fictionary… 8 megapixel artist… bloody awful poet.

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If a Tree Falls

tree falls png

I have never been a successful writer.  I’ve never won a single award for writing.  I’ve never been a best-seller on any list, anywhere.  I have fewer than a thousand followers of my blog.  I don’t drive dollars, pageviews, or likes.  My words have never been found on a shelf in any library.  As writers go, I have not been quoted in another book; I’ve not spoken at a conference, or given a talk that was recorded for play on anyone’s YouTube channel.

If a tree falls in the forest, does anyone know I’m a writer?

I once asked someone who knows me well, “What if I just stopped writing?”  They answered, “Better chance of you becoming a woman.”  Okay, if that’s true, what prompted me to ask that question?  Then I remembered I also once asked this person, “Can’t I just be a posthumous success?” 

And no, I didn’t like their answer to that question, either.

Pausing as I write this, I remind myself that only 20 to 30 people will ever read these words.  But I’m still writing them.  I just don’t know why.  I’m hoping that one day, before I stop for good, I will.


© Copyright 2017 William S. Friday


Turn Your Head And Drive



Here it is.  Day 30.  The final day of NaBloPoMo, 2015.

No holding anything back for another day, another week… another year.  It’s all-in day.  Go big or go home.  Ride or die.  All clichés on the table.  A way for a writer to leave an impression that lasts for 11 more months.  So what are you getting out of me?

A song.  A blues song, to be specific.  With music and lyrics, and vocals, by this guy…

Bill Friday

So here it is.  For the last day of November, this is…

“Turn Your Head And Drive”



Copyright 2015 Bill Friday

Bloody. Awful. Poet.



Once upon a time…

(I know, a terrible way to begin any story.  Just like concluding it with, “…and they lived happily ever after.”)

…there was a middle-aged man who thought he could write…  a little.  He wrote  a screenplay that he let no one read, and, for a time, he was a somewhat successful, albeit unpaid, contributor to an online Citizen Journal that now, no longer exists.  He thought he was happy in his pursuit of writing,, and considered the years he was investing in his craft as the equivalent of a fancy journalism or film school like he so often saw advertised on TV between 2 am and sunrise.

Time passed.  Years, even.  The screenplay never got sold, and the Citizen Journal fell into the hands of a disreputable new ownership group.  The middle-aged man’s words grew fewer and fewer with the years and the circumstances of life, until all he had left were poems.  Not the broad sweep of five-pointed prose, or the sharp stick of tightly wound slam.  Just the shit that popped, spontaneous and whole, into his brain at all inconvenient hours.  In dreams.  While at work.  And the bathroom.  Yep, especially the bathroom.  The words weren’t good, they were just real.  For the first time since before the invisible screenplay, the words… his words… were real.

So he began to write them down.

(One note of explanation.  The phrase, “…bloody awful poet”, for those now reading who are unfamiliar with the work of writer/director Joss Whedon, was properly, um… *borrowed*… from a character he created.  A character who, in flashbacks, was known as William, the Bloody Awful Poet“.  Click the brightly colored letters to see just what I’m talking about.)

Including today, there ten more open spaces in the November Nightmare known as NaBloPoMo.  That means plenty more opportunity to share some Bloody Awful Poetry with readers and friends.  Poetry that still comes to me, spontaneous and whole, at all inconvenient hours.  I’ll keep writing them down.  I’ll keep sharing them.

But nobody’s going to see that screenplay… ever.

John Stephen Akhwari


john stephen akhwari 01

I can’t keep up with my own life

let alone the lives of those around me

The lives of those who love me

and God forbid

of those I love

Without meaning to

my life has become the image that

haunted me in my wide-eyed post-adolescence

Of the Tanzanian marathoner

John Stephen Akhwari

who finished last in Mexico City in 1968


just YouTube it

The point is

I want to grab onto life

hold on for all I’m barely worth

Or run

with endurance

and the speed

not just to finish

but to win

Yet on days like this

and most others

it is all I can do to look at life like a


limping man

sweat-drenched and bloody

shuffling in the dark towards the finish of a race

long over

but not for himself


when asked why he did not quit a race



“My country did not send me five-thousand miles to start the race.  My country sent me five-thousand miles to finish the race.”

And so

I look up

into the near-empty stadium

and to a victor’s stand

long since abandoned by those with medals won

and put one more foot in front of one more other

This race almost done


© Copyright 2015 Bill Friday

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