Friday, May 25, 2007
White Roses, Part 1
(I've been in the mood for a traditional Victorian ghost story. However, rather than simply copy that romantic style, I thought I'd experiment a little. For this short series, I'm blending a traditional ghost story theme with the relatively uncommon second person point of view, present tense.)
Sunlight pours through new leaves as you walk the sleepy streets of town. Bird songs dance in shadowed limbs.
The streets are lined with Sycamores, tan and pale and mottled green where the patches peeled. You take care not to trip where the roots made the sidewalks pitch.
You smile. Spring warmth is different than the heat of winter. Not scratchy and flecked with orange flame. Spring is freedom, and the hard months melt in the sheeting rains.
Ahead, you see the house. It sits on the corner of two streets, Brandywine and Grove. The painted eaves and lattices cast shadows on a wicker table and chairs.
The old woman is not sitting there.
You slow. The privet hedge breaks at a white arch twined with wisteria. Purple blooms hang thick in the tendrils. You unlatch the gate and pass inside the grounds.
The air is heavy and still. Your steps lift without a sound.
"I've never seen anything so beautiful," a voice says.
She is standing at the edge of the garden. Her gaze floats, looking past everything that is there.
On to Part 2