The donkey brays after midnight

I believe people are just generally happier when they make time to escape to their favorite worlds to read. For some people, their favorite worlds involve a comfy couch or bed. Other people retreat to different planets, underground cities, magical kingdoms or alternate realities. You fantasy aficionados know who you are.

I have never been a fantasy reader, but as my reading tastes transform, I’m open to any type of book that catches my fancy. But, basically, I like to believe the world I read about really exists. I suppose that’s why in the past I have enjoyed biographies and memoirs. I suppose that’s why I have an insatiable appetite for the works of Rick Bragg. His words drip off the page like molasses. Whether he’s avoiding alligators or setting readers down to meet his family members, he draws us into his world by satisfying our five senses through delectable imagery and emotion. It also helps that he’s a Pulitzer prize-winning journalist. My passion for journalism runs deep within my soul.

When I’m drawn into a story, I want to feel as though the setting, the characters, the conflicts, etc. really do exist. When I was a kid, I read Harriet the Spy by Louise Fitzhugh, and then I became Teresa the Spy, jotting down my illicit entries in my own composition books. But my all time favorite novel is The Outsiders by S.E. Hinton. At the young age of 14 Hinton breathed life into her characters, and they became alive in my mind. I became so attached to the book that I refused to return it to the library. I slept with it under my pillow every night. I made the librarian mad. There was a little part of me that agonized over the fact that I would never be able to meet Sodapop or M&M or Ponyboy. I suppose I subconsciously rationalized that if I didn’t return the book then I wouldn’t have to give up my friendship with the Greasers. To tell you the truth, I think the war between the Greasers and the Socs sparked my decision to minor in sociology.

Journalism teacher Sean Kincaid (from my book The Edge) starts each class with a quote of the day. On one occasion he tells his students, “Words are things; and a small drop of ink, falling like dew upon a thought, produces that which makes thousands, perhaps millions think.” The quote foreshadows events that change the lives of TJ and Megan.  Ah, the power of words. Even the utterance of one syllable can initiate a butterfly effect.

As I mentioned, I am morphing. I am transitioning from the nonfiction world into the fiction world, and in the words of one of my characters, I “kinda like it.” I am happy right now to stay in the realistic realm although I do not discount fantasy. I think I’ve read just about everything by Frank Peretti, and even though his works include nonhuman creatures, I believe the entities he writes about really do exist.

I have heard about other strange paranormal, legendary creatures straight from the pages of fantasy. Some people even claim a few of these creatures are real. Could it be that fantasy and reality do occasionally intertwine? I live near a bluff overlooking a river, and there have been documented rumors that Big Foot lives in the proximity of neighborhood. I can’t say that I’ve actually seen Big Foot, but I have heard donkeys braying outside my window after midnight. That is a fact. I have heard them with my own two ears. Could it be that these alleged donkey brays weren’t made by donkeys at all? Could it be…?

I have yet another challenge for you. Ever so often we encounter maniacal entities that try to bring about our demise. What monster do you face in your life right now? Give it a name. Describe it. How does it try to do you in?  Let us morph fantasy with reality and add an allegorical twist.

My fantasy creature is the idgit. It is very similar to a gnat or a midge. It sucks the life force out of its prey through zings, snarky remarks and backhanded compliments. The idgit possesses a brain the size of a gnat but is twice as annoying. Victims of the idgit may not realize at first they have been bitten, but soon their wounds swell and create pain. Idgits feed on the rotten, as do gnats, and they often carry hidden toxins. It’s best to seek help right away if you are attacked by an idgit.  Better yet, potential victims can avoid the idgit through strong repellant such as self confidence, strong prayer and daily Bible reading.

Okay, it’s your turn. What fantasy creatures lurk about your reality?

13 thoughts on “The donkey brays after midnight

  1. A crepeinhanger. Crepeinhangers come across intelligent and witty. They appear admirable, but oh they shall fool you. Usually, most are older and in some sort of leadership position. Crepinhangers do the opposite actions of Thoreau. They chose not to “suck the marrow out of life,” but to suck the marrow out of you.

    Once you become acquainted with one, the sarcasm and negativity pour out and will seep into your daily vernacular and actions causing you to suck the marrow out of others. Eventually, you even begin to feel like them and enter their depressing/suicidal realm in which they feed off of.

    The best way to rid of one is to simply eliminate your relationship with them. However, it is not that simple. You need positive beings to build you up in order to repair the damage the crepinhangers caused. Most importantly, God is needed in order to rid of them. Since the crepinhanger has blindly drug you into an emotional and spiritual rut, He is the only solution to getting you out. Yes, crepinhangers. Dangerous creatures. They creep around everywhere. Beware.

  2. A Grizmo is almost a centimeter tall, but just because it’s that small doesn’t mean it has no power. Its power is its voice. It climbs inside your ear while you sleep and makes its way to the brain. Then it attaches itself to every inch of the brain so that it can have access to every part of your life. It whispers horrible things to you. It knows how to push your buttons. It’ll turn one of the best experiences in your life to a total disaster. No matter how hard you try to be happy, it turns all your memories into a massive mush of depression. Soon you don’t even trust your friends. Then, you lock yourself away from the world, asking, “Should I even trust myself?”

  3. This is currently how I feel…. Teresa, since you know me you probably know what I speak of…

    This one I call…. The Creature

    My old foe!
    Troubling me since childhood
    Trying to get it right, still cannot comprehend
    All it takes is the right one…
    The light will not go off
    No matter how hard I
    Try to make it make sense
    Consider the pitiful plight

    Of a runner who wasn’t too bright

    But he sprinted so fast,

    That he vanished at last
    One of Lucifer’s ways of making us suffer
    Will it ever make sense?
    Probably not…
    I still have to learn it the best way I can…
    Haunting my dreams
    Never ending anguish and suffering
    The cruelty
    Of making one learn something pointless….

  4. Wow, Rachel. Why don’t you consider going to a writer workshop with me someday? I think you would enjoy some of the poetry sessions. Obviously, poetry is the root of your writing passion. I’ve found that when I enhance the fuel that feeds me, I am more easily able to overcome the things that are just so difficult.

  5. Actually, my goal is to be the next dickinson, but not to be a recluse. Poetry is actually what led me to you in the first place, remember? For some reason, it is easier for me to write poetry than to write a creative story… Why that is, I’ll never know. I would love to attend writers workshops with you. Let me know!
    You are still one of my biggest muses! That one, by the way, was written about mathematics in case you did not figure it out:) However, being the literary genius that you are, I am sure that you already did:)

  6. Yep, I got it right. 🙂 I know math can be a real obstacle. Don’t give up. Maybe you just need to learn it / see it from a different perspective. What is your main problem with math? Where does it all go downhill for you? I’m not an expert at math, but I know a little bit about looking through the wrong window.

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