Wednesday, April 14, 2010

104. A run of bricks


The raggle-taggle retriever bounds beside number 4a, then clatters down the adjacent lane, trailing lickings of affection, the disembodied voice of his handler echoing more distant still as she continues her late afternoon jog unperturbed. Presenting a firm, no nonsense face to the world, the door and wall together brook no intruders, their manicured appearance announcing that these premises are occupied. Not a brick is disjoint, not a hinge dare squeak.

The lime philodendron, made translucent by the angled rays of the sun, suckles over the adjacent trellis, tentatively reaching out in its endeavour to suckle onto the mortar between the runs, to drain the clay of any residual moisture after its century or more of sentry duty. Discarded leaves, aged and dry, flutter down onto the cobbles, mingling with the bottle tops and cigarette butts, and empty packets of Smith’s crisps.

The evening air quietly draws down the moisture.

6 comments:

diane said...

A very colourful picture. I wanted to hear more about the dog.

Julie said...

But that would have been a cop out, from my way of thinking. Remember, this is a landscape and my aim is to try to find a writing style that does not involve people.

So I took this one in stages. I had another history based one partly written. But went away and did something else.

To get into this, I need the dog/jogger (people substitutes) to get me started.

Then I gave the wall and the gate people characteristics. There is a word for that ... personify.

And only then, could I find a landscape only voice. You should try this ... not as easy as it might appear.

Janet said...

I loved the 'landscape' part of the piece, Julie - and I think if you left out the dog/jogger, it would have read fine. I've noticed in my own writing the trend to 'start' in a place for me - not necessarily for my audience. I've also learned to cut those sections (very hard to do).

As I said - "Apartment 4a presents a no nosense..." would have been just as appealing to me.

Favorite line:

Not a brick is disjoint, not a hinge dare squeak.

Julie said...

It is fascinating what one DOES end up ditching, Janet. And what barriers the mind puts up to cuts that are a bridge too far.

I have another no-people image coming up on Saturday which will be interesting.

No segues.
No people.
No personification.
No just describing the bleeding obvious!

This IS possible.

Janet said...

...just describing the bleeding obvious! LOL

I'm looking forward to Saturday's Riff, Julie :)

Joan Elizabeth said...

You are doing great ... in fact remove the first paragraph and it's a pure "landscape" piece the works. And the photo is lovely too.