Answer To Exercise Page 19¹
(Describe a photograph and how it came to be.)
“You look for him to come back. He never will. He’s gone. I’m here, now, but not if you continue to trade hope for the present.”
He walked away after speaking to her, him in his turquoise shirt blurring into the landscape itself. Then that, too, began to smear, streaked by some invisible rain that bleached the colors from the world. Even the road, whiter than the noon sky, had pulled some of its brightness from under her feet, leaving only her in focus and standing in the road as she had come from the fields with baggy pants and shirt, face and hands smudged with dirt. When darkness came, what would it subtract from this?
She hadn’t been able to make any answer to him; her mouth hadn’t worked and nothing would come out. Words had paraded through her mind and coagulated into groups that made no sense, took no shape as any idea. She was at sea in the sloshing of a foreign language created by her own will and could only hold on, stare and wait for this strange ocean to calm and beach her on some friendly shore. It seemed so silly that she found nothing to say to him, no statement of her own, her mind steeped in a haze that wouldn’t clear. And she clenched her fists in anger at her own ineptitude.
“No,” she finally said—did the word echo down the road?—breaking the spell and clearing her mind. This was his anger, not hers; the anger of someone who had not got what they wanted, blaming their failure on others and planting guilt within their victims’ souls. So what if he had spoken the truth? It’s her choice to wait, even if it’s in vain. But let him wait in anger; she will wait in hope.
text copyright © 2013 by mari t.
¹ Ellis, Sherry. Ed. Now Write! Fiction Writing Exercises from Today’s Best Writers & Teachers. New York. Jeremy P. Tarcher/Penguin. 2006. Print.
Photo credits: Brett Amory’s Waiting-93. 2011 [?]. Original: oil on canvas [?]. Website
http://brettamory.com/ (22-08-2013; @ 8:43 pm PT). Image site: http://brettamory.bigcartel.com/product/waiting-93 (22-08-2013; @ 11:02 pm PT)