12.5.2013 Journal Prompt

Photo by Eve Arnold
Photo by Eve Arnold

December 5, 2013: Shining.

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One thought on “12.5.2013 Journal Prompt

  1. Lindsay

    Writers are so up themselves sometimes, with all their pretty words and their clever metaphors, and looking for new ways to say things just to fucking show off. And it’s said that there are only a certain number of stories in the world and that number is surprisingly small, yet there are so many bloody books crowding the shelves of shops or libraries. I just don’t get it.

    And there’s this girl and she’s the prettiest girl you ever saw and everybody thinks so. I swear she lights up a room when she’s in it. And she laughs all the time and when she talks to you, she touches your arm, just the soft brush of her fingers; and she looks you in the eye and you can tell that she’s really interested in what you have to say. And let me tell you, she could have any man in the room, any man in the world, but she chose a writer.

    This is one of those stories and it is a love story and you have to look beneath the surface to really understand it. He is older than her and his brow is deeply furrowed with thinking, and he has the right words for everything, almost everything. He sets his pen to paper to write about the girl and he imagines a person reading what he has written and the room where that person is all lit up with the girl being in that room, too. But the words do not run easy onto the page.

    She is sitting in a chair opposite him. Not exactly sitting, for she is curled up like a cat, and the arch of her foot is something so beautiful that he wishes he was a painter then; and the fall of sunlight on her hair that she tucks behind her ear with a practiced movement of her hand, her fingers, something like a caress or like a musician fingering the bridge of a violin; and she is reading and so caught up in the story that she does not know where she is or that she is watched, and her face in that light, in any light… and he does not know why she is with him.

    He pushes himself up from his chair and he sighs and stamps his feet and punches the air with his fist and kicks the leg of the table, like a child that wants something but does not know how to ask.

    She looks up and she is all soft and concerned and not knowing what it is that has upset him.

    ‘I can’t,’ he says. ‘Not with you here. Not with you sitting there and so beautiful and so bright.’

    She tells him she does not understand.

    ‘With you I am not myself,’ he says. ‘I am a writer first and foremost and with you I am something else.’

    He sends her away, and that’s not what he wants either so he sends her off with hard words and hurt-words, and he does not know if she will ever come back. The room is suddenly dark and he sits at his table and takes up his pen and begins to write. And there is an ache in his writing when she is not there, the sharp blade of yearning beautifully twisting on the page, and he does not really get it.

    Writers! Like I said, they are so fucking up themselves sometimes. And I know this because this writer is me.

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