Our own paradise.
Our own piece of heaven.
Our own paradise.
Our own piece of heaven.
My father used to tell me to take
a long walk on a short pier.
I thought he was trying to get rid of me.
I would walk away.
We weren’t close.
We never talked.
But maybe he was trying to share something with me.
His love of the sea.
He had been a Marine in World War II.
He could have been sharing with me in his awkward way.
His love of boats and the deep, blue sea.
Now when I look out at the ocean,
I think of him.
A perfect oasis on the shore.
You could not ask for anything more.
Sun and surf during the day,
But at night there’s hell to pay.
The waves welcome daily swimmers,
But at night there are no winners.
Afraid to venture out after dark,
Residents stay clear of the town park.
One night, a hanging party was had
By the dark creatures who are plain bad.
Our town is plagued by darkness and woe.
We don’t even know who is our foe.
THE DEAD GAME
A small, petite, middle-aged woman with kind brown eyes and short brown hair, dressed in a conservative pin-striped blue suit, with low black heels, came over to greet them. “Hi! My name is Irene Moore and I’m the mayor of this village. When the killings began some years back in Oasis, Leanne approached me, explaining the situation between the good vampires and The Dead. She told us that it might take some years to destroy all the wicked vampires in town. She offered us a way for us to escape the atrocities that were happening too frequently around us.”
“We accepted her offer. She gave us this door, which opened to any fantasy that the person opening the door wanted to imagine. Whoever walked through the doorway was safe from any violent storm or attack on our village,” continued a tall brown-haired man.
“This is my husband, Jack. He is also the village’s sheriff. He is the one who makes sure that whoever walks through the door comes out again safely.”
“What if a person decides to imagine a horrific scene instead of a fantasy?” David asked.
“Why do you ask such silly questions?” Mike turned to David.
“It isn’t a silly question, because I do have to make sure the scene is peaceful before anyone crosses the threshold. Someone had to remain behind to watch over the door while the villagers escaped through the doorway. It was a huge responsibility that I’m happy is finally over,” Jack said.
“Why is it over?” Todd asked.
“Leanne informed us today that we are finally free of The Dead and their evil games, so we won’t need to escape any longer. We were just coming here to see our door for the last time. Our daughter, Cindy, wanted one more fantasy before it was gone for good,” Jack said with a smile.
Cindy’s laughter could be heard tinkling merrily through the open door. It was the laugh of a young girl who was happy and carefree. That is what Shana wanted for the town and this village: a lifetime full of joy and challenges and many happy endings.
Irene called to her daughter that it was time for her to return. Cindy waved goodbye to her new friends at the carnival and ran back through the doorway to her mother.
She said to everyone, clustered around her at the diner, “That was fun. I will miss the magic door.”
Irene bent down and picked up her daughter. “You will have many more adventures in life that will be real, but it will be fun to remember the fairy-tale adventures that we had behind the door. Now go out and play with your friends.”
Cindy ran out to play. Shana looked across the street and noticed other children also running out to play in the park. These children didn’t need fairy tales, since they had a very beautiful life right here in their village.
“I agree,” said Leanne who appeared behind Shana. Shana turned around and also recognized Reece and Diane in the crowd.
“I forget that you can read minds,” Shana said.
“Sorry, we were just arriving to remove the door.”
“Could we have a door just like that in our town?” David asked Leanne.
“Don’t act silly,” Mike said.
“Don’t correct me anymore. If you aren’t happy with Louise and me being a couple, then go find different friends.”
“I’m sorry, I guess I was feeling left out. I’ll leave you both alone if you want.”
“I want you to be friends with both of us. Just lay off of me a little.”
“See. You don’t need a magical door to find happiness. You could find it within yourselves and with the people around you. You just have to open your eyes and your heart to the possibilities.”
With that said, Leanne disappeared with Reece and Diane and the magical door.
The villagers began dispersing, while waving goodbye to their new friends from town. Irene and her husband thanked them for coming and sharing the special experience with them. The couple briskly walked out of the diner into the brilliant sunshine, hand in hand.
Let’s take a walk.
Down the path
covered in flowers.
Down the stairs
to the beach.
Can you feel the ocean breeze?
Can you smell the flowers?
The sun rides high in the sky.
My mood is riding as high.
Let’s not stop.
Let’s keep walking.
Fisherman are bringing in their catch.
Seagulls circle around them.
Searching for any scraps of fish.
Can you smell the fish?
A unique aroma.
Let’s sit down and
watch the waves,
lapping at the shore.
At this moment,
life feels perfect.
Life is perfect.
The sky turns from blue to black.
The waves rise up and bow
to the forces of nature.
Boats head to shore.
All in a hurry.
In a hurry to out race the storm.
The waves pound a furious beat.
Raindrops join in the chorus.
Thunder accompanies with its dark sound.
Pound, pound, pound.
Could we survive nature’s wrath?
Only time will tell.
If you could go anywhere,
where would that place be?
What would it look like
in your mind?
In my mind, it would look like
There would be steps leading
down to the calm, blue waters.
The sun would be shining on
the bright white buildings.
The air would be warm with
The sun would be targeting
its hot rays on my back.
Yes, that would be paradise for me.
Linda and Shana hadn’t remained in their apartments, like Todd had requested, but were driving to the small, peaceful fishing village.
As Shana drove along the cobbled road, Linda thought about how much she loved visiting the pretty village. It was nestled in lush green shrubbery, alongside a busy dock with fishing boats going in and out for the day’s catch. The houses were beautiful with large gardens and backyards, complete with patios and swimming pools. Each house was painted a different color of the rainbow.
The village was only a half a mile from the Oasis Hotel, but the two places seemed miles apart in lifestyles. The hotel catered to the rich of Oasis and to very wealthy tourists, whereas the village seemed more down to earth: kids playing in the street and laundry hanging in the backyards.
The village offered many unique stores for tourists. The town square had gift shops, boutiques, and a large assortment of antique stores. The remaining stores—such as the diner, grocery store, hardware store, and gas station—were popular with the villagers.
In the center of the square was a park with tall trees, a huge grass lawn, white painted benches, and a colorful playground. Kids could be seen playing in the playground, while people were out walking their dogs or just standing around socializing under the shady trees.
They parked their car in front of the diner, which appeared to be very busy, with a constant stream of customers entering and exiting through its front door. This was as good a place as any other, decided Linda, for them to begin their investigation.
As they walked from their car, they were enveloped in the sweet smell of flowers from the colorful rose bushes lining the busy sidewalks. Large trees provided shade for the pretty white benches along the stone pathways. It was a sunny day, so many people were strolling by the shops—many with ice cream cones cradled in their hands.
Since it was already noon, the diner was full of customers: mothers with babies, men taking lunch breaks, and teenagers hanging out in groups. Most of the orange and green vinyl padded booths were already taken. Bright sunshine sparkled through the clear windows, directing its glare on the animated faces of the diner’s patrons.
The diner appeared to be a cheerful place. But then Linda noticed that all the diners were staring at them. It had been very noisy when they’d first entered, but it had turned much quieter once they’d settled into a booth. Linda thought again of the dividing line in town between the older and newer residents. This time there seemed to be an imaginary line dividing this village and their town.