PROMPTuesday #32: One Word

I took today’s PROMPTuesday from One Word to keep it simple this week (especially after the labyrinth-like PROMPT from last Tuesday.


So this week, write on this:



Just look at the word. And write.

That’s all. (Oh were but it that simple, right?) (Or — “but were it that simple?”) (Is that even a phrase?) (Moral: DON’T OVERTHINK.)


Anyway, since it’s been awhile, let’s check out PROMPTuesday’s rules:


  • Try to write your entry in 10 minutes. This encourages top-of-mind, primal thinking before the ego and judgmental brain kick in. Just set a timer, make your kid count to 600 slowly, whatever. It’s an honor system. And I trust you.
  • Aim for 250 words or less.
  • Please have fun. Don’t put pressure on yourself. Together, let’s rediscover the simple joy in the writing process.
  • Post your submission in the comments OR post in your blog and leave a link to your blog in the comments.


First time to PROMPTuesday? Welcome! Read a bit about this weekly writing exercise here.

Want to see what’s been written in the past? Catch up on the PROMPTuesdays archive here.


25 Responses to “PROMPTuesday #32: One Word”

  1. Yeah! I remembered! Interesting. Not sure it’s very good, but I did follow the rules!

  2. Da Goddess says:

    I once interviewed the creator of oneword, so I feel especially drawn to this PROMPT. As well, it ties in to something that happened to me while I was in PACU after surgery (before I started really feeling the pain and crying, that is).

  3. […] week, Deb has us focus on one word: “held”. She took the prompt and ran with it. I’m really tempted to […]

  4. vodkamom says:

    I held her hand and I knew. She was gone. The machine was pumping, the lights were blinking, but she was gone. And so, with a courage and grace I knew she would want me to have, I placed that hand I held on top of the blanket- kissed her lovely face, and said goodbye.

  5. Hellooooooo Deb!

    Blog This Mom! has submitted Held. Thanks for another PROMPTuesday!

  6. […] wedding.  but this week i’m back, because a) i need the prompt today, and b) i LOVE this week’s prompt: So this week, write on […]

  7. stef says:

    another great prompt! i can’t believe i even did this in 10 minutes. ;) <a href=””<here‘s my submission. thanks again! :)

  8. stef says:

    sorry, i messed up the html in the previous comment…here‘s the link to the post. :)

  9. Okie dokie — it was fun — thanks:

    My Ten minutes

  10. Debrah says:

    Held you for so long. Now you’re looking to go. Held my heart on the floor. Held my head down, trying to pick up the pieces. I can’t see too clearly now. Maybe you held on so long without me realizing it, you have nothing left now. Held you over our tragedies, held you over our pain, over everything that seemed to be all about me. I’m sorry. I held in my feeling for so long now. You held everything in. Now he’re they are, out in the open and the only thing I can see right now is the pain.
    I’m sorry I held you back.

  11. Karen says:

    Here’s my contribution. By the way, it feels good to be back, Deb. I missed you!

  12. Mama Mary says:

    Here’s mine. I actually followed the rules this time. What fun!

  13. vodkamom says:

    ONE day I will follow the damn rules. one day…………

  14. San Diego Momma says:

    The hum of my wheels kept me going. It’s not like I’d nod off, but rather that my brain would stop thinking, and I’d sink into a sort of nothingness. A slow descent into a boggy pool, thick with cotton and clouds. I’d thought at first that I wouldn’t go, that maybe it would be better if I didn’t see her at the last. Still, I needed to see, have always needed to see, the people who leave me.

    I swung my car into an empty spot that would be filled in just a few short hours. Four AM and the world is mute. It seemed right that life would be slow at this hour, and that for some it would stop altogether. When I entered the hospital, the security guard made me wait while he checked my ID, filled out a guest pass, and called upstairs to warn of my arrival. I bit down a shout, an “you’re wasting time! she’s dying, do you hear me?” because I could tell he did this all the time, and thought maybe this place makes you like that.

    The elevator obliged my rush and soon I emerged into the radiant sick light of the 6th floor. I nearly ran to her room, but somehow slowed at the last step because I sensed the leaving from just outside the door.

    I heard the heart monitor first, then saw a young nurse crying by the bed. I didn’t know who she was but we hugged in solidarity, and she told me you smiled at her just before. I don’t remember her leaving, but I held your hand and wished I’d seen your smile. I said your name over and over, as if I could call you back, and I carefully watched the heart monitor for the peak that came occasionally, but it was just a machine and you were gone.

    That should have been it. But each time I began to walk out of the room, I stepped back in again. I must have done that a dozen times. I wasn’t ready to see you that last time, to let your face lose its outline, to let it dim and fuzz.

    So I waited, and I watched, and I walked out, and I came back, and when the light bit into the sky, I released you to the cotton and the clouds.

  15. On the subway platform, a six year old black girl clutched her little sister’s hand, and held her breath.

    She’d witnessed something impossible, the kind of thing you only see in movies. But at the movies, you knew how to react. First you’d get that tingle along your spine, and then you’d laugh. Maybe you’d even clap and cheer. You cheered because it was thrilling, but ultimately, you knew everything was going to be fine. Everybody would be safe and the hero would be unharmed. But seeing such a thing in real life, she realized, wasn’t like that. Not at all.

    And so she held her breath. While her knees trembled and her vision blurred and her brain wobbled around inside her head, she held her breath and tried to decide whether to cheer or to scream. . .

    Note: The entire piece is posted to my blog. Thanks for reading! —

  16. kate says:

    can’t post this where i live, but still wanted to play:

    She held the steering wheel, in the dark, parked in the pull off lane of the freeway. She didn’t put the car in park, but kept her foot on the brake instead. Shifting into park would be giving in. She felt trite and common, crying over a man.

    She’d walked out, because she’d known that she had to. Even though all she wanted was to collapse into his arms. When she pulled his keys off her key ring he said, “you can keep them.” God, how she wanted to say okay. She wanted to say okay to all of it. Because she knew him and she knew that probably, it would be okay. She knew that probably, he would love her forever; probably, he would be there for her forever. And if that were true, then he’d love her kids forever and be there for them forever.

    And while the probably was probably okay for her, but it wasn’t okay for her kids. She knew that if they were abandoned or rejected, even if it wasn’t them he was leaving? They would be that much less whole, and they’d have that much more pain. So when he said, “you can keep them” she said, “no, I can’t. I don’t want them, because I want them so much.” She knew that if she kept them, she’d say okay to probably, and that was not the mother she wanted to be.

    So she sat, being trite and common, crying over a man. But she never took the car out of drive, and eventually she re-entered traffic and drove home, to her children, leaving him behind her probably, forever.

  17. tinsenpup says:

    I did write a thing with words and stuff.

  18. Jennifer says:

    I’ve missed doing these. I’ll make this short and sweet.

    This breath has been held long enough.
    Let it go and live.

  19. Da Goddess says:

    All fantastic entries…again!

    Deb, yours especially touched me. Wish I could send you a hug as an email attachment because I totally would right about now.

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