Author Krista Tibbs

Archive for the ‘Original Fiction’ Category

The Newest Reindeer?

In Original Fiction on November 30, 2014 at 8:29 pm
Picture copyright kav777/Fotolia

Picture copyright kav777/Fotolia

The year all the reindeer came down with the flu,
Maurice was excited; he knew what to do!
He’d longed for this chance to prove all he was worth,
But Santa ignored him, to everyone’s mirth.

Maurice had fine antlers and four solid hoofs,
Immune to the flu, he could climb all the roofs.
Yet the sleigh was hitched up to Canadian geese,
And Dumbo, and Rocky — everyone but Maurice.

Prancer and pals made Maurice feel ashamed
When he thought he could play in their Reindeer Games.
And Rudolph, well he was the worst of the pack,
Telling Maurice to go home and never come back.

But the Clauses had always been nice, so he thought.
Oh, this turn of events had Maurice quite distraught.
He did not understand, the poor little guy,
So he hid in a snow bank and had a good cry.

Mrs. Claus found him there, fed him cookies and milk.
“You simply must find some friends of your ilk.
Now I’ll tell you once more, so you’ll stop asking why–
You are a moose, and moose cannot fly.”

Maurice then realized what she said was quite true
But flying was all that he wanted to do.
He bemoaned his bad luck for the way he was born
And he dreaded to wake on that holiday morn.

But the crisp, white day dawned despite all of his dread
And he woke to ten moose crowding onto his bed.
“We missed you!” they cried.
“Where on earth have you been?
Moose Games were no fun without you to help win.”

“So you left us behind to go join the reindeer…
You’re forgiven. It’s Christmas.
We’re glad you’re now here.”
Maurice felt his soul shining bright without doubt,
And he smiled at the way that this day had turned out.

He knew now that he had judged Rudolph all wrong;
That red-nosed reindeer meant
Home is where we Belong.

His heart lifted up, and he looked to the sky.
Then Maurice finally knew what it felt like to fly.

Newest Reindeer Extended jpg
This story originated with the Indies Unlimited Flash Fiction Challenge.

When I Wish You Merry Christmas

In Being Human, Original Fiction, Spirit on November 22, 2014 at 7:29 pm

WhenIWishYouMerryChristmasBlue2

When I wish you Merry Christmas
I’m remembering all the love
That I’ve been blessed with through the years—
from here on earth or up above.

I wish you joy and hope and peace
and all that swells your soul
And that you’ll recognize your blessings, too
and feel you’ve been made whole.

I wish you Merry Christmas
from the memories of my youth;
I hope you will be heartened
by a special memory, too.

I wish you silent moments
like a walk through falling snow
Or light that bathes your whole hometown
and warms you in its glow.

I wish your spirit to find purpose,
and if purpose has been found,
Then I hope you’ll find a voice
that spreads your gifts to all around.

May your focus always land
on what brings cheer into your heart
And look past the petty other things
that dampen your true spark.

I hope you’ll find a home
where you forever will belong
Where any broken places in you
will be healed and come back strong.

But if your strength has all been drained this year
or nothing feels like home
I wish renewal through your winter.
Please know you’re not alone.

I pray that you’ll believe
in something greater than this life
And feel the peace of knowing
there is solace past the strife.

I wish your soul much deeper
than just happy holidays
So when I wish you Merry Christmas
this is all I mean to say.

© Krista Tibbs
Author of The Neurology of Angels

Book Videos: Uncertainty Principles and The Neurology of Angels

In Being Human, Original Fiction, Politics & Government, Science, Spirit on November 21, 2014 at 11:28 pm

Creation

In Original Fiction on October 1, 2013 at 9:57 pm

 

I will name the girl Autumn, and she will have hair like October in New England. I will name the boy Breeze, and his eyes will reflect the thousand lakes I left behind. Their hearts will be warm like the South that is now my home, with easy smiles that can part the mist between souls like the morning sun in east Tennessee.

They will meet in Happy Holler and go off the grid together. They will work hard and feel light and think deeply. They will care for each other and for their neighbors and be adopted by stray children. They will do great things through their smallest joys that ripple into the world outside the hollow.

They will never know how much they mattered except that they matter to each other, but there is no existential angst in their story.  To live largely in a small life is a choice to master every moment. Fear has no room where even the corners burst with light.

They will know illness, because they are human, but they will not feed it with worry. Instead they will fill their bodies with laughter and theirs souls by creating something daily. They will not believe in The End.

These are my characters, and they will live the lives I have not yet dared.

[Day 1 post for the Bill Counts October Game 2013.]

Fiction: Possibilities

In Original Fiction on April 12, 2013 at 6:25 pm
© jc - Fotolia.com

© jc – Fotolia.com

Some might say it is cowardly to want to hold onto your dreams, but Jefferson Roosevelt Jones disagreed. Dreams are like hope, as long as you appreciate them for what they are and don’t let them take over your life. As long as you never let them sour.

So Jefferson lived alone, because no relationship was as good as his imagination. He did his work and collected his paycheck and went home, never expecting anything more. He carved his chess sets as if for royalty, but he never let them leave the hobby room where they were shielded from the light of reality. Then he allowed himself a few hours a week to indulge in thinking If Only.

Life wasn’t bad this way. Jefferson knew he wasn’t forgoing a dream when there was no chance it could happen anyway. He had read how much luck and connections mattered to success, and they just weren’t his forte. He was never going to be able to succeed in the way he imagined. So for a little while each day, while others watched television or read a book, he suspended disbelief to escape into his alternate world of Possibility.

Jefferson believed possibilities were tangible but just out of reach, like twinkling stars or secret gems, and always better and certainly more perfect than any achievable thing. That is, until she came along.

Lila was in every way larger, louder, and messier than Jefferson’s imaginings. She intruded. She would plop down next to him at the picnic table outside the office. “Whatcha thinkin’ about every day out here? You got a girlfriend?” She would simply ask such questions. “I’m gonna call you Jeff. Or better yet, Leo.” That’s what Lila did—she just took on the world and warped it to her liking.

Jefferson understood that in order to escape to alternate realities and return, one needed boundaries. But Lila had no boundaries. It was not only her body that lacked definition, but her personality overflowed into everyone she met. You could never go back, either; she was like a red sock in the white wash.

Jefferson tried to avoid her. It wasn’t that he didn’t like her; she certainly livened up the office. Plus she had so many ideas. But she didn’t seem to mind if they didn’t work out. She also didn’t seem to mind if they did work out, even if she didn’t get the credit. He couldn’t help asking her about it one day.

“The idea’s the thing, Leo. You can give them away, because there are always more where that one came from.”

He chewed on that statement for a long while. Ideas were possibilities, after all, and he was a big proponent of those. But were they really as plentiful as all that? If he let go of a dream he’d had for so long, would another just take its place? If so, didn’t that make all of them a little less special?

Another day he asked her: Didn’t she get attached to her ideas? “You mean pick favorites?” she had said. “Oh Leo. Ideas are like children. You love them all, but differently, and eventually they grow up and move on.”

That made him sad, so sad. His ideas never moved on. Real possibilities are poised on the edge of reality, but he had relegated his to no certain future, by keeping them in his mind, never intending them to live and be. He had carefully bred them to remain puppies and kittens forever.

With that one intrusive idea of Lila’s, the perfect balance Jefferson had worked so hard to achieve was thrown off kilter. Now, when Jefferson sat down to his Possibility time, he felt guilty. Every chess piece he carved was a child he was stifling, stunting. He couldn’t enjoy If Only like he used to. His dream had begun to sour.

Jefferson set his possibilities aside, promising that he’d come back to visit them soon. Then instead of a perfect evening of wine and roses with the dream date in his mind, he was roller-skating with Lila, her too-wide body spilling in a heap on the rink floor, her laughter like a waterspout, shooting up and spraying all within earshot, a wave on the ocean so big you had to ride it, run, or drown.

Jefferson told himself that this was nothing special, that he had always been open to new people and new things; he was just aware they would never be as bright and shiny as his imagination. But then he was driving Lila home after work. Then he was sitting beside Lila at the movies, her ample thighs spilling over to his seat, and he didn’t mind. Then he was cooking dinner for Lila at his apartment that few had ever seen.

Then she was in the hobby room with his carvings. “Hey, these are really good. Do you ever sell them? You could set up a card table at the beach or something.” His face burned with the suggestion, the cavalier way she could water down his glorious possibility. He would not share with her his aspiration to be commissioned by the royal family, a thought that seemed silly all of a sudden. Instead, he spewed a litany of reasons why it is practically impossible to live as a street vendor, how the effort and cost of marketing would take away carving time, and his reluctance to twist his hobby into something he had to do rather than the release that it was.

But his real reluctance was none of those things. It was that every start of one thing is an end to another. The breeze that blows through an open window will slam shut a door. Succeed or fail, everything you try is the end of a possibility. To chase your dreams is to exit the silver lining and enter gray reality.

When he finished, Lila stared at him, slack-jawed. “Creepers, Leo, I wasn’t suggesting you quit your day job. I’m talking about a website, a weekend now and then. Good grief.”

She had done it again. Jefferson’s possibility-dream began to change without his permission. He had wanted his carvings to be masterpieces, too beautiful to be touched. But that first Saturday at the beach, he found that every person who touched his art touched his heart. Many warmed yet some pierced, turning over kings and pawns alike, then walking away without them. That never happened in the possibility dream. Or at least it didn’t hurt so much.

He looked over at Lila. She was going to leave peanut butter smudges on the cupboard. She might hurt him. He might hurt her. She didn’t always understand. As long as he was with Lila, he wouldn’t be with the imaginary girl next door. The guy selling trinkets on the beach isn’t the one carving a castle for a king. But for the first time, his carvings meant something to someone. Jefferson meant something to someone. They were all growing and living.

He excused himself from the table and walked the length of the shore, blinking his tears back, though the dogs and families and sunbathers were oblivious to his mourning. He had given up so many possibilities in choosing this one life. He still wasn’t sure if it would be better than all the alternatives; he just knew it was right. It was real. Still, as Lila had said, his possibilities were his children, so he mourned their loss. He owed them that much.

When he was done and the sun was beginning to set, he went back to his table. He saw a little boy clutching one of his carvings, possibly a knight, although he couldn’t see for sure because the boy gripped it tightly in his hand, like he was holding a royal treasure. Lila was saying, “You take care of that now, won’t you? You’re holding my Jefferson’s possibilities.”

[This story was first published on Indies Unlimited.]

The Fairy Godmother Fashion Renaissance

In Original Fiction on January 29, 2013 at 3:20 pm
Artwork copyright Kathy Gold/Fotolia

Artwork copyright Kathy Gold/Fotolia

In the late twentieth century, fairy godmothers of North America staged a comeback. Maybe you didn’t believe they existed, or maybe you thought they were all in Europe–a lot of people do. The simple truth is that they had not been seen for over a century, since the world-wide strike after the Grimm brothers wrote them out of Cinderella. By that time, the Pied Piper had absconded with all of the mice, so it was hard to find good help. Cats weren’t cooperative about driving the pumpkins and even less so about being turned into magical horses. And real horses were… well…cattle. Seamstresses wanted to be paid by the hour, and there were far too many ball gowns to be made in far too little time. Besides, what do fairies know about money?

So, the fairy godmothers magicked up some glass crypts, fluffed them with silk pillows and thousand-count sheets, and settled down for a long nap. They left one FG on call each decade, because even on strike, no fairy godmother could ignore a slipper-related emergency. All was going fine until the 1930s when there was a precipitous drop in the number of fancy dress balls. Bippity, the FG on call at the time, swears it wasn’t her fault, but she was known to be a maverick, so the others didn’t fully buy her Depression-era excuses. When Boppity took over in the 1940s, she was appalled to see women wearing trousers, but she was too much distracted by swing dancing to do anything about it. By the 1950s and 60s, the style detour was fully embraced, so Boo would have let the fairy world sleep on, if it weren’t for the heaven of crinoline. She woke all the FGs to partake in the joy.

It was a fleeting joy, however. Because at the end of the decade, the godmothers were fully alert to witness the worst crime against fashion that history had ever seen – Woodstock. Why, it was hard to tell the men from the women: they dressed alike, they were hairy in all the wrong places, and no one could seem to dance at all. Whatever were the FGs to do?

In the past, the fairies had raised babies from their infancy to right the wrongs of the people, but there just wasn’t time. So they searched the land for an ingénue. They found a 20-year-old girl who had been trained in grace and graced with style and devoted all of their fairy essence to creating a legend who would resurrect the glory of fabric and lace. The girl’s name? Vera Wang.

Fiction and Art: Keara the Mischievous Angel

In Original Fiction on December 7, 2012 at 7:22 pm
The following poem was created one day as part of the Bill Counts October Game, in which I participated along with the artist Jill Lorraine Turpin. All of the participants created a complete work every day in October in recognition of the late Bill Counts. I am so pleased that my little poem inspired this drawing, because I have become a big fan of Ms. Turpin’s work! See more at jilllorraineturpin.com.

Keara the Mischievous Angel

Do you ever hear things clunk around in the night,
That make you pull up all the covers in fright?
Well don’t be afraid, it’s not monsters down there;
It’s just Keara, the angel with curly pink hair!

That sound was just her trying to catch a dust bunny.
She can’t help but chase them; she thinks they are funny.
They bounce all around going every which way,
And it’s rude to refuse when they ask her to play!

So Keara just followed one under your bed,
And she didn’t watch out, so she bumped her bright head.
She’s sitting still now, just holding her breath;
She’d feel pretty bad if she scared you to death.

So what is she doing in your room anyway?
She’s been sent here to guard you in sleep every day.
But she gets kind of restless–your snoring is boring–
So Keara the mischievous soul goes exploring!

She tries to be quiet when she goes off to play,
But sometimes she just gets carried away.
After all, those stuffed animals look so silly,
And the clothes in the dryer tumble all willy-nilly.

But she knows of the job she was sent here to do,
So she’ll stop in mid-mischief if you ask her to.
When you have a bad dream, she’ll sit by your bed,
And put visions of happiness back in your head.

Being an angel is what Keara likes best,
When she protects you, and you get a good rest.
So forgive her mischief, ‘cause she really does care;
It’s just hard to be good all the time with pink hair!

***

Fiction: A Ride on the Wind

In Original Fiction, Spirit on November 18, 2012 at 12:17 pm

Photo © bigfoot – Fotolia.com

Once I took a ride on the wind, to the Beyond. I go there often in my afternoon dreams. So far away that even the animals don’t know me; I am just another tree moving with the breeze.

There is a clear, cold stream, with rocks and no fear–of spiders or snakes or bears or of social settings or expectations–just experience. Cool, fresh experience and an exploration of what’s inside.

Smells are only sweet in the Beyond. Not the fake sweet of the freshman summer, not the planted sweet of Grampy’s roses, but just clean.

Potential means something different here. It sounds like a color: the deep potential blue of the mountain tops. It speaks of size: the potential of trees. It is the sound the wind makes: potential. Beyond cleans the meaning back to when the whole world ahead was exciting and full of shivers.

There is no dread sense of living up, no suggestion of being less or below, no dark holes that can swallow, because the Beyond is above it all, where only the wind can go. It is a mountain top, but not for falling. It is words, but nothing dark, only sunshine after rain.

The wind stirs up again and carries me back to my life. But I do not dread, because the experience is multiplied by the sharing. So I bring back some of the sweet inside.

Fiction: About a Squirrel

In Light Menu, Original Fiction on November 2, 2012 at 4:59 pm

Picture from thenewyorksquirrel.blogspot.com

“I gotta find me some nuts!” Squirrel skittered from tree limb to trunk, to the fire pit, and onto the front porch of the cabin. “Nuts, nuts, nuts!” He poked around for a hole in the building, just to warm up a little. Chilly, chilly out here, it was. Winter and all, he supposed.

It had been a lovely summer. He had touched every branch in the forest, he was sure of it. While his brothers and sisters were all knickers-in-a-bunch over their winter rations, Squirrel had climbed miles of bark and leapt across a sky full of leaves, warmed his tail in the sunshine, and every evening hassled little dogs from outside their windows. Yes, it was a merry old time.

Aha! He knew there’d be a hole, he just knew it. He shimmied his little body through the opening and crawled into the living room, whipping his tail in after him. Nobody was home! He sauntered over to the kitchen then sprung onto the counter and ran the length of the sideboard. He caught a sweet smell from a drawer. He poked his paw into the crack and jiggered the drawer open. He couldn’t believe his eyes; inside was a nut, made of sugar! He’d never seen one like it. He climbed into the drawer then stuck his nose out and sniffed the air. There were more!  More, more, more!

He followed his sniffer through the four rooms of the cabin, collecting the nuts and scurrying back to deposit them in the drawer. He’d be the envy of the family, he would, he would!  But maybe tomorrow. Right now, he was tired. And with that, he curled up next to his pile and went to sleep.

He woke to the sound of a man and a woman entering the cabin. He scrambled out of his hiding placed, jumped onto the floor, and wiggled back through the hole. Outside, he cried, “Which way, which way?” then raced up a tree, jumped across to the drain pipe, and slid down to the ledge outside the kitchen window.

The man inside was saying, “Looks like the mice ate your poison while we were gone.”

The woman grimaced. She dropped a cooler onto the counter and pulled open a drawer–Squirrel’s drawer! He squeezed closer to the window for a better look. “Oh, dear. I don’t think it was the mice. Looks like something’s been stockpiling them for winter. I hope he’s all right, stupid little thing.”

All right? Why wouldn’t he be all right? And who’s she calling stupid?

“You know that squirrels are basically mice with tails, right?” the man said.

Squirrel took offense at that. He wrapped his leg around his big, bushy tail and hugged it to his cheek. It was a fine tail, it was, it was.

“Well, the tails make all the difference. I couldn’t hurt anything with a fluffy tail.”

Squirrel had almost warmed up to the woman over that. But then she did something unforgiveable; she emptied his drawer into the trashcan! He plastered his paws to the window and screamed at her. “That’s my dinner! Dinner-dinner-dinner-breakfast!”

She turned in his direction and pointed. “I guess we know who the culprit is!”

The man laughed, “Yes, and he sure told you.”

The woman picked out one of the sugar nuts and brought it to the window. “Hey, little guy. I’m sorry to make you mad, but these aren’t good for you. They’re poison!”

Squirrel smacked his lips and swallowed. Come to think of it, they had tasted a little tangy.

Well, it was a good thing he had restrained himself from eating one. Oh well, oh well. He jumped down from the window and plowed through a pile of leaves. “I gotta find me some nuts!”

Spirited Woman Top 12 Book List

In Announcements, Original Fiction on October 25, 2012 at 3:04 pm

I’m pleased to announce that The Neurology of Angels is on the Spirited Woman Top 12 Fall Book Pick List!

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