Today, I’d like to challenge you to read a few of the poems from Spoon River Anthology, and then write your own poem in the form of a monologue delivered by someone who is dead.
When I was reading the post about the anthology and then the optional prompt I thought of this family when I was a young child. The family was not very clean. Now looking back, perhaps they didn’t have the money to pay for detergents and soaps. Nearly everyone in town knew where they lived and although I am ashamed to admit this openly, we all used to hold our breath when we passed by their house on the bus. It is so mean and I am not proud of it but they came to mind. I think they may have come to mind because it is a family that is now haunting the living as revenge to all those people who were so cruel to them in life. This family is still alive as far as I know and I wish them no harm. I think if they knew, and maybe they did, then they would find some “humor” in their haunting!
Before, they were known by the odor sent forth from their windows and doors.
Now they lay together rotting into the earth emitting an odor much worse than any that came from their windows and doors.
And he who lay beside them must live in death with an odor repulsive through dirt with no windows or doors.
Together they rot in peace All sending their odor to all passersby as they did in life.
Before the Ruins by Victoria Gosling is a wonderfully crafted mystery, set in modern day England, that weaves a whole cast of characters so intricately and a plot that keeps you engaged and anxious to read how she brings it all together at the end, revealing secrets and the truths around them.
Andy, Em, Peter, Marcus and David have found friendship and comradery but are also in the process of learning how many secrets one group of friends can hold. As a young group of friends there are games to play and plenty of time to enjoy each other’s company. Andy conveys the impression that she leads the group, while also seemingly the least favored friend. With Em and Marcus close by her side the group works on solving an old mystery haunting The Manor since 1936, the missing diamonds. As they age so do their problems, and the situations they find themselves in, while life seems to unravel around them. Where is Peter? What has happened to David? Who is telling the truth? Who can any of them believe? It isn’t until years later that loose ends are tied up, truths are told, and authentic relationships are revealed.
I give this story 3.5 out of 5 stars for the compelling storyline and cast of characters. Gosling is a native of the English countryside, which made some of the references confusing to a reader who is not familiar with places and situations specific to life in England. After reading through most of the story many phrases become understandable based on context and in the end, you don’t notice any impact of cultural differences at all.
I’m alone on the side of the road as I watch my tire deflate I think about having a beer but by then it will be too late So waiting I sit on the ball as I really have no good seat and wait for the tow truck to arrive as I space out and look at my feet I sit and think, “there is no hope” When in the horizon I see there is tow truck coming along and it’s coming there to help me. The driver was happy to see my good seat He said he played basketball He told me he had never been beat. So I laughed and tossed him the ball.
Would you want to be a millionaire and if so why and if not why not?Yes. I could find plenty of good things to do with that kind of money. I would make sure my debt was gone and that I was comfortable. After that I would probably use the money to travel to areas that need help. I would be willing to do work to help needy areas…taking care of people, building things they need, helping in other ways.
Do you listen more to the voice in your head or your gut when making difficult decisions?Definitely my head…It is so damn loud I seem to have no choice.
Should we be afraid of our nightmares or see them as a sign of improvement?I am scared as hell! The good ones are fine, the others are just like dealing with stress but you are sleeping. I have told many people before that I had to get help from my therapist for my spider nightmares. Yeah, I am a true arachnophobe and don’t find spider pranks funny.
Are you a fan of cult movies and if so which ones and why?No, I don’t think I have ever seen one. I don’t really know what they are either so I don’t think I could say I was a fan.
What comedy film you could watch over and over?Either The Money Pit or Ace Ventura Pet Detective
How often can you listen to your favourite music for more than an hour in a day or a week without interruptions? I can listen forever…I just don’t know why people have to keep interrupting me! I don’t listen that often though because I sort of forget that is an enjoyable option in life.
What is in your opinion the best way to make an omelette?Eggs and Cheese
When was the last time you were completely naughty? Well, this is a PG site I believe so my answer will be family friendly…Last weekend I was a bit proud of myself!
What’s the secret to making someone laugh hard?It has to be about real life and something that is outright silly. Nothing embarrassing, nothing at anyone else’s expense. Usually it is when someone, me or someone else, just says something so odd yet fitting. Hard to explain. I just picture me and my daughter laughing with tears in the car about something I said…
How forgetful are you and why does the word look so silly when written? I am forgetful if put on the spot but I do remember quite a lot…especially those pieces of information that are completely useless and unrelated to anything. It looks silly when it is written because it looks like it should have another “t”.
What advice did your parents give you about LIFE that you too have passed on to your own children or friends?No one but you can make you happy.
How often do you surf for something on the internet but end up hours later looking at something else … why does it happen to you, what causes you to stray?That happens quite often. I start looking for something and like to dig a bit deeper. Every site has extra information that then peaks my interest in something else. Sometimes by the time I am exhausted and “done” with the computer I don’t even remember what I was on there for in the first place.
One of my most favorite books is “The Alchemist” by Paulo Coelho The line I chose is: “God has a prepared path for us to follow. We just have to read the omens he has left for us.”
Upon My Shoulders
Upon the shoulders of the man there was a feeling firm he thought it was a bad omen it was his true God’s arm He didn’t know how to react for he was slightly scared All he knew was God was there and that he really cared.
*****For any participants that do NOT like restrictions, please feel free to participate in any way you would like. It is great to read the contributions!****
Set up a timer or sit near a clock so you can keep track of the six minutes you will be writing.
You can either use one of the prompts (photo or written) or you can free-write.
Get ready and write for 6 minutes, that is it! Can you write a complete story? Can you think of a new Sonnet? Can you write 400 words? 400? 500? There are no restrictions on what kind of writing you do, but you should try to be actively writing for six minutes.
After you are done writing, include your word count and then post back to this page #Simply6Minutes or include your link in the comments section. Pingbacks are enabled.
*Feel free to leave your work completely unedited. I believe it is good to see, especially for new writers, that even very seasoned writers don’t write a perfect first draft.*
Have fun, challenge yourself if you’d like, read and respond to others’ posts.