Jeanne Owens, author

Blog about author Jeanne Owens and her writing


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What a Difference A Day Makes – Stream of Consciousness Saturday #SoCS

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“What a day,” Jimmy grumbled as he plopped down on his couch and leaned back.

Nothing had seemed to go right all day. He was late getting to work, thanks to horrible traffic. Things just seemed to go wrong at work, too, and he wound up getting in trouble with the boss, even though it wasn’t his fault. Then he wound up arguing with his girlfriend after work and he’d just stormed off. To top it off, he got a speeding ticket on his way home. As he sat there on the couch, reliving all the bad things that’d happened, he didn’t think it could get any worse. Then a thunderstorm started up outside and his power went out, and he thought it was just the perfect way to end his day.

He was in such a bad mood, he didn’t even feel like eating dinner. Instead, Jimmy just decided to go to bed early. Even then, he was afraid he wouldn’t sleep good, that he’d be plagued by nightmares. As the thunderstorm continued outside, mirroring the turmoil he felt from his bad day, Jimmy managed to drift off to sleep.

He woke up the next morning, feeling refreshed. He was also surprised to realize he hadn’t had any nightmares. He was still a little hesitant to get up, though, afraid of having another bad day. But as he looked out the window, he saw it was a bright, shiny day. He smiled and found himself in a better mood already. He checked his phone, and found a message from his girlfriend apologizing for the fight they’d had an offering to make it up to him. He also found messages of apology from his work, and a message from an old friend he hadn’t seen in a long time who wanted to meet up.

Jimmy got up from bed and got ready for work, humming a happy little tune as he did so. He felt so much better than he had he day before. “What a difference a day makes,” he thought.


And in case anyone got an earworm from the title, here’s the song:

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

https://lindaghill.com/2021/04/09/the-friday-reminder-and-prompt-for-socs-april-10-2021/


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The Future – Stream of Consciousness Saturday #SoCS

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Who says the future

Is predetermined

And can’t be changed?

The future is not

Carved in stone.

It is something

That is ever-changing,

And is something

You make for yourself.

Don’t be held back

By fatalist thoughts.

Dream your dreams.

Set your goals.

Reach for the stars.

Make your future

What you want.

It is yours, after all.


This post is part of the Stream of Consciousness Saturday prompt, “start with who/whom”:

https://lindaghill.com/2021/04/02/the-friday-reminder-and-prompt-for-socs-april-3-2021/


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On The Run – Stream of Consciousness Saturday #SoCS

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Mitch was in the middle of his daily run, jogging along a path bounded by a creek on one side and trees and shrubbery on the other. It was a peaceful natural area, and he loved to jog there in the mornings because he felt more energized after being out in nature. In the evenings, he usually would come there to walk with his dog, Riley, to relax after a long day at work.

Mitch was approaching a large clump of shrubbery when he heard a small noise coming from the bushes. He stopped running and listened, not sure of what he’d heard. Then he heard it again – a short, high-pitched meow. Intrigued, he slowly approached and looked into the nearest bush. Peering at him from inside the bush was a pair of yellow cat eyes. As he watched, a small pink mouth opened and meowed again. Then a small, black kitten timidly crawled out, sat in front of him, and meowed up at him with its tiny voice.

Mitch stared at the kitten in surprise. He had certainly not expected to come across something like this on his daily run. The kitten wound itself around his legs and continued to let out tiny meows as he tried to decide what to do. The kitten didn’t look very old. It had probably been weened not long ago. But it was kind of dirty and looked slightly underweight. He didn’t think it belonged to anyone. He considered taking it home, but he wasn’t sure how Riley would react to it or how the kitten would react to the dog.

The kitten began climbing his leg, then made its way all the way up to his shoulder, where it crouched and began purring. Mitch instinctively reached up and petted it, and that was it. He was going take the kitten home.

Cutting his run short, Mitch returned to his car and headed home. When he opened front door, Riley greeted him enthusiastically, jumping at him and trying to lick his face. Mitch had to hold the kitten out to the way as he tried to calm the yellow Labrador down. 

Mitch ordered the dog to sit, then took the kitten into the living room. He put the kitten on the floor then called for Riley. The dog ran into the living room and stopped instantly when he saw the kitten. Mitch watched anxiously to see how the two would react. 

Riley crept up on the kitten slowly, curious to investigate the newcomer. The kitten hunched down and gave a short hiss, but didn’t attack immediately. Mitch took it as a good sign. 

Riley sniffed the kitten, and the kitten leaned back as the dog invaded its personal space, but it still didn’t attack. 

Riley finished sniffing, took a step back, and sat down. He panted and his tail wagged. Then he dropped to all fours and let out a short yip, wanting to the play with the kitten. The kitten stared at it with narrowed eyes, as if it considered the dog and its request beneath him. But Riley continued yipping, and the kitten finally gave in. It lunged at Riley with its claws sheathed, and the dog jumped and ran off. Riley paused at the entrance to the living room and looked back. The kitten was standing where Riley had been. It stared at the dog a moment, then ran after Riley. 

The two continued like that for a few minutes, with the kitten keeping Riley on the run throughout the house, playing chase. Mitch settled down on the couch with a sigh of relief. He would still keep an eye on the two for a few days, but he thought that them not immediately fighting and playing instead was a good sign and that they would become good friends.

 


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

https://lindaghill.com/2021/03/26/the-friday-reminder-and-prompt-for-socs-march-27-2021/


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In The Misty Moonlight – Stream of Consciousness Saturday #SoCS

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In the misty moonlight, Aryn crouched on the rooftop and watched the building across the street. She wondered what she’d been thinking when she’d accepted the job. She’d been told it was a house that she’d have to break into. Except this huge building was no house. It was a mansion. The large building and its surrounding land took up at least half the block on that side of the street. And there were practically no trees, just some bushes and flower gardens. So she didn’t have anything to hide behind if she tried to sneak up. 

Aryn watched as a pair of armed guards patrolled the outside of the mansion. She frowned as she tried to think. How was she going to get inside? The moonlight might be misty but it was still a full moon, so there was still plenty of light for her to been by the guards. Why, oh why, the young girl wondered, couldn’t her client have waited a few more days, so the moon wouldn’t be quite as bright? She understood how important the item they wanted her to get for them was, but surely a few more days wouldn’t hurt, would it?

The sound of horses clopping along the street reached Aryn, and she looked to see a carriage approaching the mansion from her left. Perfect! she thought. She quickly and quietly slipped down from roof. Keeping low to the ground, she ran up and jumped onto the back of the carriage as it turned onto the road leading up the mansion.

The carriage came to a stop in front of the mansion and the armed guards approached to talk with the driver and the occupants. While they were occupied, Aryn slid from the back of the carriage and quietly darted around to the side of the mansion. She paused to make sure she hadn’t been spotted, then crept along to the back of the mansion. There she found the servants entrance door. She checked it and found it locked, as she’d expected given the lateness of the night.

She pulled her cloth-wrapped lock picking tools from the leather pouch on her waist and got to work. Within moments, she heard the click of the lock. She put the tools away, quietly opened the door, and slipped inside. 

After giving herself a few seconds to let her eyes adjust, Aryn closed the door and softly crept across the kitchen floor to the main area of the mansion, in search of the item she’d been hired to steal. 


Aryn is a character I used once before on Stream of Consciousness Saturday. You can read it here.

And in case I gave anyone an earworm, here’s the Dean Martin song by the same name:


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

The Friday Reminder and Prompt for #SoCS Feb. 27, 2021

 


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Endings and Beginnings – Stream of Consciousness Saturday #SoCS #Poem

 

The ending of something

Often is saddening,

Bringing with it

Feelings of loss

That we think

Will never go away.

But we are all stories,

And stories never

Truly ever end.

As one story ends

Another story begins,

Just as one door closes

And another door opens,

Revealing to us new beginnings.

Embrace the ending

And cherish the memories

It gives you while

You embrace and

Embark on

The beginning of

Your new story.

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


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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 Journey – Stream Of Consciousness Saturday #SoCS

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Dreams are what

Help define us.

Help give us purpose.

Help us to be

Who we want to be.

Don’t let your dreams

Fall by the wayside.

Dream your dreams.

Become who you want to be.

The road may not be easy,

And may be long,

But always remember,

The journey of a thousand miles

Begins with a single step.

So take that first step

And begin your journey.

 

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

The Friday Reminder and Prompt for #SoCS Nov. 7/2020


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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”: