Entries are now open for July 2020! The Winner will receive a super sleek silver Ballarat Writers pen.
JULY 2020 PARAMETERS Prompt: Write to the theme of ‘My Perfect Sunday’. Style: Write in any style you please. Including but not limited to fiction, poetry, playscript, non-fiction and creative non-fiction. Why not surprise us and give us a recipe, a book report or some song lyrics? Anything goes, as long as it fits in the given parameters for the month. Limit: 200 words. This does not include the title. Entries Close: 11.59pm Monday 20th July Voting Closes: 11.59pm Monday 27th July
HOW TO ENTER This competition is open to current paid members of Ballarat Writers Inc. only.
Please ensure your membership is current and check the parameters carefully to avoid your entry being disqualified.
Congratulations to Neville Hiatt for taking out the June 2020 Ballarat Flash, adding another win (and silver BW pen) to his collection. Neville once again delivered a wonderful piece, entitled ‘2021’, with the prompt “my troublesome neighbours”
Ballarat Flash is no longer just a short fiction competition, we now welcome any form of writing including but not limited to fiction, poetry, non-fiction and creative non-fiction. Why not surprise us and give us a recipe, a book report or some song lyrics? Anything goes, as long as it fits in the given parameters for the month
Watch this space for next month’s parameters. Any suggestions for prompts or word limits, please feel free to email Megan at competitions @ ballaratwriters.com
Voting is now open and will close at 11.59pm on Monday 22nd June. To vote, simply use the poll at the bottom of this blog post.
Prompt: Begin your piece with the line “My troublesome neighbours…” Style: Write in any style you please. Including but not limited to fiction, poetry, playscript, non-fiction and creative non-fiction. Limit: More than 350 words, but less than 450 words. This does not include the title.
Entry 1: A Soliloquy
My troublesome neighbours are nice! A few parties, a barking dog. We get on OK. But you’ve gotta pick your moment to pop next door! The other day I desperately needed a smoke. I had run out. The front gate squeaked as I entered.
“Hiya, wanna cuppa? Kettle’s just boiled.” Julie was hunkered down in her favourite seat on the front verandah, smoking, out of the wind and catching the watery, winter sunshine. “Here’s the rollies, help yourself. There’re more papers over on the seat.”
“Kylie popped in the other day, as I was sitting here. She needed to use the loo and suggested we could go shopping later. She’s after one of those new earbuds; ya know the ones with the pink and grey stripes? Nichole got a pair last week at JB Hi-Fi. Apparently, they deliver great sound, and you can imagine those colours against her new green cardigan!”
“Talking of being caught short, I was in the kitchen making scones earlier, and I ran out of self-raising flour. I luckily had some baking powder, and I mixed two tablespoons with 400grams of the plain flour. It worked a treat, and with the lime marmalade, they will be great for morning tea. Jason will be home shortly. He had to go to the doctors for his annual prostate thingy. Ya know where they stick their finger up – oh yer, ya know all about that, don’t ya!”
“It levels the playing field a bit – we ladies have all of those fingers prodding, and those bloody cold speculums and it, well, ya know, it sorta levels things a bit.”
“I was talking to Melissa last week, and she has found this amazing recipe for spaghetti bog. Ya gotta fry the onions first, then add the garlic, capsicum, tomato paste and wine quickly, so ya don’t burn it. She says that it provides a good base to brown the mince. She only ever uses the premium grade. It doesn’t cost that much extra and, well, while there is still a bit of water in it, it’s nowhere near as much as in the ordinary stuff. It’s what I like about Coles. I reckon they don’t add as much as IGA!”
“We are going to have plums and custard for tea tonight. Jason really likes them, and I thought I would give him a special treat. He has lost nearly three kilograms, since starting his diet. Renee says she sometimes adds vanilla to her custard as Darren really likes that. I cheat, and buy the ready-made stuff from IGA. It is only $3.79, for nearly a litre!”
At that moment I made a commitment to never, ever run out of smokes again!
Entry 2: Ode To A Dumbass My troublesome neighbour bought a new car And had it on blocks in just a minute Spray painted it orange and welded a bar On the front, with a bull’s skull stuck in it. The car revved all night, and the welder arced While I tried writing at a poem or two, And love grew in the engineer’s din. While I pontificated, her pit bull barked One day she came over ‘to use the loo’ Fondled my crotch, and then she moved in.
Wharves of twilight ‘neath the verdant swirl, Aurora australis of sinecure, Illumined by the light of stellar burl, Reflections on the tide-swept shells impure. Waves crinkled by Selene’s darkened pull As masses orbit, shadowed from the sun. Cold spars bisect the sprinkled crowns of thorn Ionised as ghosts of cotton wool The crews that haunt the tarrying ships that run Their clues up in the ever-imm’nent dawn.
As dirty as a day spent building Rome. Not knowing what is meant by ‘raths outgrabe’ With hand around a stubby wrapped in foam She coughs and says: ‘What’s with this poem, babe?’ These words upon the dark, high-contrast screen, These photons that determine my success Cannot but conjure thoughts that further rhyme If she just understood what these poems mean, I could forgive her all her bathroom mess Or how she calls the Fernwood gym a ‘gyme’.
Planets are nutty orbs that loop the skies Invisible in daylight, like the wings Of mortal, jewel-encrusted dragonflies. Like them, and many other lovely things. Once, she read a poem about some slugs Then threw ‘That bloody book’ across the room. “What the fuck’s a ‘conoisseuse’?” she screeched. Then left a wine stain on the loungeroom rugs (Fruit of some over-priced Moroccan loom) Then cleaned that up and left the carpet bleached.
Paper wasps like wisps of forlorn Thought Frail glissandos etching faint desires In unrequited paroxysms fraught With melodies plucked on Sisyphean lyres. She cracks a can, and whispers in my ear “Later on tonight I’ll make you come.” I blush, as she calls me her McMuffin. Then prances off to get another beer. I tell her that I like her jeans-clad bum And try explaining to her ‘a maguffin’.
Cheetahs sprint, and whale sharks softly browse Their parted plains, yet in grains unground There rest the tawdry ghosts who gently drowse And rustle – but make no other sound. Yet no poet could describe what I now feel As she pushes our new couch out on the lawn And sets a bin of poetry on fire. The smile she gives to me shows she’s for real. As real as any bogan ever born. Every burp and fart fills us with hope.
Entry 3: There Goes The Neighbourhood
My troublesome neighbours were simply not house proud. We’d followed their progress as they moved in, slowly building their home, spreading out across the whole block, knocking down everything that didn’t suit them. Which was pretty much everything. They’ll regret that, my partner said as the trees came down, but we doubted they’d notice. The chimney was smoking the whole time, and nights and days were filled with vehicles coming and going, and the whole place blazing with lights.
They were simply never still, never quiet.
It was the noise that really got our attention, that told us things were approaching a dangerous level. Music and other entertainments blaring constantly. And such inanities, being spewed constantly and loudly for all to hear, as though they were the only ones with ears. Yeah, they were a rowdy lot, swearing at each other, and worse. The screaming and fighting could be terrifying, but it never seemed to stop them for long.
It’s the pressure, my partner said. So many of them crowded into such a small place.
It’s not that small, I argued. There should be plenty of room if they’d only share. Maybe take better care of the garden.
So we took a trip past their place, innocuous-like, just a drive-by, not game to introduce ourselves. The place looked all right from a distance, a pleasant enough combination of blue and white and green, if that takes your fancy, but the closer you got, the more you realised something was off. The state of the yard, oh my! Rubbish everywhere, their animals running amok and digging great big holes everywhere, and apparently at war with anything they hadn’t planted themselves. There was a definite predilection for rocks over vegetation. Delightful natural water features had been built over or left to go filthy with run-off from their habitation.
We’d park just close enough to watch, the whole place slowly turning brown, and their trash spreading further and further.
What if they visit us, my partner said. What if they come knocking?
It was a genuine worry. They started making noises about moving out. We could hear them clearly enough, in amongst their squabbles, talking about needing more room, more space. Not leaving, mind you, just spreading, buying up the neighbourhood.
No, my partner said. We aren’t going to have that.
But what could we do, I asked.
Nuke them from orbit, she said. Before they infest the rest of the solar system.
Entry 4: 2021
My troublesome neighbours were taken last month. I felt as a law abiding citizen it was my duty to call the track and trace hotline and report them for having visitors. The government said it was for our safety and they would only be placed in a quarantine facility for two weeks.
A two week holiday of peace and quiet before they returned and hopefully started obeying the rules.
It’s not been six weeks and they haven’t returned.
I’d originally felt like boasting about having reported them. I was the one responsible for getting rid of the undesirables. Dobbing in anyone flouting the new laws was my civic duty. I even got a bonus stimulus payment for doing so. With each passing week the less I want anyone to know. What if they never return?
I used to fall asleep at night wondering who the strangers were, visiting my neighbours day and night. Now I fall asleep wondering about the growing reports of no one ever returning. The politicians and the news keeps extolling the need of the track and trace hotline and the quarantine facilities. However, more and more stories are circulating questioning if we are being told the whole truth.
I’d still be calling those spreading stories tin foil hat wearers, except my neighbours still haven’t returned. The more I try to uncover what might be happening the more I’m left scratching my head.
Any reports different to the official narrative are deleted as soon as they are published. I don’t even know how many will get to read this before it gets censored.
I have to remain anonymous so I apologise you won’t be able to verify any of this. I don’t want to end up being one of the disappeared. If we are ever let out of this lockdown how will I ever face my neighbours friends and family? If they come asking after them, how will I be able to look them in the face when I am the reason they were taken?
According to their neighbour on the other side, they were helping those that had resisted the mandatory vaccination program. With growing unofficial reports of thousands of deaths of those that had been vaccinated, I’m left wondering more and more each day if maybe I was the crackpot believing what we were told.
Entry 5: Home, Sweet, Home
My troublesome neighbours – well, The Knockers, we used to call them. Back in the time, our little row of terraced houses was like an extended family, everyone in and out of each other’s homes, children shrieking, stereos blaring, But one by one, upward mobility struck and everyone began peeling off into smart detached properties with porches and pergolas.
Not us, of course. Nothing upwardly mobile about us. But we found ourselves marooned in the middle of the terrace with invisible neighbours. We never saw them. We certainly never heard them. The once rowdy row was now silent. No singing, no laughter, no music.
Until The Knockers moved in. A strange wizened couple of indeterminate old age. They too were silent to begin with. Then the knocking started. 9am sharp, every weekday. 10am on the weekends. Thump, thump, thump in an irregular rhythm. Thud, thud, thud. Bang, bang, bang. An occasional wallop. A break for lunch, a break for tea. Then the evening shift until 10pm. At first, we thought they were banging on the walls to see which were solid. But the knocking went on, day in, day out. We eventually decided they must be hanging wallpaper by nailing it to the walls, to save on paste.
The knocking went on. And on. Maybe they’d got a treasure map and were trying to find the gold and jewels. Maybe they were covering everywhere with shelves. Maybe … maybe … maybe.
And then, a year to the day exactly, it stopped. Just like that. We never discovered what they’d been doing. The terrace simply returned to its morgue-like state. We started tiptoeing around, whispering in case anyone was listening.
Then one day the Head of the Household held a family meeting.
“We can’t go on living like this,” she said. “Something Has To Be Done.”
So, we went back to singing, playing our musical instruments (badly), turning the stereo and the TV up as loud as we wanted. And we shrieked with laughter whenever we could.
Turns out, all the nearby residents needed to galvanise them into joining forces and becoming allies – friends even – was us. We’re now the troublesome neighbours in the block and everyone complains about us. They hold meetings about us. They write angry little notes for us. They even got a petition going for the council.
But it’s OK. The Head of the Household’s got her eye on a tidy little detached place across the road. It’s going cheap, because apparently the neighbours are awful. Upwards mobility here we come.
Entry 6: Sirens in suburbia
My troublesome neighbours, well, neighbour, has me very confused at the moment. What you need to know about her is that she couldn’t carry a tune in a bucket. And while she’s always been a terrible singer, she’s started getting louder and louder. And she’s started spending more time in the garden. I can hear her from my living room even when the windows are shut.
It has led to some heated exchanges.
“Christeene, would you please shut up that awful racket?”
“You don’t have to be jealous of me, Richard. I know I have the voice of an angel.”
“An angel caught in the garbage disposal maybe.”
We have one of these exchanges every single day. She tells me that singing is meant to be good for the plants, but looking at the miserable, shrivelled up fruit her trees put out, I think they feel the same way about it as me.
But today I’m confused. She went out into the backyard and started filling up the watering can at the top of her voice, so I went out to shout, and she did her stomp around routine. But just before she went back inside, she winked at me and asked, ‘Same time tomorrow?’ before closing the door. The worst part is that I felt my heart skip a beat.
Alarm bells started ringing. How could I have a crush on a woman whose voice was literally peeling the paint off my ceiling? Did she hit some strange pitch that resonated with my heart? Some kind of auditory hypnotism? Literal brain damage? I thought back to high school where we read about Odysseus and the Sirens, who sang beautifully to lure sailors to their doom on the rocks. Odysseus, wanting to hear their song, who forced his crew to plug their ears with wax and row near enough to the rocks that he could hear it, without his crew crashing the ship on the rocks. The only thing my 95 Civic has in common with a boat is that it steers like one, and the only thing she’s driving is me crazy, but could it be that her singing is actually making me fall for her?
She’s more like an air raid siren than a naked wet woman on a rock, but I think it might be working.
Entries are now open for June 2020! The Winner will receive a super sleek silver Ballarat Writers pen.
JUNE 2020 PARAMETERS Prompt: Begin your piece with the line “My troublesome neighbours…” Style: Write in any style you please. Including but not limited to fiction, poetry, playscript, non-fiction and creative non-fiction. Limit: More than 350 words, but less than 450 words. This does not include the title. Entries Close: 11.59pm Monday 15th June Voting Closes: 11.59pm Monday 22nd June
HOW TO ENTER Please check the parameters carefully to avoid your entry being disqualified.
Send your work as a pdf file attachment to an email to competitions @ ballaratwriters.com by midnight on Monday 15th June.
In the body of the email include your name and the title of your entry. See the entry conditions for more information.
HOW TO VOTE Look out for the poll at the bottom of the blog post which contains all the entries. To be online on or near Tuesday 16th June.
Congratulations to Richenda Rudman, whose beautiful poem ‘Departure’ was voted the winner of Ballarat Flash for May 2020. Richenda receives all the glory and a super lush BW pen (to add to her growing collection!) .
Looking forward to seeing more entries for June. Remember to please read the parameters carefully to ensure your entry is valid. And we welcome any form of writing including but not limited to fiction, poetry, non-fiction and creative non-fiction.
Watch this space for next month’s parameters. Any suggestions for prompts or word limits, please feel free to email Megan at competitions @ ballaratwriters.com.
Voting is now open and will close at 11.59pm on Monday 25th May. To vote, simply use the poll at the bottom of this blog post.
Prompt: Use the phrase “Winter is Coming” somewhere in your piece. Style: Write in any style you please. Including but not limited to fiction, poetry, playscript, non-fiction and creative non-fiction. Limit: 400 characters, not including the title.
Entry 1: Departure You are leaving: used baggage tags are crumpled on the bed and your lips rehearse the words and wine of elsewhere. Winter is coming: green ribbons of leaves turn sepia, dry and fall; the sun is covered by a thick grey blanket. I shut the gate watching tail lights and the way you sit and stare straight ahead.
Entry 2: Is Coming Spring is coming, it will soon be here Spring is coming, it means no more fear Spring is coming, bringeth new love, bringeth new birth Spring is coming bringeth joy to the earth Summer is coming we toil and acquire Autumn is coming, we divorce and retire Winter is coming, it will soon be here Winter is coming, it means no more fear Winter is coming, an end in sight Winter is coming to extinguish the plight
Entry 3: I Lost Autumn Autumn passed by me in barely a trot One moment twas hot, and then, well, it was not Yeh, I did see the changes, the trees turning brown From the lounge room bay windows, the leaves falling down But closed up inside home, your cut from the world And the friend’s front-gate banter has all but been foiled So while sunshine was there, on many a bright day I know winter is coming, cos we’ve done most of May.
Entry 4: Winter’s First Day The sun is slowly setting at dinner time The sun is slowly setting on May Dew covered grass greets us in the morning now Winter is coming With a multitude of multi-coloured beanies Welcomed warmly back onto my head Presents will arrive in brown cardboard boxes Ordered and wrapped for myself None of it will be a surprise But I will celebrate anyway My birth coinciding with winter’s first day
Entry 5: Unprecedented Weather After three days of torrential rains and single figure top temperatures, I heard a guy from the Bureau of Meteorology predict, “Winter is coming”. It seems an unprecedented cold blast of moist air is blowing up from Antarctica. Two days later, snow down to 300 metres, with falls up to ten centimetres in regional centres across Victoria. The State is unprepared for such falls, roads blocked, rail services halted; you’d think it was Covid-19 or something.
Entry 6: Changing Seasons The icicles on my eyelashes dripped into my hot chocolate as the crackling fire danced light around the room. Hot chocolate sprayed everywhere as I felt something cold caress the back of my neck. “Shit Lorelai don’t scare me like that.” “Aw Luke, you were so intently listening to the radio, I didn’t want you to miss hearing that winter is coming.” “I think it came a month early.” “I’m a month late.”
Entries are now open for May 2020! The Winner will receive a super sleek silver Ballarat Writers pen.
MAY 2020 PARAMETERS Prompt: Use the phrase “Winter is Coming” somewhere in your piece. Style: Write in any style you please. Including but not limited to fiction, poetry, playscript, non-fiction and creative non-fiction. Limit: 400 characters, not including the title. Entries Close: 11.59pm Monday 18th May Voting Closes: 11.59pm Monday 25th May
HOW TO ENTER Send your work as a pdf file attachment to an email to competitions @ ballaratwriters.com by midnight on Monday 18th May.
In the body of the email include your name and the title of your entry. See the entry conditions for more information.
HOW TO VOTE Look out for the poll at the bottom of the blog post which contains all the entries. To be online on or near Tuesday 19th May.
Congratulations to Fiona D’Silva, whose Covid-19 inspired piece put a smile on our faces. ‘Cause and Infect’ was voted the winner of Ballarat Flash for April 2020. Fiona receives all the glory and a super lush BW pen.
We were so pleased to see so many submissions in April. Don’t forget that you can submit any form of writing including but not limited to fiction, poetry, non-fiction and creative non-fiction.
Watch this space for May’s parameters. Stay home and stay writing!
Voting is now open and will close at 11.59pm on Monday 27 April. To vote, simply use the poll at the bottom of this blog post.
Prompt: Begin your piece with the words “The last thing I expected was…” Word Limit: 150 words
Entry 1 ‘Now That Is A Surprise’ The last thing I expected was this.
No warning that this might happen, none at all, things like this just don’t happen to me.
I’m a dormouse, my husband Peter understands and keeps the cats away and I wave to the neighbours, they are all friendly, but my boss at work doesn’t even know I exist, let alone who I am or what I do.
But this was the last thing I expected, the look on Peter’s face was one of those precious moments I will cherish for the rest of my life, it almost glowed. Mind you, he hasn’t thought through the implications yet, but he will, and then he will undoubtedly worry for the both of us.
But for the moment we are together, in the dark and quiet, cherishing every second together. Our moment was interrupted for the foreseeable future.
Triplets were the last thing I expected.
Entry 2 ‘No Extra Charge’ The last thing I expected was to be kidnapped.
As my friends boarded buses at the airport, a man checking our itineraries singled me out. “This way, Mumma”.
He bundled me into a smaller bus and my only thought was my passport, left with our guide. Losing your passport in a foreign country – every traveller’s worst nightmare! Then I realised that I was the only one on this bus.
Don’t panic, I told myself. I managed a weak “I’m on the wrong bus”.
“No, Mumma. Right bus.”
As we hurtled through the dark African night, my imagination rioted and not panicking was no longer an option.
Hours of bumping along atrocious roads punctuated by “Look Mumma, elephant!” delivered us to a resort, where the manager explained that I had been taken to the wrong place. No kidding!
He actually suggested that my African adventure had been enhanced. No extra charge.
Entry 3 ‘The Last Thing I Expected Was To Be At His Mercy’ The last thing I expected was to be at his mercy. His eyes mesmerized me, like magnets we were drawn together. Slowly, barely touching, warm breath over flesh. Slowly, shyly, I opened myself a fraction to him. He leaned in gently, considerate at first. Not wanting to alarm or frighten me, this, my first time.
I returned his ardor as he slipped in further, wrestling, the slipping and sliding becoming more insistent, until I could stand no more.
Pushing him from me, I stared deeply as his eyes bore into my soul, drawing me back.
We clung together, our thrusting becoming more sensual, enjoying this, our first kiss, one of many.
Entry 4 ‘Stranger Than Fiction’ The last thing I expected was to be living out of my van. I had a dozen staff working under me at the start of the year and the business was growing. Then the government shut everything down. I don’t live under a dictators regime, I live in Australia. The lucky country.
We had just survived the bushfires from hell then everything got a lot darker with the virus. As it spread faster than the fires the government quarantined everyone in their homes. The police started using drone patrols. Tracking everyone through their phones and putting ankle bracelets on anyone caught breaking the new laws.
As I sit gazing out my van window at the barren landscape with 1984 half read in my lap I wonder if there will be anything left to celebrate by New Years Eve.
Entry 5 ‘The Shirt Trick’ The last thing I expected was the ocean of shirts hanging in my dead father’s wardrobe; they were catalogued in the same style and colour: white, lilac, cobalt blue and black. But the revelation that each colour came in a different size from medium to massive caused me to shake my head. That old bugger!
I used to sit across from my hypertensive father, watching his plump fingers push food into his mouth. ‘I’m worried, dad,’ I’d say. ‘You seem to be putting on a lot of weight. It’s dangerous!’
‘Rubbish! Look!’ And he’d pluck his collar away from his stout neck. ‘See how loose this is? I could hardly do the top button up a few weeks ago!’
He’d been right of course; he hadn’t been able to do the button up on the smaller size, so he’d bought a bigger one: same colour, same style.
Entry 6 ‘Leave’ The last thing I expected was to leave as soon as I arrived in my dream destination, but the world changed overnight. I arrived in Ronda, excited and tired, after a day of driving in the Andalusian countryside where white villages peppered the mountains. I expected to arrive in a bustling town and it was packed full of parked cars taking up every inch of the curb but there was no people in sight. I parked the car in a lot and Google mapped the hotel then wandered the narrow, medieval lanes grinning.
“Good evening.” The hotel receptionist greeted, with a look of surprise.
“Ola.” I replied, “It’s very quiet outside.”
“Yes. Yes. When do you leave?’ she asked looking concerned.
“I just arrived.” I laughed.
“Leave Spain?” she asked again.
She shook her head with concern. “You need to leave now.”
I was 1200kms from Barcelona.
Entry 7 ‘Cause and Infect’ The last thing I expected was to cause a pandemic.
I’m a writer. I write on VLine. Over coffee at the shopping centre in Bacchus Marsh. Anywhere really. Poems, short stories, long stories.
Last November, in that shopping centre, I wrote a poem about consumerism, how our economy relies on unnecessary spending. Desires not needs. “Unicorns prancing in the aisles, saying you need these brand new styles.” Then I thought, what if unnecessary stores were removed from here? What would be left? Supermarket, chemist, clothing, shoes, hairdresser, a cafe and the post office. Perhaps a third of the stores left. It would never happen.
Now that centre is ghostly. Essentials only. Did I manifest this? What if people find out? Thousands of lives lost. Or, is this cabin fever? My guilt escalated as I isolated.
Finally, my daughter consoled me over Zoom. “It’s okay Mum, the unicorns will be back.”
Entry 8 ‘Love Me Tender‘ The last thing I expected was slugs. Carefully preparing the soil, tenderly planting the seedlings and lovingly watering them only to be devastated by the emaciated leaves that greeted me the next morning. I immediately blamed the greedy blackbirds who had been gorging themselves on the ripe cherry tomatoes and then bathing unashamedly in the birdbath with glee. I gathered the skeletal leaves of my seedlings placing the evidence in sealed plastic bags which I promptly presented to the cheerful young man at the plant nursery.
“Had many blackbirds in your yard?” he asked.
“Yes”, I replied jubilantly.
“Slugs”, he uttered. “Blackbirds scour the gardens for slugs”.
I departed with my box of poison destined to be dinner for the unsuspecting slugs and guilt for blaming the blackbirds who I will allow to forage in the cherry tomatoes and then to bathe ceremoniously in the cleaned birdbath.
Entry 9 ‘Covid 19 and I‘
With the current social distancing restrictions, and the semi ‘lockdown’ at home, the last thing I expected was to be happy with my personal situation. I thought I would be climbing the wall, bored, anxious, possibly argumentative. But I am surprised at the ease with which I exist within this Covid-bubble!
I have an extensive vegetable garden. My quinces need stewing, the cumquats to transform into marmalade. The strawberry guavas and feijoa will be ripening in the next few weeks.
I have unpacked, recharged and loaded my e-reader. There is the daily newspaper quiz, crossword and sudoku, and I have found the SBS Movie channel.
As a pensioner, I’m told that I am at risk, but think I am fortunate. My thoughts are with those who have lost family and friends, the hundreds of thousands, their livelihoods, have tenancy fragility and the future burden of a $230,000,000,000 mortgage to service!
Entry 10‘Untitled’ The last thing I expected was – we would Allow the rich to cream the poor and stand by. For each of us to obey, little narratives Some of condemnation; others praise Delivered boldly … even with a lack of grace Towards the old, infirm, poor and disadvantaged
Let’s walk away from the democracies, it took so long to create Jettison our minds wholesale And watch the mess that remains.
Where are we bound? But for more unequal ground So some need to beg and others – laugh at what they have found Telling themselves they deserve more every time around, Because above the line, there is nothing amiss So… why do we frown? The ones that lead have to follow Whatever is set to drown the voices of the poor, the weak And recompense those already fat with what they have found.
Entries are now open for April 2020! The Winner will receive a super sleek silver Ballarat Writers pen.
APRIL 2020 PARAMETERS Prompt: Begin your piece with the words “The last thing I expected was…” Word Limit: 150 words, not including the title. Entries Close: 11.59pm Monday 20 April Voting Closes: 11.59pm Monday 27 April
HOW TO ENTER Send your work as a doc.x or pdf file attachment to an email to competitions @ ballaratwriters.com by midnight on Monday 20th April.
In the body of the email include your name, title of the entry and word count. See entry conditions for more information.
HOW TO VOTE Look out for the poll at the bottom of the blog post which contains all the entries. To be online on or near Tuesday 28th April.