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The Woman on the Mountaintop (writing challenge)

Updated on November 1, 2014
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Shauna's preferred genre is fiction. She particularly enjoys rising to a challenge posed by fellow writers. Picture prompts spark her muse.

Bill's Challenge

A Writing Challenge: The Woman on the Mountain

Are you ready to spread your writing wings and fly?

Meeting billybuc’s writing challenge

Sometimes we need a trigger to set our creativity on fire. Picture prompts do that for me and billybuc fires me up more than anyone has to date. This is my response to his most recent challenge.

Source
The Blue Ridge Mountains of Ashville, North Carolina
The Blue Ridge Mountains of Ashville, North Carolina | Source

The Woman on the Mountaintop

Once I realized I was on the mountaintop I could breathe again. I don’t know how I got here or what sent me to my refuge. All I know is this time it was different. I knew it when I took inventory of my aching body. My jeans were torn. My hair was full of displaced Earth and gravel. And I was bleeding.

But it doesn't matter. I’m in my happy place. This is where I belong.

This is where I go to find peace. Lord knows our world is ravaged with anything but, but I have my special place and this is it. When I’m atop the Blue Ridge mountains, I’m close to God. I hear the wind as the birds swirl and sway in their dance below the clouds. I smell the evergreens. I smell the Earth. I feel my soul.

Not many people think about their souls. They’re too busy building their empires and pushing their children into the mindsets that will achieve their selfish long-forgotten rites of passage, in an effort to ease their own guilt.

There’s nothing as free as inhaling the sounds of nature and breathing its life. Yes, I meant to say ‘inhaling the sounds of nature’. You see, until you’re up here intaking fresh air, listening to the sounds of trees swaying in the breeze, comingled with birdsong, you cannot fathom the ultimate beauty of life that I inhale when I’m here.

One More Cup of Coffee (to the valley below)

In the valley below

“This just in: A woman was beaten to death in front of a homeless shelter in Ashville, North Carolina. Our reporters have discovered that her name is Sheila McIntyre. We have not been able to locate her family and request the help of our viewers.

“From what we have determined, Sheila was known for advocating for the homeless even though she was homeless herself. She’d give up her space in a shelter for others who needed the room; those who had children, those who were immobile, and those who just needed a safe place to rest for the night.

“Sadly, her body was found behind a dumpster close to the shelter. We pray for her and reach out to you for any information you may be able to give regarding the murder of Sheila McIntyre.”

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Before the news hit the airwaves, people gathered around Sheila’s body. Homeless folks, local proprietors, and the curious formed a semi-circle around her frail, beaten frame. One lone soul started softly singing, Kumbaya. Soon, the neighborhood was filled with a cacophony of voices. “Kumbaya, my Lord, Kumbaya. Kumbaya my Lord, kumbaya”.

As the melody rose, Sheila’s wounds healed. The stronger the voices became, the less pain she felt until she was once again at one with the peace of the mountaintops.

Sheila reflects

I remember when I first found this spot. I was about six. I’d run up here to get away from hearing my parents argue. Then one day they died on their way to pick me up from a birthday party. Everyone felt sorry for me, but I felt guilty because I was always praying that something would make them stop fussing. But not that. No, I never wished for that!

I remember running out of our yard and going as high as I could. That’s when I learned to climb to the mountaintops of the Blue Ridge. I kept going and going until my pain fell away. I saw something new and miraculous up here and it’s been my go-to place ever since. It’s my haven, my home.

I don’t know why I never found a comfortable foster home or why I wasn’t the right fit. It really doesn’t matter now. I’ve always preferred to be alone anyway. Nobody sees what I see or feels what I feel.

That advertising job I had, well, it paid me well. But something was missing. Money and connections didn’t do it for me. The fancy house was more a headache than anything. I wasn’t happy, plain and simple.

One day I decided to take my fucitol pill and leave the life of comfort behind. After all, I wasn’t happy hob-knobbing with superficial people. I just didn’t fit in. That lifestyle tore me up and tore me apart.

I was worth more than the torment that life gave me.

From there I don’t remember how I became homeless. I didn’t care. The people I met sleeping under overpasses and camping in the woods taught me more about life and what’s important than I’d learned while trying to make something of myself.

Myself. Hmmm. That’s what is all comes down to. I’m only me when I’m on the mountaintops. Here I’m free. Here I can breathe. Here I don’t have to please anyone. I don’t have to pretend. I’m the ‘me’ that God intended me to be.

Looking out over the Blue Ridge from Sheila's vantage point
Looking out over the Blue Ridge from Sheila's vantage point | Source

The legend of the woman on the mountaintop

Sheila’s story has been passed down for generations. Countless children, hikers, and tourists have climbed the Blue Ridge Mountains surrounding Ashville in an attempt to feel her spirit and perhaps get a glimpse of her, for it is said that once you reach the top, you can smell her scent, absorb her love of life, and be transformed.

If you look carefully, you’ll see her flying the wings of eagles and see her image mixed with the mist that so often envelopes the peaks.

Many have tried and failed. The journey has to come from within. No one knows exactly on which mountaintop she found freedom, but legend says once you find it, she will reach out to you if you believe. If you love. If you’re not selfish and if you wish to seek peace within yourself.

If Sheila were to tell it, she’d say her story is not legend. It’s truth.

Open yourself to love and life and you’ll know the freedom Sheila McIntyre found at the top of the mountains.

Absorb the spirit of the woman on the mountaintop. Absorb the pain and the strength of character that encouraged her to climb mountains in order to find salvation. Learn from her selfless giving to others. Understand that you could find yourself high on the hog one day and groveling for sustenance on the next.

How will you handle it?

What kind of legacy will you leave behind when you leave this Earth?

Embrace and share the story of the woman on the mountaintop with every human you encounter. Share the love. Share the spirit and spread the freedom of the soul.

She’s calling to you. Do you hear her? Will you listen? Will you follow her to learn the truth? Thousands have tried but few have succeeded. Let go. Close your eyes. Seek your soul and you just may find her. You just may find yourself.


Peace,

Bravewarrior


Refining, Defining or Rhyming

All Rights Reserved

© 2014 Shauna L Bowling

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    • bravewarrior profile image
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      Shauna L Bowling 2 years ago from Central Florida

      Shyron, thanx for the read and the shares. I find picture prompts inspiring.

    • bravewarrior profile image
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      Shauna L Bowling 2 years ago from Central Florida

      Joyette, thank you for your comment. Sorry I'm just now seeing it! I'm not familiar with the song you refer to; I'll have to look it up on You Tube.

      I'm glad you enjoyed my story and it made you think. That's always a good thing.

    • Shyron E Shenko profile image

      Shyron E Shenko 2 years ago from Texas

      This is beautiful Shauna, this is life for sure.

      Thumb-up UABI and shared

    • Joyette  Fabien profile image

      Joyette Fabien 2 years ago from Dominica

      An absolutely beautiful story, bravewarrior! We all need to find our mountain and have that mountain top experience. Voted Beautiful.

      The song 'God on the Mountain ' was playing in my head while I read the story. "The God on the Mountain is still God in the Valley" so even while we search for that peace experience on the mountain top we must also try for that peace to remain with us in the valleys.

    • bravewarrior profile image
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      Shauna L Bowling 2 years ago from Central Florida

      Jennifer, I'm so pleased this story had that effect on you. Thank you so much for your wonderful comment!

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      Jennifer C 2 years ago

      Shauna, I was taken somewhere else that I really needed to be, while lost in your beautiful masterpiece. Thank You!

      Such an intelligent and gifted writer.

    • bravewarrior profile image
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      Shauna L Bowling 2 years ago from Central Florida

      I'm glad you enjoyed this, Sheila. This morning, as I was having my coffee on the front porch, the air came alive with the sounds of birds beginning their day. I just love that!

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      Sheila Brown 2 years ago from Southern Oklahoma

      This is just wonderful! I can relate to how she felt. I "inhale" nature when I go walking in the woods. I love to be outside watching the deer and listening to the birds and the wind in the trees. You did a wonderful job here! Up and awesome!

    • bravewarrior profile image
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      Shauna L Bowling 2 years ago from Central Florida

      Thanx, Deb!

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      Deb Hirt 2 years ago from Stillwater, OK

      I like it, Sha. You did very well with this challenge.

    • bravewarrior profile image
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      Shauna L Bowling 3 years ago from Central Florida

      Thank you KoffeKlatch! Florida's not too sunny today, is it? I live here, too. It's been drizzling all day and is cool enough to wear warm clothes.

    • KoffeeKlatch Gals profile image

      Susan Haze 3 years ago from Sunny Florida

      I would say that you were more that up to the challenge. Awesome and up.

    • bravewarrior profile image
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      Shauna L Bowling 3 years ago from Central Florida

      Thank you Flourish. That's quite a compliment!

    • FlourishAnyway profile image

      FlourishAnyway 3 years ago from USA

      Wow, Sha! This was terrific -- I think your best piece of work so far. I love the direction that you took it. Very well done!

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      Shauna L Bowling 3 years ago from Central Florida

      Thanx, Linda. Your comment has put a smile on my face!

    • Sunshine625 profile image

      Linda Bilyeu 3 years ago from Orlando, FL

      Wow! Way to go Sha! You rocked the mountain top challenge! :)

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      Shauna L Bowling 3 years ago from Central Florida

      Thank you again, Shanmarie!

    • shanmarie profile image

      shanmarie 3 years ago

      True! And by the way, love the creative way you changed voices.

    • bravewarrior profile image
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      Shauna L Bowling 3 years ago from Central Florida

      Thank you, Shanmarie. If you consider Sheila lived forever with nature in the mountains, and became a legend, it's not so heartbreaking after all.

      Thanx for stopping by!

    • shanmarie profile image

      shanmarie 3 years ago

      Heartbreaking, but beautiful!

    • bravewarrior profile image
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      Shauna L Bowling 3 years ago from Central Florida

      Suhail, what a beautiful comment! I couldn't ask for anything more. Maybe you'll remember this story the next time you hike the Blue Ridge.

      Thank you so much for reading!

    • Suhail and my dog profile image

      Suhail Zubaid aka Clark Kent 3 years ago from Mississauga, ON

      I have hiked a lot on Blue Ridge Mountains of North Carolina to enjoy reality of nature, but this story shook me up with its powerful message, Shauna.

      Thank you for writing and opening my eyes up to a reality of different kind.

    • bravewarrior profile image
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      Shauna L Bowling 3 years ago from Central Florida

      Thank you, Eddy. I'm glad you enjoyed it.

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      Eiddwen 3 years ago from Wales

      A wonderful story indeed Sha and one for me to vote up and share. Great work my friend.

      Eddy.

    • bravewarrior profile image
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      Shauna L Bowling 3 years ago from Central Florida

      Dianna, it's been a while since I accepted a writing challenge. This one spoke to me. I'm happy you enjoyed my story.

    • bravewarrior profile image
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      Shauna L Bowling 3 years ago from Central Florida

      Thank you, Susan!

    • bravewarrior profile image
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      Shauna L Bowling 3 years ago from Central Florida

      Audrey, you have no idea how much I appreciate your comment. You've started this rainy Sunday morning off with a ray of sunshine. Thank you so much!

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      Dianna Mendez 3 years ago

      This is so beautiful and inspiring. You really took this challenge and made it soar!

    • Just Ask Susan profile image

      Susan Zutautas 3 years ago from Ontario, Canada

      Awesome awesome, beautiful, interesting story!

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      Audrey Hunt 3 years ago from Nashville Tn.

      Oh Sha, you are a master with words. I appreciate your story and the unveiling parts of you throughout, the brave warrior. You write as if you are composing a symphony. Astoundingly beautiful. A pleasure to read. Votes across and sharing.

      Love,

      Audrey

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      Shauna L Bowling 3 years ago from Central Florida

      Thanx, Manatita. I'll try to get over there and check it out.

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      manatita44 3 years ago from london

      No worries. I like it. It's 'cool.' Much love, Brave warrior.

      P.S. I have a Hub called the Divine Warrior. A little long, but you might like it in your own spare time. If you have any.

    • bravewarrior profile image
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      Shauna L Bowling 3 years ago from Central Florida

      Manatita, thank you for you wonderful comment. I may have been telling my own story in part. I little piece of me is in everything I write. I don't do it intentionally; it just turns out that way.

    • manatita44 profile image

      manatita44 3 years ago from london

      I voted this up, awesome and beautiful, Brave warrior.

      You tell a really touching story with Light, Love and clarity. Your writing style is like some exquisite poetry. I keep telling Bill that all good writers are also poets. I believe he now silently agrees. I captured this:

      "I hear the wind as the birds swirl and sway in their dance below the clouds. I smell the evergreens. I smell the Earth. I feel my soul." - Brave warrior.

      Immaculate, like the Virgin Herself. Were you telling part of your own story? Life is so full of many colours and intricate webs, like tapestries. Long live the Cosmos! Jai Love!

    • bravewarrior profile image
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      Shauna L Bowling 3 years ago from Central Florida

      Rasma, I don't think anyone has told me my writing gave them the shivers. That's awesome!

      Thank you for reading, sharing, and caring my friend!

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      Gypsy Rose Lee 3 years ago from Riga, Latvia

      Voted up and awesome. Now this was a truly inspirational story and it gave me the shivers. What wonderful thoughts and imagery it fills you with despite the tragedy. What she left behind was truly worthy. Passing this on.

    • bravewarrior profile image
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      Shauna L Bowling 3 years ago from Central Florida

      Thank you, Shyron. I'm so glad you like this and find it worthy of sharing. Awesome!

    • Shyron E Shenko profile image

      Shyron E Shenko 3 years ago from Texas

      Wow Shauna, a true free spirit. I love this, I especially love the saying “They’re too busy building their empires and pushing their children into the mindsets that will achieve their selfish long-forgotten rites of passage, in an effort to ease their own guilt.”

      Voted –up UABI and shared

      Blessings dear friend

    • bravewarrior profile image
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      Shauna L Bowling 3 years ago from Central Florida

      Thank you, Alicia. The message came through via happenstance. It wasn't intended, but when I write fiction my characters seem to take over for me.

      Thank you for taking the time to read and comment.

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      Linda Crampton 3 years ago from British Columbia, Canada

      This is a wonderful and very creative story. I love the fact that the hub is both a great story and an article with an important social message.

    • bravewarrior profile image
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      Shauna L Bowling 3 years ago from Central Florida

      That includes, you Mary. I hope you find your mountaintop too, if you haven't already. I'm glad you enjoyed my take on Bill's challenge. Thank you!

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      Mary Craig 3 years ago from New York

      Ditto to every wonderful word in every comment before mine! This is a folk tale to live through the ages. So much more to life than money and jobs....May you and every reader here find their mountain top!

      Voted up, useful, awesome, and interesting.

    • bravewarrior profile image
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      Shauna L Bowling 3 years ago from Central Florida

      Chris, reading to the music is brilliant on your part. I'll have to try that and see what that does to the story. Thanx for your ongoing support. You're a gem!

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      Shauna L Bowling 3 years ago from Central Florida

      Blessings to you for your beautiful comment, Gail. You just made my day!

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      Chris Rose 3 years ago

      Brilliant, Shauna.

      Passionate. Persuasive. Perfect. If I weren't convinced already, I am now - but then you know I've always been convinced ;-)

      I read it a second time along to the Kumbaya piece, magical :-)

    • Happyboomernurse profile image

      Gail Sobotkin 3 years ago from South Carolina

      Dear Sha,

      You hit it out of the ball park with this lyrical prose that speaks to the heart and soul of the reader. Stunning, breathtaking, moving, thought-provoking.

      Bravo!!! Rated up across the board and sharing.

      Sending a Mountain of Love Your Way,

      Gail

    • bravewarrior profile image
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      Shauna L Bowling 3 years ago from Central Florida

      Rolly, it's nice to see you here. It sounds like you've found your mountaintop. More power to you for realizing you needed to make the climb to that peaceful place in your heart.

    • Rolly A Chabot profile image

      Rolly A Chabot 3 years ago from Alberta Canada

      Hi Bravewarrior... as always your writing challenges us to seek a higher understanding of the meaning of life and ourselves. Far to often in the past I accepted where I was, defeated. It was not until I changed my way of thinking did I grew. Thank you for sharing from the heart....

      Hugs and blessings from Canada

    • bravewarrior profile image
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      Shauna L Bowling 3 years ago from Central Florida

      Colin, your words blow me away. I think I may try to do something with this short story. Enter a contest or try to get it published in a magazine. We'll see.

      Thank you for stopping by. It's cold here today. Brrrr.

    • bravewarrior profile image
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      Shauna L Bowling 3 years ago from Central Florida

      Kim, Sheila is happy. She's free on the mountaintop where she'll live for all eternity without stress, suppression or expectations. Thanx for seeing that. As one of my favorite fiction writers, your opinions are always respected and make me smile.

    • bravewarrior profile image
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      Shauna L Bowling 3 years ago from Central Florida

      Mom, you always provide such wonderful insight and wisdom.

      You know how much I respect billybuc. Shoot, he's become a household name! You're right. He pushes the right buttons for me. That's what makes him such a great mentor.

      Thanx for reading, Mom. I love you and your mountain, too!

    • bravewarrior profile image
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      Shauna L Bowling 3 years ago from Central Florida

      Thanx, Randi. I'm glad you enjoyed it.

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      Shauna L Bowling 3 years ago from Central Florida

      Ghost, you're the only one that has commented on the fucitol pill. Bravo, my friend! It's a pill I swallow quite often if I feel stress creeping in.

      I'm glad this piece reminded you of your special place. It sounds like you have some peaceful memories.

    • bravewarrior profile image
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      Shauna L Bowling 3 years ago from Central Florida

      Faith, I had no idea I was going to end this story with a message. Once the woman on the mountaintop started speaking to me, she took over.

    • bravewarrior profile image
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      Shauna L Bowling 3 years ago from Central Florida

      Thank you, Dreaming Boomer! Much appreciated.

    • bravewarrior profile image
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      Shauna L Bowling 3 years ago from Central Florida

      DJ, what an awesome comment! Thank you so much. Sadly, I haven't seen the Blue Ridge in 18 years, but at least I can say I had the experience of the majestic beauty they provide.

      Thanx again and enjoy your Sunday.

    • epigramman profile image

      epigramman 3 years ago

      Well my loyal and dear friend I am here to return the favor of our esteemed friendship and I am very proud of you and also to be quite truthful you took my breath away with your spiritual odyssey and literary quest.

      Of the fictional writing that I've had the pleasure of reading from you I would definitely say you have the mastered the short story genre and this piece could easily be filmed as a short film in itself. Bravo from the epi-man and sending good wishes and thoughts from Colin and the cats on this Sunday in Canada to you and your beloved son

    • klidstone1970 profile image

      இڿڰۣ-- кιмвєяℓєу 3 years ago from Niagara Region, Canada

      Sheila's spiritual journey is inspirational. It takes a certain type of person to put others before themselves. A haunting end (or wonderful beginning?) for a pure soul. Wonderfully written, my friend.

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      Barbara cook 3 years ago

      BillyBuc's challenge brings out your creative genius. He is a great mentor and pushes the right buttons. So sad that there has to be an end to life for the lost souls to find a peaceful new beginning. But that may be the key--the first life was "given" to them and they get to choose their next life. You gave Shelia that privilege. I'm proud of you. There is a mountain for all of us to climb.

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      Randi Benlulu 3 years ago from Mesa, AZ

      Beautiful job, Shauna! Inspiring story!

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      Ghost32 3 years ago

      Nicely done and then some, Sha. :)

      I don't reckon you'll be surprised to discover my favorite line in the entire piece is, "One day I decided to take my fucitol pill ....". Absolutely outstanding, one of those excellent bits that leave me thinking, "Wow, I wish I'd written that!"

      This Hub also triggered a powerful recall of a "special place" of my own that I hadn't thought about in years....

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      Faith Reaper 3 years ago from southern USA

      Wow, Sha, you ran with Bill's challenge up to that mountaintop and beyond with this creative piece here! I have been to the Blue Ridge Mountains too and you have captured the feel. You story conveys an important message beautifully.

      Blessings and peace

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      Karen Kay 3 years ago from Jackson, MS

      So inspiring! Lovely interpretation!

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      DJ Anderson 3 years ago

      Sha, you have outdone yourself! What an incredible tribute to freedom,

      beauty and brotherly love. Oh, I know those Blue Ridge Mountains as well as anyone. I have stood atop those misty giants and breathed in all the beauty my soul could drink. You have done an incredible job giving

      proper acclaim to the woman on the mountain.

      Congratulation on a job well done!!

      DJ.

    • bravewarrior profile image
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      Shauna L Bowling 3 years ago from Central Florida

      Linda, if anyone were to 'get' this, I knew it would be you. What's ironic is, I was about 2/3 thru this when you posted yours. I saw that our spirits were in the same place - we just took a different direction in getting there.

      I love you, my friend.

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      Linda Crist 3 years ago from Central Virginia

      Well sistah! You wrote a masterpiece with this challenge. I loved it. I mean, "inhaLe the sounds", Bob Dylan, and Sheila's story all in one hub. Good Golly Miss Molly. You touched my soul in a dozen ways. I love that you capitalize the word "Earth" and allowed me to feel the tears in your skin and the tired bones. I could feel your pain. Only one word for this one - AWESOME. Vote up and linking to my response to the challenge.

    • bravewarrior profile image
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      Shauna L Bowling 3 years ago from Central Florida

      Thank you, lambservant!

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      Lori Colbo 3 years ago from Pacific Northwest

      Amazing.

    • bravewarrior profile image
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      Shauna L Bowling 3 years ago from Central Florida

      Martie, there's definitely a feeling of freedom in the mountains. Especially during the fall when the leaves display their brilliant colors. The photos I included in this story were taken many years ago when I attended a wedding in Ashville, NC. The wedding was held in the Blue Ridge Mountains in October. The leaves were just beginning to change. It was so beautiful!

    • MartieCoetser profile image

      Martie Coetser 3 years ago from South Africa

      When life becomes too much, I have always had an obsessive urge to be on a mountain top, though nowadays I have to bum a lift in a helicopter.....

      Voted up and touching :)

    • bravewarrior profile image
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      Shauna L Bowling 3 years ago from Central Florida

      I'm glad you enjoyed it, Peg. It's chilly here too. 57 degrees right now. Brrrr!

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      Peg Cole 3 years ago from Dallas, Texas

      You certainly stepped up to the challenge with this one, Shauna. Your words are filled with imagery and depth of feeling with a moving message of simplicity and human caring. It was the perfect read for a chilly post Halloween morning.

    • bravewarrior profile image
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      Shauna L Bowling 3 years ago from Central Florida

      Vicki, I'm glad you like my story. Thank you for your kind words and seeing some meaning behind Sheila's experience.

    • bravewarrior profile image
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      Shauna L Bowling 3 years ago from Central Florida

      John, it's been a while since I accepted a challenge. Bill's photo of Bev inspired me. I thought it was about time I jumped in.

    • bravewarrior profile image
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      Shauna L Bowling 3 years ago from Central Florida

      Thank you, Jo. And thanx for the votes!

    • bravewarrior profile image
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      Shauna L Bowling 3 years ago from Central Florida

      Thank you, Maria. The humanity spin kinda popped in on its own. It wasn't planned. Or maybe it was, I just didn't know it until the words came spilling out.

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      Shauna L Bowling 3 years ago from Central Florida

      Nell, I'll take 'wow' any day. Thank you so much!

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      Vickiw 3 years ago

      You accomplish every day, dear friend, and so it really isn't a huge surprise that this flowed out of your creative mind. A very heartfelt message to all, and it encourages a spiritual journey, even if it can only be afforded in the mind, to a mountaintop, or in my case to the ocean side. I loved the idea that enlightenment can come from the poorest, and be sought after by the richest. Lovely story, and what an answer to Bill's challenge!

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      John Hansen 3 years ago from Queensland Australia

      Wonderful Shauna. You were certainly inspired by Bill's photo challenge and it shows here. Awesome story with great messages for us all. Voted up.

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      Jo Alexis-Hagues 3 years ago from Bedfordshire, U.K

      Captivating and inspirational. Beautifully done.

      Voted up and awesome.

    • marcoujor profile image

      Maria Jordan 3 years ago from Jeffersonville PA

      This is a haunting story that leaves me sad and hopeful at the same time...you have us thinking about Sheila, humanity and ourselves...thought provoking on many levels.

      Beautiful work, my friend. Voted UP and AB and sharing, Love, Maria

    • Nell Rose profile image

      Nell Rose 3 years ago from England

      Oh Wow! that was amazing, beautiful and well, just Wow! wonderful, what more can I say? voted and shared! nell

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      Shauna L Bowling 3 years ago from Central Florida

      With friends like you, Paula, how can I help but smile?

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      Paula 3 years ago from Beautiful Upstate New York

      Aw shucks.......you should never wipe that beautiful smile off anyway!

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      Shauna L Bowling 3 years ago from Central Florida

      Paula, you're such a good friend. I checked my email before I read my notification from HP. I'll take care of it. And thank you for taking care of me.

      You've put a smile on my face that will be hard pressed to wipe off!

    • bravewarrior profile image
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      Shauna L Bowling 3 years ago from Central Florida

      Wow, Bill you've blown me away. You've been my mentor since I met you three years ago. You've also become a dear friend who I know won't bullshit me. You keep me keepin' on! You've made my day - or night - and the entire weekend.

      Love,

      Sha

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      Shauna L Bowling 3 years ago from Central Florida

      Ruby, you're a doll. I couldn't ask for a better assessment than that!

      So much appreciated. Thanx for the tweet!

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      Paula 3 years ago from Beautiful Upstate New York

      Sha...awesome, beautiful, inspirational........simply stunning. You have GOT IT, girl....the "gift." No question......UP++shared, pinned, tweeted, googled tweeted.. Peace GF......Paula

      check Ur email

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      Ruby Jean Fuller 3 years ago from Southern Illinois

      Shauna, magnificent is an understatement! This is not only beautiful, it sends a message of love and giving. Thank you. Tweeted.

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      Bill Holland 3 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Blow me away and call me impressed. This is meeting the challenge, chewing it up, spitting it out and declaring to the world that you are a superb writer. So beautiful, my friend. I'm in awe of this one, and that doesn't happen very often. Thank you for showing others what creative writing is all about.

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      Shauna L Bowling 3 years ago from Central Florida

      Mike, you have no idea how much your comment means to me. Thank you so much!

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      Shauna L Bowling 3 years ago from Central Florida

      Suzzette, I agree. Mountaintops and even ocean sides bring a sense of self to us that we neglect through everyday life. Nature has a habit of delivering peace to our souls.

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      Shauna L Bowling 3 years ago from Central Florida

      Ann, I will, but I have to work this weekend to meet my deadline. That has to come first.

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      mckbirdbks 3 years ago from Emerald Wells, Just off the crossroads,Texas

      Hello Sha, well, when you step up to a challenge, you really do well. All the votes and shared.

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      Suzette Walker 3 years ago from Taos, NM

      Wonderful story with so many wonderful lessons. There is something about mountain tops that makes us want to soar.

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      Ann Carr 3 years ago from SW England

      I hope you do get to mine - I'm expecting great things after this! No pressure!

      Enjoy your weekend!

      Ann

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      Shauna L Bowling 3 years ago from Central Florida

      Leslie, I'm always thrilled to have you show up on my pages. You humble me with your comments. You're a dear friend and I have the honor of knowing you before you became a successful author!

      Love ya, girlfriend! Peace to you forever and always.

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      Shauna L Bowling 3 years ago from Central Florida

      Thank you, Ann. I've been meaning to check out the other contributions, but I'm working on a few assignments right now. I've been working on this for the last three days, as a reprieve from my work and decided the story has gone as far as it needs to.

      Bill's photo prompts inspire me. I had to take the challenge.

      I'm so glad you like the story I came up with. I'll get to yours, I promise!

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      Karen Silverman 3 years ago

      I'm very impressed, Sha! I am 'absorbing' the morale(s) of this high flying story! It speaks to so many issues.

      Integrity. Stick-to-it-ness. Empathy - the works, girl.

      Now, i shall 'share the love'

      Have a great weekendxx

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      Ann Carr 3 years ago from SW England

      Wow! What a great story and a powerful message. You really have us soaring with eagles up there!

      This is a great response to bill's challenge. Another totally different angle and with plenty of substance. Seriously impressive.

      Ann