Awaking from a extremely strange and surreal dream, I set to your task half-awake. I started typing in an already opened notepad file with my eyes closed: Is and was and were and shall be again crayon makeup crazed mall pancake sausage biscuit gravy in a dancing robot but isn't a robot is only a boy wearing a helmet that spews it out chicken helmet he's jig dancing everyone live as in the same house sells pancakes a mirror in front of the hallway she just wants to love me they just want to love me but the crazed crayon makeup which will not let them shoes size 10 saddle weren't black and white rhinestones bird masks wasn't wearing socks so he brought footies"Kris:
I was hosting a conference out west some where, I was speaking to a group of faceless men and women about f-stops and the importance of eating roast beef before you shoot large animals. Using the visual aid to my left I showed them my research and the chance of getting a great shot of a large animal went up 42% after eating a roast beef sandwich. The graph was made up of one large piece of plastic and the pie pieces where little bugs* that were behaving very well and staying in formation pretty well, for little bugs**. So after the lecture, I simply tell everyone that there is something really special outside and to grab their cameras. In a poof we are no longer in the log cabin, but outside on the edge of a large cliff. One wind blown Joshua tree stands in front of us. Across the ravine more of the same desolate terrain. In a blink there are two huge black robots on the edges of each side of the ravine***. These robots are the last step along a huge conveyor belt that stretched beyond the horizon. As we stand and look at these robots as two huge blocks of black salt† come sliding down the conveyor belt and as the reach the robots they punch them into the canyon below. As these 30 foot tall blocks of salt fall, they melt into a black and blue and green waterfalls† and then evaporate into a brilliant luminescent burst of color††. I turn and say, well start shooting!!††† So this crowd of people that now stretch as far as I can see‡ all start clicking away at the huge robots and the melting and evaporating salt‡‡. When I turn to raise my camera, I am looking at my back door and see Holland come running down the hall telling me he wants to go to school. Quinn is crying and I hear the door slam. Then I wake up to Quinn crying and Lynn has just knocked a hardcover off the side table‡‡‡. Funny how dreams work out.* itty-bitty bugs, really, really little ** Each bug was hand painted yellow, blue, red, and green by the large man in a purple suit that sat on the second row. *** They resemble the “old rock ‘em sock ‘em” robots from the 80’s, just 80 feet tall and matte black, a sharp contrast against the ice blue desert sky. † If not salt, perhaps it was a fine grain sand, it just seemed to smell like salt - you know that smell? †† There were other colors, but I’m not sure that we have the language to describe them - like a reflection of that golden yellow you see when a child smiles - colors like that. ††† Like a rainbow of a thousand colors and just one color, all at once. ‡ Bunch of dummies, how often do you see 80 foot tall robots? ‡‡ a sea of humanity ‡‡‡ I think it’s my turn to get up with the baby anyway." And my contribution:
I lay down on the thin mat, covering the old wooden floor so that no ink might spill into the cracks but slight enough for my naked body to feel every curve and warp of the fifty-year-old oak. The overhead fan blew silently, forbearing as an old man bereft of power. It tickled my sides and kissed my skin. The conductor moved slowly around me, mapping every curve of my hips, the gentle arch of my back between my bum and where my breasts caused my shoulders to curve, the shape of my thighs. He was a master topographer. Slowly, moving as an old metronome, he began to mark, the pen scratching as a quill on parchment. First, a line above my shoulder, a phrase on my foot. He moved quicker and his pace steadied to the beat of the fan far above us. He circled and swooped, an eagle teasing his prey. The words and lines were important, but they were just building to the crescendo. I barely breathed, but found myself matching his pace, soon expecting the next score. I was his instrument, a cello to play his suite, a part of the symphony. I noticed as my skin turned into eyes, my arms and legs told stories of philosophers and great men who failed. He left my back blank, a hole in the myriad library. His pace slowed, stopped. I heard the pen drop to the floor, bouncing once, twice, before settling in a groove and his fingers followed suite, his breathing heavy. After sixty beats of the fan, sixty caresses of wind, he lifted a hand and began to form lines, with only his fingers, stroking his outline. His other hand reached for the pen and, uncapped, he started anew. The scratching was not soft this time, and I grimaced when the nib dug under my skin like a tattoo. My body never moved, only my face, hidden facing the floor, betrayed my surprise. I felt feathers forming, long strokes that seemed to last forever, from the top of my scapular to somewhere below my buttocks, the tops of my thighs. The primary flight feathers. Then moving to the secondary, working up and inward, to the tertiary, smaller and faster, the beating of wings. I felt something drip down my side, blood or ink. He didn’t stop. I felt, as the outline formed, that even with the immensity of the scape, the wings were somehow shorter than should’ve been. I used touch to concentrate as he again pulled across my skin down my sides. Yes, they ended short, the wing not arching at the end, sharp, stunted and angular. He seemed to sense my awareness because his hands now concentrated on fleshing out the lesser coverts and scapulars on my upper back. My wings were clipped, why? The orchestra master, my conductor and artiste, walked away from me, spent. I turned my head to see hands stained in black and long white hair mussed from exertion. He caught my eye, I looked for an answer. He silently turned and closed the door, leaving me alone."Thanks for participating! The current challenge will be up in a jiffy.