"How did you get to be sooo taaall?" asked The Little Sir, a gentlemanly four year old boy asks. The yellow, tan-spotted creature swings his head around and brings his face closer to the boy's. He blinks, his long lashes nearly sweeping along The Little Sir's face. The boy backs up a step. "Well," the creature began, "there are many stories your kind tells to answer that very question." Not quite the answer the boy was looking for, but then, he didn't really know what answer he might have been expecting either. He just wanted to know. The creature flicks his ears, and brings his head back to the average height. "It's all relative anyhow." He continues with the puzzling answers. The Little Sir kicks the dirt as he walks.

Another creature, a little bit smaller, but not by much, gracefully frolics up to their location, reducing speed and joining them. "Hello," she says. "How are you both doing today? Enjoying this sunny day in the park?"

"Yes," the spotted creature replies, "The Little Sir was just asking me about how we got to be sooo taaall." The boy looks up at her in anticipation of a better response.

She blinks in surprise. "Oh! It just really depends on who you ask, doesn't it?" She says, unhelpfully. "Aren't there tall ones from your kind, too?" she asks The Little Sir.

"Well, yes, I guess. But not nearly as tall as you," the boy replies.

"Oh, it's all relative anyhow," she echos.

Her husband fast approaches them, with a little one running just behind, still three, maybe four times the high of The Little Sir. He speaks, "Darling, how are you?"

"Well, Dear. We were just talking with The Little Sir about why we are sooo taaall."

"Oh! The story changes. It could be for many reasons or none at all," replies her husband.

"I'm going to be really tall one day!" squeaks the little creature, towering many, many feet over The Little Sir.

"Isn't that the truth!" says the boy's friend to the other three creatures.

The Little Sir sighs deeply.

The breeze gently passes through some trees ahead of them. The creatures pick up speed and approach the tree, stopping in its shadow. They began to reach high for the leaves, gnawing on them happily. The Little Sir looks up at them, imagining what it would be like to be sooo taaall. Loose leaves fall from the activity high above him. He removes his top hat and tries to catch the falling leaves inside.

My fiancé gave me a writing prompt: A walk in the park with giraffes.

Sketches: War of the Shoes

The sneakers stomped and then heels clicked and clacked. They were separated a short distance, on the hardwood floor, the rug as the barrier. The heels, then the sneakers again, and back to the heels. The slippers scurried behind the heels, pretending not to be seen, while the flip-flops ran through the middle, not concerned in the slightest about the volume of their steps. The sneakers responded roughly, the heels sassy but sweet, and the slippers just hid in the corner. The sneakers stepped closer, their laces tightening, the heels stepped even closer. When they were not an inch apart, suddenly they turned to the door as they heard them coming: the steel-toed boots had arrived. PROMPT: My fiancé gave me a writing prompt, which simply said: “the war of the shoes.”

Sketches: Here & Now

Needing a Push

She pulled over to the side of the road, and there's not another soul in sight. She closes her eyes, imagining herself home with her children, but she's still a ways away. She thinks of their big, bright, beautiful smiles, and she starts up her car for those last long few miles.


She looks at her paper, and sees the scribbles she's left behind. Worrying about the next quiz, midterm and final test.

Worrying about then, later and now. Wanting to do well. and not knowing how to be someone of whom one can be proud, to be picked out as unique from the crowd.

But her teacher gives her a pat on the back, and says, "Do you realize that you're doing so well?" She looks down and tucks her books into her pack, and suddenly off goes the 2:30 bell.

Her teacher says, as she turns towards the door, "I'm so proud of you, and I know that you're going to continue to grow."

And she smiled.

Writing Prompt

Reaching Out posted 9.10.13

Writing poetry can be a lonely endeavor. Reading poetry, however, can introduce us to people and worlds we’ve never experienced. Use the power of poetry to help someone who is lonely. The woman resting her head on the steering wheel at a long red light. The old man with a soggy coaster at the end of the bar. The adolescent kid hiding in the school bathroom. Write a poem for them, from you.

Neil Gaiman Quote: Mistakes

I hope that in this year to come, you make mistakes. Because if you are making mistakes, then you are making new things, trying new things, learning, living, pushing yourself, changing yourself, changing your world. You're doing things you've never done before, and more importantly, you're doing something.

So that's my wish for you, and all of us, and my wish for myself. Make new mistakes. Make glorious, amazing mistakes. Make mistakes nobody's ever made before. Don't freeze, don't stop, don't worry that it isn't good enough, or it isn't perfect, whatever it is: Art, or love, or work, or family life.

Whatever it is you're scared of doing, do it. Make your mistakes, next year and forever.

Neil Gaiman