Posted in Creative Writing, Poetry, Self Publishing, Writing

Goodbye Daily Prompt!

UPDATE –  I have now started my own! It can be found here

I only found out about this today!

After all this time the Daily Post is sounding the Last Post and bidding us farewell.

Damn!

I need it! I will miss it! I need a push every day – I may not use it – may not do it every day – but it helps. A lot!

Retrospective? Well, all I will say is that there was a tie, a few years ago I came to the realisation that I had neglected my passion. I stopped writing. Once I realised I tried to start again. It was difficult. Very hard to gain momentum. That is where the Daily Post came to my rescue. It gave me the inspiration I needed.

Now it won’t be there.

I suspect I am not the only one sorry to see it go.

So I may start my own. I might just put up a prompt each day. Can’t provide the fancy screen that shows all the entries – if anyone else does use it but I will give it a go.

In the meantime – here’s a suitable poem.

Old-light-from-the-past

Lantern

By Scott Bailey © 2013

Old light from the past
Is still illumination
Wisdom echoes far

 

In response to the daily prompt Retrospective

#DailyPrompt, #amwriting, #postaday

www.scottandrewbailey.uk

Posted in Creative Writing, Daily Prompt, Poetry, Writing

Freedom

By Scott Bailey © 2018

Swallows fly freely
Soaring high in summer skies
Earthbound fox watches

In response to RonovanWrites #Weekly #Haiku #Poetry Prompt #Challenge #203 Home&Free

Image from Pixabay

 

#amwriting, #postaday

www.scottandrewbailey.uk

Posted in Creative Writing, Short Stories, Writing

Heirloom – #writephoto

For Sue Vincent’s Thursday Photo prompt

Another bit of fiction – another continuation of previous entries that I have decided to collate in one place – here.

Here Sue’s photo for this week.

 


Heirloom

By Scott Bailey © 2018

 

She had run from the stately home – from ghosts and strange blind men – both alive and dead.

But not far. She had very quickly got hold of herself. Now she sat outside a provincial coffee shop sipping the best she’d tasted for some time.

As she drunk she stared at the place in the distance. Turrets rising from the darkness like the beginning of some gothic horror movie.

Only now she knew the ghosts were real.

How she knew that she was not sure. It went against everything she had ever believed, against the grain of her fundamental seeking for truths.

But she did not doubt what she had seen.

So, that is how he found her, sipping coffee, staring at his home.

Vaguely, she wondered at that. Had she stumbled straight into his favourite place? Had he had her followed? Again, she noted that he seemed to need no guide. He must be familiar with this place as well.

He sat across the table from her and waited.

“Who are they,” she asked eventually.

He smiled wryly and lifted one shoulder and a strange shrug.

“That is the question. One there has been no answer to. All I can tell you is that through all the stories, down through the years – beyond history – they are there – along with the sword. With Northblood.”

“Stories? Do you have them all?”

“All, that are known of,” he replied. “There are gaps in time, and as I said, they go beyond written history.”

Again, for no apparent reason, she believed him.

“Will you tell me them?”

“I will,” he nodded. He signalled to a waiter and ordered himself a coffee. Then he resumed.

“But if you are seeking truths, stories will not suffice. You must take more, you must take responsibility.”

She cocked her head at that.

“What do you mean?”

“It is time Northblood was held by new hands.”

“You want me to have the sword?”

He nodded, then added more quietly.

“But there is a cost.”


#writephoto

Posted in Creative Writing, Poetry, Writing

Consumed

By Scott Bailey © 2013

More fucking shopping
I’m consumed by consuming
Working just keeps up

Image from Pixabay

Originally published in A Spring of Dreams

www.scottandrewbailey.uk

Posted in Creative Writing, Haiku, photography, Poetry, Writing

Snake

By Scott Bailey © 2014

Monster
Caught in lead and steel
Frozen
In time

Human
Caught in the machine
Enslaved
Forever

Somewhere
An artist smirks
And settles
To eternal sleep

Photo by Scott Bailey

 

In response to this weeks Photo Challenge Twisted

This was a sculpture spotted during a day trip to Hastings many years ago.

 

Posted in Creative Writing, Poetry, Self Publishing, Writing

Cold Cold News

By Scott Bailey © 2016

The news chills today
The child killers found guilty
Will justice suffice?

Image from Pixabay

In response to the daily prompt Guilty

#DailyPrompt, #amwriting, #postaday

www.scottandrewbailey.uk

Posted in Creative Writing, Poetry, Self Publishing, Writing

Assumption

By Scott Bailey © 2018

The assumption
Is consumption
Is needed
The beast needs feeding
So we can all be fed
Let’s
Eat the beast
Instead

Image from Pixabay

In response to the daily prompt Assumption

#DailyPrompt, #amwriting, #postaday

www.scottandrewbailey.uk

Posted in Creative Writing, Short Stories, Writing

The Avenue- #writephoto

For Sue Vincent’s Thursday Photo prompt

Another bit of fiction – another continuation of previous entries that I have decided to collate in one place – here.

Here Sue’s photo for this week.

 


The Avenue

By Scott Bailey © 2018

 

This was the second time Ilaria had walked down this Avenue of trees today. Earlier it had been bright sunshine and lush green grass. Now it was grey and blue in the moonlight.

Then, he had walked with her. The Count. She had learned he was a Count almost immediately. It had amused her mildly. She had followed all the clues and they had led her to a castle where a Count lived.

It has all the makings of a horror movie. Or maybe a quaint period romance.

She had no taste for either. She rarely read fiction. She preferred a good textbook, preferably history.

Somehow he had known that.

She had badgered him with questions which he deftly danced all around and avoided with politeness. As she talked, he walked. Moving at a leisurely pace. She noticed that despite his age – she guessed around mid-fifties he seemed quite fit. Moved with a strong, feline confidence.

She barely noticed that they left the darkness of his personal museum and found themselves strolling in the dappled sunlight beneath the trees.

When she did she also realised that, despite his blindness, he had not faltered once. He had been sure-footed and need no guide.

She stopped. Taking in the implications.

“You have lived here all your life?” It was the only explanation, he must know the place intimately.

“As have my family for several generations.” he smiled, amused at her question.

“A French Count.” she mused.

“An English title, my family moved here many years in the past, the title came with them and stayed.”

“And you? You have stayed here, never left?”

“Oh, I have travelled in my time, all over the world.” There was sadness in his voice now. Maybe he had not always been blind? Did he mourn the loss of all the sites he had seen?

She pushed on with her quest for answers though.

“Is that where you collected all those weapons?”

“No, that was not me. That was father’s passion. I don’t really care for the collection – it holds no interest to me.”

“Except for that sword.” There could be no denying his interest in that sword. It had pride of place n his house.
He smiled wryly, as is admiring her insight. He nodded.

“Yes, except that sword.”

“Was that one of your father’s acquisitions?”

“It was. One of his last.” he began walking again, drawing her down the avenue.

“He never knew what he had, he dies shortly after bringing home.”

“But you do?” she said. “You know what is special about it. What is it? And what are those figures?”

He stopped again, turned and faced her. He sighed and appeared to be considering his answer. Finally, he spoke again.

“I know your type. You are obsessed with facts – with explanations, not mystery.”

She bristled at this description of herself, to the way he had pigeonholed her, she wanted to dispute it, but she didn’t know what to say. She realised that he had hit the mark.

He went on.

“You want answers, explanations. I am not sure I can give you that. What I can tell you, you would not believe.”

“Try me,” she said. Something about all this had hooked her. She needed the answers in a way she had never felt before. Her calm assessment of everything that had gone before in her life seemed to have been washed away by this sudden, irrational obsession. Though it frightened her – she found she could not turn back any more.

So her heart lurched when he answered.

“No.”

She began to protest but he held up his hand.

“I cannot tell you in any way you would accept. Therefore, I must show you. Meet me here again, this exact spot at midnight.”

She almost snorted, almost derided all this theatrical nonsense. Almost walked away from it all.

But he did not give her the chance. He whirled around and stalked away from her, leaving her open-mouthed.

So she found herself back beneath the trees in the cool night, wondering if she were starting to go mad.

“Are you ready to open your eyes?”

She jumped in fright. The count had come up beside her in silence.

The air felt chill now. Yet, somehow, in spite of the situation, she did not feel any threat from him.

“What are we waiting for?” she asked, trying to keep the scepticism from her voice.

He pointed his cane down the avenue.

Where two faint white figures approached. They were misty and translucent and seemed to be sunk in the ground up to their waists.

She stepped back several paces in fear. What the hell! They looked for all the world like ghosts approaching them.

The air felt colder still.

This could not be! She whirled around looking up in the trees for the light of a projector.

“This is no illusion!” said the Count. “Take all the time you need to confirm that after, but for now – attend closely.” He nodded in the direction of the approaching figures.

She could see them more clearly now. They were indeed sunk up to their waists into the earth. But they seemed not to notice. They ran as if it were not there.

They were figures from the most ancient of times. Almost naked, wearing simple animal hides. Their hair wild. They both carried spears, wooden with flint heads.

They passed her. The nearest was a young woman, barely an adult. The other was an older, man. He looked strong but worn by time. Somehow, despite the fact that he was not eyeless, she could tell that he, like the Count, was blind.


#writephoto

Posted in Creative Writing, Daily Prompt, Poetry, Writing

Fragility

By Scott Bailey © 2018

I watched his heartbeat
Fragile and fading too fast
Stops everyday

Image from Pixabay

In response to RonovanWrites #Weekly #Haiku #Poetry Prompt #Challenge #202 Fragile&Heartbeat

And in Memory of Lucas Henry Bailey

#amwriting, #postaday

www.scottandrewbailey.uk

Posted in Creative Writing, Poetry, Self Publishing, Writing

Not Enough

By Scott Bailey © 2018

Here are my words
Not enough
To unburden
My crushed soul
Or move a mountain
Of stress

#amwriting, #postaday

www.scottandrewbailey.uk

Posted in Creative Writing, Poetry, Self Publishing, Writing

Infected

By Scott Bailey © 2018

Infected
With weariness
Watching the corruption
Until it becomes
Normality
And we shrug
And move on

Just as they planned

Photo by Samantha Sophia on Unsplash

In response to the daily prompt Infect

#DailyPrompt, #amwriting, #postaday

www.scottandrewbailey.uk

Posted in Creative Writing, Short Stories, Writing

The Sculptor – #writephoto

For Sue Vincent’s Thursday Photo prompt

Another bit of short (very short this week) fiction – another continuation of previous entries that I have decided to collate in one place – here.

Here Sue’s photo for this week.

 


The Sculptor

By Scott Bailey © 2018

 

He stood back, took in his work, and smiled.

Yes. He was getting there. He was satisfied.

He was almost finished.

He knew that nobody else would see it. No one in this place understood. They would not see what he could see. They would only see a couple of boulders, barely touched by him.

But he knew. His subtle touches revealed the shapes that were there. The two figures, watching waiting – poised. Ancient figures known now only to a few, their stories passed down through the generations.

Stories many did not believe – of wonder and dread.

Stories of The Hunter, The Eyeless Man and a magical weapon that defied time.

Northblood.


#writephoto

Posted in Creative Writing, Haiku, Poetry, Writing

Triumph

By Scott Bailey © 2018

The white wolf’s triumph
Hunt over, hunger sated
No howling tonight

In response to Colleen’s Weekly #Tanka Tuesday #Poetry Challenge No. 81, DIGNITY & SUCCESS, #SynonymsOnly

A haiku again this week. My brain is too fried for anything more.

#haiku

Posted in Creative Writing, Fiction, Self Publishing, Short Stories, Thirteen Tales, Writing

Pedigree

By Scott Bailey © 2018

The list is out
The top dogs preen
While those who put on the show
Count their gains
And the mongrels
Sniff out the scraps
On the ground

Image from Pixabay

In response to the daily prompt Pedigree

#DailyPrompt, #amwriting, #postaday

www.scottandrewbailey.uk

Posted in Creative Writing, Daily Prompt, Poetry, Writing

Dancer

By Scott Bailey © 2018

The ballet dancer
Perfecting her heart with grace
Hiding her sore heart

Image from Pixabay

In response to RonovanWrites #Weekly #Haiku #Poetry Prompt #Challenge #201 Body&Art

#DailyPrompt, #amwriting, #postaday

www.scottandrewbailey.uk

Posted in Creative Writing, Fiction, Self Publishing, Short Stories, Thirteen Tales, Writing

Slight

By Scott Bailey © 2018

The slight light
Of the dawn
Brings dread
Worry
When it should bring hope
What happened?
When did the light
Seep

Image from Pixabay

In response to the daily prompt Slight

#DailyPrompt, #amwriting, #postaday

www.scottandrewbailey.uk

Posted in Creative Writing, Poetry, Writing

The House of Bailey

By Scott Bailey © 2013

Heart lifts
When I lift him high
Heart skips
With her every kiss
Through darkness and troubled times
Our place has held us
I return with joy
To the walls
My son
My wife
My home

 

Photo by Rachel Bailey

Originally published in A Spring of Dreams

www.scottandrewbailey.uk

Posted in Creative Writing, Fiction, Self Publishing, Short Stories, Thirteen Tales, Writing

Fire and Green

By Scott Bailey © 2018

Earth’s ire arises
Fire from the pulsating core
Fertilizing land

In response to the daily prompt Core

#DailyPrompt, #amwriting, #postaday

www.scottandrewbailey.uk

Posted in Creative Writing, Fantasy Fiction, Fiction, Science Fiction, Self Publishing, Writing

Amazon Marketing Services – Worth it?

Anyone in this corner of the blogosphere had any experience or success with Amazon Marketing Services? Wondering about dallying with it to boost the ailing sales of my books?

Photo by Lukas from Pexels
Posted in Creative Writing, Fiction, Self Publishing, Short Stories, Thirteen Tales, Writing

Top Hat

By Scott Bailey © 2016

With top hat askew
Dancing lightly through the throng
Predatory smile

Photo by Siobhan Dolezal from Pexels

In response to the daily prompt Skewed

#DailyPrompt, #amwriting, #postaday

www.scottandrewbailey.uk

Posted in photography, Wordless-Wednesday

Flight – Wordless-Wednesday

 

Photo by Scott Bailey#wordless-wednesday

Posted in Creative Writing, Haiku, Poetry, Writing

Snake

By Scott Bailey © 2018

Basking in the sun
The snake saw lunch in his mind
Movement brought him back

By Thomas Brown [CC BY 2.0], via Wikimedia Commons

In response to Colleen’s 2018 Weekly #Tanka Tuesday #Poetry Challenge No. 82 – BELONG & DREAM #SynonymsOnly

A haiku this week. I have inferred the given words rather than use synonyms so breaking the rules a bit. This post was also prompted by the fact that on a country walk yesterday my eldest nearly stood on one of these – an adder – the only venomous snake on these isles. I think it was a juvenile as it was small but definitely a viper rather than a grass snake.

#haiku

Posted in Creative Writing, Short Stories, Writing

Northblood – #writephoto

For Sue Vincent’s Thursday Photo prompt

Another bit of short fiction – another continuation of previous entries that I have decided to collate in one place – here.

Here Sue’s photo for this week.

 


Northblood

By Scott Bailey © 2018

 

Ilaria regarded the stairs with apprehension. Should she ascend them? There was something about all this? Something she could not explain rationally and that disturbed her. She was a scientist! Her life was all about explanations.

So she hesitated.

Actually, she was not being honest with herself. She was an archeologists and in that field explanations were not always forthcoming. In fact she prided herself for her tendency to refrain from explanations. To her facts were what she found. A pile of swords in a pool was just that – a pile of swords in a pool. They might be in a broken state or not. What she did not do – what she insisted on – was starting down a flight of fancy trying to imagine – or theorise on what it all meant. Was it ritual? Or a treasure hoard? In the end there was no way of knowing. So it was best left at that – an unknown.

So why did this whole mystery upset her equilibrium?

It was that face in the caves. That ancient figure from a time so long ago it was a miracle that it still survived.

It was the contradictions in the figure. When they had discovered it she had enthused to her colleagues about the clarity and detail of the painting – and it was all true. The figures truly surpassed anything else she had seen that was contemporary or even later. Yet, by modern standards it was crude.

And still.

That figure of the man. It seemed to stare right through you. Look down through the ages and into your soul. Despite the fact it had no eyes.

And now this sword. She had seen the photo’s and there was no doubt in her mind – the figure was the same.

So she had pleaded and begged this visit – to see it for real. The owner had been reluctant – to say the least. He had even denied its existence.

It had taken a photo of the cave painting in return to convince him.

And still, she hesitated.

“Ms, Neri?”

Her guide, looking for all the world like an old time butler, waited by the stairway. She had come all this way to Paris, to this opulent mansion, to this private collection.

She took a deep breath and nodded. The guide led her up the sweeping curve of the stairs.

They walked down a hallway, lined with many fine pictures which she she guessed were worth a small fortune each. They came to a heavy, modern security door. The guide discreetly entered a code and, she thought she detected, used a fingerprint to unlock the door.

They stepped into a small, dimly lit room. In the centre was a hexagonal glass case. Hanging in the case was the sword.

It did not look ancient. It did show signs of use but could have been twenty or so years old. The hilt certainly looked like it had been replaced.

But the rest – it drew her in. The deep rose gold of the metal had a deep lustre, as though light was lost in it, swallowed to another place deep within the blade where it ebbed, reaching out for reprieve.

And, there, on the blade, was the figure, the eyeless man.

She shook herself, immediately started to see the signs that told her the design, the origin of the the blade. It certainly, at first glance, looked to be something designed in the early iron age. Yet it also looked far too unscathed.

Was this a replica?

She asked the guide.

“No,” he said. “This is the real blade. I understand your confusion – but let me assure you – it has been aged correctly.”

“Was it found near here?” she ventured – it was a test. The was not Gaulish if she was correct.

“No,” he replied. “We have traced its earliest findings to Wales.”

She nodded, that chimed true to her.

“Is that why your master is so cloak and dagger? Does he think the Welsh agitators might want it back? As a symbol?”

The man paused for a long time. Finally he spoke again, carefully.

“No. No doubt you’re right, they would demand it back. This sword is not unknown though few know that it really exists. Many historians in fact equate to a more well known sword of Welsh origin. They are mistaken – that name does not belong to this blade – it has another.”

She looked at him quizzically

“It is called Northblood.”

Before she could ask how he knew that he seemed suddenly to remember something. He went to the case and flicked a switch on the base. The sword began to rotate slowly. She watched, mesmerized as the light glinte on the strange red metal. Then she gasped as the other side of the blade came into view.

There was the figure of the woman, the same woman from the caves.

What the hell connected this sword to that cave – the time distance was fantastic!

“Well? You are the only person alive to have seen both this sword and the cave paintings. Do they indeed match?”

She nodded slowly. They did. She was so shocked by what she had discovered here that it took a few moments to realise that it had not been her guide who had spoken. It had been a much deeper and richer voice.

She whirled around.

There stood an imposing figure. A middle aged man, well built and with strong shoulders over which he wore a coat like a cloak. A bristling, greying beard on a broad strong face. He leant his heavy frame on a sturdy black cane.

And though he has deep grey eyes it was immediately obvious.

He was blind.


#writephoto

Posted in Creative Writing, Daily Prompt, Poetry, Writing

Flaunting

By Scott Bailey © 2018

When the oppressors
Flaunt
Their power
When they laugh
Not in their sleeves
But in your face
As they take
And cut
And take some more
Chuckling
On their beds of gold
And thrones of power
When their hands are tightest
On the flow
Of information
Disinformation
And lies
They feel the safest
The strongest
That
Is
The time
To strike

In response to the daily prompt Flaunt

#DailyPrompt, #amwriting, #postaday

www.scottandrewbailey.uk

Posted in Creative Writing

More than survival

Sue Vincent's Daily Echo

One of my all-time favourite fantasy cycles is the Chronicles of Thomas Covenant the Unbeliever by Stephen Donaldson. They were the first fantasy books I ever read other than the classics such as Tolkien, Lewis and Carroll. My grandfather sent me a copy of the first book in paperback when I was living in France, “You’ll like this. The cover says it all…”

Well, if it did,  I didn’t fancy it. Bear in mind the fantasy genre hadn’t come my way much back then and flicking through the first chapters the style didn’t appeal, the hero was an anti-hero and commits unspeakable acts. I didn’t care for the way the opening chapters were written and honestly, the only reason I persevered was because I had already read my way through all the English language books in the library in Vichy, including the ones in the storeroom. Reading in French…

View original post 1,030 more words

Posted in Creative Writing, Daily Prompt, Poetry, Writing

Drop

By Scott Bailey © 2018

In the froth and the spay
In the spume and the churn
In the majesty of the mightiest wave
And the receding tide
Shines
A drop of water
A single drop
That one day
Will hold the heart
Of a child

Image from Pixabay

In response to the daily prompt Tide

#DailyPrompt, #amwriting, #postaday

www.scottandrewbailey.uk

Posted in Creative Writing, Poetry, Writing

Proud Dad

By Scott Bailey © 2013

Hushed concentration
Then with a sudden surprise
His name is written!

Image from Pixabay

Originally published in A Spring of Dreams

www.scottandrewbailey.uk

Posted in Creative Writing, Poetry, Writing

Two Years

By Scott Bailey © 2013

Pardon me for interrupting
But that was just a step too far
Not really a sporting move
Two years
Two years you have been playing straight
That is to say
Murdering
But with the proper tools
The ones from our markets
Hardware, hard and solid and paid for
That gas – tut tut – just too far
So hand it over
There’s a good chap
And we will let you
Get back to your war

Image from Pixabay

Originally published in A Spring of Dreams

www.scottandrewbailey.uk

Posted in Creative Writing, Daily Prompt, Writing

Jungle

By Scott Bailey © 2006

Buy a jungle man.
Buy a jungle man.
C’mon bring the cash on.

Buy a jungle man.
Quick as you can.
They’re selling like they’re going outta fashion.

A little bit here, a little bit there.
They’re going fast,
Does anyone care!?

Crush a beetle for juice.
Let the cattle herds loose.
See those trees burn.

A bird of bright feather.
Has gone forever.
We ‘aint ever gonna learn.

Where the sun is beaming.
Once life was teeming.
Now all is dust.

While we strive for our goals.
We say to our souls.
Die if you must.

Devestation

In response to the daily prompt Abrupt

#DailyPrompt, #amwriting, #postaday

www.scottandrewbailey.uk

Posted in Creative Writing, Daily Prompt, Writing

Sleeves

By Scott Bailey © 2018

Sleeves
Hide mystery
Sleek and smooth inside
Be that
Skin
Or vinyl

Image from Pixabay

In response to the daily prompt Sleeve

#DailyPrompt, #amwriting, #postaday

www.scottandrewbailey.uk

Posted in Creative Writing, Poetry, Writing

Swansong

By Scott Bailey © 2018

Swansong
All clap along
As the end approaches
And the triumph lifts us all high
Cheering

Image from Pixabay

In response to Colleen’s 2018 Weekly #Tanka Tuesday #Poetry Challenge No. 82 – The May Day Edition: SING & CELEBRATE #SynonymsOnly

A cinquain this week

#cinquain

Posted in Creative Writing, Poetry, Writing

Explorers

By Scott Bailey © 2013

Wandering the shore
Through new lands every day
Ancient fishermen

Image from Pixabay

Originally published in A Spring of Dreams

www.scottandrewbailey.uk