T. D. Smith
My name is T. D. Smith.
T. D. Smith
My name is T. D. Smith.
Sorry it is a bit later than 7PM, but here it is, "3 True Stories," my latest Halloween short story. Enjoy!
Hallie Closed Her Eyes
Hallie closed her eyes
And felt pain.
Then, shadows crept in,
Took form and shape.
Every sin ever committed by her
And the demons danced about,
Gnashing their teeth,
Flailing their hideous limbs,
Re-enacting all the evils
She’d ever seen,
As fell actors in some heinous play.
Hallie was afraid.
How long would this last?
A burst of light.
A figure both a column of light and of vaguely human shape.
Facing them down,
Undeterred by any evil,
Spreads its luminous wings,
And says to them, “No.”
It fends off the shadows,
Wards the wicked winged ones away,
And as smoke vanishes,
So too, they vanish.
Now there is nothing but light and warmth.
But Hallie is still afraid.
The being embraces her, and carries her.
Simultaneously she is an infant again,
Being borne away in the arms of a loving and much larger parent,
And she is herself,
But can walk again,
And is holding this being’s hand
As they walk
Up some gently sloping corridor
Toward an even brighter, warmer light.
The light spills forward,
Benevolent and warm,
From some opening nearby ahead.
“Do not be afraid, Hallie.
Enter, my good steward,
For when I was naked you clothed me,
When I was hungry you fed me,
Thirsty, you gave me drink,
Stranger, you took me in,
In despair, you comforted me,
Sick and you cared for me.”
And Hallie is confused,
Not knowing when she had done these things
For a being,
Like the Man who is now solidifying before her in that Light.
(But her loved ones knew,
We still know.
Her children know,
Her grandchildren know,
And the ones she helped,
Know, too, and always will,
Just like the Lord standing before her,
To greet that warm, faithful soul,
Who has been waiting for so long bedridden, patient and kind.)
She now takes His hand,
And with that,
Takes her final breath.
The pain is gone.
Hallie is no longer afraid.
She steps across the threshold with Him.
Light, beauty, wonder, Love,
Beyond her wildest comprehension,
Fills her soul.
Greet her in that place,
Whose walls are taller than she can see
Whose halls seem to reach out
And continue forever.
They embrace her,
Some fall before her and kiss her feet.
(Again she is confused.)
For the first time since her youth,
Always in her bosom,
Causing her to worry ceaselessly,
That pesky cough,
The one she had
Stayed with her, off and on, relentlessly, for years,
Her soul rejoices
And happiness beyond imagining
Emanates through, around, and in her very being.
Turning around one corner or another,
Comes another one,
You are just in time.
It is perfect timing,
You coming here now.
In the West,
It is Holy Week,
And your passing
With our Lord’s going to Golgotha.
In the East,
Next Week is His Passion,
Is soon to be celebrated!
Come with me,
And taste the Paschal bread
We are preparing
For the Feast of Feasts.”
Hand in hand,
Mother and daughter,
In a company of Hallowed elders,
Into that kitchen,
From where wonderful smells,
And warm hearth,
Greater than the greatest she has ever known,
And far more real than anything in this gray realm,
Together they go
Into the Eternal Celebration
Of His Light and Life.
In love and honor of my grandmother, Hallie Simpson (1939-2022)
I swear I am not dead! (Cue Monty Python joke)
It has been a few months and life has been very busy. I have had little spare time for writing, which I regret. But, I decided to post a story here, for Father's Day (a day late, I know) that I wrote back in October and did not post.
I promise that I am still alive, I am still writing (that has picked up some lately), and that I will have new stories on here soon. There is one I am currently writing that I am rather excited about, so check back frequently!
Anyway, I hope you had a good Father's Day. And if you do not have a father in your life, or are not a father, I hope you had a good day anyway, and have an even better one today. And I hope you enjoy this tale I wrote for my father on his birthday in October 2020. His favorite fairy tale is the Three Billy Goats Gruff, and this is a spin of sorts on that tale, interlaced with the Russian demon Chort. He seemed to really like it, and I hope you do, too!
Life has been hectic.
I feel like I say that a lot on here!
It has, though, with many irons in the fire. I was making great progress on 2 novels, then stopped to give full attention to other things professionally, not least among them starting track meets back up as safely as humanly possible in a pandemic.
We pulled one off successfully, then I got a nice, snowy Sunday to myself and fiancé. We went walking in the woods in a winter wonderland. I looked at our tracks in the snow. My mind drifted to that old poem, "Footprints in the Sand," and an idea came to me for a take on that poem.
Here is the result, that I jotted down then typed up a couple of days later.
Here it is, my Halloween short story, a shivering tale, "Room 216A," for Scaretober this year!
I hope you have a Happy Halloween. I hope you are warm, healthy, and safe. I hope you are with a person or people you love. If you trick-or-treat or ride a hayride or bob for apples or drink some cider with friends, or partake in some other form of Halloween merriment, I hope you have fun and enjoy it and don't become sick from it.
If you do not choose to go out, I hope you do something Halloween-y and fun inside with the members of your household or a loved one. Regardless, I wish you well and hope that Halloween 2020 brings you as much or more joy than always, despite the conditions the year has brought along with it. And, if my tale here, while not really a Halloween one, while it is sort of a ghost story, brings you entertainment and joy, then that will have made my Halloween a happy one.
My best always,
T.D., Halloween 2020
Chapter III is here and ready to be read!
A couple of my friends read it and when I'd given it to them realized I'd committed a minor plot error. It's corrected for you, and I honestly don't know if my friends caught it, so I'll be interested to see if they do.
Anyway, enjoy, and Happy October 1st!
Here it is! I realize I have fallen behind on my weekly chapter promise. However, life and work have been busy and I have been sending each chapter to friends to read first to get some feedback and tweak before posting. I apologize nevertheless. Here is Chapter II. Enjoy!
Chapter III to come soon. I am hard at work penning it down!
As I have said elsewhere in this blog, dreams factor into my writing quite heavily sometimes, being integral parts of many of my stories.
This new story came to me the same way most of them do: confluence of ideas, situations, and goings on in the world and in my life.
I was told many times in conversations with my dad that you "can't have God in a box."
As I have written here previously, my younger brother Andrew is an actual, real-life Russian Orthodox monk who grew up unique, different from others, and always interested in the monastic life.
One of my favorite graphic novel series, written by Neil Gaiman (of course!) was just adapted into an audiobook on Audible.
Crazy things and times, and dark forces behind them continue to go on.
A character, a story, an idea formed and once again I typed up a rough outline bringing all those threads together.
I have not named the monk. Not yet. I suspect in the coming weeks I will.
He too, is special, and has many spiritual gifts others do not, that he will develop over the course of his life encoded in the words contained here on this blog. I will strive my utmost to upload a chapter of his story each week until the entire story is told, to the best of my ability. Once I compile these chapters, I will publish them somehow as a novel.
And he, too has dreams and communicates with a reality above our own.
That is all I will say for now, other than that in such a crazy world that shows no signs of slowing down or returning to the normality we might have enjoyed to a degree in the past, it is important that we carry on writing, reading, creating, and making new things that will inspire and get us through it, give us and future generations, hope, and shine some light in uncertain, dark times.
Without further ado, here is chapter one.
I sincerely hope you enjoy it.
Friends of T.D. Smith