Perseverance

Day 51: March 24 (written)

He scorches the ground. Every blade of grass and petal of every flower bursts into cold white flames. Incinerated in an instant, a ruined field of ash is all that remains. But look! a sprout shoots rapidly out of the ground. It buds and blooms in the link of an eye. Hundreds of others join it. He scorches the ground again. And again. And again. And each time the enchanted grows back, fragrant with the sweet scent of roses and honeysuckle and lilac.

[83]

Last month, inspired by the-cassandra-project and their Every Day Challenge, I wrote every day to raise money for the Urban Justice Center. You can still donate here or please spread the word. I assume, since I set it up, that it’s still available if you want to. Thank you.

Endurance

Day 48: March 24 (written)

A tiny flower, leaves shuddering from the strain, shoves through an icy, near solid, sheet of stony earth. The hard edges tear its petals and split its leaves. Ragged, the flower turns toward the sun. But white-gray clouds, drab as spindles of spoiled milk, blot out breakfast. The tiny flowers, petals aching, will have to wait.

[56]

Last month, inspired by the-cassandra-project and their Every Day Challenge, I wrote every day to raise money for the Urban Justice Center. You can still donate here or please spread the word. I assume, since I set it up, that it’s still available if you want to. Thank you.

Surviving Objectives

Day 39: March 11

Flowers flare like fire, ignited inspiration and potential; many objectives suddenly bloom, busy and bustling as bees. But the fire, in a short while, dwindles until there is only a flickering ember. Of the many inspired flares, perhaps one survives. And the others fade from memory, a repetitive scars of scorched earth building over and over atop one another, on and on and on…

[64]

Snow Flowers

Day 7: Feb 7

I have renewed these in lieu of the Refugee Ban in the USA. Inspired by the-cassandra-project and their Every Day Challenge, I am writing every day to raise money for the Urban Justice Center. You can donate here or please spread the word. Thank you.

Snow plummets down, an arch of fluffy cold crystals, coating the desert with a heavy white blanket. The lizards and crickets dart into their homes, burrowing as deep as they can to avoid the chill. But the snow continues relentlessly, and as it falls, unknown to most that make this northern desert their home, tiny translucent flowers burst through the powdery layer. Plum and indigo, they sway gently, black satin faces drinking up the crisp moisture of the snow.

[79 words]

Flower Smiles

Day 257

Warm sunshine – but what other kind was there? – spilled over the smiling flowers, petal-trimmed faces waving in a gentle breeze. A tiny caterpillar nodded back; she had always thought flowers were the most polite creatures. Other insects scoffed at her opinion. Too young, too naive, they said. But she knew better. 

She may have just come out of her egg, but she knew flowers. Somehow. Knew them like the tasty crunch of maple leaves and the delicious golden sunshine. How could anysect not know?


Written: 19 June 2016

Words: 83 

Inspired: a song

Fairy Tale Friday: The Loveliest Rose in the World

by H. C. Andersen

I was browsing one of my collections of Andersen’s fairy tales (because, yes, I have more than one; his writing’s lovely), and I happened to catch this title. I did not recall reading it so I did.

It’s simple enough – a queen has a garden that, no matter the season, is full of flowers. Her favorite are roses, which bloom and grow all over her palace. She eventually becomes ill and can only be saved by seeing the loveliest rose in the world, sprung from the purest, greatest love.

Well, that idea – roses and love – is exactly the kind that sparks my emotions and fires up my writing imagination.  But knowing how and what Andersen writes, I had a hunch of what the loveliest rose would be.

Possible roses that are dismissed are romance, patriotism, and knowledge. Other possibilities that are suggested include: a child’s love, a mother’s love (and grief) for her sick child, and people at church.  Can you guess what the loveliest rose is?

In this story its Christ for his great love for humanity. Dying on the cross and all that. I don’t entirely agree but I don’t disagree. But I suspected that’s what the greatest and purest love would be in Andersen.

Fairy Tale Friday: The Daisy

by H. C. Andersen

Oh, the daisy. Andersen’s stories are really big on humanizing, or as I like to say, emotionalizing inanimate items (balls and lanterns), as well as nature, like the daisy.

The daisy is basically the sweetest, most positive, upbeat flower ever. All the other flowers think they’re much better than the daisy, in classic Andersen style, because they’re stuck up. A bird vists the daisy and kisses it and the little daisy is esactic about this. The other flowers stick up their petals.

Of course no one cares about the daisy and when the bird is captured and stuck in a cage (cause children, especially boys, are generally rather wicked in Andersen), the daisy comes along because it happens to be on the tuft of earth that’s brought to the cage.

The daisy wants to help or cheer the bird up, but cannot speak or move. The bird eventually dies of longing for freedom, and the boys bury the body.

Andersen points out the hypocrisy:

“While it was alive and sang they forgot it, and let it suffer want in the cage; now they cried over it and covered it with flowers. The piece of turf, with the little daisy on it, was thrown out on the dusty highway. Nobody thought of the flower which had felt so much for the bird and so greatly desired to comfort it” (17)

Basically the daisy had a better nature than those boys. Or, as I summed up when I read it, this is so Andersen – write about an overlooked but positive, giving organism that’s flung aside by others because the world is full of assholes.

The daisy is the best.

Works Cited

Andersen, Hans Christian. Classic Fairy Tales. New York: Barnes & Noble, 2012. Print.

The Book of Flying | “The Valleys of the Country of Death”

a novel

by Keith Miller

“’What is precious is beautiful'” (Miller, 229).

Right. So this chapter starts off with some lovely description (yay!). And Pico moves from the mountains into the desert.

As I’ve written before, I love deserts so Pico simply arriving in one is interesting to me. Additionally, this geographical stage of his journey reminds me of the Ordeal in the Hero’s Journey, where the hero faces death and, after overcoming it, obtains or receives a special item, gift, talisman, ability, etc. which is what the whole quest was about.

Similarly, the connotation of wandering in a desert, where Pico in effect abandons everything he’s brought with him so he’s stripped down to the barest minimum of himself, has a flavor of spiritual mysticism. The one who goes out into the desert. Whether this is an entirely true in practice, I can’t affirm, but in stories and philosophy books I’ve read, there seems to be a tendency of going into the desert as a means to remove oneself from the mundane necessities of the world.

Although, I don’t think this desire is dependent on going to a desert specifically; it’s probably more a way of life or thinking. And going anywhere that is more isolated from a busy living would be ideal. (And that’s not to say that deserts don’t house busy life and people, there just seems to be this trope of the desert as the frontier where everything is washed away.)

The book seems to follow this sentiment by stating that “[a] forest is mystery but the desert is truth” (220). I can’t help wondering if there’s a bit of Orientalism in there. Why is the desert so much truer than a different environment? But then I’ve never been in a desert, so I can’t comment on whether it’s scarcity of water or appearance would evoke any deeper sensibility of truth.

Continue reading

Fairy Tale Friday: Snedronningen: et eventyr i syv historier

The Snow Queen: a fairy tale in seven stories

by H. C. Andersen

Tredje historie: Blomsterhaven hos konen, som kunne trolddom

“Third Story: The Flower Garden with the Woman Who Knew Witchcraft

So in this story we get:

  • lots of sunshine and yellow (in contrast to the detailed ice and snow last time)
  • a little spurious; that is, it feels a little out of place, especially the flowers’ stories. After all, what does hearing their stories or being there contribute, other than having time pass so Gerda can travel in autumn
  • to know what’s Gerda doing
  • to learn its been almost at least a year since Kai vanished/was lost (winter to autumn)
  • little details: roses, roses and death