@RonovanWrites Weekly #Haiku Challenge: Beast& Day

In response to Ronovan’s Weekly Haiku Challenge

When one day’s delay

left Beast heartbroken, dying,

Beauty’s heart broke too.

We take for granted

The love we have for others

Don’t leave it too late…

poetry prompt


Weekly Photo Challenge: Reward

 In response to the Daily Post’s Weekly Photo Challenge

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAThe reward for travel and exploration is sights like these. To walk where ancient people walked and see what lost civilisations were capable of. That’s why I travel.

I took this photo in Cambodia, somewhere in the greater Angkor temple complex. There is so much to see in this world! Some people travel to see what nature is capable of too, though I’ll always love temples and monuments.




@RonovanWrites Weekly Haiku Challenge: War and Fame

In response to Ronovan’s Weekly Haiku Prompt Challenge.

war-weary landscape

seeks deeper infamy, so

deepens destruction

I was shocked again with the latest video that ISIS proudly dumped into the lap of the world media. It is not enough for them to destroy their own people and threaten to destroy the rest of the world – they have attacked their own history, one of ‘the cradles of civilisation’.

“Islamic State militants ransacked Mosul’s central museum, destroying priceless artefacts that are thousands of years old, in the group’s latest rampage which threatens to upend millennia of coexistence in the Middle East.

The destruction of statues and artefacts that date from the Assyrian and Akkadian empires, revealed in a video published by Isis on Thursday, drew ire from the international community and condemnation by activists and minorities that have been attacked by the group.” – from The Guardian website http://www.theguardian.com/world/2015/feb/26/isis-fighters-destroy-ancient-artefacts-mosul-museum-iraq

Destruction: Isis thugs push a statue to the ground at a museum in Mosul. Source: UK’s Mirror (Yes I know the Mirror isn’t a great source but they had actual stills of the video posted)


This is messed up, but unfortunately it is nothing new. The two largest standing statues of Buddah were destroyed by the Taliban in 2001.

Ancient Archeological Sites That Were Destroyed By Stupid Humans

There are so many examples of hateful people destroying art, culture and knowledge, not just in the middle east but all over the world. The Nazi’s book burnings. Pol Pot’s decapitation of Buddhist statues. These are not acts of one country invading another – the desecration is self-inflicted. It is so, so sad.


I took this picture in 2010


We believe certain things are sacred, that they will be kept and preserved for the good of the human race even when we war against each other. It is a terrible truth that nothing is sacred, especially when it can be used to incite further fear and hatred.



Flash Fiction: Second Time’s the Charm

In response to Susan Lattwein’s Flash Fiction Prompt

No matter how much I kicked, no matter how much I screamed, no noise was loud enough to attract any attention. He must have parked in the middle of nowhere, or else the enclosed boot of the car was muffling everything I did. No one was coming for me.

The minutes ticked by, my ears settling to catch even the faintest noises, but there was nothing to hear. The inside of the boot stank like old meat. I wondered if I should try kicking again, maybe trying to focus my attack on the lock? I rolled over and tried to finger my bound hands across the lid, trying to locate something I could target. The crunch of footsteps on loose gravel froze me. I managed to take a deep shuddering breath before the boot popped open and harsh yellow light blinded me from above.

I snapped my eyes shut as he grabbed my elbow and wrenched me out of the car. Somehow, I managed to stay on my feet as I was half-dragged away from the solitary light. The fresh air brought the smell of salt and humus. I opened my eyes.

A road overgrown with weeds led to a little pier jutting out over the mud bank. It reminded me of the boardwalks I used to take when I was a kid, looking for guppies, frogs, and toadfish. This was a proper lake though, not just a little billabong. The water had to be deep.

There was no doubt in my mind why I was here. My whole life had been innocent, inconsequential. I’d made sure to anger nobody, learning from mistakes long past. The man didn’t speak, but I knew what he wanted.

“You want revenge.”

He took no notice of me, his gait unchanging. My shoes hit the wood and he pushed me in front of him, holding me at arm’s length.

“Look, you’re either just a psycho-killer, or you remember as much as I do. Which is it?”

Ever forwards, unrelenting.

“Okay, let’s say you do remember. That was the past – I can’t do anything about it now!”

We got to the end of the pier. I turned to him and opened my mouth to speak, but he just dived in, dragging me along with him.

Salty water rushed into my mouth, eyes, and ears. My hands still tied behind me, I was helpless to fight against him. This was exactly how it had gone. He was weaker than me back then, our roles reversed, and I had held him under until he stopped moving. It hadn’t even been anything personal – he was an old man who was taking too long to die, and he was making the country sick because of it. Everyone had turned a blind eye.

Before I lost consciousness, I wondered vaguely if he’d kill the others too, for what we did in our past lives.



Weekly Photo Challenge: Rule of Thirds

In response to the Daily Post’s Weekly Photo Challenge “Rule of Thirds”



Tried bokeh, can’t do bokeh. Decided to just do the ‘rule of thirds’ thing, and I was even struggling with that, but look! Look what nature has provided! A beautiful perfect flower, complete with little sparkly dots of dew, and I take a picture trying ‘rule of thirds’ and unintentionally fulfill a half-decent bokeh!

Moral of the story: don’t let the feeling of defeat actually defeat you.

I am stoked – STOKED – that I took this photo! Little things in life, you know?


Response to Danielle’s Literary Essay Prompt: Frankenstein

1. Why is the Frankenstein’s monster concept so enduring in modern life?

Even if you’ve never read the book, you know the story. At it’s simplest, it is a horror story about a man-turned-monster and a doctor daring to challenge nature. These are now staples of the horror genre. How many mad scientists and awry experiments have been written since? Or what about creatures back from the dead?

I think the reason Dr Frankenstein and his monster have survived for almost 200 years (yes, it will be that long in 2018) is because the story has inspired so much. A large part of it has to do with film – Frankenstein was first turned into a movie in 1910, and since then 55 movies have been featuring Frankenstein’s monster (although there are some tenuous films in that list, but we can safely call it 50, and that’s not counting all the movies and television the monster has cameoed in). It’s become a part of popular culture, and the things Frankenstein has inspired… can you imagine a world without Igor?


I have this, and I am using it as my diary.

So why is Frankenstein so adaptable?I think it’s because it’s got two great ideas going for it – monster and creator. As a comparison, Prof Van Helsing did not permeate pop culture nearly as much as the romanticised aristocratic vampire, Dracula. He didn’t create the monster – he just killed it (after lots of research and experimentation). Sure, we’ve seen plenty of vampire-hunters since, but how many of them seem to be inspired by the Professor? Dr Frankenstein is much a more creative, flawed and interesting character. We’ve therefore seen the ‘mad scientist playing God’ and ‘well-intentioned scientist in over their head’ as the catalyst for many, many monsters and experiments.

doctor drankImage result for back to the future mad scientist 

But I’ve gone off on a tangent here: the original question was about Frankenstein’s monster. I think it’s survived because it’s got three main things going for it:

1. The monster is undead.

2. The monster is an experiment; a creation.

3. The monster has a conscience.

Wow, that was an awful lot of waffling to arrive at the final point. I hope I’m better at this when I start writing assignments on teaching.

What do you think about the tale of Frankenstein? Why do you reckon it survived for so long?



Weekly Photo Challenge: Scale

In response to The Daily Post’s weekly photo challenge: “Scale.”

Two photos again, showing off the gorgeous Library in Ephesus in Turkey:



Can you even see it in the first photo? The ancient town’s main thoroughfare was designed so you could glimpse the Library in the distance as you walk the long marbled road down the slight slope. Well worth visiting!



Weekly Photo Challenge: Serenity

In response to The Daily Post’s weekly photo challenge: “Serenity.”


Low light from the setting sun and tropical flowers bursting from the treetops makes for a perfectly serene atmosphere. Too bad it’s freaking thirty-eight degrees out there. That’s over 100 degrees Fahrenheit folks. Sounds more dramatic in Fahrenheit.

So yeah, I’m back inside with aircon now 😀