MONTHLY MUSEPAPER #4 – WINNERS & FINALISTS ANNOUNCED! (see results)

Archives: Musepapers

“Taking Our Time” by Jonathan Segol (2017)

“Taking Our Time” by Jonathan Segol (2017)

The MUSE has spoken! Jonathan Segol’s essay, “Taking Our Time,” is a winner in our first-ever Monthly Muse writing prompt on In Memoriam. Find the complete list of winners and finalists here and check out this month’s prompts here and share your own musings.


Taking Our Time

by Jonathan Segol

 

“Attention: it is now 11:30.  The park will close at midnight.  You have thirty minutes to leave the park.”

The three of us–Roger, Billy and me—could leave this park in two minutes, in any direction.  It’s a small neighborhood park.  But after those instructions blare from the loudspeaker on the golfcart-sized vehicle with its headlight pointed at us, we agree it might take us longer leave to the park.  Thirty-one minutes at least.

“Ice Lessons” by M.K. Sturdevant (2017)

“Ice Lessons” by M.K. Sturdevant (2017)

The MUSE has spoken! M.K. Sturdevant’s essay, “Ice Lessons,” is a winner in our first-ever Monthly Muse writing prompt on In Memoriam. Find the complete list of winners and finalists here and check out this month’s prompts here and share your own musings.


“Ice Lessons”

by M.K. Sturdevant

 

I’m running next to the lake, leaping and punching through the fog. It’s spring, freezing cold. Heart pounding, I gasp it, I spit it out once more, to let him know that now is a good time. There’s nobody around. Now, Dad. Come now! There are merely millions of shadows, flickers in high-rise windows to the west. I pause on my path, and not even a gull flaps. I can only hear the lake breaking, shifting ice all around, and I hear the plates rolling slicing and shattering little by little: his steady crackle. He is the line being drawn, from here to Benton Harbor, a noise drawn deep under Sister Bay, a shift in the light over Milwaukee.

I’m walking home later, trying to figure out what he was up to, what he wanted to say. I worry I didn’t get the message.

Dad and I go grocery shopping sometimes. He’s so funny about cereal. He mixes up about four different kinds in his bowl. So I ask him,

“From the Garden” by Michele Flynn (2017)

“From the Garden” by Michele Flynn (2017)

The MUSE has spoken! Michele Flynn’s essay, “From the Garden,” is a winner in our first-ever Monthly Muse writing prompt on Parenthood/Childhood.


From the Garden

by Michele Flynn

 

We live in a small city, and tend a shady backyard the size of two Ford Explorers. Half of the yard is covered in paving stones, and the other half is grass.  We buy sod each year, roll it out and water it. It lasts through mid-September and inexplicably dies. My five year old thinks that grass is an annual that comes in rolls like toilet paper. But he also knows that peas come in pods and potatoes must be dug out of the ground.  At least once a week, I pull our tools and Jake in a red radio flyer wagon to a sunny community garden plot one block from home. We don’t grow prize winning tea roses. We play in the dirt, and bury seeds, wait for them to sprout and ask questions: “Will it grow to the sky like in Jack and the Beanstalk?” “Will it be red?” and most importantly, “How does it taste?”

Jake and I live a parallel life in the garden, one with