Pic’n’Post n° 33: What is the picture of?

Curtis Bausse Photography

What is the picture of?

First of all, my apologies for skipping last week – an emergency to deal with, thankfully resolved as well as could be hoped for. It was a difficult picture, so many thanks to those who hazarded a guess in spite of that, namely Matt, Rosa, Charlie and Thumbup . Although no one got the exact place, Matt was closest with Pakistan. Fly 1000 kms north and you’ll be spot on, in Bishkek, capital of Kyrgyzstan. 


Congratulations, Matt!


This week it’s back to What? at the top of this page. Happy guessing!

Flash Fiction: Forgive me

San Giusto Cathedral Trieste2

‘But what precisely?’

Light and dark: such comfort in the light. She was cherished, her every thought seen, encouraged towards it.

Vanessa. The way she smiled, the glow of her hair. Her lips.

Magali forced herself to answer. ‘Of kissing her, Father.’

Such terror: within her a sin she couldn’t control, dragging her into the dark.

‘Be strong, my child. Resist.’

Absolved, uplifted, Magali stood in the light, looking up. But even as her own lips moved in prayer, the thought of Vanessa’s returned. She ran outside, seized by dread at her powerlessness, the impossibility of making her imagination pure.

In response to Matt’s Flash Fiction Foray, which had the song Pure Imagination as the prompt. The title of the story is apt as I’ve been a little overwhelmed this week and there’s been no Thursday Interview, nor even Pic’n’Post. Normal service to resume next week – thanks to Matt for getting me back on track.


Flash fiction: The School Trip

Tombstone flash fiction Curtis Bausse blog

‘And here we have – Jonathan, are you listening? A row of ancient stones, behind which are… anyone?’

‘Tombs, Sir?’

‘Good, Georgina! Now, further up, you’ll – Jonathan! Any more trouble, it’s the next plane home.’ Mr. Higgins sighed. School trips… never again! He strode up the path.

Jonathan lingered, unsure what to do. Was it just his imagination? He crouched by the stone again – then leapt away, fell on his back, a shiver running through him. ‘Mr. Higg- ‘ But the group was already disappearing. He scrambled after them, the faraway moan still echoing in his ears. ‘Help! Is anyone there? Hello?’

In response to Matt’s Flash Fiction Foray, where the prompt was Adele’s song Hello. When I follow Matt’s prompts, I generally use just the title and listen to the song afterwards, but we’ve already had the completely different song called Hello by Lionel Richie. Of course, I could have cheated and posted my answer to that one (you’ll find it here), but instead I listened to Adele and was struck by the line, Hello from the other side.


Pic’n’Post n° 32: Where was the picture taken?


Where was the picture taken?

Many thanks to those who sent in guesses came for last week’s picture: MattDookes, Rosa and Thumbup . And Dookes was very quick off the mark with the correct answer, a coelacanth. As Rosa pointed out, these were thought to be extinct till one was found off South Africa in 1938. Since then several have been found, the one in the picture by a fisherman in Madagascar, where it’s now displayed in the University of Tulear’s Maritime Museum along with a few other delights.

I like to have fun making the winners’ badges nice and pretty – no easy matter with a coelacanth. Though it could be said they’re so ugly that in fact they’re beautiful.

Congratulations, Dookes!


This week it’s back to Where? at the top of this page. And since the last couple have been easy, this one might be trickier. But don’t let that put you off – happy guessing!

The five moments of morning


Wow! I like that! Why don’t I…?

Yes! That’s what I’ll do – write a story that dazzles and glows with an understanding of the heart-breaking beauty of life. Right! To work…


A bit more awake now…


Morning coffee - inspiration!

Muse? Are you in there?


From the deep obscurity of my mind – an idea!

This is it! The vision! Thank you, Muse! A couple of hours from now, I’ll have a story that sparkles, uplifts, inspires like the golden glow of dawn. Here we go!

Um… Uh… Arrgh! No, no! Concentrate, brain! More coffee, quick!

Two hours later…


Hmm… Not quite what I had in mind. Oh well, there’s always tomorrow…


There’s a monthly photo challenge over at A ‘Lil Hoohah – you take five photos on a given theme and link back to the blog. This month’s theme is Morning.

Sonata or sonata?

As you know, when I’m eating the starter,

I like to listen to the Moonlight Sonata.

But you, I discovered a little later,

Would rather be with the Moonlight Sonata.

Must we call it off? Does it really matter?

Can’t both of us listen to the Moonlight Sonata?

I love you so much, your smile and your laughter,

I want to be happy with you ever after.

But it’s clear to me now, if I really haveta,

I could also be happy with you ever after.

The prompt for Matt’s latest Flash Fiction Foray was Beethoven’s Moonlight Sonata. There was a hint of an invitation to link it to the events in Paris, but that was so strong in my mind that I did it last week, and this week it’s defiantly flippant, owing more to George and Ira Gershwin than Beethoven. I hope he won’t mind (Ludwig, I mean, not Matt – I know he won’t mind). Thanks, Matt, for being a great host, and… What else can I say? Roll over, Beethoven!


Pic’n’Post n° 31: What is the picture of?


What is the picture of?

Guesses came in for last week’s picture from MattDookes, Rosa, Charlie and Maja over at Travelling Rockhopper. Thanks to all for participating! While initially Spain attracted the votes, interest soon shifted to Italy, with both Rosa and Matt homing in on Pitigliano in southern Tuscany. This was indeed the case, and Rosa, who got her answer in first, wins another badge, with Matt (yet again!) a worthy runner-up.

As Rosa said, apart from the beauty of Pitigilano itself, the area is known for its Etruscan ruins and most impressively, I thought, the ancient pathways, “Vie Cave” or Sunken Roads, carved deep within the rock. Not to mention the profusion of mushrooms sprouting everywhere when we visited in November.

Congratulations, Rosa!

Pitigliano Rosa

This week it’s back to What? at the top of this page. Happy guessing!

Flash Fiction: You Ruin Me

The young couple had known each other just over a year. They talked about marriage, but hadn’t yet fixed a date. She was outgoing, keen on contemporary dance, a volunteer for Amnesty International. He was more reserved, a talented photographer, currently unemployed. He often said, if they had a baby, he’d be a stay at home dad.

At first, all you saw was the blood. But then you noticed their foreheads touching, their fingers interlinked. And although they no longer spoke, their words were clear: ‘You kill me. I don’t die. You think you ruin me? You don’t. You never will.’

I normally have no trouble with concentration. I don’t procrastinate, I never get writer’s block. But all of yesterday, I couldn’t do anything. Not even read. In the evening, we had dinner with the neighbours. Very little was said about the events 5000 miles away. There wasn’t much to say. This morning, we went for a five-hour walk, which made me feel better. Still not good, but better. It’s that ‘life goes on’ thing. I had another text drafted for Matt’s Flash Fiction Foray (this week’s song prompt: You Ruin Me) but it seemed futile, so this one takes its place. Futile as well, but at least it connects with something that needs to be expressed, even if, right now, it seems like we have to dig deep to find the conviction. This time, things have changed. The couple in the text (totally imagined) are ordinary – could be anyone. I don’t see fear in the air, but worry. It’s all such a mess. And I don’t trust the politicians to get us out if it.

Pic’nPost n° 30: Where was the picture taken?


Where was the picture taken?

Last week’s picture drew quite a few guesses, varying from animal to vegetable to man-made. Many thanks to MattThumbup, Dookes, JoHanna, Charlie and Rosa for participating, with suggestions that ranged from frayed crochet to a limpet. And when I look at the picture in the light of those answers, I can indeed see the resemblance. However, guesses in the vegetable realm were closer, and of those, Charlie came closest with ‘the funky cross-section of a tree.’

IMG_5062    Banana tree Mayotte  IMG_5064

It was in fact a banana tree, photographed the other day while out walking in Mayotte.

Congratulations, Charlie!


This week it’s back to Where? at the top of this page. Happy guessing!

Pic’n’Post n° 29 What is the picture of?


What is the picture of?

Thanks to MattThumbup, and Rosa for their guesses last week. Matt was the first to come very close, though he didn’t actually name the building, which both Rosa and Thumbup did a little later. So a tough one to judge there – Matt and Rosa are joint winners, I think, and I hope they won’t mind sharing the badge with Thumbup, who was very close behind and deserves to be in the Prado for her GIFS.


The picture was indeed of the 16th Century San Gerónimo Church in Madrid, right next to the Prado. No doubt, before a lot of the world’s most famous paintings were put on show next door, it received more attention than it does today. I took the picture because I liked the contrast between the two styles of building, as well as the statue who was looking right at me with a slightly doleful expression. I didn’t go up to see who he was – apparently he’s an anonymous painter. No doubt wondering why he can’t be in the Prado as well.

                                       Congratulations, Matt, Rosa and Thumbup!

triple winners

This week it’s back to What? at the top of this page. Happy guessing!