Wednesday, February 11, 2009

The Beginnings of Stories

Sometimes, when I'm sitting alone on the deck on a summer's evening, I'll start writing and continue writing until the light wanes. These dashed-off beginnings don't usually evolve into anything; there's invariably more important work to tackle.

Other authors likely do this, too -- engage in a kind of stream-of-consciousness fictional interpretation of their moods or current situations or environments. The snippet below is an example. I've always been intrigued by the genre called "magical realism" and, someday, would like to explore it. (I've always been intrigued by Drollerie Press, as well, and would love to get something published there one day!)

So here's an untitled scrap. It ended with the bloom of night. The porchlight was too weak to write by, and any room within the house would've destroyed this odd little vision.

* * * * *

Just before the deer began to move, the sky looked like watered silk. Its color wasn’t even. A large, faded patch in the northwest gradually deepened to cornflower blue in the southeast. There was a pinprick in the fabric. Arcturus, perhaps, shining through the rent threads. Or maybe Vega.

I didn’t know anymore. Couldn't remember.

Light silently seeped away. The determined chorusing of small creatures, hidden within weeds and grasses, signaled its passing. Swallows moved to their nests, relinquishing the air to bats and harrying insects.

I waited for the deer. Sometimes their steps were tentative, almost awkward. Sometimes they bounded confidently between the pines. Sometimes they paused, turning amber-bottle heads to look in my direction. Sometimes they were oblivious of me.

A moth fluttered past, close to my face. I fancied I could feel a delicate dusting of powder on my eyelashes. Why, I wondered, did they carry powder on their wings?

The sky’s color sank to indigo. Dull light from somewhere limned the jagged silhouettes of the pines.

I wished upon the still, yellow spark in the sky. Star light, star bright, first star I see tonight ...

“It could be a planet, you idiot,” I whispered, and then finished the rhyme. I could be as idiotic as I wanted; there was no one around to judge me.

The night, or something concealed by it, spoke. I believed the deer had arrived.

“Why are you here, Darien? Why are you here?”

“I don’t know.”

“You must know something.”

“I believe I was ... cast out.”

“From where?”

“The place I thought was my home. The place I was born to. Where I ran with a dog named Brownie and built fires against the dark and laughed as the juice of ripe berries trickled down my chin.”

“You were wrong for that place?”

“I must have been.”

1 comment:

K. Z. Snow said...
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