Creosote & Crimson
port wine cheese
quartz of tears
I could talk about the dull senses that fill my world as I write.
The glow of the screen, or the lined white paper.
The numbness in my ass.
Muted sounds of birds and cars.
Summer smells of grass and sand through the open window.
Or the lingering taste of bitter coffee.
But that’s not where my mind is. The real senses, drowned out by the ones alive in my mind.
A clash of swords and spray of sparks.
Scaling mountains of rough rock, muscles burning.
Smell of pine and earth while clambering through a dense forest.
The tang of blood in the air. Charred meatiness of game cooked over a fire.
The rush of running faster than any person ever could.
The pain of loss. The thrill of victory.
Wolves howling. The whoosh of an eagle’s wings over mountains.
Vertigo. Fear. Love. Hate
Every sense and feeling.
Every possibility, all within your fingertips, every time you write.
The path before me is tinted gray like pencil marks leading me on. Each footstep grows lighter while I watch in wonder as whole worlds are formed just for me. I peer across landscapes built of suburban houses, English flats, woodland cottages, shoebox apartments, and palaces. The blades of grass pinch at my ankles, so with a few keystrokes, I remove all greenery.
My characters are whispering, shouting, accusing, comforting, debating in their homes. Their billowy sleeves cradling each other or pushing them away. Pink prom dresses covered in shame or delight, but that is all up to me.
I detect apple pie, banana pudding, peach cobbler, mint toothpaste, chocolate ice cream, fresh baked pastries, and perfume that reminds me of winter sweeping across the air. The lights are casting beams of importance over everyone but me while I sit in the back and watch.
We all begin to nibble on croissants, soft, fluffy, and dabbed in butter as the princess is about to tell her betrothed she killed his mother or however the tale spins itself. Now, the main character is coming out to his parents, and I told him he should make brownies. He did, and they taste heavenly, chewy and delicious.
Then, the movie stops, the film chokes on itself, and I am back, in my bed, chair, car, or wherever inspiration hit. My fingers grasp at the silk of my hair ribbons to remember how the princess’s gown felt. I edit dialogue and scenes, and I yearn to write something spectacular, a piece of prose I will not regret the following morning. I want the gift of not pulling at my hair in regular, boring hair ties, not silk ribbons or pearl combs because a story did not strike my fancy like it should have. I want to travel to England, so when I write stories set in Britain, I do not sound like a copycat American.
The camera starts to roll, and I sit back, in what I want to be a plush, velvet red armchair, but is really a bed with too few pillows, to watch the story of my creation, and one day, I hope it will be good enough for me.
All you need is a new friend
“Hey, who’s there?”
“Nice to meet you. Would you travel with me for a while?"
“Yes, you’re right. I will need that pen.”
Another Long Night
A dull ache runs through my back and wrists, but I pay it no mind. Time’s slipped away from me, all that matters is the glow of the screen and the smooth plastic of my keyboard. I’d been here for hours with no signs of slowing down. I have to capitalize on this moment of inspiration before my thoughts run away from me. While my room has long since grown dark, my computer still glows with the same unending intensity. A little eyestrain’s never stopped me before. Something feint and smoky still hangs in the air, leftovers from incense sticks that have burnt themselves out. The sharp clicks of the keys play me a melody, lulling me into the rhythm of work. The sound itself means nothing, but they lead to something far bigger than themselves. I can barely see the letters I’m typing, but their positions are long since locked into my muscle memory. Black text is starting to blur on that white background. I lean back and stretch, letting my spine voice it’s grievances with my life choices. Its pops are gunshots compared to the hum of my laptop’s fan and the delicate clicking keyboard. The soft scent from the mug beside me finally entices me to stop my fervor. I take a full drink from the mug, smooth porcelain releasing thin milky tea. It’s long since gone cold, but its gentle earthy sweetness is still soothing. I look over my work, scrolling dully through pages of 12 point Cambria, 1.15 spaced. The words run together, but I still know what they mean. These tiny black glyphs contain a whole other world within them. They’re just pixels, yet they’re able to convey the life of a civilization, as well as its downfall. Heh, I think I’ve been up too long. Weariness hangs heavy on my shoulders, my bed singing a siren’s song. With a quick swig, I empty my mug. It really should go in the sink, but the kitchen feels like it’s miles away. Like everything else, I’ll deal with it in the morning. I save my document and close the computer, the burning in my eyes finally easing. Like every night, I tell myself that I’ll stop staying up so late, that I’ll build better habits. Soft fabric and darkness envelop me, and I fall into the void.
It tastes like slightly-too-cold beverages left on a desk for too long, like coffee that probably shouldn't be drunk, but it's the only thing nearby, so..
It smells like a slightly stuffy room, like the old coffee, and the random snacks grabbed when somebody comments on how long it's been since you actually stopped
It feels like slightly-cramped fingers or hands, the twinge as hands are stretched, shaken, before picking up the pencil again, or settling over the keyboard again
It sounds like many things - the muffled scratch of papers, the click of rapid typing, curses, slightly-maniac laughter, muttering, shifting, quite exclamations.
It looks different, depending on who is the focus. Prim, pen in hand at a modern desk, or slumped over a couch, buried in blankets, or scribbled on notes during a busy day. But no matter what it looks like, it has the potential to be a life-changing gift to those who are lucky enough to read the results.