Thursday, September 13, 2007

A Few Teasers from My Writing Notebooks...

I was just glancing through some bits and pieces that I've transcribed from my writing notebooks (a generous title considering these are collected odds and ends, brief snatches of inspiration, loose papers stuffed into manila folders) onto the computer, typing them and saving them in word processor files so I have them more readily at my disposal. I just thought I'd share a few that I was looking at and thinking about revisiting and developing a little bit -- maybe a story or two will evolve. There is something about each of these that I like (even as I'm aware of the flaws in these small blurbs). They are unpolished, shared here just as I jotted them down -- all of them were scribbled down in early 2004:

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Piece 1:

She strolled down the green garden path among flowers blazing with color -- hollyhocks, zinnias, marigolds and petunias. It was deep summer, and the warm humid breeze carried the sound of screaming insects. Most of the garden spread underneath the full sun, but here and there around the edges the shadows of oak and pecan limbs danced a lazy gray rhythm.

She bent down and smelled a scarlet blossomed petunia. The smell of petunias carried her away to her childhood days at her grandmother’s. The fragrance of life was so thick she could taste it, feel it, embrace it. She had always loved flowers, trees and all growing things. She was sensitive and felt things very deeply, far more deeply than most folks, so she was thought of by some as odd.

She came around a bend in the path, and on the ground lay a dead kitten, a yellow tabby. Its fur was damp and there were clumps of froth on it. She bent down and almost touched the poor thing, but she leapt up with a start. "Mad dog!" she thought. The town crazy was ranting at the general store this morning about a mad dog, but everybody dismissed his testimony as another delusion.

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Piece 2:

Mike was four years old, and he came strolling into the kitchen and climbed onto one of the tall chairs with the enthusiasm of a rock climber scaling a cliff. He stood on the chair so he could see over the counter to his mother, and so she could see him.

“Wallace is gone again.”

“Wallace will be back dear.”

Wallace was a battered old teddy bear that Mike had taken to when he was about two years old. It had belonged to an uncle when he was a boy, and the uncle had given it to Mike since he was childless himself. Soon afterwards the uncle drove over an embankment and was killed. He was drunk at the time, although nobody ever remembered him being much of a drinker.

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Piece 3:

Nelson sat on the patio in a battered blue bathrobe, smoking a cigar [specific] and reading the newspaper [specific]. He had on a pair of black socks and brown leather slippers. He had slept lousy. All night he thought about the double-cross. That troubled him. The murder did not.

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