Morning Pages 10/12/19

His crevassed fingers looked more like wood than the figure he turned with them.
They worked slowly, each finger placing down in a smooth and finely worked place, and then applying pressure and turning the figurine.
His eyes, a dull and hollow blue, darted from detail to detail on the carved knight’s armor, helm, the sword.
The ferryman hadn’t ever seen the man’s face. He hadn’t taken his helmet off and hadn’t raised his visor, neither. But this was good enough.
The bell rang in the small loft. The light above the door blink on, of, on, off, a solid green and darkness.
The ferryman stood from his chair, the four legs sliding across the wooden floor. He took his carved wooden knight and walked to the window sill where he placed it next to a collection of other wooden figures. All carved, all meticulous. All perfectly rendered. He’d seen them all, at one time or another. He often wondered where they’d gone, where they were now?
He probably wouldn’t ever know.
He went to the door and just before opening it, took his yellow rain slicker off the hook to the side. He slid it on over his wool sweat, wormed his feet into the rubber rain boots. He opened the door, the blinking light stopped. He shut the door behind him.
Outside the wind blew from he west. It always blew from the west. The river he lived on flowing the same way, always east toward the Baltic.
The sky above was dark, apart from the lights of the ferry landing. Just a dull gray was everything. He walked from his little loft down the slippery steps and then across and onto the ferry. He mounted the steps and stepped into the cabin. He started the motor, a series of gears and winches that pulled the barge from one side of the river to the other with upon a heavy metal chain.
Across the way, and through the rain, no more than 100 yards away he could make out the headlights of a car.
Who was crossing this late in the evening, and for what reason?


Comic Review: Outer Darkness #11

Outer Darkness #11

Image Comics

Writer: John Layman

Artist: Afu Chan

Captain Rigg and the crew of The Charon return in the latest issue of Outer Darkness. While the run has stalled out the last few issues, this newest installment breathes new life into a unique world. It’s wonderful when you stick with a comic, and it rewards you with an unforeseen twist.


In a story that lends itself so well to the episodic nature of comics, it’s a piece of irony when that aspect of the comic is the very thing that makes the run feel stale. The premise of Out Darkness is sound. It’s about a ragtag collection of hardened soldiers, wizards, and warriors, scouring the cosmos for lost souls. It easy then, for self-contained issues–beginning, middle, and end. Within this structure, the larger narrative sense is lost. Until now. For the first time in the series, Captain Rigg faces the true consequences of his actions. He knows he’s on the chopping block, but he won’t go down quietly. This issue gives readers a look at just how far Captain Rigg will go to get what he wants. It takes the series in a bold, new direction.

Outer Darkness #11

Check out my full review at

Morning Pages 10/8/19 (They can’t all be winners)

PROMPT: He hadn’t seen anything like it in twenty years of teaching . . .
He’d read it before. He knew he’d read it before. But try as he might to find the source of the paper–the plagiarism committed, it wasn’t there.
He typed sentences into google. He used an anti-plagiarism software search. He showed the principle, Ms. Frankle, and the whole English department. Everyone agreed. Cassandra Yin had not written this paper. But then, if she hadn’t, who had? It could have been a family member. A father. A mother. An older brother or sister. But then why was it so familiar.
The next week, after the 4th period and, which landed just before his planning period, he sent his TA to the office and ask that Cassandra Yin be brought to his classroom.
It took about 15 minutes, in which he graded the philosophy paper his seniors had been writing–they were all terribly cliche, all about how the shadows in the cave were nothing more than a shadow of real life. It was true. But the same paper rewritten 30 times does get old. He should have implemented some kind of peer review. He’d do that. But the results of such were always poor.
A knock came at the door, which was propped open. he always had the door propped open. He looked up.
Cassandra Yin was standing there, she was wearing an off white beanie, yellow baggy sweater, and slim jeans with black and white converse sneakers.
“I got a message that you wanted to see me?” she asked.
“I did, yes,” he said. “Come and sit.”
He swiveled in his chair and grabbed up her paper from his back desk. “I wanted to talk to you about. . . about this paper you wrote.”
He got up and motioned for her to sit at one of the student desks. He sat at one facing her and slid her paper over to her.
“Who wrote this?” he asked.
She put her hands on the paper and held it. “I… I did.”
“You did?”