Sunday September 5th, 2010

The exercise:

Your prompt today: before and after.

I took some 'before' shots of the cabin today. Cleaning begins tomorrow, then hopefully the electricians will come this week and the plumber next week. I'll save the 'before' shots until I can also post the 'after' shots.

But, fear not! I still have pictures to share with you today! As mentioned previously, I wanted to show off the zoom on my camera. So first, we have the fully zoomed out picture:


This is the view we get every morning as we exit from the bottom floor on the way out to the garden. A row of monster sunflowers, the neighbour's vineyard, a slight glimpse of the lake. Not bad, really.

And here's the zoomed in as far as the camera will go shot:


That would be the cluster of sunflowers around the middle of the first picture. I've always wanted a camera with a good zoom on it... and I have to say it's as great as I expected it would be :)

Mine:

Before she arrived, he was a confident, capable man. The sort of fellow everyone in a small town turns to when they needed something done quickly and done right. His laugh was honest and infectious, his eyes full of a vitality that never seemed to wane.

After she left, he was like a bombed out building: devoid of all the joy, love, and laughter that had once brimmed within. At first folk still turned to him for help, but that didn't last past a handful of letdowns and harsh refusals. He wasn't seen around town much, outside the odd visit to the grocery store and the much more regular appearances at the liquor store.

I heard she's got her sights set on me next. I'm not worried though; her charms won't work on me. I'm too strong, too sure of who I am. She can't take that away from me.

Not like she did with him.

7 Comments:

morganna said...

Before
Waist high grass with thistles
An untrimmed tree
Weed filled garden beds.

After
Fruit trees thrive
Among neat beds of flowers
Tomatoes and artichokes ready for picking.
---------------------
The story of my backyard. It had not been tended for almost 2 years when we moved in. We've been here four years now, and this is the first year I haven't had to weed the entire yard every week to keep it looking nice.

Zhongming said...

This is a wonderful prompt, I shall get back to this once I got the inspiration to write about it. My post about Blind.

Marc - as usual, your writing standard is great!

Greg said...

@morganna: your backyard sounds like it's coming on well, and your poem makes it sound well worth seeing!

@marc: the pictures are impressive, and the sunflowers are gorgeous! Your story's really well put together, I really like the descriptions; they bring the characters to life with no wasted words.

Before and After

Before: fear.
The first step, out into the
Unknown.
The first breath, a taste of rarefied
Air.
And all around, the iridescence of
Colour.
After: stillness.
It wasn't supposed to be like this.
Colour
has faded away like ancient laundry.
Air
has escaped, bleeding away too fast.
Unknown
and unremembered, life uncelebrated.

Samantha said...

Morganna, your yard sounds lovely. You poem really details the difficulty you faced.

Marc, fantastic, as usual. I agree with Greg; your pictures are amazing. They make me wish for the new camera even more.

Greg, beautiful poem. I really feel the helplessness in the After stanza. I love the ancient laundry line.


Before, things were great. We were in love; we were young and innocent and carefree. We joked and laughed. We went out, we stayed in, we just lived. We had each other, and that was all that mattered.

Then she came along. She ruined everything. She turned us against each other. We fought and argued, and she tried to tear us apart. She made you lie to me, made you keep secrets. She almost ruined everything.

After she was gone, you changed. You stopped looking at me the way you used to. You didn’t touch me anymore. You stopped holding my hand. We never spoke; you never wanted to.

It was only after you had that little taste of her again, that small sample of what was, that we returned to normal.

But it still isn’t the way it was before.

Heather said...

Guests wouldn't be arriving for another 3 hours. There was plenty of time to do the necessary things: clean the bathroom of little boy's lacking aim, pick up the toys scattered throughout the house like a giant jigsaw puzzle, make the side dishes and desserts, light a few candles to freshen the stale air. At least, that is what she planned before she was stung by a bee.

After the pain registered, the list disappeared in the rushed thoughts of her panic. Now she needed to find her epi-pen, call 911, tell her kids to run to the neighbors house, and hope the paramedics wouldn't mind the mess. She also had the two minute time frame to consider.

Zhongming said...

I am sorry for not leaving any comments for you all since I thought that I wasn't really good at that. But one thing for sure is that you people rocks! I truly like what you all wrote!

---
Mine:

Before i realize what I was doing, I fell for her. That rosy lips, slender body coupled with a long brown dinner gown was extremely beautiful. However it was that feminine character that she had truly unveil the most beautiful assets that she had.

After that I realize that the inner beauty that I saw is just about as beautiful as a real beauty.

Marc said...

Morganna - I'm glad your hard work has paid off. With both beauty and nourishment!

Greg - thanks fantastic. I have to second Samantha on the laundry line.

Samantha - excellent all the way through, and that is a fantastic final line. I felt it like a punch in the gut.

Heather - very nicely done. I liked the subtle humour of hoping the paramedics not minding the mess.

Zhongming - I like that you took the 'after' in a different direction. I'm glad it was a positive one :)