Monday Motivations

For my Monday Motivations this week, I thought it was about time I set a picture prompt. I hope it helps you to get the creative juices flowing. Is this a meeting place for lovers? Or did something untoward happen here? Let you imagination g0…


Stories, poems, non-fiction; anything and everything goes!

Last week’s prompts were as follows:

  • The letter
  • Secrets
  • Passion

Robert Griffiths has written a heart-felt story:

Ron and Dottie’s secret passion          1939

Ron stood up and put the palms of his hands onto the base of his back, stretched upwards and sighed. He looked across the factory floor where he worked and on to a wall clock. Half past five. Just half an hour left and then I’m out of here, he thought. He sat back down and continued to work, turning out machine parts on his lathe. The deafening noise of dozens of lathes grinding coils of metal. The smell of oil and diesel heighted Ron’s desire to be out of there. A buzzer sounded. His allocated work was finished for the week and it was time to go and get the wages.

Ron walked across the floor, past other lathes and men, and up a wooden staircase towards the office at the top. Ron opened a glass panelled door and walked in. Men were waiting but Ron walked through them up to a desk where a huge rotund, dark skinned man of Greek origin was sitting with his hair greasy and plump creamy hands counting out paper money. He spent his days staring out of his side window watching the men below working. His was the overseer. The men called him ‘the spy’. He looked up at Ron and said,

“Come to get your wages, have you?”

“That’s why I’m standing here!” answered Ron and put his hand out. A sly smile split the Greek’s face.

“Not been called up yet,” he said and grinned wider. Ron felt his shackles rising.

No, I won’t lose my temper, he thought. This slob would love to report that to the managers. The Greek pushed Ron’s wage packet towards him. Ron picked it up and slid it inside his jacket pocket. It extinguished his anger as a lit match dropped into water. Good, he thought. Now I can go dancing in The Palais tonight. My darling Dottie will be there. He strode out of the factory to catch the bus home.

Walking through his front door he called out, “Mum, I’m home!”

Maud, his mother, replied, “I’m in the kitchen. I’m ironing you a clean shirt for tonight!”

Ron went into the kitchen.

“Sit down,” said his mum, “your dinner is in the oven. Take it out and eat it before you go out.”

Ron sat and tucked into pork chops, boiled potatoes and greens.

“When you have finished, your suit is hanging up, cleaned and pressed, in your bedroom,” said Maud. She turned holding his shirt washed, pressed and starched. “Dottie will be there,” said Maud, with a sly grin.

“Yes, I know,” said Ron and took his shirt and went up to his room where he washed, shaved and took his suit down. He got dressed before he combed his hair with Brylcreem. Ready! he thought. Now to the Palais and Dottie. I must not be late. I don’t want to miss her. He checked the mirror and went to a drawer to pull out a white handkerchief. He folded and pressed it into his top pocket and adjusted it. Dottie likes me to look smart, he thought. Finally satisfied he went out to the bus stop and waited. The bus took him to the stop beside The Palais where he jumped off. He paid for his entrance and finding a table in sight he went to the bar to buy fresh orange juice for Dottie and a coke for himself. After half an hour, he was getting anxious but not to worry, he thought. She was always late.

A few moments later she came running through the door and up to Ron. She threw her arms around him.

“Sorry I’m late, darling,” she said.

“No problem, now you’re here.”

Dottie sat and drank the orange juice. Ron stood up.

“Come on! Let’s get dancing.”

Ron took her hand and led her to the dance floor in front of the band. He lifted her hand above her head and she was spinning around. Ron thought she danced like a feather floating in the breeze.  How pretty she is. Ron’s heart beat a little faster.

“Stop staring at me!” demanded Dottie.

Ron just lifted her into the air, lowered her and cuddled her. They danced until the band played to a stop for the evening.

“Come on, Ron, take me home now,” said Dottie.

They caught the bus home and walked towards Dottie’s house. He placed a dove like hand around her waist.

“You can hold me tighter, I won’t break,” said Dottie.

Ron squeezed her into his side and a warm rush of love swept over him. Dottie stood on tiptoe and kissed him goodnight. Her mum Daisy was sitting in the window waiting.

He turned and walked towards his home nearby. He walked quickly as he wanted to be up with the dawn fishing in the reservoir with his friend Roy. He was up with the first light and down to the kitchen where Maud was making tea.

“You’re up early,” said Ron.

“I work as well as you. I’m meeting Daisy at the bus stop. We always go together.”

Maud poured Ron some tea and said,

“There’s toast under the grill. Eat before you go out!”

She went to the front door to put her coat and hat on. Daisy was waiting for her and together they took the bus to work. They worked in a huge hall where they made tents and camouflage nets for the troops going to Africa. At tea break they found a small table and put two cups in front of them.

“What’s the matter, Maud? You look washed out.”

“Ron got his ‘call up’ papers this morning,” answered Maud. “They will send him to ‘the Front’.”

“Let me see that,” said Daisy. She knew men already gone there but only a few coming back.

Maud handed her the letter.

“It doesn’t say anything about ‘the Front’ here. Only that Ron has to go to the nearest recruitment office on Monday morning.”

“You must be more optimistic Maud!” said Daisy.

“Don’t tell Dottie!” said Maud.

“Of course, I won’t,” said Daisy.

When Ron and Roy finished fishing they packed up and took the bus home. As they were walking along the streets Ron saw Dottie talking to a man on the street corner. Ron stood rock still. Roy walked on. As he walked towards Dottie and the man he could feel a fiery wave of anger climbing up his legs into his stomach. The fire was turning into a red lava. He stared directly at Dottie. She was smiling and chatting. The man was leaning towards her. The lava was reaching Ron’s head. What are they talking about? His thoughts were taking control over him. His temper was reaching boiling point by the time he reached Dottie. He walked up to her and tapped her on her shoulder gently. Dottie turned around.

“Ron!” she said, “I’m just off to work.”

In mild surprise the man said,

“What does he want?”

Ron lost control. The steaming lava of vitriol spewed out of his mouth. Dottie stood in shock horror. “You are being completely stupid, Ron. Now go away and calm down, and until you do, don’t talk to me!”

Ron turned on his heels and continued to walk home. What have I done? That stupid temper of mine! Now I have lost Dottie. An idea came to him. He strode faster and faster. I will write her a letter and explain. She will understand, he thought, but didn’t believe that for a second. Dottie was steadfast, honest, true and beautiful. She doesn’t need me, he thought. I have lost her forever. It’s my fault. His head drooped. His shoulders sagged. His hands hung by his side. She won’t talk or ever look at me again, he thought. I have lost Dottie, my dearest love.

On reaching home he went directly to his room. He took out paper and pen and began to write.

‘My dearest Dottie,

 I cannot find the words to explain my complete stupidity when I saw you talking to another man. I could not control my jealousy. My temper, I have had trouble controlling for many years, took over me. I swear I will never let it happen again. I have never told you this, but I love you Dottie! I just want to be near you! I love everything about you! When I look at you my heart flies away. I think about you every day Dottie. I love you.’

Ron folded the letter, wrote her name on the envelope and put it in his pocket and set off to her house. He knew she wouldn’t be home for several hours. As Daisy answered the door he handed her the envelope.

“I will give it to her when she gets home, love,” said Daisy, and went inside.

When Dottie arrived home her mum told her,

“There’s a letter for you on the kitchen table, Dottie.”

Dottie picked up the letter and sat down. She read it twice and put it back on the table.

She shouted,

“I’m going out, Mum!”

“Go to ‘Patches’ and get some bread and butter. Tell him to put it on my tab,” Daisy shouted from upstairs.

When Dottie was gone, she went into the kitchen and picked up the letter and read it. She crushed it and pushed it hard onto her heart. Looking up, she whispered,

“Oh, my Dottie, she doesn’t know. Please, Dottie, don’t fall in love with him. Please!”

 Dottie was walking towards Ron’s house. She knocked on the door and in a trice Ron answered. He stepped forward and as Dottie moved back he said,

“Can you ever forgive me?”

She stepped forward,

“Of course, your silly boy. You’re just passionate, that’s all!”

She took a step back and said,

“What’s that envelope sticking out of your pocket?”

“It’s a secret,” said Ron.

Dottie turned and went towards the shop. She never saw Ron again.

And now for Rajiv Chopra‘s weekly instalment of Mary Jane:

I sat by my window and smoked some weed. Ah, it was good weed indeed, and I was feeling mighty pleased. It was a good day, the kind I have not seen in a long while.

The smoke danced in the sunlight, and I could swear that little sparkles played in the sunlight.

“Ah,” I sighed. “What a beautiful day for mischief.” Just then, an envelope floated through The Holy Smoke and landed on my table. A large ‘N’ was emblazoned at the top left hand corner, on the front of the envelope. Golden and stylish, in the Elizabethan style, it sat there and looked at me.

“A letter, a letter from my dear old Isaac. What has he been up to? It has been a while since we both smoked and chatted, and I do love our jokes – especially the ones about Gravity forsaking him.”

I opened it, and a beautiful perfume made its way to my nostrils. “This is not from Isaac. It must be from one of his descendants.”

“Darling, Loki,” it started.
“Now, that is a fine way to start a letter,” I thought to myself, a smile spreading across my face.

“Darling, Loki.” I paused to savour the words.

“Darling Loki, you are a schmuck and a weasel. What’s more, you seem to be very proud of yourself….”

I stopped and stared. This was not the continuation I had hoped for, or expected.

“You claim that this is The Saga of Mary Jane, but where is she? What have you done to her, and that absolute peach, Harley Quinn? I don’t care for Poison Ivy at all, so I really don’t know why she is hanging on in the story. Neither do I care for The Bat, Spidey and The Joker. Yet, out of politeness, I must ask – what have you done with them?”

The letter went on in the same vein, calling me all sorts of names, and cursing me for taking care of Mary Jane and Harley Quinn. The letter spoke about my passion for secrets, and then went on to call me an awful old codger for keeping my secrets.

The letter ended:

“Yours sincerely,
Esther Newton”

I was apoplectic. Rage suffused my face, and I flung the letter to the ground. “Yours sincerely?”

What about, “Yours lovingly?”

I paced the room and smoked feverishly. Smoke filled the room, and I inhaled the Holy Vapours. At long last, I calmed down.

Oh, Esther, Esther, Esther, I thought to myself. Now, wouldn’t you like to know what is happening to your little darlings? You would like me to reveal my secrets, and know what I am doing to them, yes? You would like to know when I will release them, yes?

Oh, Esther, Esther, Esther. The secrets will be revealed, in little dribbles and drabbles of blood and pain.

Patience, my dear, patience. Don’t fret your pretty head, my dear. All will be revealed in time.

An evil smile spread across my face, as I sat there, and the faraway look in my eyes pierced the veil of smoke that hung across the room.



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18 Responses to Monday Motivations

  1. OH, the delight. “The Holy Vapors” Haven’t heard that one for a while
    Great story

  2. EDC Writing says:

    What can I say … spontaneous my excuse …

    They sat
    She wriggled some
    Gave a yelp
    Jumped up and stripped
    Touched her toes
    He pulled splinters
    One by one
    By reflected light
    A perfect moon

    • esthernewton says:

      This is a great spontaneous poem! Thanks, Eric – and I’ll be getting your story back to you v soon 🙂

      • EDC Writing says:

        Thanks Esther, glad you liked the poem which was done & posted in < 5 minutes! And many thanks too for getting my story back to me today … I will send my attempt at editing the original to you soon, before the London Book Fair next week. I'll be spending most of my time on all 3 days in the vicinity of Author HQ … see you there? Eric.

      • esthernewton says:

        Yes, I may see you there, Eric. It should be good 🙂

  3. Rajiv says:

    Oh goody!

    Youngave up being evil!

  4. Kate Loveton says:

    Two fine submissions – one poignant and moving, the other wickedly funny. 👍

  5. Sacha Black says:

    Beautiful photo – I feel like I’ve seen it before – have you posted it to Facebook

  6. Rajiv says:

    And, here we are!

    “Shall we go on a journey?”, asked Vivien to all of them. She had the most innocent expression on her face, as she sat down and looked at them.
    “Look out of the window”, she continued. “Do you see that bench out there in the woods? Don’t you think that that would be a lovely place to sit a while, and breathe in the fresh air, before we start? There is much magic in these woods, and the spirit is alive. It is always good to sit and pause a while, and to allow some of the spirit to enter you. Without this, the journey itself would be empty and devoid of meaning, and we don’t want that.”
    “What sort of meaning do you mean?”, asked Poison Ivy in a hushed voice.
    “You bring your own meaning to the journey”, replied Vivien. “The bench is a conduit, a place for you to sit and meditate, before you take the first step on that journey. When the magic of the woods enters you, and it will to the extent you allow it, the spirits will then move inside you, and weave their own meaning into what you will do next. Some of it will be revealed to you in an instant, and some of it will be revealed step by step. Finally, some shades will never be revealed to your conscious mind, but will shape your thoughts, actions and destiny in strange and marvelous ways.”
    Poison Ivy looked outside, and while she was seized with a longing to venture into the woods, and feel the vines on her flesh, she was also seized with a strange doubt. Something of the old, urban memories yet remained within her, and she was not sure of how she would fare in this strange land. There was also the tug and pull of the vines, and the creepers that spoke to her soul, and increased the desire to feel a greater part of this natural world that she had so little experience of.
    As for Sam and Frodo, they found themselves most reluctant to leave the wonderful world in which they found themselves. Memories of recent events had shaken up their Hobbit souls, and all they wanted was breakfast, elevensies, lunch, high-tea, dinner, supper, beer, a pipe, mushrooms. It was a long list of desires, and it included a place by warm, crackling fire. The bench in the woods still managed to call to them, as something of the scene reminded them of their days in The Shire, and a voice called from deep inside.
    Merlin and Vivien looked at them, with eyes full of knowing and understanding. To see into their eyes, was to fall into the depths of centuries of living, knowing, and the wells of wisdom that they hinted at, were deep indeed. Secrets, deep and dark, lurked deep in those eyes.
    Were they ready for the next step? Were they ready to open that oaken door of Merlin’s home, and step out of the safety and comfort it represented?
    “I can feel the yearning and the doubt”, said Merlin. “Before we embark on the journey, would you perhaps like to know a little bit about why, and how, Vivien and I chose and built this home to live in?”

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