(Sunday, February 11, 2007)
As a spontaneous exercise, the Sunday Scribblings prompt didn't get me thinking immediately about food or taste, but smell. I was smelling gardens and spring. I gave myself ten minutes to write without stopping to think, with pen and paper... regrettably, I got a little bit interrupted, but nevertheless, here's the product, which ended up in another little description of that character I've had in my head for a while.
. . . . . .
Pots are scattered on rickety shelves that line the walls. Their clay is chipped here, soil-stained there, making terra-cotta towers where they're stacked into the corner.
The ceilings of vaulted glass are cradled in frosted panes, framing glimpses of movement within. Motes of sunlight flicker through in sparkling, lazy spirals to the floor.
An old woman tinkers about in front of a shelf, plucking dead leaves and stems from a particular pot. Against the delicate lavender leaves, her gnarled hands resemble a man's, with thick fingers, cracked and stained the black of soil at their tips. The sound of her feet upon the dusty floor is a whisper that's as deafening as a whisper can be; an idle shuffle, which she does not notice. Long, white hair creeps a long way past her shoulders, bound at the nape of her neck with a cord. I cannot see her face, but her frame is slight, her bony shoulders stuck in a perpetual hunch.
Her presence is haunted with a tick: a sharp intake of breath through her nose every seven seconds. At her first sharp breath, I think she is surprised; that she has made some discovery. But after a few instances it becomes a rhythm, and I realize that she is unaware of her own sound. It keeps time with the shuffling of her feet, a melody of quirks that she would suppress if she knew she was being watched.
Enjoy more Sunday Scribblings!
© Megan K. 2006-2007