I combined my last two works into one and added a few things. It's a pretty rough draft. Let me know what you think!
I still remember the first time I chanced upon her. I remember her standing there, shivering. Her entire body was trembling. She had cold sunlight woven into her ash blonde hair, braided behind her ear. A few strands had fallen onto her face, down to her nose and her lips. Her cheeks had been seared red by the crisp morning air and her hazel eyes, of olive green and chestnut brown, glowed in the scattered winter light of the new day. There were birds nearby, singing. They were serenading the sun as it crept over the horizon. Each note danced sonorously around her trembling body, their breathtaking ode suspended her. Her eyes drifted towards mine and she smiled. In that moment, my soul was filled with the warmth of the sun and moved with the birds’ ode.
But now, as I stand over her body, my soul is cracked and cold. Biting agony runs down my cheeks and like shards of broken glass it cuts my skin and leaves scars of hopelessness in its wake. I can feel the threads that hold up my wavering spirit finally come undone. My heart falls from my chest, as I lay my hands on hers, hands as cold as stone and as white as snow, and crashes into the earth with a deafening cry, leaving behind oceans of black and blue and jagged despair.
We were going to live in each other’s company until death took us both. We were going to spend our mornings watching the sun melt the night's frost and our evenings watching silent films and holding hands. We were going to go on adventures to the ends of the earth and get lost on the way. Then, when our bodies grew old and weary and our tired legs would carry us no longer, we were going to read ancient books and study dusty maps covered with creases carved by age and wisdom, and we were going to keep our minds safe.
A shadow settles in the place where my heart once rested and its blackness pours out like a flood. The tide rushes over my head but my mind is in pieces and my chest is broken. I've lost the will to swim. I shift my gaze to her cheeks and then to her lips, knowing that I'll find no solace in a place I once rested my heart. But I am faced with something I did not expect. A quiescent smile. It is but a quiet silhouette of her passing heart, but as I lay my eyes upon it my soul shifts. Like an aubade welcoming the warmth that comes with the dawn that follows the coldness of night, hope fills my soul. I pull myself out of the blackness and wade above its gloomy waters. The shadow passes and my spirit's threads gather my broken heart. The agony passes and although the scars remain, my soul finds comfort. I tighten my grip on her hands and I pray.
[spoiler:3azserzj]I wrote this in about half an hour. It's not great and it's short and it's pretty depressing, to be honest. Anyways, give it a read and let me know what you think!
Broken, he cowered in the corner. He shivered, his mind shattered into countless pieces. Agony ran down his cheeks. Like shards of broken glass it cut his skin, leaving scars of hopelessness in its wake, and it did not cease. The threads holding his contrived spirit split. His heart fell from his breast and crashed into the earth with a deafening cry, leaving behind an ocean of black and blue and thunderous despair. A jagged emptiness filled his self. He had no honour left, no worth.
"I give you my soul!" He declared into the abyss, "I give you my heart and my mind, my grief and my disgrace and my trust."[/spoiler:3azserzj]
I Saw a Girl Once
[spoiler:3azserzj]I haven't written anything for ages and I'm not sure what inspired me to write this. Nevertheless, let me know what you think!
I saw a girl once. She was just standing there, shivering. Her entire body trembled. She had sunlight woven into her ash blonde hair, braided behind her ear. She lifted her gaze. A few strands fell onto her face, down to her nose, her lips and her cheeks, seared red by the crisp morning air. Her hazel eyes, of olive green and chestnut brown, glowed in the scattered winter sunlight of dawn. The birds nearby were singing with the coming of a new day, each note danced sonorously around her trembling body- their ode suspended her. Her eyes drifted towards mine and she smiled. Then, like a breath, she vanished.[/spoiler:3azserzj]
Sea of Infinity
[spoiler:3azserzj]I've been trying to write another creative response, this time for my HSC English exam and this is what I've come up with. I'm reasonably pleased with this one but I'm still open to any sort of critique you might have. I reused a few things from A Letter to Clara due to a lack of inspiration but I think it still reads quite well. It's meant to have a loose connection to the notion of belonging.
The crisp air suspended over the abyss- this Sea of Infinity. Looking out, scorning enviously at the faces of the millions condemned to walk forever in a torpid state of naivety. The Wind of Wisdom whispers past my ear: “look before you leap”, but the millions moan with unsurpassed fervour:
Falling through the void, feeling like eternity. Will solace be found on this path of mortality?
The abyss consumes my body, the Sea of Infinity envelops me and, violently, I am awoken from my subconscious captor.
I get up, out of bed, and trudge towards my window’s balcony, still half asleep. Salty air stings my nose and wind gently ruffles my hair; the immense authority of this milieu overwhelming my body. I still gaze out upon the Sea of Infinity, but this is merely the night masking the beauty of the day’s harbour foreshore.
A sensual saxophone fills the air with its distinct moans, gurgling at the world; daring the city to join its source in the adjacent apartment. The siren’s calls break the silence of this city overwhelmed by anguish- signifying the loneliest hour of the night. Vicariously, I feel my neighbour’s emotions through the sonorous zephyrs culminating from his stereo as he sits, staring at the wall, studying the delicate crevasses carved by age and wisdom.
Although my neighbour and I both contemplate the value in this life- this cycle by which we are ensnared- and although we are in close proximity, we still live such a great distance apart; each consumed by our own idiosyncrasies and insatiable quests for satisfaction.
The east now fills with the characteristic pinks, reds and oranges that mar the birth of a new day. The vibrant colours intimidate as though the sun is challenging me at dawn. I obligingly retreat into my fortress of solitude as the masses swarm towards the crux of the soul sucking abyss. Carefully walking towards my couch, I throw myself into its arms.
There I sit, fixed, surveying the contents of my apartment, sulking in the enigmatic mass which are my possessions. The bookshelf, however, stands amongst the enigma eminently across the room. It is much like the world; everything has its place, just like everybody is confined in some way or another. Some books sit on the shelf unnoticed- the fortunate ones gathering dust in isolation while the rest live in the shadows of the noteworthy. The plight of the unnoticed books sees their highly sophisticated interior being overlooked as mundane by the blind. The books are people themselves and their characters are their descendants, they are my people. They care more for my existence than society.
A single sheet of paper lies inexplicably at my feet, the title reading “Ode to a Nightingale by John Keats”.
I find myself consumed by and revelled in the passionate language and vivid imagery contained within Keats’ work. I slip into a state of synaesthetic reminiscence- I can see the singing bird and the beauteous form of her ode suspends me. This sedation, however, quickly changes to panic and nausea as I look to the window to see the masses congregate. Emotionless. I am reminded of the contradictory infinitive temperament of life- what a miserable reality.
I raise my left hand to my mouth, tilt my head back and swallow. My breath starts to shorten and my heart pounds hard in my chest. Then, it stops, I fall away...
I am faced by the Sea of Infinity, the millions moaning “jump”. The Wind of Wisdom passes, silent. I fall through the void, letting the abyss consume my body, I give myself to it. I no longer see the pinks, reds and oranges of dawn, I no longer hear saxophone’s cry, the breeze no longer ruffles my hair and the salty air no longer stings my nose. To be a part of life’s next systolic change- a heartbeat. I give you my soul, oh Sea of Infinity- take me.[/spoiler:3azserzj]
A Letter to Clara
[spoiler:3azserzj]I had to write a creative piece for my English Extension folio in response to this question: "Imagine you are a young writer living in England during the 1820’s. Write a letter to an acquaintance in which you express your understanding of and enthusiasm about the direction artistic expression is taking throughout Europe and your eagerness to be a part of the new movement."
This is only my first draft and it's not due for another five or so days, so I have plenty of time to fine tune it. Anyway, here it is:
A young writer, Jonathon, has recently left home to be a part of the Romantic movement, inspired by Keats’ Ode to a Nightingale. He writes to his sister, Clara, to apologise for the nature of his departure and to reassure her that everything is well and that he seeks to share his experiences and his love of the ideals of Romanticism with her.
My dear Clara,
I write to apologise for the hasty nature of my departure and to assure you and the rest of the family that all is well and that I send my love. It seems that I have endured a fate far more peaceful than that off the Mariner and have arrived at my destination with little strife. I trust you are also well, dear sister- what news of the family? I miss you all dearly and hope to return within the year to share some of the experiences I have had in my time away- some of the most amazing experiences of my life.
Now, enough of this trivial pleasantry- I have a great joy to share with you! On my solitary travels, I have been reading Keats’ Ode to a Nightingale- the poem you insisted I take with me on my journeys. I have found myself consumed by and revelled in the passionate language and imagery within Keats’ words on countless occasions- I cannot bring myself to lay the work aside! My dear Clara, the ideas Keats writes of in this intricate work of art are the source for the movement of which I spoke of before my departure- this is the movement to which I am inextricably drawn, of which I must be a part of! What a revolution!
My travels and reading of the Ode have reminded me of the times you and I once shared back on the estate, back when we were young and would let our imagination run free, when we found our identity in our individuality- together! We sought to be consumed by the enveloping canopy of the forest, upstream. Our feet were numbed as we ran barefoot on the dewy forest floor- our cheeks stung as they were pierced by the crisp, icy air, only to be warmed diminutively by the scattered winter sunlight breaking through the thousands, no millions and millions of leaves, that seemed to defy gravity as they floated gracefully above our heads- all individual in their shape and colour. Such a marvellous milieu could only have been created by some form of divine imagination- some form of higher being.
Oh, how I wish I could return to those halcyon times when life was simple. I thought that these times might last forever- how naďve! Those times were never to last for eternity as they were withered away by the poisonous toxins of our disgusting society. But alas- we must move onwards and look to the future. We must fight this supremacy of reason, this monster which destroyed the unity between our inner spirit and nature. We must fight this supremacy with nothing less than literature! - Literature, the idea of freezing the temporal and immortalising the mortality of life and nature alike- much like in Keats’ work the bird is temporal in its beauty. But, dear Clara, we shall still celebrate nature’s continuum in art, in literature- the singing nightingale endures through Keats’ immortal words! Do you see, Clara? This is why I departed in such haste- to be a part of this movement- to be a part of life’s next systolic change- a heart beat- a complete upheaval of all we know- a return to nature and imagination and to find our meaning in life.
This journey I’ve been on has reminded me of the power of our own imagination and the freedom we can achieve through it- my humble words alone cannot justify the indescribable pleasure I experience through my contemplation of nature in all its majesty and glory! However, I have also been reminded of the contradictory, infinitive temperament of the imagination- it produces such anguish within me- such despair! This continual contemplation has brought to light the miserable reality that we have been segregated from nature- we have been incomprehensibly alienated from this great majesty. We cannot let this continue Clara! We simply cannot let our broken species carry on rejecting the source of healing that nature so gracefully offers us- of which we are so undeserving! But, dear sister, as much as it seems that there is no escape from this torpid cycle by which we are ensnared, all hope is not lost! Although it has become nothing but a nostalgic reminiscence to some, the idea that we can still be set free by our imagination and empowered through some form of enlightenment still exists within us- within our afflicted relationship with nature- our means of acquiescence being art, literature- poetry. We will be given gracious passage back to a passionate connection with nature- a return to our innocent, naďve past- when all that we cherished was the absolute, pure freedom we achieved through our innermost, deepest emotion and imagination...
Clara, my precious, treasured, dear sister, this is why I cannot- no must not adhere to the chains- the shackles that our wretched society attempts to place on me. This is why I had no choice but to leave the estate, the family- to leave you behind. Clara, my sister, may you always be blessed with walls for the wind, a roof for the rain, a warm cup of tea by the fire, laughter to cheer you, those you love near you and all that your heart might desire- until our paths next cross- adieu.
Although I did say that this was only the first draft, be as critical as you want as I'm open to any suggestions for improvement.[/spoiler:3azserzj]
[spoiler:3azserzj]Basically, I needed to prepare a creative writing piece for my English exam on Monday and this is what I eventually came up with. It's supposed to be based on the notion of belonging.
The crisp morning air stung her cheeks and the cold, wet grass numbed her bare feet as she skipped through the forest. The girl, who seemed almost too old to be skipping around in such a child-like manner, had a pale complexion and long, scarlet hair. The scar above her left eye was the only feature marring her perfect appearance. However, it was not distinct enough to take away from the beauty of her glistening green eyes that reflected the scattered winter sunlight peering through the forest’s protective canopy.
She had not visited this reminiscent place for several years; it was an incredible feeling to be back. She remembered the first time she had come here, she wished to relive the memories the forest awoke as she cherished them like nothing else. She lifted her head slightly and closed her eyes and, in doing so, slipped into a state of nostalgic torpidity...
... “Daddy, look what I found!” the girl exclaimed as she delicately held the fragile ladybird on the tip of her index finger. Out of excitement, she ran to her father to show him the amazing discovery she had made. In the midst of this excitement, she failed to notice the wayward root of a nearby eucalyptus tree. She stumbled and fell to her knees. On the edge of tears, she suddenly felt a warm embrace. Her father had picked her up and wrapped his arms around her. Enfolded in his love, the tears ceased and all thoughts about the ladybird left her mind. She was happy....
The girl slowed to a halt and collapsed onto all fours, tears flowing down her pale cheeks. No matter how much she wished to relive the memories this forest awoke, she knew that they were, in reality, lies. Apart from these few moments, there was no love; the relationship with her parents was empty and cold. No matter how many times she rehearsed these scenes, the relationship remained lifeless. She could never live up to their expectations and their love was conditional.
She rolled onto her back and stared up into the roof of the forest. The trees surrounded her like a blanket; they protected her and strengthened her. The girl closed her eyes again and remembered...
... It looked so helpless, fluttering its wings to no avail. Why was its mother not coming to its aid? She looked up the tree to see the nest from which the baby lorikeet had fallen. There was no way the bird was going to get back up the tree and if it couldn’t get back to the nest, the girl feared it would die. She decided that it was up to her to provide the care and love it needed in order to survive. She gathered it up in hands and placed it the pocket of her jacket. She then fearlessly climbed up the tree, branch by branch, being careful not to let the chick fall from her pocket. She reached the top and placed the bird back in the nest, with the other chicks. When she reached the ground, she sighed in relief knowing that the young lorikeet was going to be alright...
The girl had been forced to endure the taunts and remarks of others her entire life. She would return home each day in the vain hope of finding even the slightest fragment of sympathy from her parents only to be pierced by the hatred and anger contained in their eyes. She was young, yet she had experienced more suffering than most people endured in a lifetime, both physically and emotionally. This forest which now enveloped her was her escape, her haven. She could be herself here without fear of consequence or judgement. Throughout her life she was haunted by the memories of her past. They had scarred her for life, never to leave her. Not anymore though. She had returned to the only place she had ever found solace and she was never to leave. She decided that she would stay here forever...
In my opinion, it started out quite well and then rapidly got worse and worse as I kept writing. However, I needed to get something written in a short space of time and I'm moderately happy with how it turned out. Comments, advice and anything else of the like would be greatly appreciated.[/spoiler:3azserzj]