The Queen’s Roses

Day 17: Feb 17

Roses, roses, rose! There are always roses! She scowls at the dainty flowers, their intoxicating sweet perfume wafting up to her nose. Why not orchids? Or lilies? Or gardenias? They have a strong scent, too! Her scowl deepens, two dark eyes glaring up at the lofty tower high above the gardens. All its windows are shaded, drapes pulled shut to block out any light, whether sunlight or moonlight. There dwells the queen. Stamping her foot, she glares silent threats at the tower. If the queen wishes so much to murder anyone who offends, perhaps the queen should use a different flower to the cover the scent!

A twist on a “Snow White” fairy tale I wrote recently


I have renewed these in lieu of the Refugee Ban in the USA. Inspired by the-cassandra-project and their Every Day Challenge, I am writing every day to raise money for the Urban Justice Center. You can donate here or please spread the word. Thank you.


Unlooked for Sweetness

Day 8: Feb 8

I have renewed these in lieu of the Refugee Ban in the USA. Inspired by the-cassandra-project and their Every Day Challenge, I am writing every day to raise money for the Urban Justice Center. You can donate here or please spread the word. Thank you.

A tantalizing sweetness buffeted the air, coy and floral. Stopping, Azana peered into the hoary brush. Dead twigs and cobwebs thick as moss tangled around the dreary landscape. Most of it rose nearly equal to her height. Once it must have been a wondrous sight, but now it held nothing living. So where was the scent coming from?

Azana scoured the dreary shadows, piercing shapes and outlines around colors. Nothing. She close her eyes and followed the scent. Her nose led her forward. Hands out, she ran into a prickly bush.


Pulling her hand away, Azana sucked on her bleeding finger. And then she saw it. The source of the sweet scent.

There among the gray twigs and drooping cobweb-moss and needle-sharp thorns, was a dainty rose. Milky grey, like a dreary snowy day, it rustled on its stem, underside petals a touch darker than the rest. It was the most common and colorless thing Azana had ever seen! And yet… It was the sweetest thing she had ever smelled.

[171 words]

Roses and Death

Day 220

Wind whipped rose petals into her face. Squinting against the onslaughter, she spied the source of the roses: a giant wall of briars blocked her path. Long glistening thorns gleamed white under the moonlight, roses brushed in silver. As she came closer, the sweet perfume assailed her nose. Sweet as roses and stronger than any she had ever smelled. Wrinkling her nose, she moved to the left, away from the drying blood on one of the thorns.

Written: 27 May 2016

Words: 77

Inspired: a song → fairy tale


The Rose Briar [Day 173]

A SLENDER VOICE whispers in the cloisters’ dusty gloom. Light and quick as a bat, the words flutter past, too fast to catch. Only the lingering scent of wisdom or advice beckons her forward. 

Soon she stops, amazed. In front of her, growing right out of the stone, is a briar patch. Succulent red and yellow roses bloom amid the dark green thorns. Creepers squeeze the weathered walls, glistening thorns strong and sharp enough to pierce solid rock. 

Shuffling closer, she sees iridescent beads of moisture condensing on the tip of each thorn. Is it poison? Is it medicine? Or…

The voice whispers in her ear, fleet-footed as a hummingbird. 

It is both. For those who know what they search for. 

Written: 11 March 2016

Words: 121


Virulent Roses [Day 125]

THE SCENT OF roses filled the air. Sweet and dainty as feathery clouds, the fragrance tingled her senses, making her pause. She breathed it in, tasting a peculiar flavor on her tongues. If flowers could have taste, she would have been the soul of roses. Closing her eyes, she let the sweetness seep down into her consciousness, unmindful of the thorns growing around her. A frantic wind blew, gently rustling her hair and cheek; wake up, wake up, it seemed to sing. 

Written: 9 Jan 2016

Words: 82 

Inspired: a song and I’m not even sure

A/N: This was supposed to post at 8:30 am EST but WordPress has been acting up. Also, I have been doing these (pretty) regularly, only not every day is publishable often because of its potential in a larger story so I would rather err occasionally on not publishing them here. But I have a lot plugged away from the past. Thanks.


Fairy Tale Friday: The Loveliest Rose in the World

by H. C. Andersen

I was browsing one of my collections of Andersen’s fairy tales (because, yes, I have more than one; his writing’s lovely), and I happened to catch this title. I did not recall reading it so I did.

It’s simple enough – a queen has a garden that, no matter the season, is full of flowers. Her favorite are roses, which bloom and grow all over her palace. She eventually becomes ill and can only be saved by seeing the loveliest rose in the world, sprung from the purest, greatest love.

Well, that idea – roses and love – is exactly the kind that sparks my emotions and fires up my writing imagination.  But knowing how and what Andersen writes, I had a hunch of what the loveliest rose would be.

Possible roses that are dismissed are romance, patriotism, and knowledge. Other possibilities that are suggested include: a child’s love, a mother’s love (and grief) for her sick child, and people at church.  Can you guess what the loveliest rose is?

In this story its Christ for his great love for humanity. Dying on the cross and all that. I don’t entirely agree but I don’t disagree. But I suspected that’s what the greatest and purest love would be in Andersen.

Garden of Beauty [Day 84]

THE GARDEN SHONE in the sunlight. Dazzling white snow glittered, diamonds clumped together beneath bowers adorned with icicles; the powerful morning light transformed them into crystal teardrops. Tiny purple snowdrops and frail satin gray flowers she did not have a name for curled  around the icicles, basking in the sunshine.

On the other side, bees hummed around bowers of honeysuckle, while lush iris and cosmos glowed brightly beneath bushes bursting with white and purple lilac. Delicate ivy snakes hugged short ornamental lemon and orange trees, blossoms and fruit both freckled in sunlight. Their green shadows swept across the summery grass, each blade and petal drinking up the fresh sunshine.

And of course there were roses. Red, white, yellow, blue, pink – there were roses of every color on either side. They were surely no natural breed of blossom. Regardless of what they were, she had to admit they were beautiful.


Written: 18 Nov 2015

Words: 150

Inspired: “La Belle et la bête” – the scene I always loved