs which congregate in the corners of the Georgian panes.

  88. Lynne

    The winter sky rings with blue like an omen promising more light in our lives, a clear path ahead. And what harm in believing it so? On this one day, through dusk and darkness, we say anything is possible.

  89. RB67

    Two adults and two children gather around the table. A chaos of plastic and color spread before them. Amidst young pleas for help, a LEGO plane and helicopter emerge and imaginations take over.

  90. Geri Greene

    Pressures
    released
    Left behind
    tho’ not far away
    Why won’t they stay
    put in the past
    where they appeared?

  91. Saille Falbh

    As I opened my eyes
    The lightening flashed
    and the wind spat
    against the window pane.
    then the thunder growled
    and rolled away with the rain.
    One star
    two stars
    and the robin sang.

  92. Wendy Haylett

    Small Stone – 1/1/13

    Big white 1
    on my desktop calendar.
    The first
    The best
    There is no comparison.

    Every day
    is a good day.
    Nichi
    Nichi
    Kore
    Ko Jitsu.

  93. Caroline H

    Wind whips my face. Bright sun blinds me. I focus on the luminous red berries laden on the tree.

  94. Anonymous

    A rolling grey sea viewed through transparent squared paper – decorated with seagull waste and dusty residue. Orange buoys plot the tide’s course on the glass page, drawn there for my eyes to see and my pen to record.
    AitchJayEmm 1.1.13

  95. Deb

    In this third season with this tree, in this space, the snow covers her limbs. She is quiet, like me.

  96. melanie

    Fiona is walking into the woods as the pup and I are walking out. She introduces us to her friend. “I liked what you wrote” Fiona says. “You’re touching people”. I busy myself tending to the dog. She throws behaviours when she is uncomfortable. Right now she is trying to burrow her nose into the friend’s pocket. “Stop touching strangers” I say.

  97. Carolyn Abrams

    The single birch stands tall and alone in the cold wood.
    No leaves or needles or branches to keep it warm
    It appears as a guardian to all the rest
    Strong, tall, aware.

  98. martinwrites1958

    Lying awake in bed at midnight, still and quiet as joyous explosions erupt outside. Red, blue and green jewels flash and burst as distant cheers waft through the open bedroom window. As everyone goes back indoors and peace returns, I drift into sleep, wondering how it would be if every new day were celebrated with such delight.

  99. Unknown

    Ebony richness
    transformed into deep caramel in my cup.
    The cup reaches my lips
    the deep caramel is instantly transformed into
    liquid gold.

  100. Old Miss Lavendar

    There is a slight chill in the house: the temperature outside must have dropped. One lamp is lit in here. It casts a rosy glow across the wall and ceiling, and somehow warms me on the inside.

  101. Pattie Mulderig

    Ebony richness
    transformed into deep caramel in my cup.
    The cup reaches my lips
    the deep caramel is instantly transformed into
    liquid gold.

  102. Kevin Mackey

    The moon, bright, white, shines down on a lake made blue and rose in the dawn of a new year.

  103. foreverhealthandwellness.com

    Soft, easy, quiet patterned breathing;
    whimper and groan, stretch and moan.
    Smile
    Love breathes

  104. carahart

    Orange tabby fur, a blazing fire in the lamplight. His quick inhale, exhale. Rumbling: soft, just to be in proximity. His presence feels like fidelity.

  105. Julie Singleton

    A crossroads
    and, to the north,
    a narrow dirt track, where boot and hoof have made their mark over
    centuries.
    Above
    the canopy whispers secrets of the long gone, their voices whipped away
    by the wind.
    I tread where they once trod, feel the memory of their footfall;
    the path a palimpsest,
    where my own boot makes its
    mark.

  106. ghostmoth

    The princess sings Adele’s Someone Like You whilst a glitterball decorates the walls with sparkly polos.

  107. Helen Clare

    Woodfiller turns from ochre to fired clay as it’s sanded. Grit in eyes. Smooth under fingertips.

  108. Padma Ayyagari

    Crowing Roosters
    Cackling Magpies
    Fading Moon light
    Rising Sun
    Flickering Candle
    in the Cool Breeze
    The beauty of
    Early morning
    of a Summer
    Swells my heart
    with gratitude.
    Thank YOU
    For a new beginning
    24hrs fresh
    to write or rewrite
    a Story
    That can be a legacy
    of Joy & Happiness
    or Sorrow & Misery
    CHOICE
    To begin from
    Where I am
    Right NOW
    Right HERE.

  109. Paul

    First light.
    Monochrome hills
    soggy under hungover clouds
    unexpectedly
    awakened by a brilliant seam
    of sudden sun.

  110. Nancy

    Small Stones Day 1

    Seeing the white sky, the bare trees
    where weeks ago, autumn had used
    all the crayons in the box, I looked
    for “palimpsest” in the dictionary.

  111. isobelandcat

    My first stone of 2013: http://wp.me/pMKim-1P8
    I have a parcel from Maria in Barcelona. It was here when I got home yesterday, but I was in a rush. Today, after a late night I am quietly tired. So it is waiting for the right moment to come, still in the brown paper tied up with string, a surprise, a pleasure, all the nicer for the anticipation.

  112. verysmallstones

    The Hunt
    Ears like brushed suede, pricked and alert; glossy black pelt twitching; amber eyes giving way to black pupils. The kitten crouches, intently watching the children as they play. Her haunches rise instinctively: she draws back and launches. The children are immersed in their game; the hunt goes unnoticed.

  113. Jules

    Jan 2013 Mindful Writing

    Fresh new page…a journal awaits
    Beginnings, seconds…letters and
    Minutes and hours….lineup to play
    To start the day…… and a chapter
    And the year…..as we book up life

    © JP/davh

  114. T

    While cleaning, I found my great-uncle’s old, tin ladle. Every morning he would draw a bucket of well water, cover it with a fresh, white towel, and set it by the door for all the June-sweaty kids to find. We all drank from the same ladle and dipped it back into the same bucket. Today it served up a refreshing sip from my childhood.

  115. Roxie

    Crisp crunchy snow on the ground. Foot prints showing the way to the barn. The barn cat has obviously decided to not blaze her own trail however. There are cat foot prints within human footprints. Smart cat!

  116. Gina Anderson

    My faithful little friend sits by my side, his head tilted and his eyes big, round, and wide….he knows that every bite I take brings him closer to the last bite, which I always save for him.

    Hello big wet nose and barrage of licks all over my face! Would you like some of mama’s coffee too?

  117. ewk

    Dusk. Cold Tea. Furnace hums.
    Sitting in a usual place
    clutter (in head, on table) somewhat contained.
    Begin.

  118. sleepwriter

    The moon crept from clouds of ice and fireworks, bitten and misshapen in her wane, yet trimming the clouds with luminous lace.

  119. Tai

    Stalling…waiting…halting.
    Wanting…wondering…why?
    Why do the gears of my get up and go have no get up and go?
    Excuses…Reasons
    Convincing the lazy self to wait.
    Contemplations…Meditations, creating speed bumps.
    Present time…right now is the only time.
    Remember Yesterday? Not really.
    Have you seen Tomorrow? Nope.
    Is it Today? Yep!
    Why am I waiting?
    No More.

  120. Laurie Granieri

    Multi-colored strings of lights cling to the boughs of a limp Christmas tree on its last night in town. Tomorrow? Garbage Day.

  121. Kathy Marie

    Small Stone #1: Nature’s winter house ornaments, icicles, now taking shape — each unique glass-like creation formed by the kiss of cold and the pattern of water’s fingers slithering around and gently gliding off

  122. Calla

    Hot blood-orange pu’erh tea on the veranda. Air heavy-damp with fog and incense.
    Tea-cup steam curls thickly,
    but the breeze lightly steals
    it away.

  123. Robin

    Tiny white snowflakes fill the air
    As the cold squeezes and squeezes
    Moisture from the overhanging clouds
    Bella is glad
    She wore her winter coat

  124. Rhiannon

    There is little traffic on this new years day and no mushrooms in the supermarket. Routine has yet to reassert itself.

  125. Duff

    Intense young men,
    lilting Español, raucous English
    compañeros, friends
    on a sunny winter afternoon.
    Pick-up soccer…”free for all to participate”.
    So aware that for today,
    my participation is observing.

  126. Caroline

    New Year’s Day we take our long shadows in Christmas mittens, scarves and hats, to walk in winter’s low light. Under the cliffs, sharp against the blue-hue, a twisted thicket of buckthorn is shaken by the chill. We hold hands and take the steep path through wild cabbage, too bitter for grazing sheep. It leads us to the sea, which greets, and bids farewell, greets and bids farewell.

  127. Kathryn

    my eyes were blurred today upon waking, crying in dreams about those who have passed on or away, necessary perhaps to embrace the present?

  128. Tara Adams

    Christmas is now in boxes,
    piled upon one another,
    mountains of spent stagecraft in my living room.
    Without Christmas to arm me,
    it is cold and spring is months away.
    I am one woman in a house full of ordinary dreams,
    protected from winter by only walls.

  129. Michelle

    Walking across the fields, a powerful westerly wind at my back, propelling both me, and the scrap of black paper that is a rook , forcefully forward and into the New Year….a leaden sky, but there a chink of light on the horizon…

  130. deb winans

    Rusted leaves float atop thick brown water of winter pond
    But nature will come full circle with a spring revival
    Until then, treasure the stillness

  131. Nancy

    Stripes of light and shadow dance across the dusty landscape of the quieted television, evoking peace with reminders of things not yet done.

  132. Dr. Pearl Ketover Prilik (PKP)

    There atop a crimson valentine’s day box of tiny scented soaps – a yellowed picture of that little bathing-suited little girl, arm slung around her daddy’s bare strong shoulder both staring with the same black eyes straight from then into today.

  133. NanLeah

    Towhee flits beneath huckleberry,
    announcing the banquet I’ve scattered.
    Exclaiming, “It’s time towheat!”

  134. Jessaca Sears

    With built in fur coats they rush out the door like cannonballs, running and leaping in the white stuff.

    Like hummingbirds to flowers sticking their noses down deep into the white stuff.

    Stopping a moment to take a taste of the white stuff.

  135. magalex

    Late….the laptop hums, the curtain shifts as a breeze drifts through the open window….I remember I forgot to write the first #smallstone

  136. betweenthewords

    January 1, 2013

    Walking on the tree shaded street with my old grey-bearded dog Charlie, we meet a new friend, the silver-haired poodle, Harry. Two elderly gentlemen, out for a stroll this New Year’s Day, take a gentle sniff of each other, tails wagging acknowledgements.

  137. teri

    January 1, 2013 – a small Stone
    A Personal Summer Teri H Hoover

    My feet search the sheets for coolness
    like a dog snuffling along the kitchen floor for left overs.
    Even in the midst of winter my body feels the summer heat.

  138. crystalnine

    That one written thought connection with your soul mate makes for the profoundness of being alive each day.

  139. Delaina

    Imprints

    A snowy tree branch bends
    and bounces with a cardinal’s weight
    feathers puffed like red balloon
    caught in the leafless dogwood.
    He waits and watches.

    Just beneath
    sunken prints in white snow.
    Among the rabbit and dog
    are mine on a path leading
    to somewhere warm.

  140. Rosanna

    The old is gone,
    the new is not yet fully here…things are beginning
    again…
    slowly…
    more peacefully this time
    because I am more peaceful
    and appreciate time more
    this time.

  141. RosyRevolver

    There is only treelight and candlelight and
    a wet torrent teeming over the roof above.
    As I sit in this semi-silence, I wish for sleep,
    and I think, Day One… and how fitting it is,
    that it has all begun with the washing rain.
    And George Eliot echoes in my head,
    “It’s never too late to be what you might have been.”

  142. raw poetry by donna snyder

    black-eyed peas for luck
    tradition of the American South
    small stones bloom tan in water
    their eyes open to hot bath of new
    onion and sweet peppers
    yellow and red
    sizzle on thick cuts of bacon
    crusted with black pepper
    minced garlic
    a pinch of thyme
    a bit of tomato pureed with pimento
    just enough cayenne

    the peas for luck
    the spice for pluck
    please let the new year
    surpass the last
    and pass the corn bread

    1/1/13
    Donna Snyder
    El Paso, Texas

  143. Dana Knighten

    Trying to find the place of beginnings again, after so many years of hopeful beginnings come to naught. Tired. Worn down. Afraid to hope again. Find the place in me where the live coal still burns beneath the ash.

  144. Dylan Tweney

    clear darkening sky
    and the sounds
    of the neighbor’s party
    — a swallow darts
    over the treeline

  145. Dr. Pearl Ketover Prilik (PKP)

    Hi – no payment for joining – (that is I believe a separate offering)… you can post your small stone right here and/or on your own blog… For example, your comment posted here came to me, another participant in small stones. So post away. Looking forward to reading. (For the record, I am posting both on my own blog and here).

  146. Dr. Pearl Ketover Prilik (PKP)

    Oooh what a delightfully vivid poem – much more than a small stone 🙂

  147. Denise Homer

    New Year, Old Stars

    New Year’s Day after New Year’s Day
    the Pleiades are in the night sky
    sometimes hidden by the weather
    tonight the Seven Sisters shine bright

  148. Dr. Pearl Ketover Prilik (PKP)

    Terrific quote – wonderful thought and a delightful small stone 🙂

  149. Dr. Pearl Ketover Prilik (PKP)

    Ah “leading to somewhere warm” lovely poem – so much more than a small stone.

  150. Dr. Pearl Ketover Prilik (PKP)

    Ah “leading to somewhere warm” lovely poem – so much more than a small stone.

  151. Renee

    I think since the site is changed I am confused. I want to post a Small Stone but in the past I entered a link to my own site so one could read it. Is that no longer possible here? I get the impression one has to pay to join? I really enjoyed Small Stones in the past. Thank You!

  152. Lanita

    Propane-fueled flames, in a neon halo reflected in the aluminum saucer above,
    flap against the winter wind like a flag.

  153. Lanita

    Propane-fueled flames, in a neon halo reflected in the aluminum saucer above,
    flap against the winter wind like a flag.

  154. Kris

    Only hours old,
    this pale, frigid beginning–a manmade demarkation unrelated to nature’s boundaries–
    ushers in midwinter
    and hope.

  155. colorfulpen

    Bone tired, the ball-capped man sleeps soundly on a couch, head lolled to his chest. In the middle of a busy mall.

  156. yaywords

    snow falls

    on the first
    night of the year

    I dream

    the tea
    blossom unfurls

    as we pull
    her life back
    layer by layer

    how many

    days does
    she have

    left to wilt?

    (accompanying image on blog)

    — Aubrie

  157. rashmenon

    tarred streets

    quiet cars

    sleeping away a day’s grime

    fluffy white idli

    and my blue glasses

    melted into a frame

    stretching awake

    pools

    of conscience

    multitudes.

  158. Lenora

    Thank you for offering this opportunity to all of us. I think I’ll mostly just be posting my small stones on my tumblr (http://soponalimb.tumblr.com/) in January, but here’s my first one:

    Praline Pecans from a local roadside market—a special treat. Crusty sweet goodness that leaves my tongue feeling much like it does after eating a lemon drop. But pecans are SO much better.

  159. Anna Meshach

    First day of the year and feeling somewhat tired today. Reflecting on the difficulties of the last year and how I don’t want to be in that dark tunnel of depression again.

    Show me the light please my guardian, deliver me from the dark. Bathe me with winter sunshine to restore my balance and make your mark. Show me hope and give me peace, help me with patience and love and health. Allow me time for me alone but support me in making my children grow. This I pray almighty one, I’m in your hands so show me how.

  160. Anna Meshach

    First day of the year and feeling somewhat tired today. Reflecting on the difficulties of the last year and how I don’t want to be in that dark tunnel of depression again.

    Show me the light please my guardian, deliver me from the dark. Bathe me with winter sunshine to restore my balance and make your mark. Show me hope and give me peace, help me with patience and love and health. Allow me time for me alone but support me in making my children grow. This I pray almighty one, I’m in your hands so show me how.

  161. Hagthorn

    Sharpness of stone,
    iciness of water,
    dog barking at our cries.

    Here where you died
    we are being so alive
    and suddenly I know,
    this is the best way
    to honour you.

  162. Hagthorn

    Sharpness of stone,
    iciness of water,
    dog barking at our cries.

    Here where you died
    we are being so alive
    and suddenly I know,
    this is the best way
    to honour you.

  163. Freya Pickard

    Life is a mosaic of light and shadow… shadows serve only to define light
    © Freya Pickard 2013

  164. Freya Pickard

    Life is a mosaic of light and shadow… shadows serve only to define light
    © Freya Pickard 2013

  165. raw poetry by donna snyder

    The sound of brakes screaming to a halt
    issue with each exhalation,
    followed at once by a cacophony of what might be geese shrieking warnings to her lungs, Beware of breath!

  166. Victoria

    Another new beginning,

    filled with promise and balance today.

    Will I remember that every day is fresh and flawless as the snow covering our garden?

  167. Victoria

    Another new beginning,

    filled with promise and balance today.

    Will I remember that every day is fresh and flawless as the snow covering our garden?

  168. Laura

    One hand is cold, out typing alone in the freezing room. The other is snuggled under the rough love of my half finished crochet.

  169. Lorelei

    Starting too delicately, too carefully
    when change is so nearby
    and open to the new. Better
    to jump and make a new decision
    with each new situation.

  170. WabiSabi

    This is my first time doing this challenge and I love it!
    Here’s my linkhttp://wabisabipoet.wordpress.com/2013/01/02/carpe-diem-hill/

  171. Lorna Cahall

    relentless searcher
    first friend shaping all who follow

    you seem here today

    over the open path ahead
    your spirit, wild birds flying

  172. Siggi in Downeast Maine

    Day One
    .
    Looked for Acts of Senseless Acts of Beauty
    .
    I knew that the tree in Blue Hill, near the top of a steep hill
    had ornaments on it again this year. Such a pleasant sight
    to all of a sudden come upon the tree.
    After several years, I have gotten brazen and driven into the
    driveway…to stay alive, basically, to take photos.
    .
    This year I put a few ornaments on the tree out front,
    and out by the side of my deck. I decided too late to do it
    properly, but I did the best I could with the ornaments I had
    and with the storms on their way.
    .
    I have other places that have ornaments, but this
    is the first I remember that I actually made a special trip
    to take a photo of remembrance and paint a card of the tree.
    .

    .

  173. Wilma

    A New Year
    in a new place.
    White sand
    instead of white snow.
    Dwarf yellow palms
    instead of Colorado blue spruce.
    Blue-green ocean
    instead of County Road 25.
    A change of pace,
    a change for life.

  174. Cindy Bene

    Lumpy, pale yellow batter
    magically transformed
    into golden brown cornbread muffins.
    Along with country ham and black-eyed peas
    my “lucky” New Year’s meal is complete.

    (posted late for January 1st)

  175. Thailand Villas

    Youre so cool! I dont suppose Ive read anything like this before. So nice to find somebody with some original thoughts on this subject. realy thank you for starting this up. this website is something that is needed on the web, someone with a little originality. useful job for bringing something new to the internet!

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