Thursday March 19th, 2015

The exercise:

Write about: Tumbleweed Alley.

Inspired by all the tumbleweed that has collected along the fence between our home and Kat's parents house.

It was another warm day here, but it was difficult to appreciate with that cold wind rip roaring all over the place. So, of course, while I was taking care of Max and Natalie for a couple hours after lunch, they really wanted to play outside.

I should have worn more layers. Like, all the layers.

Max spent the day playing with Natalie, from shortly after breakfast until just before dinner. Not surprisingly, he was asleep not long after the last bite of dinner went in his mouth. I'm hoping that doesn't mean an extra early start to the day tomorrow morning.


It's a place for cowboys who are down on their luck. Old hands and young lads who've ended up stuck. Try as they might, they just can't seem to make a buck. If it wasn't so dusty here they'd be covered in muck.

Was it greed? Were there warning signs they refused to heed? Some terrible, unmentionable deed? What could lead these broken down souls to this land of tumbleweeds?

No one I have met seems to be able to say. But I shall hazard a guess, if I may. I may? Well then, what I have to guess goes this way: they had a debt that they could not pay.


Greg said...

The real trick is to keep your heart so icy and your soul so cold that every breeze seems warm in comparison :)
I do rather like your fusion of prose and poetry and the casual rhythm that it creates; the imagery you've conjured this time is quite intriguing too. I'd quite like to hear/see more of this place and the lost souls that inhabit it.

Tumbleweed Alley
"They renamed it back in '06," said the guide, one hand holding her hat firmly on top of her head. A tumbleweed whipped past the small group, travelling at approximately thirty miles per hour.
"What did it used to be called?" asked Alice, a middle aged woman whose dress was flapping around her thighs threatening to embarrass her. She tried to hold it down, but then she couldn't hold her coat closed properly and that flapped around even more.
"There are no actual indigenous tumbleweeds," said the guide as though she hadn't heard the question. "They're all imported from Kansas and distributed by a government programme that hires drunks and itinerants to drive the lorries. The tumbleweeds are very erratically deposited as a result, which helps hide the fact that it's not actually natural." The next tumbleweed was definitely travelling faster than forty miles an hour and exploded when it hit a small child at the back of the party. He let go of his mother's hand to try and clear his face, and was caught up by the wind instantly and whisked away as well. A small, despairing scream was the last they heard of him.
"What did it used to be called?" asked Alice again, shouting over the noise of the wind and the cries of the sonless mother.
"Tumbleweeds are actually very nutiitious," said the guide, shuffling into the lee of the largest gentleman in the party. That was Alice's husband however, and as he loomed over the guide, he repeated Alice's question.
"Tornado Alley," said the guide at last, and the wind howled like a hungry demon.

morganna said...

Tossing and turning
Under the
Moaning sky
Bumbling along
Leaving seed
We visit,
Each and
Every place,
Death to grasses!

Marc said...

Greg - that is certainly one way of dealing with the cold :P

Thanks. I was wanting to explore it more as well but wasn't feeling especially inspired. Hopefully I'll come back to this another time.

I like your guide's insistence on sticking with her routine, but equally appreciate why her entourage might like to have their questions answered. That poor kid, too!

Morganna - another clever acrostic from you. Especially enjoyed the first half.