Thursday, February 12, 2009


I had an assignment in my Faulkner class to write a one page fictional piece using just one sentence. This is what came of it:

The lights outside are dim, flickering, streetlights shining through half-closed windows, the shadows of blinds streak across the wall in slow motion, a projector screen, and there he stands, gazing straight ahead into eyes that he is all too unfamiliar with—black, deep, the material of constellations and the dreams that stars dream, but an emptiness he had grown to accept and expect—and the way the wind blows through the room, circles and curls, surrounded by white paint and plaster and some artificial clean that soaks into the pores of the walls, a burning sensation if the room ever finds within itself the ability to feel, and I would expect shivers, goosebumps, Braille on his dry, wrinkled skin, but there is nothing to be had of that, and so the blind are unable to touch into the letters of tonight (not that anyone would have known because he is the only one who should) and so there is no one to stop when there is the crash and the glints of light that fall to the floor in so many effervescent pieces (just another something for him to ignore) and he can feel it, seven years of bad luck, seep and groan, though he was never one to believe in superstitions or black cats or garlic or stakes through the heart, so there isn’t much point in his starting now, but millions of lights on the floor begin to mix with reds and a shade of blue that kids will never find in crayon boxes if only because it doesn’t match well with sun and clouds, and all mixed together, colors and shapes, and the sounds of the shadows tapping against wind and the creaking of joints and a single beating heart, up-tempo, a jazz tune, but it’s too late for improvisations now, not when he can’t stare into his eyes anymore, not that there was much to see because it all looks like plaster and paint and there are shapes and colors and sounds and the smell of tobacco smoke in a room yellowed by the only light from outside and something about kites tied onto strings that were too short to reach lunar destinations, but the alternative is to close his eyes, shutting windows in order to open doors, just to let a bit of a breeze in, and he finally finds himself laying in open sheets, feathers shaping his mind but there’s not enough lift to keep him flying, staring into where Orion should be, but he only sees frosted ceiling, bits of it falling, snowflakes, straight into his eyes and melting somewhere in the back of his head, and his knuckles lay open on his chest, the color of children falling from bicycles when no one is watching, waiting for tomorrow, arbitrary numbers pressed into white boxes, pinned to walls, and there’s something about it all, pillows made of wings, melted ceilings, scraped knees, colorshapesounds, that makes the sides of his mouth turn upward to where crayon shavings from children’s drawings should be despite it all, several years of bad luck, messes to clean up tomorrow morning, the lights outside that remain dim, but there are laughs to be had from the death of reflections.


mooseinmyshoe said...

I had the same assignment and mine did not turn out nearly as wonderful as yours.

Sherri said...

i read this through bit by bit and was just about knocked dead on the ground when i was done. which is to say, i like your writing and your metaphors are awesome.
just wanted to let you know (and say hi!)