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  • Becky Adams

No Pressure Present Tense: Writing Prompt #4

Being mindful is all the rage! It’s good to take a breath and look around in the present without worrying about whether it’s good or bad.

With that in mind, here is Writing Prompt #4:

Write a mindful paragraph of at least 100 words. Describe exactly what is happening in this moment. Describe what you are experiencing with each of your five senses. Let go of assigning a scale or score; be neutral in your word choice. This isn’t supposed to be judged—by your or anyone else. It’s just a moment to stop & think & breathe. Do this two or three times, at different times of day.

Here is my response, on three different days:

After a sweaty walk on a hot day, I bolt for the pool. I wade into the water, instant relief for my feet, legs, hips. The cold pushes the heat in my body upward, puffing my fingers, reddening my face, and toasting my scalp. I pause for a few seconds to experience the odd sensation of a sweltering upper body and cool comfortable lower body. Then I sink back and glide to the opposite edge of the pool, groping for the rough concrete edge. Clinging with one hand for safety, I duck my head under the water. Whoosh! The last of the fire disappears, sweaty walk forgotten.

I’m working at the speedway. The sun is hot, but my canopy provides respite; every so often there’s a whisper of a breeze. The volume in my headset is turned up a little too loud; a co-worker just abused my eardrums. I haven’t worked in a few weeks and my headset-laden head is heavy on my neck. I just applied sunscreen; my hands feel sticky, but I like the smell of my skin. I brought lemon Italian ice today; being in my lunch bag has softened it to just the right consistency. It’s icy and quenches my thirst with every slushy spoonful. When is our break? I have to pee.

By late evening, the air conditioning feels cold, and I huddle on the couch under a down blanket. The dog sees an opportunity; he hops up and contorts his body to fit onto my lap. Even curled up, he extends from my stomach to my knees, warm and heavy, and immediately begins snoring. I’m reminded of the pleasant memory of serving as a human bean bag chair for my children. Archie’s trust is palpable through the blanket, releasing any tension from my muscles. Luckily this action movie is riveting, or I’d be snoring too, under a down blanket in the middle of August.

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