Category Archives: Temperatures rising

Sue Vincent’s #Thursday photo prompt: Pillars #writephoto, Pyroplastic surge

pillars

It was frustrating. For two days we had been sitting down in the hot, humid cellar. Our wine was warm, our food was cold. At least we could breathe down here, unlike in the street above. The choking fumes clogged our nostrils, the tiny wind-blown cinders got into our throats. Everyone was coughing and the stench was unbearable.

From what they said it seemed to be getting worse outside. Last night only a few of us had come down but today more and more people started arriving. Most had not brought anything down with them in their panic. They were just concerned with getting away from the ash cloud that sat like a dragon atop the hill. The very ground had started to groan and shudder as if all the denizens of the underworld were on the move.

My father had told us that we need not worry as this had happened many times before.He stayed in the villa thinking that it would soon pass but the Gods appeared to be really angry this time. No-one was sure how to placate them. Even the priests from the temple had decided to join us.

As the daylight, what there was of it, due to the sun having been smothered by the dark cloud, began to fade for the second day we heard a strange noise. It was like a low moaning and it seemed to be getting louder.

I shouted for everyone to be quiet and as our babble subsided we realised that the sound was coming from a great wind that was flowing through the passageways. Some of the women started to wail and before long both men and women started to sob as we realised something terrible was about to happen. Strangely there was no panic and I could hear my companions starting incantations. Before long even the chanting ceased.

Wrapping my cloak around my shoulders \I took my wife and daughter in my arms. We huddled against the wall and the stifling air grew steadily hotter. I can write no more. I will sleep and hopefully return to my beloved Pompeii home in the morning.

 

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Filed under As you read it, Factual, Flash fiction, History, Self compositions, Temperatures rising

Mindlovemisery’s Menagerie, #First Line Fridays

Egypt (230)

The sun simmered red as it slunk towards the jagged horizon. Nightfall always followed shortly after the sun set in the desert wastes. Janvers  knew that if he and his companions did not pitch their  camp shortly it would become too cold for them to survive. No-one without desert experience would believe that after the baking temperatures of the day the desert could become so cold at night. The tall, minaret-like pinnacles in the distance were giant outcrops of red sandstone that formed pillars stretching high into the cloudless sky. If they were lucky they would be able to shelter in the caves found at the base of these towers. If not they might provide tethering  points for their single tarpaulin. 

Pausing in his forced trek Janvers suddenly motioned for everyone to stop and be quiet. Turning his head from side to side he listened intently, looking round them in all directions. It was unmistakable. To the West, where the red disc of the sun was casting it’s last glow in the darkening twilight sky there was a faint sound. It was a monotone, low, moaning that was  not the sound of any animal. He felt a slight lifting of the breeze and he was sure he could just make out low eddies like miniature typhoons in the sand  between them and the mountains. There was no doubt in his mind, a storm was coming.

The thing that all desert dwellers and travellers dread, a sandstorm. They often came without warning and could last for days or just stop within minutes as abruptly as they started. He knew that they would have to run, to try and gain the shelter of the rocks. If it was a full storm they would stand no chance of survival if caught out in  the middle of the rippled, sandy plain. Trying not to show panic but emphasising the urgency he cajoled his team to start running across the soft treacherous sand.

After only a few minutes  the wind was noticeably stronger. This served as a hastener to the team of semi-exhausted men. Their feet were leaden and every step became harder as the wind pushed into their faces. By sheer bad luck that was the only direction they would gain any shelter. Janvers felt the coarse sand granules whipping his face. He wound the blanket tighter around his neck and struggled on. He could not afford to show any weakness in front of his team.

Twilight is brief in the desert and there was now no distinction between the sky and the rocks ahead. Their only guide was to try and remember the star formations that were beginning to appear overhead. The sound of the wind increased in line with it’s strength. Janvers kept up his exhortations depite his own flagging strength. The ground started to  get  harder beneath his feet and he knew that they were no longer trying to run on sand but stone. This could only mean that they  were close to the base  of the  hills. Almost too dark to see more than forty paces in front the wall of stones loomed like a black, empty void ahead. To their left was a gigantic boulder which leaned at an ominous angle. It was enough  to offer some shelter to the three men.

They crouched at it’s base and with heavy blankets wrapped around them prepared to sit out the storm. Their only hope was  that it would be brief. Within twenty minutes they detected a lessening of the wind. The rushing sound akin to a passing express train faltered and stopped almost in an instant. Looking out they  could make out  the flat landscape illuminated by a rising moon. The sand flurries ceased and all was quiet once more. In silent prayer the team relaxed and smiled, each with their own thoughts. After a short time of this meditation they huddled together prepared to discuss their course of action for the remaining hours of darkness and the next day. Janvers knew that once past this range of hills there were  only a few kilometres before they crossed the range of dunes known as the Sea of Sand and they would be safe on the Namibian coast. 

  

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RonovanWrites #Weekly #Haiku #Poetry Prompt #Challenge #210 Woke & Up

The distant  thunder

woke her up from deep slumber

welcome rains coming

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Filed under Haiku, nature inspired, Temperatures rising

I haiku

A veil gives safety

as you watch mosquitoes

outlined in moonbeams

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Filed under Haiku, nature inspired, Self compositions, Temperatures rising

Sue Vincent’s weekly #Writephoto beach frolics

sea-mist1

Listen to the torpid, turquoise waters,
langorously lapping at the sun scorched sands.
Imagine the tall, curving, coco-palm trees
casting welcome shadow over gay steel-bands
Parasols swirling, laughing ladies, clutch their
high, iced glasses in painted, long-nailed hands.
Gaze upon the lithe, lissome half naked bodies
in their bold, bright costumes, showing golden tans.
When the bright golden sun’s rays turn to crimson
driftwood is gathered and barbecues are manned.
As the fading light becomes tropical evening
everyone’s dreams and pleasures on demand.
Tuned dustbin lids polished, glowing in the fires
while stamping  and dancing capture the rhythm of the land

 

 

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Filed under Otherworldly, Self compositions, Temperatures rising, Whimsical

G haiku

 

With a lazy twitch

thin lace gently taps the glass

cooling Summer breeze

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Thursday photo prompt: Conflagration #writephoto

conflagration

It was one of the saddest sights I had ever seen in my home county of Devon. For days we had watched the articulated lorries with trailrrs attached. Each one bigger than the trailers we had only witnessed before on the one train line in or out of the area. The papers were full of the stories of the outbreak but only now was the full scale of the disaster beginning to show itself.

Of course, everyday life had been changed, signs were up at all farm gates that led onto the narrow lanes with dire warnings of the danger within. Road blocks were everywhere restricting passage to all but bona fide government workers. No more ramblers enjoying the countryside. In the towns and villages, anywhere where cars and other motor vehicles were likely to congregate the entrances were strewn with straw and all around the pervasive smell of strong disinfectant.

Minibuses drove up the lanes following the heavy lorries. Through the windows, it was possible to see human figures. All dressed in the same white coveralls, reminiscent of the NBC suits we donned during exercises whilst in the forces, It was more like a scene from the Roswell or Area 51 movies. Behind these came the oil-tankers all in a convoy heading for the high ridges. Ridges where recently excavated trenches were now filled with the carcases of many thousands of newly shot farm animals, cattle and sheep piled up to the lip in their mass graves.

The hills resounded with the shouts of these eerie white figures as they lit the bonfires and stood admiring their sad handiwork while all in the land looked at the flames and the towering clouds of smoke. Nostrils filled with the acrid smell as of over-roasted beef and greasy smuts of soot blew wherever the wind carried them to land on car and house windows throughout the area.

By night the fires continued to burn. It was like looking up to the edge of some once-forgotten but now suddenly alive volcano. The gloom and sadness was all pervading and for once there was sympathy for the farmers on whom we had always poured such scorn. An attitude that perisits to this day. Even we felt sorry for the victims of the dread, “Foot and Mouth disease.”

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Filed under Factual, From the heart, History, Self compositions, Temperatures rising

RonovanWrites #Weekly #Haiku #Poetry Prompt #Challenge #198 Beat&Party

ronovan-writes-haiku-poertry-challenge-image-20161

The calypso beat

promises a great party

let your body sway

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Filed under Haiku, Self compositions, Temperatures rising