Weekly Writing Challenge: The Re-Meeting

Weekly Writing Challenge: 1,000 Words, Take Two
Your challenge this week is to write a post based on this picture: We see lots of possibilities in this photo:

Who are these people? What’s their relationship? Where are they? Are they saying hello or goodbye? Or something else altogether? Are they just clinging to one another to keep from sliding down the steep cobblestones? Who’s coming/going, and why? Where are they coming from/going to? Are the people behind them waiting for them? Are they happy for the couple, or irritated?

writing challenge

Your light is day

Dispersed upon waters of this world,

Of moon’s mourning face

Photographed upon decals

Of ice, thawing . . .

Freezing . . .

Thawing . . .

You, revealed everywhere:

Above the radiator’s row

Womanlips intoned a SutraSong,

Then recitations – your name.

Womanhood,

Reticent, silent,

Stunned, hardened;

Ignited, uncoiled,

Ascended. And incense

Was cologne you shun Continue reading

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Weekly Writing Challenge: He-djfoi icki foilium nuk nuk?

Weekly Writing Challenge: 1,000 Words, Take Two
Your challenge this week is to write a post based on this picture: We see lots of possibilities in this photo:

Who are these people? What’s their relationship? Where are they? Are they saying hello or goodbye? Or something else altogether? Are they just clinging to one another to keep from sliding down the steep cobblestones? Who’s coming/going, and why? Where are they coming from/going to? Are the people behind them waiting for them? Are they happy for the couple, or irritated?

writing challenge

SHE-NON

Yes, let us continue to hold together. Yes, like this.

HE-NON

It is silly, yes?

SHE-NON

Yes, but it is their way. It will give us more credibility.

HE-NON

How do the legs feel? These are still cold.

SHE-NON

These have grown warm already. Don’t be concerned. The warmth will come soon. Remember, I entered the shen-non before you entered the hen-non. It takes time. What a bright idea the commander had for reformatting the mothership into a trolley…trolley… Continue reading

Writing Challenge: The Devil Is in the Details: Sandra

A woman walks into a restaurant. Imagine this scene and capture every detail you can in a few paragraphs. Describe the woman: is she old, young, or in-between? What type of restaurant is it: fancy, casual, or a diner? What is she doing? Pack as much detail as you can into a few paragraphs that will help us imagine this woman clearly.

Copy (2) of silhouette_womanShe approaches the restaurant tentatively, her gloved hand lingering on the door handle. If I could read minds, I might say that she is still debating whether she should enter or not. She is alone, and how many people like to dine alone? A few seconds have passed, and now she’s opening the door. Entering. The heels of her long leather boots click-clicking against the marble floor. Confidently, I might add. She’s the deep red-brown of a kidney bean, and the natural top-knot that she wears is lightly threaded with silver strands. The silver in her hair might lead you to conclude she’s “of a certain age,” but she’s not. The unlined, unwrinkled skin, barely touched by gravity or living, might lead you to conclude she’s young. She’s not. Small filigree silver hoops hang from her, Sandra’s, ears and catch the lights from the faux-crystal chandeliers as she slides into the booth of a diner whose décor – brocade fabric on the seats, blue-gray marble tops and counters imported from Italy, and even the tuxedos of the staff — pretends to be more than it is, but whose menu tells its truth: typical coffee shop fare. Continue reading

Weekly Writing Challenge: A Picture is Worth 1,000 Words

“They say a picture is worth a thousand words, right? Prove it! This week’s challenge couldn’t be simpler: tell a story based on this picture. You can take this in whatever direction you’d like. Write some fiction. Who are these people? What’s their backstory? What’s going on in this picture? What happens next? Construct a history for us. Write from your own experience. Do one of these people remind you of someone you know, or of something that’s happened to you? Connect the dots for us. Go on a flight of fancy. Who knows what pops into your head when you take a look? Grab the first thing and go with it! We’ll tell you the truth behind the photo in next week’s challenge post, but we’re sure it won’t be nearly as interesting as what you come up with!”

Greg, Dad and Me circa 1951

Yes, that’s our dad holding our hands. My mom took this photo. I’m three. My brother’s five. Greg. I’m Anne. My neck was sweating between the coat collar and the bonnet. Itchy, really. Greg’s cap is hiding a bad, homemade haircut that my mom gave him. What? Oh no, we weren’t angry, just serious. We were a loving serious family that day about to go to church. Mom’s wearing a lovely royal blue dress with light pink trim around the collar and long cuffs, a matching trapeze coat and low black heels. She was, as my dad used to say, “a real looker.” She had to put her pocketbook down because it was making her arm shake and interfering with the photograph she was trying to take. Then she and my dad switched places, and he took one of her, me and Greg. I don’t know what happened to it. Too bad. It pains me. I ought to have both photos.

If photographs reflected reality, not just as a snapshot of a moment, but as ongoing reality, I would be the only one in the photo. An absurd take on Dorian Gray.

What happened.

What happened?

Well… Continue reading

Weekly Writing Challenge: A Splash of Color

Alchemy: Postcardperfect sun and river redefining reality; on the stage of the Seventy-ninth Street boat basin nature is the everpresent performer, enchantress, and finally, trickster.

photo by Kate Benedict

Where the Hudson River was unlit, its surface receded and sank; where the sun’s light romped, shimmering runners of rainbow luminescence appeared to reverse the river’s movement from horizontal to vertical. A feral speedboat, its canvas roof carmine, the color of a movie star’s lips, its body cerulean fiberglass, fractured the illusion of optics with violent momentum and gouged a deep violet gash into the river’s fluid skin. Gulls, kamikaze in aggression and concentration, dived, skimmed river surface, and then ascended until they disappeared, sometimes with fish in their beaks, sometimes with what they merely thought were fish. When river mended itself, flowing south to north, it carried with it old Reeboks still laced and toes turned upward, spent and dulled condoms as transparent as cellophane, pastel race tipsheets with some dreamer’s circled selections, and other chronicles of contemporary human settlement. Continue reading

WordPress Weekly Writing Challenge: Down Memory Lane

Lesson I: Memories & Illusions

for Tina & Ronnie in memory of our mother;

 

Listen to me:

This is the blouse she wore on the merry-go-round

lemon and cherry lovebirds beaking the other

I am smoothing the wrinkles against our chests

it is the motion of pressing time backwards

The sandals that never wore the feet that

touched the pavement with you to school

acorns and berries on straw antique weave

round red toes were her statements on life.

We called these her kangaroo clothes

room enough for us to raise the world

ma ma mu mu  me me  mo

literary songs from kangaroo babies.

Listen to me:

Do you remember the color of her arms

the exact shade of black I mean

And how her reds bled into her browns

or how her nipples wet your searching mouths

when she was a leaf tarnished in autumn

or roses and the color of her anger

and vanilla oxydol and her wintertime smell

the wind would part around her

and return for a second try.

Listen to me:

This woman was the sea roaring our scars

She was the sea rocking our fears

and gushing our dreams to shore

Then she became the day dying in her own hair

and the night trying to resurrect herself.

Art: “The Persistence of Memory” by Salvador Dali; “Light My Fire” by Lena Karpinsky; “Winter” by Robert Lacy