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First Snow

I had never seen anything like it before.

It was soft and fluffy, like a white blanket that covered the space where the yard used to be. But it was wet and cold to the touch, not like any blanket I’d ever slept on. In the nine months I’d been living here, it was the strangest thing I’d ever seen.

I wasn’t sure if I liked it.

The kids and the dog were the next to come outside. Unlike me, they weren’t afraid to run out into the white stuff. In fact, they seemed to love it, like they’d been waiting all year for it. They all looked better prepared than I was: the kids wore thick clothes that covered them from head to toe, and even the dog had a sort of long blanket around his neck.

Mom and Dad followed the kids out into the yard a few minutes later, also covered in strange thick clothes. How did everyone else know this cold fluff was coming today? I watched as they packed the white stuff into balls and threw them at each other. How strange. I know I would hate that, so why did they look like they enjoyed it so much?

I’m not proud to admit that watching them all play in the yard made me a little curious. What was it about the cold, wet fluff that made it so fun? I was curious to know why the kids loved it, and I was intrigued to see Mom and Dad playing in it like they were children too.

But it was the sight of them all playing with the dog that made me jealous. Why should Buddy get all the attention while I was stuck on the porch like a common house pet? I could have fun outside too! Right?

Cautiously, I took another step off the porch. The cold shot through my paw and up my leg, but I shook it off and took another few steps until I was standing completely in the white stuff. I was already starting to regret my decision; my paws were freezing and my fur was damp. But I couldn’t stop now. Or could I?

I glanced between my family and the porch, wondering what to do next. Just then, I heard a whistling sound coming from the yard. I turned and froze at the sight: a great white ball was flying toward me!

I dove out of the way a split second in time. The ball missed me, crashing into the tree behind me instead. I jumped to my feet and shook the white stuff off my fur, licking my paws clean of their cold touch. That was a close call. Or so I thought.

Another whistling sound over my head made me look up. More of the fluff was falling toward me, dislodged from the branches above. This time I wasn’t so lucky.

What happened next happened so fast that I barely had time to react. I remember I was suddenly very cold and very wet, surrounded by nothing but white. The next thing I knew, I was being scooped out of the pile into Dad’s arms. They rushed me into the house and I sat shivering on the table as Mom warmed me up with blankets and a blowdryer (it was loud and scary, but at least it got my fur warm and dry again). I glared at the dog as he stared at me with those innocent yet mocking eyes. As the kids watched, one of them laughed and made a comment to the other.

“Maybe we shouldn’t let Buttercup out in the snow anymore.”

That was my very first winter, three years ago. Since then, every year when the weather gets cold and the yard turns white, I’ve kept my paws dry and curled up to watch my family from the warmth of the porch. This fluffy white stuff they call “snow” is not for me.

Welcome Winter

White December rain

Virgin snow blankets the world

A welcoming sight

Gone are summer’s waves of heat

Wintertime is here at last!

A Day for Family

The moment I walk into the kitchen, I’m greeted by warm and delightful smells. We’ve been working on this dinner since this morning and looking forward to it for weeks, and it’ll finally pay off tonight. As I pull the turkey from the oven, the doorbell rings. Mom hurries to answer it, and within minutes, more of our relatives are filing into the living room to greet the other guests. I smile to myself in the kitchen; Grandma and Grandpa never get this many visitors in an entire year! The day passes in laughter and joyful conversation (and maybe the occasional “friendly argument”), until finally evening comes and we sit down to eat. We join hands and give thanks, then we indulge in the most delicious meal of the year. I look around at all the people I love and grin; it’s easy to know what I’m most thankful for!

I always feel blessed
On this day of giving thanks
With my family
Celebrate the joys of life!
Have a Happy Thanksgiving!


Happy belated Thanksgiving to all my family, friends, and readers who celebrated! Have a blessed weekend!

The Warm Scents of Autumn (Colleen’s Weekly #Poetry Challenge – #Tanka)

Sweet scents fill the air

Colored leaves and pumpkin pies

On the crisp fall breeze

Autumn’s welcoming embrace

Always warms my homesick heart


My response to the third of Colleen Chesebro‘s Weekly Poetry Challenges for November: Smell & Cozy. The twist for this month is to only use synonyms for the prompt words! For this challenge, I chose to write an autumn-themed tanka. I hope you enjoy the poem! Thanks for the prompt, Colleen!

Homecoming

I stare out the window, watching, waiting. Mom says to be patient, but I can’t help getting excited. I’ve been waiting months for this day! Every passing car makes my heart skip a beat, until finally one pulls up in front of the house. I run to the door and throw it open. I’m outside before Mom and my brother can catch up. A man in a uniform steps out of the jeep. He kneels on the sidewalk and I throw myself into his arms. His hug is even stronger than I remember. I catch a glimpse of the neighbor’s flag over his shoulder, and without even thinking, I say “Thank you!” This is always the best part of the year. Dad’s home!

This coming weekend
Take the time to thank someone
Who’s served your country
Remember they risk their lives
So we can live in freedom!


Dedicated to all the veterans out there. Thank you for your service to our country! Have a blessed Veterans Day weekend!

Terrors in the Dark (Colleen’s Weekly #Poetry Challenge – #Tanka)

October twilight

Monsters rule the witching hour

Terrors in the dark

Hear their cries of “Trick or Treat!”

On this festive Halloween!


My response to the first of Colleen Chesebro‘s Weekly Poetry Challenges for November: Fright & Night. The twist for this month is to only use synonyms for the prompt words! For this challenge, I chose to write a Halloween-themed tanka. I hope you enjoy the poem! Thanks for the prompt, Colleen!

A Sonnet for Halloween

The sunset on the last October day
Will usher in the year’s most haunted night.
Throughout the streets, the monsters start to stray
To fill the evening air with screams and fright.

The autumn moon shines brightly in the sky.
The sound of howling werewolves gives you chills.
While vampire bats and witches’ broomsticks fly,
The ghosts and zombies fill the night with thrills.

Dressed up like all the monsters they adore,
Young children start their quest for something sweet.
They plan to knock on every neighbor’s door
And earn free candy shouting “Trick or treat!”

Enjoy the year’s most frightfully fun scene!
I wish you all a Happy Halloween!

Darkened Heart

I didn’t believe it when they said what I’d become.

But deep down, I knew it must be true.

I no longer felt any warmth inside me.

The taste of blood had become delectable.

And the sunlight burned like fire.

Embrace the darkness, they said.

Accept what you are.

No longer human.

Cursed soul.

Vampire.


This piece is based on What If? Exercise 93: “Ten to One”. The exercise is to write a 55-word story in which the first sentence has ten words, the second has nine, etc., until the last sentence has only one word. The objective is to show that precision and thrift in writing can produce surprisingly powerful results. I hope you enjoy what I’ve written. Thanks for reading!

Stronger Than You

You think you’re so tough, don’t you?

You think you have limitless power. Every time you strike, it gives you such a high. You revel in the chaos and devastation you create. It’s never enough; no matter how much pain you cause, you always want more.

I know because I’ve been watching you from the start.

I know why you do what you do. You think you can tear down their spirits. You think if you hit them hard enough, you can break them. You think if you destroy them from the inside, you can win.

But I also know that you’re wrong. You will never win. You can hit them as hard as you want, and you may even break a few, but you will never destroy them all. Because on the other side, there will always be someone to catch them, to heal them, to mend their spirits and send them right back out to fight you and everything you stand for.

That someone is me.

Every time you threaten them, I tell them not to be afraid. Every time you hurt them, I defy the impossible to heal them. Every time you break them, I embrace them and remind them that they will recover, that the pain will make them stronger, that it’s not the end.

You want everyone to know they should fear you. But I want you to know that you should be afraid too, because no matter how many hearts you break, how many souls you claim, or how many lives you take, you will never defeat me.

You forget that for every one spirit you break, many more rise up against you. For every one soul you claim, countless others flock to me. For every one person you push over the edge, hundreds find solace in my love and choose to believe in the better life I promise. We outnumber you, and we always will.

So be very afraid, Despair.

Because my name is Hope.

And I will always be stronger than you.

For the Love of Writing

Writing is my life, my love, my greatest passion.
Writing is who I am.
Writing is who I was always meant to be.

Books were my first gateway to this world, the magical world of fiction.
I read them every day as a child, devoured their words like chocolate.
Every day, they welcomed me with open pages and promises of wonderful and imaginative stories.
And they never disappointed me.

I knew I wanted to join them, those great authors who had invited me into their minds, into their homes, into their worlds.
I aspired to share in their magic.
And I knew from that young age that I had found the only path on which I would always belong.
I had taken my first step on the greatest journey of my life.

I penned short stories as frequently as ideas came to me.
I started several books (though I never finished most).
I scribbled words anywhere and everywhere I felt the spark of creativity.
My magical world was open and growing every day.

Fiction was my whole world, but there came a time when my own writing fell behind.
I stopped creating so many stories.
Before I knew it, the ideas stopped flowing.
And my magical world grew dark.

For years, I felt lost without my words.
My stories hid in the corners of my mind, never to come to light.
I only ever wrote for school anymore, a tedious task with none of the magic I had once known.

And then, one day, the spark came back.
An idea peeked out of the darkness and whispered for me to create again.
So I typed a few words into my laptop.
Those words became a sentence.
That sentence became a paragraph.
That paragraph became pages.
And those pages became the beginning of a story.
At last, my passion had returned.

Once forgotten in the darkness, my dream reemerged in my heart.
I began to pursue my passion again, to reach for that star I had longed for as a child.
This time, I dared to share my stories with the world.
Readers gave positive feedback and encouraged me to keep going.
My stories even brought me real-life love.
As my courage grew, so did my creative skills.
And then the time came to seriously start chasing my dream.

Starting a blog is one of the scariest yet greatest things I’ve ever done.
It opened my creativity to a whole new world.
I’ve met other writers, made new friends, and shared my stories with likeminded creatives.
Never have I felt closer to that star.

Now I’ve taken one more step forward on my writing journey.
A hundred thousand words have freed themselves from my mind, growing from my imagination into my first major work of art.
My first novel, the fantasy story I’ve long wanted to tell.
And as I shape these words into order, I feel more excited than ever.
No longer will I be just a writer; I will be an author.

I reflect on all the joys writing has given me—freedom, creativity, courage, magic—and I know I wouldn’t change a thing.
From my childhood days of devouring books to my adult years of creating stories and poetry, writing has given me everything I could ever want or need.
Writing has made me the person I’ve always hoped to be.
And though I still have much to learn, I’m always ready to take the next step.

For the love of writing, I know I can never stop creating.
I will never stop being who I am, who I was always meant to be.
I am a writer!

About J.C. Wolfe

J.C. Wolfe is a fiction writer, biologist, and aspiring novelist of science fantasy and romance. A natural-born American and graduate in Marine Ecology from a university in Brazil, J.C. now writes for a living in California while spending free time blogging and penning stories and poetry.

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