Friday, August 20, 2010

Voice of the Maker

Fiction' view¤t=
Fiction Friday is hosted by Vonnie @ Polliwog Pages
Stroll on over for more inspirational fiction.

Voice of the Maker
by Beth LaBuff

A car door slammed, then with a lope
Scampered a carefree lad,
The little guy with skinned-up knees
Was visiting Granddad.
The days ahead held promise with
Adventures to unfold,
You can’t just sit and wait on life
When you’re six years old.

The farmhouse sprang to action,
‘Twas fair-weather for the day,
They packed a lunch, then out the door
And they were on their way.
The little legs took twice the steps
To match the Granddad’s stride,
And Granddad’s heart, though weakened some,
Beat with a family pride.

Adventures started with a trek
Upon an earthen road,
Across the bridge then up a hill,
At length their pace had slowed.
‘Twas there upon a milkweed,
A caterpillar crawled,
He paused a bit and raised his head,
The two looked on— enthralled.

“What is he doing, Granddad?”
Inquired the little guy.
“He’s listening for the Maker’s voice,”
Was Granddad’s wise reply.
“And what’s the Maker telling him?”
“The Maker says that soon
He’ll need to find a steady branch
Then make his silk cocoon.”

Quite typical of six-year-olds
The next word posed was, “Why?”
Granddad, with his knowledge,
“He’ll become a butterfly.”
The boy thought on the process
Then breathed a whispered sigh.
He stared down at the dirt beside
Then something caught his eye.

The six-year old bent skinned-up knees
And stooped down to the ground,
He grasped a dark red pebble,
One quite smooth and round.
His childish fingers picked it up
And rolled it in his hand,
He stuffed it in his pocket,
Then rose again, to stand.

A chicken hen scratched near the two,
The boy studied the bird.
He wondered as the chicken paused
What had the old hen heard?
And as she fluttered to the coop
On feathered-chicken leg,
He knew that God was telling her
‘Twas time to lay her egg.

They journeyed on, more slowly now,
Then finally had to rest
For Granddad was all out of breath,
His palm pressed to his chest.
They settled ‘neath an apple tree
Upon the meadow grass,
They ate their lunch and waited for
His episode to pass.

When Granddad’s breath came easier,
Once more upon their way,
They saw a cow off by herself
Nearby the fresh mown hay.
“Now what would God say to a cow?”
The boy muffled a laugh.
Then Granddad said, “He’d tell the cow,
‘It’s time to drop your calf’.”

As they walked they came upon
An odd array of rocks,
Somewhat stacked atop each like
Haphazard building blocks.
Granddad told the little guy
About the Bible story,
The donkey and the palm leaves and
The people’s praise and glory.

He told about the Pharisees,
(Words penned by Dr. Luke)
To silence the disciples
They requested a rebuke.
How Jesus told the Pharisees
Amid hosanna-shouts,
That if the people quieted
The rocks would then cry out.

The wheels inside the young child’s head
Spun ‘round in concentration,
Then in his pocket deep he reached
And pulled forth his donation.
He put his pebble on the pile
And then he thought about
Just how amazing it would sound
To hear the rocks cry out.


Just days after their journey
Found Granddad sick abed,
Reposed upon a patchwork quilt,
The boy perched near his head.
The open window near the bed
Enabled evening breeze
To cool the ashen weathered brow
And boy with skinned-up knees.

“What are you doing Granddad?”
He eyed the pallid face.
“I’m listening.” The Granddad said,
Cheered by the child’s embrace.
“And do you hear the Maker’s voice?”
Words whispered with a quaver,
“The voice that I am listening to—
That of my loving Savior.”

“And what’s the Savior telling you?”
He shifted on the bed
Then leaned to hear the Granddad’s voice,
“’Come home,’ my Savior said.”
Then youthful hands clasped work-worn ones
Until the final sigh,
And through the window, on the breeze,
Entered a butterfly.

Inspiration from:
Job 39
Does the eagle soar at your command…? Verse 27
Do you know when the mountain goats give birth…? Verse 1

©Beth LaBuff -- July 2010
written for a writing challenge

Friday, July 30, 2010

Incident at The Black-Caped Shadow Grill

Maybe this is a little too graphic for some,
and perhaps I need to add a disclaimer like,
"The views expressed in this poem are not necessarily those of the author." :)
I think I will just add a "warning."
The following poem deals with the subject of vampires.
--as always, thanks for reading!

Fiction' view¤t=

Fiction Friday is hosted today by Rick (Hoomi) at
Rick's Pod Tales and Ponderings
Head over there for Rick's excellent sci-fi!
You will also find links to other great fiction pieces!

Incident at
The Black-Caped Shadow Grill
By Beth LaBuff

I settled in my easy-chair
To dissipate my tension,
I closed my eyes then wakened in
An alternate dimension.
But surely it was just a dream.
The blame — I had a hunch,
Was caused by Beef Chipotle
That I scarfed down at lunch.

And in my dream, a neon sign
That flashed, “Open All Night.”
I clenched my collar ‘round my neck
Then peered through muted light.
Words painted on a window,
“The Black-Caped Shadow Grill.”
I entered in faint-heartedly,
Ignoring dank and chill.

My eyes skimmed the interior,
The clientele — dismissing,
The worn plank floor was gouged in spots
With many slivers missing.
Then focused on the patrons with
Red lips and black attire,
And I, the only human in
The diner of vampires—

I yielded to a shiver,
I saw their fangs and winced.
I’ve heard, “Vampires are shape-shifters.”
Frankly — I’m unconvinced.
To take the form of animals,
To flit about as bats,
I spurn the theory vampires
Can transform into rats.

Then seated near the kitchen door,
My eyes compelled to look,
Were locked into a stare-down with
The bloodstained-aproned cook.
His manner disconcerted me.
His eyetooth glinted gold.
His hairline formed a widow’s peak.
He made my blood run cold.

A menu pressed into my palms,
I welcomed its intrusion.
I scanned the list of beverages
Entitled— “Chilled transfusions.”
“We’ve drinks to please your palate,
Our patrons all agree,
We’ve even stocked ‘O negative,’
Along with ‘A’ and ‘B’.”

“Our famed, ‘Thicker Than Water,’
On-site, this beverage brewed
In our blood-pressure-cooker—
Pairs well with any food.”
“And for the youngsters, ‘Veggie-Freeze’—
The blood squeezed from a turnip—
A blend of wholesome plasma
Served frozen in a cup.”

“The meats we grill are all served rare.”
The menu’s guarantee—
“A red and juicy center,
We pledge they’re garlic-free.”
“And seared to seal the juices in,
The ‘Special of the Day,’
With coriander seasoning—
A porterhouse fillet.”

The creature sitting next to me,
His tone and manner—curt,
I heard him hiss, “One special with
“Blood pudding for dessert.”
Ten minutes passed before a
Harried waiter served his food,
I thought it looked a little charred,
That wouldn’t help his mood.

He cut into the well-done steak,
He said it tasted blander
Than any fare that passed his fangs,
“It’s missing coriander!”
He jumped up with his steak knife,
Eyes bored the kitchen door.
He started hacking wooden stakes
From off the wooden floor.

He raged into the kitchen while
Behind him trailed his cloak,
Then just before he skewered the cook,
Well, that’s when I awoke.
My wife was gently jostling me.
She said, to my relief,
That she’d be serving chicken
And not sirloin of beef.

Still settled in my easy chair,
I swear this is the truth,
A rat peered out and sneered at me,
I saw his golden tooth!
They say, “Vampires are shape-shifters.”
Although it goes against
The core of what I once believed,
But yeah, now I’m convinced!

written for a writing challenge
© Beth LaBuff -- July 2010

Daniel 4:5
I had a dream that made me afraid.

Friday, June 25, 2010


Fiction' view¤t=
Fiction Friday is hosted today by Laury @
Fill your paper with the breathings of your heart
Head over for links to more inspirational fiction!

by Beth LaBuff

According to quaint solar lore,
Upon a sunspot crater,
A colony of immigrants
Lived near the sun’s equator.
As former Saturn citizens,
They each possessed two brains,
A fore brain and an aft brain lived
Within each skull’s domain.

Sun energy that radiated
From a solar vortex,
Made inspiration flow and fill up
Each cerebral cortex.
The colonists were writers,
Each were stylized with their form,
The synergy between their brains—
A solar-powered brainstorm.

The mentor for their writing group,
And leading citizen,
Was Stella who wrote poetry
In her solarium.
She kept a sundog for a pet.
She called him Astral-Sol,
He ate moon pies and drank sun tea.
Before each evening stroll.

Each solar day began just like
The solar day before,
And solar energy infused
The sunspot writer’s core.
Until that day! — ‘Twas overcast,
The weather turned for worst,
The sun’s corona had a
Solar flare flare up and burst.

The solar flare disturbance
To the sunspot dweller’s brains
Impeded brain synapses and
Caused solar flare brain-sprains.
And inspiration ceased to flow,
An intellectual shock,
When residents upon the sun
Can’t write, it’s called sun-block.

And so severe the malady,
They called in a physician
Who ranked it, “third-degree sun-block,
A non-lethal condition
The solar lore recounted
How the colony declined,
“The worst instance of sun-block
For all of Solar-kind.”

The solar flares continued,
Ergo; Stella couldn’t write—
No currency for moon-pies
For her sundog’s snack at night.
“Each fore brain and each aft brain
Fought each other,” said the lore,
“Drove sunspot crater citizens
Quite wacko with head-war.”

Then much to everyone’s relief
And answer to their prayers,
A merchant starship orbited,
He came to ply his wares.
A peddler from Andromeda,
A dealer in space junk,
Wielded a flare-extinguisher
Pulled from a cargo trunk.

So Stella and the colonists
Used local currency,
They paid the man in gamma rays,
A sun commodity.
They utilized extinguishers
To end creative drought,
Once sprayed, the solar flares smoldered
Then sputtered and went out.

Without the flares the sun-block ceased
The cloudy skies departed.
The brain synapses recommenced,
Creativeness — jump-started.
Their fore brains and their aft brains
Were kicked into high gear.
Each writer produced volumes,
Had success in their careers.

Then Astral-Sol ate moon-pies,
Strolled a street called Sunnyside,
And every solar day that dawned
Was Sunday sunspot-wide.

written for a writing challenge
©May 2010 -- Beth LaBuff
Topic: inspiration/block for the writer
inspirational verse:
a merry heart doeth good like a medicine
Proverbs 17:22 KJV

Thursday, June 10, 2010

A new style, fashion, flair, look!

I'm excited to show-off my new look. Ella's picture's at the top will ensure that you Laugh at the Days or will at least leave you with a smile. I'm grateful to Marita "Mari" Thelander for her expertise in designing and making these changes for me! Thanks, Mari!

Thursday, March 18, 2010

Phantom of the Reptile

Fiction' view¤t=

Friday Fiction is hosted this week by
Christina Banks @ With Pen in Hand
Be sure to head over for links to more great fiction,
or add a link to your own.

Phantom of the Reptile
by Beth LaBuff

A seashore near the ocean where
The breakers scattered foam,
A turtle dwelt with two small friends—
The sandy beach their home.
“Benevolence”—their motto,
A Marine Society
Of turtle, clam, and hermit crab—
Companions by the sea.

The turtle’s shell – beguiling—
Chartreuse with flecks of puce,
But flawed, she had a seal-leak,
Her shell, a trifle loose.
Her leak issues let in a draft
When ocean breezes blew,
The gusts that wafted ‘round felt like
El NiƱo coming through.

Just two weeks past the little group
Ceased daily occupation,
They gathered with the turtle for
Her birthday celebration.
They all partook of birthday cake—
Some kelp steeped in sea brine,
To celebrate her sixty years.
(In turtle years, that’s nine.)

The turtle then proceeded to
Unwrap her gifts as planned.
The clam presented turtle with
A coarse brown grain of sand.
The sentiment read, “Keep this sand
Positioned near your heart,
In time your irritations change—
A pearled work of art.

Inside her shell she tucked the sand,
Though contact wasn’t pleasant.
Then hermit crab, with shifty eyes
Presented her his present.
To her surprise the second gift
Opened that afternoon,
A shiny sleek harmonica
To play a turtle tune.

With cake and presents finished,
They bid each one farewell.
Two special gifts from two rare friends
Were tucked within her shell.
‘Twas later on that evening
She basked in ocean’s breeze,
Then noise issued within her shell,
A harsh and jarring wheeze.

It gave the turtle such a fright
A rasp sprang from her beak,
It sounded somewhat like a “Phbiss!”
That’s turtle-speak for “Eek!”
Well mercy me! the turtle thought.
Her turtle eyes grew wide.
She bravely sought the noise’s source,
She pulled her head inside.

The jarring, wheezing dissonance,
Refusing to be quelled,
Chords ebbed and flowed around inside
And echoed in her shell.
The discord and cacophony
Had left the turtle daunted.
And in her mind she was convinced
Her turtle shell was haunted!

Her head and turtleneck popped out
For what was she to do?
Her quandary was astounding,
Put her in a turtle stew.
Afraid to tuck her head inside
Where once it used to dwell,
She thought perhaps she’d hire one
To exorcise her shell.

A fortnight since her birthday,
And two weeks since she’d slept,
She had a plan to use the clam.
Herself— she was inept.
The clam, squeezed in her turtle shell
Armed with a D-Cell light,
He hoped to find the origin
Of turtle’s awful plight.

Then what he found inside her shell,
The noise secret—unlocked.
He couldn’t wait to tell her,
Was sure she’d be shell-shocked—
‘Twas through her leaky turtle shell
When wafted airy breeze,
It blew through her harmonica
And made the breathy wheeze.

The hermit crab confessed his scheme,
He’d coveted her shell.
He hoped she would evacuate,
Give him a place to dwell.
The turtle, though a trifle mad,
Revenge did not demand.
To show ‘twas no hard feelings,
Gave him her grain of sand.

Benevolent Society—
Was weighed—found to be wanting.
The hermit crab, sand in his shell,
Still for a new one—hunting.

Thou shell not covet thy neighbor’s house.
Exodus 20:17
(paraphrase and emphasis mine)

written for a writing Challenge
Topic: "Eek!"
© Beth LaBuff -- March 2010

Thursday, February 25, 2010

Catfish on a Hot Tin Roof

Fiction' view¤t=

Friday Fiction is being hosted by
Shelley @ The Veil Thins
Head over there for links to more great fiction.

Catfish on a Hot Tin Roof
(ballad of a bottom-feeder)
By Beth LaBuff

Through the middle of a cornfield
With its ripe and golden grain,
‘Round a waist-high prairie meadow
Wound a pot-hole riddled lane.
‘Twas there a shallow pool
Where a sign read, “Zoned – No wake,”
(Named with hopeful aspirations)
Was the pond called Mammoth Lake.

The pool, at its broadest point
Was scarcely ten feet wide,
And deep down in its shallow depths
A catfish did reside.
An educated catfish
For he’d memorized the rules
To graduate—top of his class
At M-L Catfish School.

The rules simply put were
Rule ONE— “Turtles are taboo,”
And “If it shines, don’t bite it,”
Was rule NUMBER TWO.
And if perchance th’ unthinkable,
You find a hook you’ve bit,
Then NUMBER THREE will save your fins
Just “Flop, then twist, and spit.”

Last June, the day was hot enough
To make a catfish sweat,
Something occurred this catfish
Wasn’t likely to forget,
A pickup truck came rolling to
The pond with boat in tow.
The boat was launched on Mammoth Lake,
The anchor dropped below.

Five feet from shore the boat bobbed in
The middle of the lake,
And in the boat, a tackle box
Was labeled “‘Zekiel Flake.”
Zeke wore his lucky fishing shirt
A rip upon his sleeve.
Where late last fall a fish hook caught
And corner-tore the weave.

An ice chest, also in the boat,
Was handy for the day.
He reached inside and grabbed some lunch—
On rye – P-B & J.
He set the sandwich on one knee
And when ‘twas aptly blessed,
He grabbed a portly earthworm
And then he closed the chest.

Zeke took a bite of sandwich,
And then threaded the hook
Straight through the earth worm’s belly
‘Til positioned in the crook.
He tossed the worm rig overboard,
Then cleaned his hands of dirt,
Another bite of sandwich then
He smoothed his lucky shirt.

The worm began to wiggle and
Continued his descension,
When near the catfish hovel,
Caught the catfish’s attention.
The catfish knew the rules ‘cause
He’d learned them long ago.
But as he watched he was enticed
By wriggly earthworm’s show.

The worm was pleasing to his eye,
And in his mind he thought,
If on the tail I nibbled, I’d not
Break the rules, as taught.
I’ll brush it with my whiskers
While the hook and worm I view.

The more he watched, the more he
Schemed to bend rule NUMBER TWO.

The catfish took a nibble,
Then the bobber took a plunge.
The pole ‘bout lost within his grasp,
Zeke Flake was forced to lunge.
His peanut butter sandwich flew
And lost most of its jelly.
It flipped, bounced on his lucky shirt
Then landed on his belly.

Then Zeke Flake tugged upon the pole,
Securely set the hook,
The catfish—sins before him—
Rued the day the bait he took.
Zeke’s mouth watered for fish sticks,
Heard the sizzle in the pan,
Adrenaline pumped through his veins
And then— something unplanned…

Rule NUMBER THREE! the catfish thought,
To “Flop, then twist, and spit.”
He sputtered out the fishhook
Then he turned his tail and split.
And Zeke thought sure he heard a “hiss”
Or possibly, a “meow,”
Besides the hook, the catfish spit
Pond water on Zeke’s brow.

Relief then coursed through catfish veins.
His plight, at one time grave,
The catfish and his whiskers
Had averted a close shave.
Old Zeke, bereft of dinner,
Spat upon his lucky shirt.
He rowed to shore and then he flung
His tackle in the dirt.

Then with relief, Zeke Flake recalled
More lunch— P-B & J!
The sandwich in his hand surpassed
The fish that got away.
The catfish vowed his fish lips would
Not eat worm meat again,
He’d only dine on plants, he’d be
A vegetarian.

My son, if sinners entice thee, consent thou not.
Proverbs 1:10 KJV
written for a writing challenge
Topic: "Phew!"
February 2010

Thursday, January 7, 2010

Barred Plymouth Rock Band

Fiction' Friday,button,karlene? view¤t=

Fiction Friday is hosted today
by Sara @ Fiction Fusion
Skate on over for more great inspirational fiction.

Barred Plymouth Rock Band
By Beth LaBuff

Abutting an abandoned barn,
A crib devoid of corn,
With weathervane and cupola,
The rooftop, sagged and worn.

The corncrib was repurposed
By fowl society,
A chicken troupe, Barred Plymouth Rocks,
The white variety.

This granary was their concert hall
With only room to stand,
For nightly concerts were sold out for
For this uncommon band.

Bandleader of this feathered group,
This five-fowl poultry show,
A southern bird of Creole stock
Was dubbed Ole Chick’ Gumbo.

Ole Gumbo plucked the banjo strings,
On French horn — Cordon Bleu,
With Kiev on percussion,
And Lo Mein played kazoo.

The fifth fowl, in a washtub,
He floundered on dry land.
Sans feathers, Chicken from the Sea
His job—tuna the band.

White feathers ruffled as they crooned,
Laud for their chicken breed.
They danced till eggs were scrambled.
They sang for chicken feed.

Cordon Bleu stuck in his craw
His spare chapstick supply.
It came in handy, between songs,
When chicken-lips got dry.

And Kiev on percussion,
Brushed cymbals with his tail,
And when he had a solo,
Made chicken drumsticks flail.

Gumbo kept the songs up-beat,
His banjo on his knee.
He picked with pomp and circumstance,
His notes were extra crispy.

Misfortune struck one chicken,
A pox upon Lo Mein,
No longer able to kazoo,
He could not entertain.

The band was sympathetic,
In order to console,
They gave Lo Mein a paperback
“Beef Stew for Chicken’s Soul.”

Auditions held, to fill his spot,
A hog stood in their midst.
A rumor breathed to chicken ears,
“The pig’s a chauvinist.”

The pig squealed, “I am white meat, too,
And for this group well-suited.”
The hearsay disregarded,
The porcine was recruited.

Their chicken-band, Barred Plymouth Rocks
Would now sum-total three,
And pig, another white meat,
And one Chicken from the Sea.

© Beth LaBuff—November 2009
written for a writing challenge
Topic: White

Inspiration: Proverbs 17:22
A merry heart doeth good like a medicine… KJV