Strength is not about what you can pick up
or who you can hold
it is about whether you can carry yourself
on a base made of muscles
and tendons and ligaments
(more) held together at the knees
and elbows and hips
and tied together with the strings of
your head and heart.
Strength, true strength
is buoyed by the light
that shines from within.
Know yourself, or at least, be secure in your non-knowledge of yourself,
before you set off to show it to the world.(less)
He didn't think much of her when he first saw her sitting there under a tree that Mid-October morning. When he passed by her, she looked up from the thick novel she was reading and smiled. He nodded, pulling on the strap of his knapsack, and continued on his(more) way to work.
The next time he saw her was at the county fair two weeks later. She stood to the side, next to two other young ladies, listening quietly to her friends gab. Her smile was warm, inviting. Her hair, blonde and curly, was pulled on top of her head, tendrils falling daintily down her neck and framing her face.
December 12 he finally met her. He walked down a busy street in the late evening, on his way to meet with a group of friends. He turned a corner and bumped right into her. Instinctively, his arms reached out to grasp her frail arms to steady her.
"Oh, I'm so sorry!" she said, stepping out of his grasp once she was steady. "I wasn't looking where I was going."
He blinked and replied, "Oh, no. No, it's my fault as well. I was preoccupied with my thoughts. I should have paid more attention to what was going on."
Green eyes peered quizzically up at him under thick black lashes. The corner of her mouth quirked upwards.
"Jackson," he said. "Jackson McCarthy."
She laughed, a musical sort of sound he'd never heard before, and reached out her hand to shake his.
"Well, it is very nice to meet you, Jackson McCarthy."(less)
The moment the steel monster grumbles past the front lines, the other side turns into a swarm of flying guns and scampering uniforms.
The cries worsen as the spiderlike shadow twitches four of its blackish limbs, sprinkling chunks of caked soot onto the slowest runners and prompting them(more) to nearly claw their eyes out in horror.
From inside a nearby ditch, a certain young woman's earsplitting laughter drowns out the enemy's collective shrieking and her comrades' collective applause.
"They didn't even try tapping one of the thing's arms!"(less)