Through the trees #writephoto

Sue Vincent’s Thursday photo prompt this week is open to many interpretations, and I’m sure not all of them are going to be nice.

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He peered through the greenfly-sticky leaves of the lime tree and caught his breath—so many windows, so many turrets and balconies. How many pairs of eyes could be scanning the parkland at that very moment? They had known how to build fortified palaces in the olden days. How olden he hadn’t a clue. That was one of the things that impressed and terrified him about the place. It was old. Fucking ancient. Riddled with rooms that led into other rooms with no windows, no way back out again, and staircases leading nowhere, attics full of weird noises…And it had a mind of its own, this place. It knew things. Like it followed you about when you were inside, watched you creep down corridors, slip inside rooms you’d no business in. It saw you pick the lock on the window, saw you drop over the balcony, sniggered maybe when you landed badly. It saw you get out.

His breathing came faster. A twig snapped behind him. He let go of the branch and the leaves swished limply. A step, heavy, the panting of hot breath. He looked back one more time at the windows, the turrets and the balconies, and he ran.

She leans out to the starry night

Yesterday evening, Harriet Goodchild initiated a twitter duel, drawing on some of the beautiful imagery she uses in her novels. This is my bit, tidied up and with the blanks filled in.

Quintuplet_Cluster_-_GPN-2000-000908

 

He stands before the casement tightly closed.

“Open to me, love, for the night is bright.”

She sees him framed in moonlight, hollow-eyed,

And bars the door against the fearful night.

 

She shivers in the chilly wind that blows,

From the deeps beyond the evening star,

She hears him call her out to join the dance,

“Open, love,” he says, “for I have come so far.”

 

“You bring a breath of winter, love,” she says,

“Hoar frost glitters in your tangled hair,

The night stars all are frozen in the sky,

Though sweet summer’s breath was in the evening air.”

 

He waves his hand and starlight fills the dark,

Burning bright with passion where he stands.

“Look again, deny it if you can,

The yearning in your heart to take my hands.”

 

She hesitates and looks around her room,

At the homely fire burning in the grate,

And sees her life among the dancing flames,

Consumed in ash where love has come too late.

 

She listens to the stirring of her blood,

Looks out upon the deep and starry night.

She sees the wild abandon in the sky,

And takes love’s hands to join its savage flight.

Two Sentence Story #6

Painting by Odilon Redon
823px-Redon,_Odilon_-_La_Voile_jaune_(The_Yellow_Sail)_-_Google_Art_Project

The prettiest of the unmarried girls, she was a sacrifice to the sea, she and the sea’s share of the treasures the men had brought back from the season’s raiding, but she was also the daughter of the Wise Woman, the Healer, She Who Balances Life and Death, and now Thief of Sacrificial Boat and Booty. For any mother would defy the law, refuse the death and sorrow dictated by the menfolk, defy the sea itself, to choose another future for her daughter.

Noise

Seurat_Grassy_Riverbank_DMA

To become so small, so insignificant
That the cool tangle of the riverbank
Is the whole world.
For the creeping of insects
To sound a background throb
To the rustle of the reeds
Like sheets flapping in a storm.
The slap of the waves, a thunder roll
And the air vibrates with warbling notes,
Dropping from the immensity of green canopy,
The sublime music of the blackbird’s song.
To creep, to hide in the momentous shade
Where life teams, and the city noise,
Metallic braying wreathed in acrid fumes
Like emissions from some distant star
Falls into the black hole
Of man’s futilities.