Wednesday, January 13, 2010

The Writing Submission

With no small amount of trepidation, I have entered the writing contest at Clarity of Night.

Instructed to create a piece of fiction of no more than 250 words in length, contestants were told to take their inspiration from this photograph.

Here is the result of my effort.

It was an enjoyable exercise.



Through an opening in the green curtain he could just see the garden, asleep in the wintertime sun. An unclosed curtain through which a vertical stripe of morning light occasionally touched his shoulder like a knighthood.

Don’t let them close the window, he thought.

You won’t require an open window, the voice replied.

He didn’t try to turn his head this time. He knew no one was there.

How much longer?

Not long now, I should think.

He wished he could share what he knew with those gathered around him. They all seemed so pale now, almost invisible.

As the afternoon weakened he could once again hear the paper soft flutter of wings. He closed his eyes to see them. Feathers. Feathers of white, blue-black, grey, falling and flying like snow. Coming down from the ceiling, drifting in through the windowglass. He liked the black ones best. He secretly wished for the black.

Soaring up on the wind currents, flying out over the oceans, glissading through the glen. He had coveted that casual liberty since his boyhood. To run and run, to lift away. An unspoken longing buried deep in his soul.

You can go now.

I can? Where should I go?

Anywhere that you wish.

The silhouette of a hawk casts a violet hued shadow into the dimly lit room. The bird briefly hovers outside the window, then spreads its black feathers, lifts over the bare tree tops and is gone. To glide on the winds of December.

Painting above by Sir John Everett Millais


  1. I'm so thrilled you entered! Your writing is inspirational in every possible way and this piece is no exception. Definitely a winner - brava!

  2. What a well-crafted story! As always your descriptions were so vivid, and the story was hauntingly beautiful.

  3. I am so happy to see you entering your writing - you are so amazingly gifted and this piece was beautiful. I loved your character - I too have 'coveted that casual liberty since (childhood)'
    Fly, fly!
    Cheers to you, Pamela!
    xo Isa

  4. By Jove, you've done it again. You don't need us to tell you what talent you have. But, I absolutely love to read everyone of your postings. Its like the sun rising over the trees in the morning and always starts my day with a smile.
    Good luck with the contest. I am sure you will come out with a gold star. At least you will in my book.

  5. Wow, that was beautiful!
    Good luck with the contest.
    Love, Joni

  6. Lovely! I'd like you to come and write the final chapter of my life when I'm ready to go.

  7. Beautiful piece of writing, and good luck.

  8. That was a lovely piece of writing! Well done:)

  9. A brilliant and moving tale, Pamela.
    Do you often enter writing competitions ?
    I wish you well with this one. In my humble opinion, you certainly deserve to win. XXXX

  10. OMG! I would have frozen just seeing the word limitation but your writing was like reading silk.

  11. Hi Pamela
    You have such a way with words. A lovely haunting piece. x Julie

  12. never a doubt in my mind about your ability to use words and make magic - wonderfully beautiful entry - good luck :)

  13. Your piece brought to mind a personal experience, that of being by the bedside of a loved one who passed away. The imagery in my mind at the time was that of a butterfly. There was a feeling of peace and release.

    I wish you well with your submission, you have a great talent.

  14. A beautiful piece of writing Pamela. It brings back a memory and I am comforted by your words.

  15. Fabulous.........Your words are enchanting

  16. Well done, Pamela! It's a beautiful piece.

  17. Congratulations!!So worthy of your writing!! You have such a gift!

  18. Such humility and sweetness in the picture you chose to go with this post..Good luck!

  19. Beautifully written Pamela.
    I love that Millais picture too.

  20. May you win!
    This is such a gentle and lovelingly imagined story of death, wish I could go one day like that!
    Keep going, you are so good at this!
    You won me over already a while ago...


  21. a story of feeling... as if watching a dream


  22. Gosh, you're good.
    A real winner.

  23. How wonderful, Pamela - I'm so glad that you submitted your writing. Like Acornmoon - it brings back memories for me of sitting by a bedside wanting to hold on and yet knowing the loved one had to go and be free.

  24. Way to go. You are amazing and tender.

    Love Renee xoxo

  25. Pamela, I can only say: YOU ROCK!!

  26. Wonderful piece - best of luck to you! Whatever happens, your writing is a winner with me. I like the concept of an image as a prompt. I left a comment there too.

  27. Good luck Pamela!
    An amazing piece of writing. You are a very talented lady. x

  28. I have been over and read it, left a comment. Moving and beautiful.

  29. You have a beautiful silver quill. This piece is as telling and stunning as all your words!

  30. Pamela you are a master with the English language. The story made me think of my mothers passing on New Years Day. I would like to think that we can just fly away amongst the clouds with the grace of a bird. So beautiful Pamela x

  31. What an interesting challenge! I enjoyed reading what you came up with. So creative!

  32. You continue to thrill me with your beautiful words, Pamela. You are truly an authentic, original voice. I love reading anything you write.

  33. Pamela,
    Eight years ago, my three older brothers and I surrounded our Father on his final day...the scene was one that parallels your beautifully poignant words.

    Your writings make a difference in the lives of others. Thank you for the image of such peace.
    xo Treacy

  34. Really lovely, Pamela. You are a gifted writer - please do write more.

  35. Wow, Pamela - I've got tears in my eyes. Your piece is so touching. When my son passed away, there was a snowstorm on the day of his funeral and a hawk hovered right outside of the funeral home. I was sure that it was my Tony watching all of us enter to pay him tribute. Beautiful!!!

  36. Pamela....your writing makes my soul smile! :)


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