Writing Prompts

Word Prompt: Find | Story Prompt: from the book “The Year of the Flood” by Margaret Atwood

‘The next morning Toby was giving a class at the Wellness Clinic: Affective Herbs, for the twelve- to fifteen-year-olds. Manic Botanics, the kids called it, which was better than what they called some of the other subjects: Poop and Goop for the violet biolet instruction, Guck and Muck for Compost-Pile building.

“Willow,” she said. “Analgesic. A-N-A-L-G-E-S-I-C, spell it on your slates.” There was the squeaking of chalk – too much squeaking. “Stop that, Crozier,” said Toby, without looking. Crozier was a chronic squeaker. Had she heard a whisper of Dry Witch? “I heard that, Shackleton,” she said. The class was more restless than usual: after-shocks from the uproar caused by Veena. “Analgesic. What do we mean by that?”

“Painkiller,” said Amanda.

“Correct, Amanda,” said Toby. Amanda, always suspiciously well behaved in class, was even more so today. She was sly, Amanda. Too well versed in the ways of the Exfernal World. But Adam One believed the Gardeners had been of great benefit to her, and who was to say that Amanda was not undergoing a life change?’


5 August 2022 MEC (excerpt)

I offer this heart to you.

Those were dark days

when we sat

at either ends of the table

when we lay

on the outside edges of the bed

when we ran

away from each other

and could not speak

what was in our hearts.

I am offering this heart to you.

Those were the dark days

when you moved inward

and inward

putting up walls as you

collapsed inside yourself


the very cells

of yourself

looking for answers

in the composition of your blood

in the electricity of your heart

going so far away

from us

without going far at all.

Still I offer this heart to you.

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