Thursday November 26th, 2009

The exercise:

Bit more writing to do tonight, I think. We'll see. It's getting late.

NaNo Word Count: 51,259
NaNo Target: Obliterated

Your exercise today: imitations. Pick an artist, poet, author, whoever you like, and try to write in their style.

Yeah, I'm still stuck on my Tom Waits binge. Good thing tomorrow is four line prose day or I'd do it again.


Imitations - Tom Waits

When I was born that rainy Monday
Momma's skin turned as grey as the sky
Oh brother I just started to live
And Momma, she was all set to die
Yeah Momma was all set to die

Oh Daddy stuck the blame right on me
No sir, I never did stand a chance
I was raised in a house full of ghosts
And they never showed me how to dance
Yeah I never learned how to dance

While Daddy drowned his heart with whiskey
I took notes so I could fill his shoes
The day he passed on I said goodbye
And carried on with nothing to lose
Yeah man I had nothing to lose

Well I robbed a man the other day
It felt good to put him in his place
But man that feeling soon was gone
Cause he went and shot me in the face
Yeah he shot me right in the face

Now these beeping machines tie me down
No they won't let me break free and fly
If this is what living's gonna be
Oh my brother I'd much rather die
Yeah brother please just let me die


Greg said...

That's really good, Marc, it has a genuine ring to it of something Tom Waits might produce. Your choice of rhyme scheme is pretty damn spot on too for the poem! If I handed out gold stars, you'd be getting one right about now.

I quite like noir detective stories and a certain amount of my style is naturally based on that (you may have noticed...), so this is Raymond Chandler-esque (and if you've never read any of his books, the Naked Gun films satirised him accurately).

Torch Singer

As I walked into the bar the sulphurous smoke crawled down into my lungs like a new-born foal looking for its mother and I felt my chest tighten. I'd been off the smokes for six years at that point, and I still had the cravings; my hands still shook when I lit a match, and now and then I'd throw away what little pride I had left and sniff the wicks of extinguished candles. This smoke was the good stuff, heavy with nicotine and fragrant with tobacco that still had time to make its way to heaven. I knew there and then I should turn around and walk right out or I'd be off the wagon, but there she was, up on the stage in the spot-light: the dame I'd come to talk to.
I stumbled, tripping over the leg of somebody's chair, and they stood up to complain. When they saw my face -- not my best feature, especially when splashed with blood and brains from the taxi-driver -- they sat back down again and bitched about to me to their friends instead. I prefer it when the patrons of a club have a bit of common sense.
As I struggled to the stage like a fish fleeing the net, the man at the piano rested his fingers on ivories yellowed by smoke and time and started up a tune popular a year back. And she started to sing.
Her voice had a power I'd not heard since Joplin died, and she had a mighty fine pair of lungs for a woman that small and skinny. She shimmied as she sang, her hips sending messages out across that room that were certain to get her into trouble one of these days. She was like a fresh fish in hot oil: attractive, irresistible, and doomed.

Marc said...

You had so many great lines in there, I can't pick just one. That was great :)

And thanks for the very kind words on mine! I've decided I quite like his style and that I could do worse that trying my hand at it.

Alright, I needed to pick one of yours, so here it be:

"... and now and then I'd throw away what little pride I had left and sniff the wicks of extinguished candles."