Jeanne Owens, author

Blog about author Jeanne Owens and her writing


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First Thing – Stream of Consciousness Saturday #SoCS

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“First thing in the morning,” grumbled Martha as she reluctantly climbed out of bed to answer the scratching at her bedroom door. “Always first thing in the morning.”

She opened the door and stared the orange tabby cat sitting there. It mewed at her and she sighed and said, “Yes, yes, I know, Garf.”

The cat walked off and she followed it to the kitchen, where she opened a can of food and dumped it unceremoniously onto a small plate. She put it on the floor in front of the cat with a mumbled “Enjoy”, then headed back to her bedroom to try to get a few more minutes of sleep.

Once Garf was finished eating, he dashed out the cat door into the back yard. There he found a clowder of cats sitting in the middle of the yard in a circle, all staring at each other. There was a space open in the circle, as if waiting for another cat to join it. Garf ran up and slipped into the open spot.

“Sorry I’m late,” he said to the assembled cats. “My human wouldn’t get out bed like she’s supposed to. I’m working on it, though. I almost have her trained to get up and feed me first thing in the morning.”

The silver tabby in the group nodded. “Good. Are you making any other progress, Number 5?”

“Some. She’s decent with cleaning my litter box and I almost have her trained with using toys. I’m still working on other aspects of her training.”

The silver tabby nodded again then faced the Siamese cat. “How is the training of your human coming along, Number 3?”

“Fairly well, Number 1,” the Siamese replied. “He also is doing well in regards to litter box cleaning. He’s also good when it comes to giving me those tasty, crunchy treats. He still insists on trying to put stupid outfits on me, though, even though I warn him off with growls and paw swipes.”

Many of the other cats nodded and commented on having similar problems with their humans.

The silver tabby looked at a Russian Blue and asked, “How about you, Number 4?”

“Not too bad, sir,” she replied. “They have finally gotten a huge cat tree for me, after all the effort I’ve put into showing them the necessity of one. And they’ve gotten a bunch of fun toys for me. Treat training is going fairly well, too. I am still working on trying to get them to let me outside more. I keeping having to find ways to sneak out to make these meetings.”

Number 1 looked around the group and asked, “Does anyone have anything else to report?”

A black cat opened his mouth, hesitated, then said, “My humans brought home a dog the other day.”

The rest of clowder gasped and began talking over one another, some offering sympathy and some offering advice, and others remarking their angry disbelief.

Number 1 brought the group under control before telling them, ” All right. I think that’s enough for today. Let’s all return home to work on training our humans for the Master Plan, and also think of way to help Number 6 with the dog problem. We’ll meet back here first thing tomorrow morning to discuss the dog. Dismssed!”


This post is part of the Stream of Consciousness Saturday prompt, “first thing”:

The Friday Reminder for #SoCS & #JusJoJan 2021 Daily Prompt – Jan. 16th

 


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In The Corner Of My Mind – Stream Of Consciousness Saturday #SoCS

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Today’s Stream of Consciousness Saturday prompt is “in the corner”. Country music fan that I am (I grew up listening to country music, thanks to my dad), as soon as I read that, I was struck with an earworm. I had Alabama’s song “Jukebox In My Mind” start playing in my head, even though I’ve not heard that song in a very long time.

It’s funny how that happens, isn’t it? How a song that you’ve not heard in a very long time can suddenly pop up in your mind? Or you just happen to hear a song you haven’t heard in years and you can still remember all the words? It happens to me a lot of times, since I have a rather eclectic taste in music, liking all sorts of different types of music.

In case you’re not familiar with the song and are wondering how it fits this prompt, it starts out “In the corner of my mind stands a jukebox.”

Take a listen to it, if you’d like. Alabama has been on of my favorite bands since I was little.

In the corner of my mind stands a jukebox
It’s playing all my favorite memories
One by one they take me back
To the days when you were mine
And I can’t stop this jukebox in my mind
 
I don’t need no quarters
Don’t need any dimes
You filled it up forever
When you said goodbye
 
Heaven knows I love old melodies
They were meant to ease the pain
But the kind that’s playing on my mind
Are driving me insane
 
In the corner of my mind stands a jukebox
It’s playing all my favorite memories
One by one they take me back
To the days when you were mine
And I can’t stop this jukebox in my mind
 
Song by song those melodies
Were meant to ease the pain
But the kind that’s playing on my mind
Are driving me insane
 
In the corner of my mind stands a jukebox
It’s playing all my favorite memories
One by one they take me back
To the days when you were mine
And I can’t stop this jukebox in my mind
No, I can’t stop this jukebox in my mind

This post is part of Stream of Consciousness Saturday:


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The Medium – Stream of Consciousness Saturday #SoCS

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Jack and Jen stood in the living room of their new home and heaved a sigh. It had taken a few weeks but they had finally finished unpacking everything. Jen took a look around the room, making sure everything was where it should be – photos on the walls, books on the bookcase, knickknacks on the shelves and in the curio cabinet, Fluffy’s dog bed in the corner, … With a nod of approval, she collapsed on the couch. Jack joined her a moment later.

“Finally,” Jack said. “I though we’d never finish.”

“I know. But we did. And now, this place can finally start to feel like home.”

“Yeah.”

It was getting late, so the couple decided to retire for the night. As they left the living the room and were heading to bed, a small figurine in the curio cabinet turned slightly toward them.

In the middle of the night, Jen woke up, thinking she’d heard footsteps outside the bedroom door. Heart pounding, afraid someone had broken in, she roughly shook Jack’s arm to wake him, then told him what she’d heard. He shook his head, sure she’d just dreamed it, and was about to tell her that when Fluffy jumped down from the bed and ran to the door. Then he heard the footsteps outside the door, too, clear as day. 

Jack hurried to the door and yanked it open. Fluffy ran out into the hall and towards the living room while Jack peered up and down the hall for who was walking around. To his surprise, no one was there. Confused, he checked each room along the hall, but found no one. He then made his way towards the front of the house to check there. When he got to the living room, he found Fluffy sitting in front of the curio cabinet, staring intently at it. Some of the figurines had be turned around inside it. One of the photos was hanging cockeyed on the wall, as well.

Stunned, Jack called out for Jen to come see it. When she arrived, she gasped in shock. “What’s going on, Jack?” she asked fearfully.

“I don’t know, Jen. I know what it looks like, but it can’t be. Can it?”

“Surely not,” she replied, but finding it hard to discount her eyes.

The couple returned to bed but found it hard to sleep. The next few days found more strange happenings. More things moved around. The sound of footsteps continued, along with the occasional whispered voice. Even an odd shadowy figure began to be seen.

When Jen awoke one night to see the indistinct figure of a older woman standing beside her, she screamed. The figure vanished as Jack awoke with a start and Fluffy sat up at the foot of the bed, instantly alert.

Jen tearfully recounted what she’d seen, and Jack decided they had no other choice but to do something about the problem.

The next day, Jack did some online research and made a few phone calls. The following day, a middle-aged woman arrived at the house. Jack let her in and introduced her to Jen as Linda, a local psychic medium he’d asked to come take a look at the house and possibly tell them what was going on. Jen started to tell her what they’d experienced but Linda held up a hand and walked purposefully to the living room. Jack and Jen followed.

“This room is where the majority of the experiences have been, correct?” Linda asked as she placed a hand on the curio cabinet.

Jen nodded but explained that things had happened throughout the house. She and Jack then led her around the house to let her get a feel for the whole place. Then they returned to the living room.

Linda took a seat on the couch, closed her eyes, let her breathing slow and her senses reach out around her. She began softly asking questions of whatever might be there.

After a few minutes, she opened her eyes and looked at Jack and Jen. She gave them a small smile. “You have nothing to fear,” she told them. “I have sensed no evil here, only the presence of one spirit. She tells me her name is Martha, and she used to live in this house. She didn’t mean to scare you. She was only trying to let you know she was here. She asked me to tell you that she’s happy to have you living here with her, as she’s been lonely and she likes you, and she hopes you will stay.”

Jack and Jen released breaths they didn’t realize they’d been holding. Relieved to know there was nothing bad in the house, they agreed to try living with Martha as long as she kept activity to a minimum, believing they could handle a little minor spiritual activity once in a while.

As the medium took her leave, Jack and Jen thanked her for her help, and Linda told them to call her if they ever needed her help again. Jack didn’t think they would, but he said they would if they did. Linda gave them a smile that seemed genuine but for some reason also made Jack feel a little uneasy, then drove off.

As Jack watched Linda drive off, he shrugged, thinking he’d imagined things, and he and Jen headed back inside the house.

Things in the house were peaceful for Jack and Jen from then on, with only a little ghostly activity from Martha now and again.

At least, for a while…


This post is part of the Stream of Consciousness Saturday prompt, “medium”:

The Friday Reminder and Prompt for #SoCS Oct. 10/2020


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The E-Collar – Stream of Consciousness Saturday #SoCS

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Lucy set the cat carrier down and shut the front door. Then she took the carrier into the living room and set it on the couch. A little black cat mewed from inside the carrier as she rummaged in her large purse.

A tortoiseshell cat wandered into the living room and over to the couch. She looked up at the carrier and asked the black cat, “How did it go at the vet, Salem?”

“It wasn’t too bad, Patches,” Salem replied. “I don’t remember some of it, for some reason, but Mom says my big boy surgery went well. So I guess now I’m a big boy.” He purred a little at the thought.

Patches seemed to smirk as she said, “Oh, yeah, you’re a big boy now, Salem. Do you even know what happened during that surgery?”

Salem stopped purring abruptly, not liking Patches’ tone. “No. What?”

“Don’t you feel pain in a certain location?”

“Yes, a little. They gave me some drugs, I think, to dull the pain.”

“Think, Salem. What’s in the area where you’re feeling the pain?”

Salem focused his attention on the location where the pain was. After a couple of moments, he realized what Patches was referring to and understood finally what had happened at the vet.

Salem began yowling from the carrier, upset at what he’d been put through, and Patches watched in amusement.

Lucy then found what she was looking for in her purse and pulled it out. It was a clear, plastic E-collar that the vet had given her to put on Salem to keep him from messing up the stitches from his surgery. Patches saw it and her amusement grew.

Lucy opened the carrier and took out Salem, who squirmed in her hand and yowled more. She put him in her lap as he continued to struggle, and with minor difficulty managed to fit the E-collar around the black cat’s neck. Then she set him on the couch and took the carrier away.

Salem sat on the couch, miffed at his situation and biting at the collar as he tried to figure out a way to get it off. Patches laughed at him.

“What’s so funny?” Salem asked grumpily.

“You look like a satellite dish, Salem. Or a lamp.”

“Ha ha. Very funny, Patches. How about you do something a little more comforting, huh? I mean, I did just have you-know-what done.”

Patches jumped up on the couch, went over to Salem, and leaned against him. “I love you, lamp,” she quipped.

Salem rolled his eyes. “Shut up, Patches,” he replied.

Photo is from my Pinterest

This post is part of the Stream of Consciousness Saturday prompt, “collar”:


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Sharp As A Tack – Stream of Consciousness Saturday #SoCS

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Jenny opened the backdoor and stepped outside, calling for her poodle puppy Shasta to follow her. The little apricot puppy did as asked, barreling out the backdoor after her owner. Jenny’s boyfriend, Michael, followed after them. Jenny had said that poodles were a smart breed, so he was curious to see just how smart the energetic fuzzball was.

It was a pretty, sunny Autumn day, and a light breeze was blowing through the trees. Occasionally, a red or yellow leaf would drift to the ground. Jenny stood in the middle of the yard as Shasta ran circles around her, eager to play.

“Shasta,” Jenny called. “Come here!”

Shasta continued to run around Jenny while letting out small yips of excitement.

Michael chuckled from the back porch.

“Shasta!” Jenny called. “Come! Sit!”

Shasta stopped running and looked up at Jenny, her head tilted quizzically to one side.

“Shasta, sit!” Jenny repeated firmly, pointing to the ground in front of her. 

Shasta stared at Jenny again, then sat down. Her rear had barely touched the grass when she spotted a squirrel in the yard by the back fence. Shasta instantly took off after it, her little barks echoing across the yard as she ran. The squirrel jumped the fence and scurried up the nearest tree. Shasta stood at the fence, barking up the tree at the squirrel.

Jenny heaved a sigh and shook her head.

Michael laughed and said, “Oh, yeah, she’s as sharp as a tack, Jenny!”

“Stop laughing, Michael,” Jenny replied. “She’s still a puppy and we’ve haven’t been working long on her training. Just you wait. I’ll have her doing all sorts of tricks.”

At the fence, Shasta was jumping up and down, trying to figure out how to get over the fence and get to the squirrel. Michael saw her and snickered. “Sure,” he told Jenny. “I’d like to see that.”

They turned and started to head inside. They didn’t see Shasta spot a pile of junk not far away that was leaning against the fence and start to make her way towards it, intending to climb up it and over the fence.

As Michael and Jenny started to head inside, Jenny called for Shasta. Shasta paused on top of the first piece of junk, gave the squirrel in the tree a brief look of longing, then ran off to follow Jenny inside.

 


This post is part of the Stream of Consciousness Saturday prompt, “sharp”:

The Friday Reminder and Prompt for #SoCS Sept. 5/2020