Brain

Every Thursday, I like to use a writing prompt.

Today, I’m using the word “brain,” which popped into my head, so I started thinking about it!

I don’t remember who said this or where I read it, but I found it surprising that people used to wonder where our thoughts were.

Didn’t we have them in our heads, and wasn’t that ever so obvious?

I don’t hear what I’m thinking in my feet, arms, heart, or liver.

The origin of the word “brain” seems to agree with me. It comes from an ancient combination of “marrow” and “mind.” Mind marrow is definitely a place for thought.

And yet people haven’t always been sure where our thoughts were located.

Now, here’s a thought.

What if I’d grown up being told my thoughts were in my heart?

Would the center of my chest then become the place of my dreams, my waking moments, and general cognition?

Or would I just know and feel that no, my thoughts are in my head because that is where I hear them?

It’s definitely something to think about, and maybe one day I’ll get around to researching this more and find out how we learned that our thoughts definitely belong in our heads.

5 Reasons to Start Writing Right Now

1. Writing is a fun and safe activity during COVID-19.

Even if your children don’t read yet, they can dictate a story and you can write it down for them.

2. If you have a story in mind but are afraid of it, don’t be. Put it to paper or screen.

Make those memories now for future generations. They’ll thank you for it, especially those who never got the chance to meet you in person.

Great-great-great-Grandpa was a Writer? Nice. Great-great-Grandma wrote that? Wow!

3. Writing can be cathartic. It’s a bit like going outside and rolling around in the grass, or tumbling down a few hillsides. You may become slightly bruised, but come home feeling better than you have in years.

4. The characters aren’t real, and yet they are. They want to be brought to life. They want you to crawl deep into their heads and know them.

And no, you’re not cheating on your spouse.

5. If you’ve never written a story except to (try) and make your English teacher happy, write one to make yourself happy. Have a new experience.

Remember. You don’t need reasons or anybody’s permission to write.

You don’t even need an idea. Many stories do not start with a brilliant plan, but are made of words that go through a lot of revision to become what they are.

3 Reasons to Subscribe to my YouTube Channel Today

Don’t need reasons to subscribe to YouTube channels?

Hyacinth Grey’s YouTube Channel

3. My videos are short.

You’ll never fall asleep watching hours of boring footage.

I try for under a minute.

2. Be among the first to read some of my haiku poetry before I post it on this blog.

1. I love to write, and most of my stories require a cover.

When I’m ready to reveal, it’s gonna be on YouTube first!

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In Life – Part 3 – Sci-Fi Fantasy

This is a work of fiction.


The truck’s engine won’t start, so I’m going to be stuck here for a while. I see a woman talking on a cell phone and wish I had one. While she can call wherever she’s going and explain she’s stuck in traffic, I have to sit here and wait until the truck can be moved.
Aunt Bev drove to the hospital and found the right floor. She approached a nurse and explained who she was.
She was shown into a room and saw me lying there under a pink blanket.
“What’s her name?” Aunt Bev whispered to the nurse.
“She doesn’t have one yet.”
Aunt Bev thought for a moment, and said, “Alexis Georgia Freemont.”
Alex was my dad’s name, and my mom’s name was Georgia.
“That’s a pretty name,” the nurse said. “She can go home any time. I have a stack of papers—”
A code was called and the nurse rushed away, leaving Aunt Bev standing there, unsure of what to do with me.
An older woman walked by in the hall, and Aunt Bev dashed to intercept her.
“Excuse me, I’m here to take my niece home. Could you help me learn how to mother her please?”
The woman smiled and said, “I’m an administrative assistant, so I can help you find the right papers, but I’m afraid I don’t know much about children.”
She was on her way to a meeting, but she helped Aunt Bev to find a chair she could bring into my room, and also showed her which forms needed her signature, and then she made sure Aunt Bev knew about all the follow-up appointments.
When she’d finished reviewing all the papers, Aunt Bev said to the woman, whose name was Nancy, “I’ve never even held a baby, let alone cared for one. My sister was just a year younger.”
“I’m sorry I have to go now,” was all Nancy said before she exited from the room, leaving Aunt Bev alone with tiny me.
The clock ticked. Aunt Bev sat there and watched me breathe, but didn’t touch me, for fear of doing something wrong.
Ten minutes went by, and then somebody else came walking down the hall.
Maybe it would be a nurse, Aunt Bev thought.
She stepped out into the hall and saw a woman carrying a baby.
“Oh hello, I’m Becky, and this is my daughter, Amanda. We’re just on our way home. Are you also a new mom?”
“No, I’m a new aunt. I’m Bev. My niece’s name is Alexis and she’s sleeping in that room.” She pointed. “I’m taking her home, but I have no idea what to do with her.”
Becky smiled and said, “I’ve got three at home, so I can help you out.”
She did, and that’s how Amanda and I became best friends.
Besides two older sisters and one brother, Amanda got a younger brother before her dad was diagnosed with cancer and passed away when Amanda was three.
By the time I arrive at the hospital, almost an hour has gone by since I took the call, and I still have to find out where she is, since I didn’t get a chance to write it down, and my memory doesn’t seem to be working properly.
I approach a woman at a desk, give her Aunt Bev’s full name, and tell her who I am.
She clicks keys and then looks up from her computer, her face sad.
“I’m afraid she was pronounced dead twenty-five minutes ago.”
Dead? This isn’t possible. Aunt Bev wouldn’t want to die in a hospital. She always told me she wanted to go at home, yet here I stand, being told she’s gotten exactly what she didn’t want.
A few minutes later, I see my aunt’s body, and I have to accept the truth. She’s waxen and still, but it’s definitely her.
I need to arrange a funeral.
This means I should call the minister.
Do I have his number?
Oh, right, I can call the church.
Where’s the phone?
I don’t want to leave Aunt Bev here and go home.
Oh, right, there’s a phone here, somewhere.
I finally manage to ask somebody where it is, and I’m directed to a tiny room with a phone hanging on the wall. There’s no phone book.
Is this where criminals make their last phone call before being thrown into jail?
No, of course not. This is a hospital, not a police station, but the walls are so dingy and bare, and the phone looks old and dirty.
Gingerly, I pick it up, and put it to my ear. I dial 411 but get a message informing me that that extension does not exist. I’m about to hang up and try again, when the automated voice tells me to dial 9 for an outside line.
I hang up, pick up, and dial 9 and then 411.
An operator answers.
“Hi, I’m looking for my church.”
“What’s the name of your church?”
It’s a little white building with hard pews inside, friendly people, and wood floors that creak merrily when you walk on them, but what is it called?
“I know the address. Will that help?”
“Yes.”
I give it to her and she gives me the number, but there’s no pen.
“Can you repeat it please?”
She does, and I try to memorize it.
I thank her and hang up, but now I can’t remember the number.
Did it end with 2022 or 2220?
I try the first version and get some man’s answering machine. He just says to leave a message.
I hang up and try the second version, which connects me to another answering machine, but at least this one’s for a church, and I hear our minister’s friendly voice.
After the beep, I say, “Hello, this is Alexis Freemont. Um, I’m not, oh, I can’t receive calls here. Um, er, I’ll try again, like, later. Sorry. Um, goodbye.”
With red hot cheeks, I hang up and leave the useless phone hanging on the wall in the useless little gray institutional room.


Part 4 will be posted on Sunday, October 25.

Need a Thriller? check out Wounded Bride

Wounded Bride is my first book and was self-published with FriesenPress in January 2020.

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Cover Image of Wounded Bride by Hyacinth Grey

About the Book

The city of Chicago is relentless. Murders and other violent crimes pile up: a woman lies in the hospital in a coma, a man is brutally attacked in his sleep, and a child suffers.
Detective Maria Mateo is new to the Chicago Police Department, but she’s not soft. In spite of her strength, every case that arises brings troubling memories of her past and fear that her deepest secret will be revealed and threaten everything she’s worked for.
When her captain discovers she’s having difficulty with her health, she faces the possibility of losing her badge for good. Mateo struggles to keep her personal baggage out of her work, but when a woman is almost smothered, the investigation leads Mateo to help someone she never thought she’d see again.

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Time Gone By – Part 14 – Science Fiction

This is a work of fiction.


I was not looking forward to the conversaton I was going to have with Sammy when it was his turn to help me. It wouldn’t be until dinner, so I would just have to get through the day.
We’d just eaten breakfast when my phone rang. I looked at it, and saw my daughter’s name. She’d texted when they’d arrived at their hotel, and occasinally to say they were having a great time, but this was the first actual call. Stacey had never been the kind of person to chatter away on the phone, so if she was calling, something important must be going on.
I sat down at the picnic table and tapped Accept.
“Hi Stacey, how are you?”
“I’m not sure. Sandi from work texted me yesterday while Chuck and I were . . . busy. Her message said ‘I heard about what happened, call me if you need to talk.’ The thing is, I have no idea what happened, and I don’t want to ask her. I tried to check messages at home, but I can’t remember the password. It’s on a piece of paper on the desk in the office. I hope I gave you the key.”
I checked my purse.
“Yes, you did. Should I go and check your messages or read out the password?”
“Would you mind going there and checking mail and messages? I’ve been trying to check my work e-mail, but the server keeps saying there’s some problem, and there’s nothing new in my personal e-mail. Chuck removed his work e-mail from his phone before we left. Sorry, I know you must be busy with the kids, but I’m worried and I don’t want to ask Sandi what she’s talking about.”
“We’ll go right now. We’re going for a hike later, but we have time to go home first. I’ll stop off at the store and buy food for when you get home on Monday.”
“Monday? What? Can you hold on a second?”
“Sure.”
Poor Stacey sounded so distracted. She was supposed to be having a good time, not worrying about some message a colleague had probably sent by mistake. She loved her work; it was where she and Chuck had met, although they didn’t work in the same department, but my daughter didn’t always know when to take time off and relax.
She came back on the line.
“Mom, I think I’ve screwed up. What date do you have for our return flight?”
I looked at the calendar on my phone.
“This coming Monday.”
“Oh no, I’m so sorry. It’s not this coming Monday, but the next one. I don’t know how I managed to do that.”
“That’s no problem. I’m happy to stay here for another week with the kids.”
“Are you sure? I can call around and see if anybody can babysit.”
“No, there’s no need to do that. If we can’t stay here any longer, we’ll go to your house.”
“I don’t think we’ve set up the guestroom yet.”
“Don’t worry about that. If there’s no bed, I’ll put my sleeping bag on the couch.”
“I’m sorry Mom.”
“Don’t be. I’ll call you when we’re at the house.”
*
I unlocked the front door, and the smell hit me.
“Yuck!” Sammy yelled. “Dead dog!”
“It’s not a dog,” I said. “It’s spoiled food. Do you want to stay outside and play while I clean up?”
The boys did, but Lydia came with me.
It didn’t take long to find the source: an open package of cheese had been left in a cupboard.
I found a bare minimum of cleaning supplies, cleaned up the mess as best as I could, and settled Lydia in the living room with her knitting.
I checked on the boys and then went into the office. I put my phone on the desk and called Stacey.
“I’m here. Want me to read the password to you?”
“Can you listen to the messages and call me back if there’s anything important?”
“Yes, sure.”
“Thanks. Chuck’s begging for breakfast.”
I laughed and we said goodbye.
There were a lot of messages. Many of them were from people saying thank you to Stacey and Chuck for the lovely wedding. I wrote down the names and saved the messages.
Then there was one from the kennel. Popeye had passed away peacefully in his sleep.
I called Stacey back and told her.
“Oh no! Would you mind going?”
“I don’t mind, but are you sure? They said it’s not a problem to keep his ashes until you return.”
“Yes, I’m sure. I’d like Curly to have the honor.”
She paused.
“Mom? I know this might sound crazy, but I don’t want to come home . . . and find . . . I know it’s not him, but it would be like Abe was gone all over again.”
“What do you mean?”
“Can you take the kids and get another dog?”
“Are you sure?”
“Yes. Hold on a sec please.” I heard her talking to Chuck, and then she came back. “Yes, Chuck’s fine with it. Can you do it?”
“Yes. Just so there’s no misunderstanding, you’d like me to take the kids to pick up Popeye’s ashes and Curly is the one who will decide what to do with them. You’d also like me to take the kids and get another dog.”
“Yes please.”
“Okay. I’ll listen to the rest of the messages first.”
“I’ll stay on the phone. Chuck’s buried in bacon and eggs.”
A minute later, I played the last mesage.
I’d put the phone on speaker so Stacey could hear, and a man’s deep voice resounded through the room.
“Hi,” he drawled in a wonderfully smooth Southern accent. “This message is for Stacey and Chuck. We’re downsizing just a little, so your services are no longer required. We’ve put your final paychecks in the mail. I heard you went off to Hawaii to enjoy each other’s company on the beach, so have fun in the sun — if y’all still can.”


Part 15 will be posted on Friday, October 23.