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February 24, 2012

This is the Photo Prompt from Madison Woods:

Come up with a story, 100 words, more or less, based on the above picture.


Across ages of silence the relics touch Oldman.  Pleasing poison’s caress, wrapping itself around trampled desires the lonely whispered dreams return night to morning to yesterday, where  lie lonely whispered ages of trailing words and broken gestures, long and lonely whispered thoughts, longing across ages, between darkness within silence, longing across ages, wrapping itself into itself into a new day, into a new desire, across ages of desire, and silent yearning, for grief is best when silent, across ages of silence turned fragile, turned relic, turned Oldman,  a man, a grayheart,  dry and fragile as stone.

17 Comments leave one →
  1. February 24, 2012 2:39 am

    Dear Vincent,

    You captured the enormity of the unbridgeable gulf that is death. If I’m reading this right, this piece is a tone poem of sorts that flows well at times and tumbles into itself at others. I like the mysterious aspect of Oldman and would have liked to see some of the long sentence used to limn his character with a little more light, but it’s your vision so I must be content with what you showed us. Will keep my eye peeled for other comments to shed the light I crave.



  2. February 24, 2012 11:02 am

    Very interesting. I read it twice, just to delve deeper into the prose. What I saw was a man at the end of his life, a final dose of poison his downfall, whether self administered or not, I could not tell. Very deep.

    Here’s mine:

  3. February 24, 2012 6:45 pm

    Some beautiful phrases you’ve chained together here. A somber, dignified comment on the brevity of life and the eternity of death. Personally, I would have broken it into more sentences to help the reader keep things sorted out. But I think Faulkner would love it just the way it is.
    Here’s mine:

  4. Lora Mitchell permalink
    February 24, 2012 10:53 pm

    More poem than prose. Clever circle…explaining the journey of one’s life. Would love to have seen it spaced out in poetic form to help the reader follow the rhythm better. Nevertheless, nice work. Here’s mine:

  5. February 24, 2012 11:10 pm

    I agree with Lora above. I think formatting this in poetic form would have greatly added to the impact of an already striking piece of prose. Well done.

  6. February 25, 2012 12:51 am

    Poetically beautiful, the flow of words is almost hypnotic. I like how you used repetition of phrases and words, repitition across ages, across this piece, to weave the spell throughout. .

  7. February 25, 2012 12:57 am

    It feels very haunting and sad, though I’ll confess that I didn’t fully understand the meaning behind it. That’s just me, though. I’m a fairly simple mind!

    I do love how different it is to everything else I’ve seen from this week’s prompt.

    • April 4, 2012 4:35 pm

      I wanted to keep a continuous line going, repeating certain words and phrases and sounds. I was listening to the Moonlight Sonata at the time which is probably the reason it turned out the way it did. Thank you for commenting.

  8. February 25, 2012 8:22 am

    By the second phrase of the second sentence, I knew to let go and drift where you took me with rhythm and image–a lovely ride, Robin

  9. February 25, 2012 9:45 am

    This a master craft of an art. Could have helped better with shorter sentences though (i had to read the 2nd sentence about 3 times to get the drift. Lovely piece, here!

    Here’s mine:

  10. February 25, 2012 11:26 am

    The “l’s and the rhythm of the prose poem were perfect. The “l”s and “a”s are long sound and really emphasize JUST how much time passes. Very nicely offset by the “w” and “t”

    As I read this, the story seems to me to be: Memory and grief. Holding it in. In our personal experiences, these things are forever, because to us, there is only one forever–our existence. He (Oldman), holding in this grief, these longings for the past, the new longings unfulfilled, becomes one of the “relics” he holds. It is almost a paradox of sorts. And I love it.

    This has to be one of the best things I’ve read in a very long time. Thank you very much.

    My link is here:

  11. February 25, 2012 3:16 pm

    This is an interesting take on expressing what it would really be like to be an “Oldman” in the sense of a seer – one who can see into the depths of the past – where all time exists at the same time, but yet no longer exists, which is where all the grief comes into play.
    Actually, quite a conundrum.

    • April 4, 2012 4:36 pm

      I appreciate your insight into this. I wasn’t sure the effect it would have but it seems to have worked.

  12. February 26, 2012 3:53 am

    Oh dear, I left a beautiful comment yesterday, but it seems to have disappeared today. don’t know why.
    I just wanted to say that your story seemed to say in gripping poetic prose, how all things are aligned in time – and that the “oldman” in your story, is someone caught in that conundrum, a witness to all the grief and loss, the entropy that I so fear, which he can see with out the restrictions of time. What it could be like to be a true seer…
    Well done.

  13. February 26, 2012 11:10 am

    Mm, very rhythmic, very intense. Fantastic work here and good stylistic approach!

  14. Madison Woods permalink
    February 27, 2012 3:45 am

    I loved that and think it sounds wonderful as spoken word. This is my favorite phrase: “for grief is best when silent”.

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