Monday September 21st, 2009

The exercise:

Today's starter is: desert rose.

This has nothing to do with the Sting song, but I thought I'd link it anyway since I like it a lot.


In every direction...
And I can do nothing but
And look and think while here I
But wait - is that a purple...
Surely I must dream of that
A mere mirage, my poor brain
Yet its scent still reaches my


Greg said...

Intriguing structure! I like it, and the way it forces the reader to add emphasis to the words on their own. It flows quite naturally too.

Oh, and you were quite right; hope was a typo for home yesterday.

The desert rose

The desert rose, sand roaring upwards and outwards like an exploding hourglass. As the winds swirled the sand around Jeb and I both pulled our hoods over our heads, and I struggled to realign the dark cloth bands so that I could peer from between them without risking my sight.
As it settled, I saw that all around us, stretching off towards the tops of the dunes, were dark-skinned men in jellabas. The ones closest to us had a greenish sheen over their skin as though covered in some essential oil, and all of them were heavily armed, both with swords and guns.
Jeb gasped and fell forwards at that moment, the little brass vial slipping from his fingers and spilling iridescent tables across the sand. I started towards him, concerned not for his obvious distress but for the tablets. They were clearly not the nitroglycerine for a heart condition that he'd assured me so many times on our journey here they were.
As something beneath his jellaba began to writhe in a most inhuman manner, the people surrounding us raised a chant. It ululated and echoed around the dunes, and was complemented by the growing hiss of small sand avalanches. I recognised the chant, and cold fingers seemed to walk down my spine. I backed away from Jeb; if the Pap'ra tribe had come to meet him I was in far more trouble than I'd feared.

Marc said...

Yeah, felt like trying something different. I think it worked out alright.

That was great - another one that I could easily see continuing into a longer story.

"The desert rose, sand roaring upwards and outwards like an exploding hourglass"

That's a fantastic opening line. I'm quite jealous :)