A Story in Petroglyphs

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Dr. Michael Hurst and his team of students, from Harvard University, studying archeology and anthropology had been called in to study the rock face of a cliff in New Mexico. A new set of petroglyphs had been discovered.

”Petroglyphs are usually pictorial stories carved into rock faces by the Pueblo Native Americans who lived in this area,” Dr. Hurst explained to his students. “This small set of petroglyphs has just been found. The theory is that they are Navajo in origin.”

”Dr. Hurst, what do these petroglyphs mean?” asked one student.

”Jack, they are difficult to interpret. We’ve been able to interpret some of the most common. I’m not an expert, but the one of the left represents a person. The one on the right is more of a mystery to me. The two symbols together say that a person is doing something. Our job is to figure out what by interpreting the petroglyphs. It’s time to get to work!”

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Assault

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He didn’t leave the cool confines of his apartment very often. There, he was safe. Safe from from the broiling sun of the equatorial city. Safe from the cacophony of noise that assailed his ears when he opened the door of the hotel. Safe, most of all, from the germs that he could feel penetrating his skin when he wasn’t in the filtered air in his suite. An assault on his senses.

What he was in search of today couldn’t be delivered. He smiled to himself. It could be delivered but refused to be. He walked several blocks through the city. As he walked, he became less aware of those things that assaulted his senses and more aware at the prize at the end of his journey. Ahead of his, he saw the hotel that was his destination. He stopped and gathered his composure.

He walked into the hotel bar. He saw her immediately. His daughter, waiting for him,     for the first time in twenty years.

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Photo credit to dorothy

Amsterdam

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“Why is the stupid door pink instead of red,” Katrina mumbled to herself. She had just rented a room in the famous red light district in Amsterdam. An American girl in Amsterdam. No money, no way to get home, no job. It was just sex. She scratched a smiley face on the door and went inside.

It wasn’t bad. There were new linens. She had heard that putting a bowl of pasta puttanesca out drew in clients. A knock at the door. Her first client. He took one look at her and said, “Let me help you get home.”

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The Song of the Horns

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When they were children, they would lie on the bank of the river and watch the barges and boats as they passed by. It was a game to count them. A way to fill their lonely existence at home. They only had each other as playmates.

As teenagers, they started feeling romantic feelings for each other as they watched those boats pass by. They held hands. They chased each other along trails by the river. They pitched a tent and spent the night by the river, but in separate sleeping bags. They listened to the lonely horns of the boats sound their song.

Finally, they parted. She was older and went off to college. He missed her, but there was nothing he could do. It was many years before they saw each other again. When they did, at her mother’s funeral, the old magic was still there.

They walked back down to the river after the funeral. She didn’t know he’d thought of her every day. They clasped hands, heard the horns, and knew.

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Photo Credit to Barb CT

Carnage

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A small crowd of protestors formed in a midwestern town in the U.S. They were taking a chance of being arrested by the roaming police of the U.S. government.

“Aaron, I’m terrified that we’re actually doing this,” Mandy said.

Aaron replied, “We have to be brave or we will never get our freedom back.”

The crowd was protesting the discontinued social programs, particularly those that provided them food and medical attention. The President had all social programs abolished in 2017. Since then, the disabled and the elderly people in their community had suffered and many had died.

Now it was 2019. There were few jobs. People tried to farm, but the change in the climate made it almost impossible. Aaron had organized this small protest.

A young girl was carrying a sign that said, “Love.”

They heard the police before they saw them marching in. They stood their ground. The police began the carnage by knocking the sign out of the young girl’s hands.

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Photo credit to Elaine Farrington Johnson

Working the Canyons

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She tried to keep in the shadows of the tall buildings. The buildings made the streets like canyons. There were nooks and crannies. It was easy to hide. She slipped from building to building. Then she waited before she went to the next building. If they found her, they would take her cargo and kill her.

Svetlana was a Russian girl working for the Americans. She was a mule, but her cargo was only information. The Russians would do anything to stop her delivering it to the Americans. They weren’t far behind her, but they seemed confused concerning her whereabouts. Svetlana was good at what she did.

She could see the place where she was supposed to meet her American contact. She slipped in and out amongst the trees. Right before she walked in the door of the restaurant, she heard a gunshot. She smiled. They missed. She was here.

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Photo Credit to Pamela S. Canepa

Pretty Terrible

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Marianne has been in with the doctors a long time. That’s what Marianne’s husband, Joseph, was thinking as he sat in the hospital waiting room. He noticed the flowers. Pretty. He hated hospitals. He’d just focus on the flowers while he waited on Marianne.

“Excuse me. Mr. Hayworth?”

Joseph jumped. He’d nodded off, staring at those flowers.

“I’m sorry, Mr. Hayworth. Your wife has a collapsed lung. We accidentally caused it to collapse at the end of the procedure. She has to stay until it resolves. She’s in Room 412.”

Joseph was still trying to wake up. He jumped up, thanked the doctor, and shook his hand. The doctor left and walked quickly down the hall.

“Now what?” Joseph thought.

He walked over to the flowers, snatched them out of the pots, and started walking quickly to Room 412 to see Marianne.

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Photo Credit Shivamt25

The Homeless Veterans

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Every morning they were there. All the jars with hot drinks in them. It was starting to get cold in the city. The season was changing from fall into winter. There was a man in an army jacket who came long before dawn and set up the jars. He took great care with them.

David was homeless and usually tried to sleep in a cubby hole he’d found in the park. Since the man had been setting up the hot drinks each morning, David sat in the shadows and watched him. David was a veteran of the Army. The Vietnam War. There was something familiar about the man.

The homeless people in the area always came with a cup right after dawn. David joined them. The coffee tasted wonderful and was hot. It warmed them, their bodies and their souls. The man kept coming with refills.

David looked up at him and their eyes met. They both started to smile. They had been in the same platoon in the war.

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Right Place, Right Time

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“Janice, you did it again,” Stan cried.

“I’m sorry, Stan,” Janice said. “I didn’t mean to overfill the cup.”

Stan, the cook, was thinking that he was going to have to fire Janice. She just was not a good waitress.

The diner was full for lunch. Many professional people grabbed lunch at Stan’s Diner and he liked for his service to be impeccable. Janice was sloppy with her work, but she was not an experienced waitress. He was just giving her a chance because she couldn’t find any other job.

Meanwhile, Janice was embarrassed. She really needed this job. She was serving a woman in a booth alone. She was so nervous, afraid she would do something wrong. Suddenly, the woman she was serving spoke to her.

“Young woman, could I speak with you?”

“Yes,” Janice replied.

“Is this your chosen career?”

“No. I was an English major in college and can’t find a job.”

“I’m a writer,” the woman said. “Why don’t we talk about you working for me?”

Janice started to smile.

 

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The Knock at the Door

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“Dad, can we go to the Children’s Park today?” Jeremy asked.

Greg had been promising his son, Jeremy, that they could go to the Children’s Park in  the Town Square during the weekend for a while now.

“Get your stuff together. Let’s go, son,” Greg said.

When Greg and Jeremy got to the Children’s Park, Jeremy cried, “Look, Dad, something new!” He ran toward a number of large, wooden statues that had been placed in a central location in the park. There were even statues of green Martian men. Jeremy played while Greg purchased a replica of a statue for him.

A tired Jeremy and Greg arrived home in the late afternoon. Jeremy put his statue in his room. Right before he went to bed, there was a loud knock at the door. Greg answered. It was the large green Martian statue.

In a loud voice, the statue said, “Where is my child?”

Jeremy ran to his room, grabbed the small statue, and threw it at him!