Note: What were the chances I would find the word Willy-nilly (daily post) in one of my writings? As my kids used to say, “Random!” But here it is!
Excerpt from The Moonshine Thicket by C. Dennis-Willingham
Mr. Leonard, Scooter, and Frank have already left the house for Rosie’s. It’s part of the plan. Mama squeezes her hands together while Miss Helen make-ups her face.
“Stop being so willy-nilly, Bernice. This will be a perfect evening. And for heaven’s sake, stay still!” Miss Helen says, winking at me.
Mama plants her hands on Miss Helen’s vanity. “I know. It’s just, well, there’s so much to say.”
“Then say it and put it behind you.” Miss Helen stands back and eyeballs her work. “You look beautiful, Bernice.”
“Better than beautiful, Mama,” I tell her.
“I’m in my slip for Christ’s sake. At least wait to compliment me until after I’m dressed.”
When Mama puts on her new dress, a pink taffeta with frilly layers, she says it’s too fancy for Rosie’s café. But she can’t stop looking in the mirror.
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Dad says that Mr. Posey “is richer’n four feet up a bull’s butt.” But he doesn’t act anything like Uncle Will McCleskey. He’d never pull me off a horse with a walking stick, even if he had one.
Most of the time, we even get to have supper with them and since Mr. Posey talks almost as slow as Hoover, supper conversations take a long time. At least Dad isn’t doing us any harm while we’re here. Mr. Posey doesn’t go off half-cocked like Dad does. He doesn’t hit his wife or Hoover, so I guess Dad doesn’t want to be the only one who clobbers two outta three of his family members.
Hoover asked me to ride out with him on a couple of their horses. I was supposed to be chopping wood, but the idea of riding sounded like chocolate cake. We had a good time riding around their property. It made me think of riding with Ike, the sound of hooves, the click of his left cheek. I sure do miss him.
We were trotting along just fine until my horse swallowed his head and threw me off into a prickly pear cactus. I landed on my right hand and it smarted something awful.
“Cono,” said Hoover, “ I…think….you… gave…him…just…a little….too much…spur.” And right then, my laughter took over my pain.
Since then, I’ve been trying to hide my bad hand from Dad so he won’t catch on that I’d played hooky from my wood chopping. For the last couple of days I’ve even been chopping wood with my left hand until my right one starts to feel better. It’s safer that way.
Excerpt from No Hill for a Stepper by C. Dennis-Willingham
Prickle- daily word prompt
After loading the logs and twigs (and waiting for patience), the fire snapped and cracked like Jiffy-Pop and reminded me of a long-ago home.
Daily word prompt: Jiffy
Never, ever, will I regret saving that woman from the hangman’s noose eleven years ago. That good-for-nothing she killed deserved being plugged. Even so, a Negro woman who murdered a white man might as well start braiding her own rope.
“’Nough mess … ” Parts of her newest grumble bounced from the parlor into the kitchen. I muzzled my laughter then I heard the thwack, thwack of a dishtowel slapping the velvet settees–Reba’s version of dusting.
Without Reba Mae Tyler, I wouldn’t be grinning at the cash stacked on my desk and organized by denominations. Who better than me, and my five-foot-three-of-nothing-but-glory best friend, to earn this kind of money?
Madam Volvino down the road would have scammed the Wild Bunch. I pictured that dollymop charging a lesser fee for her bawdyhouse services then afterward, jiggling her fat rump straight to the law to collect the one grand in bounty—one grand for Butch alone.
Excerpt from The Last Bordello by C. Dennis-Willingham
Organize– daily word prompt