Sunday February 6th, 2011

The exercise:

Today we're writing about: the explorer.

We should be getting our rental car today, leaving the resort behind for a week of exploration.

Note: I'm away on my honeymoon so this is a scheduled post.

Mine:

Open roads and open spaces,
Foreign words but friendly faces.
Keep the windows all the way down,
Breathe in the scents of every town.

Enjoy each moment while it's here,
Because it can never be clear
How many breaths are left to go.
So keep driving... but take it slow.

6 Comments:

Zhongming said...

The explorer

He binds himself in the map,
Never for once did he forget.
He sleep through all the way,
But he never get lost in the maze. 

morganna said...

We go
Off into the
Jungle, pith helmets on,
Ready for anything. Here come
Natives, saying Do not pass Sacred Ground.
We ignore them, of course, but here comes a
Crocodile! Mouth open, teeth
White and sharp, here
We go!

David said...

"It says here, your last job was Explorer."
"Yes"
"Why did you leave?"
"Business was sold to a competitor"
"There was no place for you with the new firm?"
"We had differing philosophies"
"Can you explain?"
"I believed my group had a better business model and I was concerned about my earning potential."
"And now you are talking to us?"
"You offer a steady income, I have four kids to feed."
"Yes, but I'm not sure ..."
"Listen, you ever see a friend drown in quicksand? Or die from a cobra bite?"
"That doesn't really happen around here."
"Exactly, and unless my former competitors stop donating their finds to museums and start selling them on the black market, you offer me a higher income."
"I'm still not sure you're Best Buy material."
"Do you offer a matching 401k?"

Greg said...

@zhongming: That's an intriguing poem, though I'm not sure he's much of an explorer if he's memorised a map of where he's going!

@morganna: I found your poem really amusing, with a definite kernel of truth in it. I really liked the way the line lengths grew, then shrank again, suggesting an imminent shortness to the would-be explorers!

@david: ah, so explorer can be a euphemism too! The dialogue's lovely, it flows well and snaps back and forth very nicely. I'm afraid I have no idea what a Best Buy is other than some kind of shop, so some subtlety may have been lost on me there. Well done though.

@marc: There's something reflective, and possibly even melancholic in your writing today, especially the last couple of lines. Was it coloured by your memories of travelling much?

The Explorer
He laid his pen down at last. His hand ached, and there were indentations where he'd been gripping the pen with his fingers; red, sore-looking wide grooves. On the pages beneath his pen were the result of his exploration. The Pochhammer symbol had yielded up some of its mysteries, though he felt there was a way to go yet.
The last page had been the hardest; each step in the calculation had been painful; hypothesizing a path through the unknown, then teasing a way forward from the previous line. Hastily scribbled notes in a margin indicated where a key idea had arisen, they shaped a proof but needed fleshing out still to be valid.
But he knew they worked. The derivative of the Pochhammer symbol was now staring him in the face.

Heather said...

Marc- I liked the sentiment in your piece. I see so many of my friends (and, yes, myself as well) rush through life, trying to do as much as possible, but never actually sitting in the moment. We, they, are always planning the next thing.

Zhongming- I liked the image of your poem.

Morganna- Much like Greg, I enjoyed the physical shape of your poem. I also liked how it came back to where you started.

David- Very funny and yet, in our economy, sadly very true.

Greg- I had some good images from your piece. I especially like the idea of pushing into the unknown and then turning around to tease out the next direction.
-----

She watched as the sand slid with a hiss through the sieve. Her eyes followed the grains, but her mind moved beyond the small pieces and delved into the bigger things, the ones she thought lay ahead. The sieve emptied, leaving nothing notable behind: a small pebble, a leaf. Carefully, she added the next allotment of sand to the sieve followed the soft hiss to the future once again.

She'd studied the terrain and knew it to be rich in possibilities. There was nothing absolute, only educated guesses, but again and again they lead her to believe that it was the right place to be. It would mean giving up on her dream of exploring the sands of Egypt. It would mean chasing a dream that included long days under a hot sun for alternative purposes; tedious tasks; isolation; and love.

Love was the true find. She wouldn't find it in the sands of Egypt or the tropical forests of Brazil. She may be lucky enough to find relics or bones, but she couldn't find the love of a man. At least, not the same man. She could find a man's love, but would she ever again be offered vacations on the coast, the opportunity to do those daily tasks of mother's, the worry and frustration of dealing with a family larger than she'd ever known? The love and life that this one man could offer her?

The sand stopped hissing. The sieve held a small sliver of an ancient pot. Her heart fluttered at the sight. It was beautiful. Quickly she logged it's find, the first entry in a week's time, and then added more sand. As the hissing began, she looked at the sliver and realized that her love for exploration and archeology were a sliver in comparison for her desire for that bigger find: love.

Marc said...

Zhongming - I really like that first line :)

Morganna - very nicely done, that`s a well put together poem.

David - even with only dialogue to work with, I can perfectly picture that scene in my head :)

Greg - very much so. Time always seemed to pass too quickly back then.

I like your take on the prompt, you definitely took it in a different direction.

Heather - another wonderfully contemplative piece. Loved the details.