The Dancer – Day 59 – Harry Clarke Artwork

Image

It started with a tweet. Jenny Duffy asked me to write a story in response to a painting. I asked her for one and she gave me gorgeous lady above. As per this week’s challenge I needed to find a new home for it. So I put it on a noticeboard. The type you might even see dance lesson adverts on.

ImageImage

 

Thea would have been offended if she’d heard the phrase ‘dance for your life’ thrown about on a reality TV competition. She was the President’s personal dancer. When he’d come to power, Thea was just 15. The president had handpicked her from a dance class. She never saw her family or classmates again.

She was given the most beautiful designer clothes and danced in the finest palaces. Most common people could never dream of such riches. But once her dance for the day was over she was locked away like a precious piece of jewellery.

Now 20, Thea was sure the President was becoming bored with her. Fearing what her fate would be, she decided it was time to dance for her life. That morning she was brought into the President’s personal chambers. She began to dance as usual.

“Don’t you have any other moves girl?” the President enquired lazily.

She bowed her head and with one graceful twirl opened his balcony doors. The sound of angry rebels filled the room. The guards made moves to grab her but the President held up his hand. There were always protestors outside the window.

She flashed a brilliant smile and danced out onto the balcony letting the sunshine hit her golden hair. As her skirt twirled she ripped a strip and began to unravel herself. The President’s red face lit up with excitement. She beckoned the President closer and he obliged.  

The guards’ eyes were fixated on her now bare body as she tied the top of the strip around the president’s neck, and the let the rest fall into the crowd below. One brave protestor took his chance and climbed up the material onto the balcony.

No one knows if Thea survived the storming of the president’s chambers that day. But there is a graceful old dance teacher in the city who tells the tale well. 

The Garden – Day 58 – A stranger’s letterbox

Today I was challenged by Georgia Wellington to write a story and deliver it to a stranger’s letterbox. 

There’s a house not too far away that has an amazing fence made from branches. So I decided ‘made from branches’ was my trigger. I made an envelope and addressed a letter explaining myself…

Image

 then enclosed this story:

My grandad took me to see the garden years ago. He said it always made him feel nostalgic, like a kid again.

The garden was unusual in that none of it was alive. Giant structures made from old branches towered over my 8 year old frame.

The locals had told us the old lady who lived there built it, and she that could often be spotted dragging a giant branch back to her house on foot.

No one really knew why she’d made it. She didn’t charge visitors and she rarely spoke to them. Most people thought she was an artistic genius not to be questioned.

But 8 year olds don’t know much about artistic recluses. We wondered off to a quiet part of the garden and saw her heaving an enormous branch to the top of a sculpture.

“What’s the point?” I asked loudly.

“It’s art,” grandad answered quickly.

But I was already running up to her.

“Excuse me lady, can we help you?”

“Don’t mind my granddaughter,” grandad called.

“It’s alright, I’d love some help,” she answered.

When we’d finished hauling the branch into place she bent down and whispered, “I collect a branch every day so I can remember.”

It didn’t make much sense to me at the time. I thought it must be an in-joke for artistic geniuses.

Years later my grandad developed Alzheimer’s. He barely remembers my name now. The other day I remembered what he’d told me about the garden making him feel nostalgic, so I took him.

The lady was gone, but the garden remained. Grandad looked bemused as usual, so I took him to the spot where we’d helped her with the branch.

His face lit up and I was reminded of an old picture of him.

“It’s art,” he said.

I delivered it this afternoon so now we wait. In the letter I ask them tweet or facebook me back if they like it. Fingers crossed!

UPDATE*

A few hours after posting it to them I received this comment on facebook:

“Hello there!  we just received your beautiful letter. My partner always has this strange habit of checking the mail box at odd hours of the night..even though the mail has always been delivered. now it seems his search of the empty letter box has been fruitful! This was a wonderful unexpected gift! We are glad that someone noticed our artistic fence. Jaarlz Ross and I made it on Christmas Eve with visiting family. Its been a very long work in progress as he chopped the tree down himself from the backyard and initially just shoved them in a hole. A unique sinister and creepy look – . But now the fence is done we are glad people enjoy it and are even inspired by it! Soon our “cool-fence house” will be known as “Bonaluga house” as we turn it into a small gallery space. You are invited and we’ll have your letter on display for sure! Thanks again and keep on extreme writing!”

So I asked them for a photo and got this beauty:

G, Bon, Moh and Moh

 

Philosophy fly – Day 57 – Toilet Comic

It’s day’s like these I really wish I didn’t have to write a story. I’m pretty sick today and haven’t been able to complete my challenge of finding a new place for my story to go.For now I’ll just post the story but I promise I’ll update this tomorrow morning with a photo of it in it’s new home.

So my friend sent me this comic strip he found above a urinal in Portland Oregan. 

frogs

Philosophy fly

 

He can make frogs question their sexuality

And spiders fret over their individuality

But he doesn’t know why

So he starts to cry

Perhaps he should stop

But then the penny drops

 

He remembers old man grasshopper

Who always came a cropper

He met obstacles with aggression

Instead of a well phrased question

He once made an accusation

About the meaning of creation

And lost his only friend

Never knowing why it did end

 

So philosophy fly wipes away a tear

And vows to spread curiosity, not fear

Eat my Words – Day 56 – Toast

Last object story. Failed at carving it into burnt toast…

Image

So I fell back on old faithful. Vegemite piped with a glad bag. Obviously.

Image

 

I’ve never eaten a dead thing… except animal fat, but only in chips. Oh and sometimes the skin & bones of pigs but only in sweets. I don’t mind the inside of an unweaned calf’s stomach now and then, if there’s a good cheese going. I guess my relationship with food is complicated. Hopefully toast will never cheat on me.

Reflection – Day 55 – My Mirror

Yep, I went with the completely not obvious and very imaginative title: ‘reflection’. Today’s object: My Mirror.

IMG_7640

I know all your secrets.

I know you suck at makeup. I know you procrastinate with dance breaks when nobody is home. I know you spend more time on your hair than you care to admit. And I remember the hours you used to spend obsessing over your skin, hoping to find new ways to hide it.

You pretend not to care. Some days, you even threaten to smash me up. But I see your vanity and I know you need me.

 

Tat – Day 54 – A children’s book

I went to Bookfest today and was challenged to alter a page of a kids book to create a new story. Those few extra letters and words come from the other pages of ‘Tat the Cat’.20140120_173943 (1)

Tat still had a long way to go and found it harder and harder to love. Creatures stood in front of him. Tat tried to get past, but the creatures did not move.

“Please let me pass,” said Tat, “I am so very tired.”

“You will never make it on your own. Please let us help you.”

Tat longed for warmth, but he was afraid.