You once wrote on the idea of boundaries.  Now I’d like to hear about collisions.  Many amazing things happen when forces, cultures, individuals, or objects collide.  Think of car crashes…clashes of cultures…willful people with different agendas…quanta in particle accelerators…agendas of adolescents versus parents…asteroids slamming into earth…bump ‘em cars bouncing off each other at the carnival…alternative universes colliding—use your imagination!

31 responses to “Collisions

  1. Politics and religion. I am right, you are wrong. Power and morality. Capitalism versus socialism. My way will get me to heaven and your way will send you to hell. I’m good, you’re evil. No common ground, no middle ground. If you disagree with me, you’re not on my side. Scream louder to drown out conflicting arguments. Emotions trump facts. My way is truth, your way is a lie. Win at all costs. What, exactly, have you won?

    • I really liked this Diane. Very succinct.

    • Good point. It makes me think of the Oliver Cromwell quote which goes something like this, “I beseech you in the bowels of Christ, think it possible you may be mistaken.”

    • Thank you, Barbara and Ann.

    • I really liked this as well. These are some of the thoughts I had myself while I was on jury duty. Many people see things as black and white but I live in the grey zone. I experienced some of the “scream louder to drown out conflicting arguments” and “emotions trump facts”. Very frustrating.

  2. Okay, so there’s all these atoms and molecules and quantum thingo bits and pieces, right? And what the scientists do, they fire them at each other in this special machine so that they all crash into each other. Anyway, when these little bits and pieces smash together, there’s two things can happen. Either the entire planet Earth blows itself apart, or there’s just some puffy squillionth-of-a-mini-second pattern kinda thing. And if we’re lucky and it’s the puffy pattern instead of a great big fireball, the scientists can look at the pattern through a super-special magnifying glass and get off on it even if they haven’t been doing substances. And in the sciencing business, that super-special magnifying glass is called a colliderscope.

  3. Here’s my collision: The muse collided with an image in the third quatrain of a sonnet and lost her mind.

    To wit:

    Help, please, from all of you.

    With Ann’s permission, I am posting a sonnet I wrote a couple years ago in an ed2go poetry class. I am having trouble with four lines, the four I have set aside in the sonnet below.

    Basic sonnet rules:

    1. 14 lines (three quatrains and one couplet)

    2. rhyming pattern: ABAB, CDCD, EFEF, GG

    3. iambic pentameter (groan): duh-DUH-duh-DUH-duh-DUH-duh-DUH-duh-DUH (shall I comPARE thee TO a SUMmer’s DAY?)

    Look at my 3rd quatrain and you can see the stressed syllables are not in the right place so the whole quatrain doesn’t scan. I am so stuck on the Robert Mitchum metaphor (that Robert! Didn’t even have the courtesy to have a name with correctly stressed syllables) that I can’t think of any other words to convey that image, even without using his name.

    4. for more info on the Shakespearean sonnet:

    5. There is also some stuff on content per quatrain, but let’s not get carried away right now, okay?

    Even if you don’t want to delve into a correctly-written quatrain, any idea you have might spark a solution in me or someone else.

    Safe Haven

    I toss and turn in worry-poisoned dreams
    Of shadow-shapes that prey upon me yet,
    Enwrapped in sweat-soaked sheets and silent screams
    Whose echoes linger so I can’t forget.
    Last night I dreamt I fled from them in grief,
    And when I stopped, I saw you standing there,
    Your strong arms open wide offered relief,
    A haven safe from nightmare’s harm and care.

    I held you close and saw your smile—Robert-
    Mitchum, devil-may-care—then my troubles
    Were gone, as if in death you could assert
    The pow’r to vanquish all my obstacles.

    But dawn, the night-lived dreams cannot survive:
    Our bed, a bier on which your mem’ry lies.

    Thanks in advance for any help or suggestions.


    • Gully I haven’t a clue, but I’m with LJ. Robert Mitchum always does it for me!

    • Couldn’t resist a try. Anything here you want?

      I held you close and saw your smile that night
      So devil-may-care, so Robert Mitchum true
      That troubles fled. In death you still could right
      The world and vanquish all the pain accrued.

      • Yes and yes again. This I can definitely use. Thanks so much. Sonnets are rather fun, you know. Kind of like jigsaw puzzles, which I adore. I also wrote a sestina which is a form I’d never before heard of. That’s even more fun than a sonnet. I think it turned out rather well, all things considered.

  4. . . . harm and care.

    Oh, Robert Mitchum, my devil-may care,
    I held you close and gazed at soulful eyes;
    Then as if in death you could assert your will,
    My soul soared—freed from heartache evermore.

    But dawn . . .

    Hi, Gully –

    I don’t know anything about writing sonnets, but I always liked Robert Mitchum. Good luck finding your perfect lines.


    • Thanks, LJ. Things I might be able to work with here. BTW, the first and third lines and then second and fourth lines have to rhyme with each other.

    • Hi LJ,

      Nice to see you here. I hope you’ve been writing and hope to see some of your stuff on Ann’s blog.


      • So nice to hear from you, Lisa!!! I think of you often. How is your Spanish coming along? And, more importantly, your book? I had to give up on our writer’s group. It wasn’t very active, and at the time I was kept busy with the ed2go course on Descriptive Writing. Currently, I’m taking the Write Fiction Like A Pro course. I’m not doing a lot of writing in the course–only because I’m stuck on a great story idea. Still, I feel I’m learning a lot. I think it’s a great course for structuring a novel. You might want to consider it because you have a novel in progress. Other students collaborate on books they’re writing. “Good Doggy” from the BWW is one of the students. (Our BWW course with Ann and our group in particular remain the best I’ve experienced.) Good job on your sonnet aide to Gully! Hope to hear an update on your novel. ~LJ 🙂

        If it is inappropriate for me to communicate with Lisa on a personal level through your blog, I apologize.

        I enjoy following your prompts and reading the submissions of the writers here but was beginning to feel a bit like a voyeur since I never submitted a post. Hope you are doing well! ~LJ

    • LJ,
      Feel free to chat all you want here. I am delighted that we still have a place to meet, write, and support each other. Enjoy!

      • Thanks, Ann, for letting us chat.


        I didn’t follow through very well on the Spanish lessons. I think the holidays, writing (more Ann’s blog than any other writing) and online scrabble have been distracting. I have the lessons for the future, though. As far as writing classes, I’m looking at 3 or 4 writing courses but haven’t decided yet. BWW really was special. I miss it. Did you see that they offer an editing class? I don’t really have the stamina for a novel. I get too distracted. I’m more suited for microfiction at least for now. Well, I’m glad you’ve starting posting pieces here. I miss your writing. Look forward to reading more of your stuff.


  5. Wow, Gully, I have so much respect for sonneteers. You have a magical way with words. I tried really hard for about 30 minutes this morning (after mulling it over for a while last night) and all I could come up with is this. Then I had to take tylenol and lay down in exhaustion and frustration. I know it doesn’t keep to the rules but I can’t resist a cry for help or a good puzzle. Talk about right brain left brain. Sonnets are a great brain teaser. Good luck!

    I held you close and saw your smile –
    My own Robert Mitchum, devil-may-care
    as if In death your power to vanquish
    my troubles were gone as if ne’er there
    Obstacles gone, I no longer languish
    Please stay, linger, if only for a while

  6. Oakland, California, circa 1974, 2:30 PM: “Something is wrong,” I said to a coworker.

    Santa Clara, California, circa 1974, 2:30 PM: Terry glanced upward and watched as the weighty hammer of the black pile driver broke loose and started its descent. Witnesses say he stood frozen on the platform. A split-second later the hammer collided with his six-foot frame. Nearly six interminable weeks later, he left the hospital. A railroad track of stitches lay hidden beneath a two-piece cast that hinged at the knee for mobility and held in place a piece of wood that would substitute temporarily for his foot.

    A decade later you barely noticed Terry’s slight limp. You’d find him shooting baskets with his team at the local basketball court or on the ski slope with lifelong friends. The hospital was but a distant memory to him, to his young wife, and to his two young daughters—to all who loved him.

    Santa Cruz, California, August 25, 1988, 3:30 AM: “Did you hear the crash?” I said to my husband.

    San Diego, California, August 25, 1988, 3:30 AM: Stars shined brightly on the balmy August night a faceless family crashed and lay helpless in their van. Terry hurried across the road in an apparent attempt to aid the family. One can only guess his thoughts as he hurried across the road. At that moment a driver drove through a construction barrier and collided with Terry’s six-foot frame. He died en route to the hospital. According to the police, the intoxicated driver was probably drawn by the light of the powerful flashlight Terry carried.

    Life can be a collision course. Live each day with gratitude.


    • Well said. You have a powerful contrast here where your brother’s urge to live brings recovery and his urge to help brings a fatal collision. Amid sorrow, he inspires us.

      • Ann, I like your words: “Amid sorrow, he inspires us.” So true. They are perfect. Thank you for sharing them. ~LJ

    • I’m so sorry for your loss, LJ. It sounds like you had a strong bond. I agree with Ann. He is inspiring.

  7. My sincere sympathies, LJ. Life is truly moment to moment.

    • Thank you, Barbara. I didn’t want to be dark or bleak in my posting. Terry was my only brother, and he was my first thought when I considered “collisions.” The amazing thing to me was my sense of foreboding in both circumstances. Yes, life is moment to moment. ~LJ

  8. There is a short story at the Elder Storytelling Place that is worth reading. It is called, “The Magic of Chicken Fricasse.)

  9. Good day! Would you mind if I share your blog with my facebook group? There’s a lot of folks that I think would really enjoy your content. Please let me know. Thanks

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