Welcome to the 9th edition of Pen’n’Tonic’s Creative Expressions challenge.

Join the challenge! Have some fun with us!

Each week on Tuesday (as time permits), I’ll post a word, a phrase, a picture, or an idea that will constitute a prompt from which to submit a poem, a flash fiction piece (not longer than 250 words), an original photograph, an original artwork, or a combination of these things that you think applies to the week’s theme.


Interpret the theme as you see fit. The only rules are that you be creative, be original, and have fun. Post your entry on your own blog and add your link to the InLinkz page (see little blue frog image below).

As with most challenges of this sort, I encourage you to provide feedback, respectful critiques, or general comments for each other’s stories. Simple “Likes” are good too!

For this week’s challenge, I give you a black and white photograph (owner and girls unknown) of three school friends at a rural schoolhouse.

Simple pleasures

Hazel had no family pictures. This was the only picture from her childhood.
Carlene and Janie. They were best friends in school.

Hazel? Her whole life was a series of ups and downs. She was the black sheep, the outsider among all the twenty-some kids who went to that school. Miss Stanley was nice though. She made Carlene and Janie spend time with her. They thought she didn’t know, but she did. It was okay. They day Miss Stanley’s brother took this picture was a good day.

Carlene moved to England with her soldier after the war.

Janie got pregnant when she was sixteen. In the last letter Hazel got from her more than eleven years ago, Janie said she just had her ninth child.

Oh my! And they call me crazy!

Hazel taped the picture back up on the sterile white wall. She went to the tiny wire-meshed window and peered down the hall. Where was dinner? She loved mashed potatoes. She wanted mashed potatoes for dinner.



6 thoughts on “Creative Expressions #9: Black and white memories

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