Saturday, June 02, 2007

From the Minor Annals - IX


We were wanderers those years, seekers, from caravanseri to caravanseri.

We sojourned like a flight of birds before a storm.

We travelled with the haste of hope, with the reluctance of regret and always on alert.

Until, with each stumbling, aching league, with each whisper of mist wraiths, of ghosts, of betrayal, that swept the evening fires at each halt on that endless road, I feared we were cursed.

And that evil followed us like a fog.

Some enclaves were barred to us; others, too open, and we did not tarry.

At last we won through the great black lowland forest - one of trees by day and assassins by night - though the trail lords and I spent our strength like coin to secure our passage.

At last we reached, through a mockery of stones, the ancient hold of our people.

We burn a wagon each year in memory.

And the flaming wheels that spin and spark down the narrow track to the forest shadows below are our defiance.

12 comments:

takoda said...

Hi Bernita, This is absolutely beautiful. I love reading your passages. You have a mastery for writing about mood and setting.

I hope it's okay to make a suggestion for your passage (in the most humble of ways, because I could never generate that myself).

At last we won through the great black lowland forest - one of trees by day and assassins by night - though the trail lords and I spent our strength like coin to secure our passage.
Quote:

At last we reached, through a mockery of stones, the ancient hold of our people.


We burn a wagon each year in memory.


And the flaming wheels that spin and spark down the narrow track to the forest shadows below are our defiance.


**You have two 'at last' sentences in a row, and a couple of short sentences in a row (which dilutes the drama). How about a minor edit like this:

At last we won through the great black lowland forest - one of trees by day and assassins by night - though the trail lords and I spent our strength like coin to secure our passage. We had reached, through a mockery of stones, the ancient hold of our people.


We burn a wagon each year in memory.


And the flaming wheels that spin and spark down the narrow track to the forest shadows below are our defiance.

Top of the morning to you!

Cheers, Chris

Bernita said...

Thank you, Chris.
You may be right - this a a first draft, composed this morning.
However,you may be right - for the wrong reasons - short sentences are usually considered effective in promoting tension, not dilluting it; and repetition may be intentional, for emphasis about journey's end, not accidental.
Nevertheless, I'll keep your ideas in mind - such reactions are always helpful.

raine said...

...this a a first draft, composed this morning...

Are you kidding??

You must need to do very little editing on your pieces.
Quite good. Love the flaming wheel image.

Steve G said...

Very nice. Do you have any idea when you will piece these togeather. You write quickly and I would suspect there would be something soon. I read for pleasure and leave the suggestions on improvements to others.

Bernita said...

Thank you, Raine.
I always do some edit as I go.

Thank you, Steve. No, I don't. They began as an exercise in myth-making/interpretation from the "minor" pov.

Charles Gramlich said...

Beautifully done. The accompanying pic was perfect. I'd still like to see more.

Bernita said...

Thank you, Charles.
That's Vaduz Castle, Leichenstein.
You don't think the tone would get tiresome in a longer piece?

Jeff said...

"We burn a wagon each year in memory."


"And the flaming wheels that spin and spark down the narrow track to the forest shadows below are our defiance."

The above is but one example of what I like about the Minor Annals. Rich imagery and powerful emotion. Please continue, Bernita. This is good writing.

Bernita said...

Jeff, thank you. So much.

Charles Gramlich said...

I don't believe the tone would get tiresome. I think you'd have to soon begin exploring the characters more but I don't believe that would need to destroy the tone.

Dawn said...

Stunning imagery, Bernita. I wish my first drafts came out like that. Hang on a minute, I wish my final copy came out like that!

Bernita said...

Thank you, Dawn, and for stopping by.
Um...you did notice it is a VERY short piece?