Each day a lovely little website referred to as Flashy Fiction offers a writing prompt to a photo. Today’s prompt was a two-fer because it’s been combined with Friday’s prompt.
I had to do one for today. The opportunity was too good and the prompt too right-up-my-alley. So, this is what I wrote for the photo above. I hope you enjoy it. And please, stop by to see all the offerings on Flashy Fiction. You’ll be glad you did.
The Light of Meaning
Within me grows a tension I cannot place. What could cause this sensation of impending destiny, which perches like a vulture just out of visual range? Does my breath come short and quick because of unexpected claustrophobia at the looks of this canyon before me?
My friends don’t seem to notice how silence surrounds this place, how the scent of dust carries with it a hint of the ancient. Their shouts fall short of my space, leaving me in a personal bell jar inside these striped red walls.
Illusions of undulating Dune’s Shai-Hulud flash across my mind. I wonder if this was how Paul felt the first time he waited for that beast to rise from the desert floor. Would there be such a ritual for me to perform for the coming secret to reveal itself? And how do I know there is a secret?
Footsteps echo. Shock sweeps through me. I recognize them as my own, though I don’t recall moving into the inner recesses of a side chamber. Dim illumination draws me forward, faster as hesitation drops away. I must know this thing that would be.
Twists and turns, dried water channels of exquisite sandstone, bring me, at last, to the chamber. I burst forth from the passage, panting in excitement and terror. Finally, I see what has haunted my vague dreams for longer than memory reaches. It waits; one glorious beam of pure light.
Within that circle of illumination is the future I’ve tried to escape from and now run to in a sprint of desperation. Could my heart beat any harder and remain caged within my body? Could my responding body contain so much light?
A jerk, like that of a tether drawn forward suddenly, pulls me into the beam of sunlight that squeezes through a tiny overhead opening. My head arches back. My chest swells and rises, as if I’m a mere marionette and someone has yanked my string upward. My mind is filled with music, sweet and gentle, as it ebbs and surges through the channels of my soul.
Home comes calling. I have been away longer than I can imagine right now. My mind registers the knowledge of a previous, though, different life elsewhere; a knowledge that explains so much that has confused me during this life.
The music and light fill me with the purpose I’ve been seeking. All is clear now. I have come this far to learn that only one act of mine is necessary for my life to have meaning for this world; to learn that with that act, I have completed my purpose here and can go home again.
Is there any better bliss than such sure knowledge?
- I’d like to order one Shai-hulud Special with extra Spice (theecaffeinatedcrow.wordpress.com)
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Small excursions energize me most of the time. Over the weekend Sister and I took a quick trip to Central Washington. This was a trip planned for a couple of months. I could hardly afford the time away, I thought.
I did have numerous projects clamoring for my attention, things pushed aside or in need of initial contact. By Friday I’d concluded how much I really needed time away from computer and familiar surroundings.
I know we just had a break away with the Mountain Man Rendezvous, but what I didn’t need was stimulation and the constant movement of people around me. Instead, the need arose for personal quiet and peace, to allow me to recharge my internal batteries and my Muse.
The five hour drive Saturday morning began the recharging process. I sat back, listening to Sister’s running commentary of locations and wildlife passing by along Highway 2.
Mule deer and whitetail waited politely until they appeared in the rearview mirror before leaping across the road. Bald eagles kept pace with us from above the asphalt. Red-tailed hawks and osprey watched from their sky-scraper perches to make sure we left their territories quickly.
Rivers and small lakes rested in stillness, reflecting the forests lining their banks or the mountain summits that cast massive shadows across the sun-kissed mirrors. Canada geese nested with goslings yards from the blue heron and mallards, while red-winged blackbirds swayed precariously on last year’s cattail stalks.
The Kootenai River splashed along its bed heading back for the Canada. Clear skies colored with the peculiar shade of pale French blue spoke to us a warm temperatures and luscious clean air. The relaxation began, even as conversation flowed between us and the radio played softly in the background. There were no expectations other than our own. We were free for a little while.
Once we arrived at our destination, we had extra time to have a picnic. The city park in Connell was, as always, well-kept and ready for use. Under the shade of cottonwood trees we opened up the stocked cooler in the back and filled our plates. Sesame Garlic Chicken made room for homemade potato salad (a once monthly treat), and a stack of cut celery mingled with split baby carrots and sliced zucchini that kept the ranch dip separated from the rest. Zucchini nut bread waited for its chance to stand up and be counted as our dessert.
After our lunch left us ready for naps, Sister needed to take me down to one of the local eateries so that I had a comfy place to wait for her. She was going to be visiting her eldest son. I was going to work until her return that evening; a plan that suited my writing needs wonderfully.
From eleven thirty until seven in the evening, I worked with paper and pencil to catch up on work without the distraction on a computer or constant interruptions. It was bliss in so many ways. A low murmur of voices crept into my hidden corner on occasion to remind me that others shared the space.
A lovely young waitress slid in every other hour or so to refresh my ice needs or top off the iced tea picture. Otherwise, I was left alone to work. They’re used to me doing a day’s work there, which is a good thing.
By the time Sister returned for me, I’d filled dozens of pages with work. Editorial calendars for the next two months filled their section. Goals lists snuggled close by. A list of prompts to be used for a friend’s book of poetry waited for typing and a send-off. A guest blog was finished and awaiting the same fate.
Four new poems—three for publication submission and one for my poetry book “Ancient Reflections” filled their portion of my notebook. Notes on the epic fantasy I’m writing sprawled across their own pages.
I’d been on a writing, planning, calculating day’s journey and had tangible work to show for it. I was feeling smug, for my own sake. It had been one of the best writing days I’ve had in months, and I knew that I needed to plan at least one of these days away from home at least once a month.
The return journey was long and tiring. We got halfway home before fatigue forced us to sleep. Yesterday morning we continued home, where we crashed and burned completely.
Was it worth it? Oh yeah. BJ got great nature photos for use later. I got more done that I had much of the week before. And along the way we’d rediscovered what we’d enjoyed so much about traveling. I figure we did well, all things considered.
Today began the new schedule for me and one filled with even more than the previous week. Now, though, I have the key to getting it all dealt with. Re-energizing is necessary for both mental and physical health. I hope everyone can get renewed as often as I intend to in future. Be sure to comment with your own measures to re-energize. I look forward to seeing how others do it.
- Mixing It Up with Poetry (claudsy.wordpress.com)
- Makinson Island – A Peaceful Retreat in Kissimmee, Florida (betterinbulk.net)
- Some Much Needed R&R (weddingbee.com)
- Turkey and Bald Eagle Sitings (jbense.wordpress.com)
- Sit Back, Relax, and Enjoy the . . . Salt Cave? (bellasugar.com)
The dreaded Friday the 13th has found us again. Dare we show ourselves in the light? Will dire portents of evil stalk the denizens of lesser shadows? Oh, I think it’ll be alright, just this once.
The Poem-A-Day Challenge prompt for today reflects the calendar and our cultural superstitions. Write an unlucky poem. Okay, that’s what’s on the menu for today.
Enjoy the fare that’s placed before you and save a chuckle for later when you need it most.
Unlucky in Love: Poor Male
There she is, so coy
Delicate in black negligée,
Waiting for my attentions.
Whisper soft, I approach
Her boudoir, quick stepping
To show off my prowess.
We meet, ah, sweet surrender.
Wait! Not yet! Too late.
Her juices leave me dying.
For her love, her magnificence,
I give myself to her, twitching,
A sacrifice to her hourglass self.
© Claudette J. Young 2012
On This Day
Watch where you step,
Your mother’s involved.
Beware the ladder’s tunnel,
The feline noir’s crossing.
Never mention the Scottish play
Or purse your lips on stage.
Who’d’ve thought soap
And tub would do me in?
© Claudette J. Young 2012
Just in case you are curious about the Lady in Black from the first poem, remember what Black Widows always do.
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