Natural Saunter

By Ami (Gypsie) Offenbacher-Ferris

Response to Weekend Writing Prompt #246: This weekend your challenge is to write a poem or a piece of prose in exactly 51 words using the word Saunter.

What is it about a man’s walk that turns my own legs to jelly, sets my heart a flutter and keeps my eyes locked on his retreating form?

Not an arrogant, false or defensively combative saunter. It’s the natural saunter of a man who knows he’s a man. Oh yes!


By Ami (Gypsie) Offenbacher-Ferris

Response to

As a people, as a Nation, in one of the most medically advanced countries in the world; there is absolutely no reason so many of our citizens go without health and dental care.

Except for Greed. Greed has overshadowed, no; completely absorbed any semblance of responsibility and compassion for the sick, chronically ill and elderly and turned the care of our loved ones and ourselves into a multi-trillion dollar business with CEO’s and CFO’s, financial analysts, consulting firms, sponsored pharmaceutical research and pill mongering.

Yachts, limousines, mansions and vacation resorts built on outrageous prices propagated by greedy insurance companies; the middle man, the barterer, the auctioneers of our health care. No matter what the doctor says you need, when the insurance company says no go; we go without the prescribed medication while they go to Bermuda.

It’s time we insist on quality health, dental, vision, and hearing care. This country, these innovations were developed out of need. We are in need again and if we as a people, do not demand regulating our insurance and pharmaceutical companies, the only losers will be us. Insist on it!

Memories by Ami (Gypsie) Offenbacher-Ferris

Finally recovering and hoping (fingers crossed) not to backslide; I’ve had nearly five weeks to lay here, contemplate, remember, dream. One thing I do regret is the day I had to sell my horse and my daughters horse due to a divorce and subsequent financial distress.

She never forgave me and of course, I’ve never forgiven myself. I came across this picture, closed my eyes and could feel and smell my magnificent Appaloosa moving beneath me as we made our way through the woods, over small streams and the wild gallop back as I gave him his lead across the meadow and back to the stables, where he was boarded.

There’s nothing like the smell of a barn full of horse gear, feed and the aroma of the attached stalls. I was born to be a farm girl that somehow always ended up trapped in the concrete, metal and noise of the city.

So this memory is for my horse, D.J. and my daughters sweet horse, Pal. They went to very good homes and were well cared for. I will always carry their love and affection in my heart.


By Ami (Gypsie) Offenbacher-Ferris

Your prompt for JusJoJan January 27th, 2022, is “understanding.” Use the word “understanding” any way you’d like. Enjoy!

I have no understanding of what you did and why? You are exactly right, I do not! What’s more, I do not want to understand because that would bring me down to your level, which is below scum.

After everything I did, everything I went through to support you, to help you fulfill your dreams, financial assistance, late nights helping you study for exams and boards while working full-time myself and taking care of our babies.

You get that scum of the earth? OUR BABIES! Yours and mine. Dark haired, dark eyed beautiful babies. I don’t see a blonde bimbo hair on either one of them. No blue eyed fawn or would that be faux looking creature looks back at you, oh well, except from your bed you piece of unmitigated garbage!

What’s that? I’m sorry, I’m having a little trouble hearing you? I honestly don’t care nor do I want to hear your lame excuses. This is all your fault! Stop whining, it really is beneath you. What would your cronies and peers think?

Actually, let me get a picture of you, all trussed up like a New Years Eve pig! I’d put an apple in your mouth but I much prefer that gag.

Hmm? I’m so sorry but truly, I can’t understand a word you are saying. How does that feel by the way? Not being heard or acknowledged? It’s really not a nice feeling at all, I should know. Eighteen years I’ve lived with a person who doesn’t even know my favorite color.

So, now I believe we have come to an understanding, yes?

Hidden Message

By Ami (Gypsie) Offenbacher-Ferris 95 Words

It’s here, I can feel it in my bones. I’d been searching for it for years, my prize was within reach. My body literally vibrated with anticipation.

Of course, X did not mark the spot like in the adventure movies; my favorites. The disc would be priceless, not only due to its age and beauty but more so, the message it carried. It was said the hand of God himself had inscribed the monolithic disc with the words that would save our race.

The ground shook. Earthquake! I hear the crack of glass above me.


Lady Jabberwocky’s prompt for the week is to write a story or poem based on the word ring.

Ring of fire

around my chest

Ring of ice

To bring me rest

Ring-necked ducks

flutter across my mind

Fevers pitch

Hallucinations bind

Rings of silver, gold and red

fairies circle the colorful hue

Parakeets bright in orange and green

Sporting ring necks of deepest blue

Across the room

a man in black

His neck ringed all in white

His robe a simple gunnysack

Beckons me to come back home

Unto his hand a gold light glows

A ring of such resplendent delight

Calling all souls home this night

Surviving! I have Survived – So Far!

By Ami (Gypsie) Offenbacher-Ferris

From poetisatinta – two challenges, Fandango’s One-Word Challenge being “dogged” and Linda’s is “surviving” (or a derivative of the words) see the links below, here is my poem:-

The COVID-19 Monster attacked me early morning of January 3 this year, with a sore throat. I thought, oh, I’ve caught a cold. Bummer, but no big deal. I’m immunocompromised, so unable to receive the vax to end all vaxes, since it might kill me. Didn’t much like the odds, so self-isolated, wore masks, washed my hands and tried to eat, reasonably well. Missed Christmas with my children and grand-children but realized in the end, it would be worth it.

By two o’clock the same day, I started to hurt. Really hurt. Bone deep, whole body muscle cramping ache. Check my glucose levels, being a Type 2 Diabetic and a young sixty-three years old and they were elevated but not alarmingly.

At six o’clock I had began shivering, fever out of control at 103.9. I either had the flu again (I had it about six weeks prior) or … IT had found me despite my best efforts.

I drove myself to my local ER where they immediately administered two different COVID tests. Both came up positive. They administered IV fluids, antibiotics, steroids and Tylenol for the fever, and sent me home with the instructions everyone has either read or heard about. Self-isolate, stay hydrated, eat and rest. Follow up with your doctor, which I did. Meds prescribed, picked up, home again and in such horrendous pain I dreamed of slicing my muscles out of my body to gain relief.

I woke up several nights later drenched in sweat. Shivering again. Fever climbed back up over 102. Got into the bathtub and started coughing. Coughed so hard I lost my breath and my lungs went into spasm. I could not get a breath in, they were like tight vice grips around my chest stating, nope, not going to do that again girlie, you are on your own.

Wrapped in a towel, I yanked open the back door and let the frozen night bathe my face and nose in clean, crisp air. My lungs relented, allowing the frigid air to enter and soothe their wounded membranes.

Clothes on, unable to drive now, I called for an ambulance. Wonderful people. Talked to me, gave me oxygen, assured me I was ok and took me back to my local ER.

Several hours later I’m diagnosed with COVID-19 Pneumonia. More IV fluids, more steroids, more antibiotics and an inhaler later and I was discharged with the same instructions as before, and follow up with doctor. Twenty dollar cab ride and I’m back home alone, staring the Monster in the face.

Days and nights of literally forcing myself to breathe. My SpO2 Oxywatch from Walgreens fluctuated from 92% to 97%. I gave in, phoned for ambulance exhausted.

They came, they assessed, they left. Slight fever, O2 levels within good range. Hospitals closed due to over-fill. Rest, stay hydrated, eat and call if anything changes. Follow up with doctor. Each time I followed up with my doctor, I was told to call for ambulance if I got worse.

More days later, unsure of how many but my text lights up. It’s my Women’s Writer’s group. Where am I? I never don’t just not show up or call, text. This is my one outing I allow myself, in mask and seated over six feet away from each other.

I honestly remember having a conscious thought that I needed to let them know I was sick and wouldn’t make it this month. I thought I did. I meant to do so but, I must’ve thought I’d done so, when I had not.

Upon hearing the news, the subsequent hospital visits, etc. My lovely group took action, even though most are at least forty minutes away from me. Within two hours I had bags of groceries, H2O, snacks and a hot bowl of soup in my hand. Not only that, but I have two very furry beasts, so the floor was covered in loose molting fur and it had been vacuumed up completely.

With a full tummy, meds taken and feeling loved, I fell into a pretty restful sleep for several hours. Until the coughing started again. Coughing so violently that I covered myself, my clothes, my bedsheets, my linens in urine. Even my mattress was soaked through the memory pad mattress cover. Fever was back up. Monster had let me have a short respite and was back with a vengeance.

Short, tight breaths to take in oxygen while not disturbing the Monster overmuch. Check O2 levels, stable at 92% but I feel horrendous. Into a steaming bath to get my lungs to release and clean the stink from my body but nothing too long, can’t exacerbate the fever. So weak. Head for recliner with clothes in hand, too weak to dress in the bathroom.

Finally dressed. Not sure if I slept or passed out, probably both. I awoke with a horrendous pounding at my front door. It’s dark inside, no lights on. No lights on outside. Apparently there’s been an ice storm and my relatives, neighbors and friends have been unable to reach me by phone. I remember thinking that I might be dying, and wondering how it was going to feel.

Bang! Bang! Bang! Ma’am? Paramedics, can you answer the door?

Well, hell. Now I have to lug this tired, weak body out of this recliner to answer the blasted door and why is it so dark anyway?

So the paramedics came in, assessed me and took me back to our local hospital, again. It was dark because it was around nine pm and freezing cold because we were iced in. I had a fever yet again and found to be somewhat unresponsive and extremely weak. COVID tests come back positive even after the first diagnosis over twenty-one days ago.

IV fluids, chest X-rays, antibiotics, steroids, inhaler and another COVID-19 pneumonia diagnosis and … sent home. Except there’s no way home. Roads are iced up, neither Uber or Lyft are in service nor are taxis. Six hours later I finally hire a private service out of Wilmington and pay one hundred dollars for the ten minute ride home. Finally get into my own bed at 5:45 am, exhausted and broke.

So it’s Sunday, January 23, 2022 nearly nine o’clock pm and though it’s early, I’m still actively diagnosed, I can breathe. I’m dogged surviving and plan to keep on until I can’t anymore.

Cold Love

by Ami (Gypsie) Offenbacher-Ferris

Looking in from far away Priorities ring true this day Love is not love at all When swings one way No recall

Lying alone in the dark in so much pain The one you thought you loved so far away Not by circumstance but by choice

Priorities ring true this day I’m worth more than a shrug or a passing grin More than I’ll see you next week Or I might not come busy again

Love is not a game to be played the scorecard lies within the one maimed It is not a test of win or lose Real character shines through when one is True Evil intentions can abide when real love can not be found

Within my heart I hold such love love rebuffed becomes distant and cold Love is more than kisses and hugs Responsibility reigns priorities rule

Slip Away

By Ami (Gypsie) Offenbacher-Ferris

In the beginning

the thought of slipping away

is terrifying

is heart-stopping

is a far distant aspect to be avoided

In the beginning there is no pain

there is no struggle to breathe

no struggle to walk

or to talk

or to eat

no reason to fight

The war rages on

the body is torn

time slips away

Naught even blaring a horn

save the last tender sound

Slip away breath peace abounds

Remembering Summer

Copyrighted Photograph by

Ami (Gypsie) Offenbacher-Ferris

Southport, NC