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Wind Chime

by Mattyai16 

Posted: 21 June 2003
Word Count: 444
Summary: The start of a novel, but end of a story. Very early, pretty jagged around the edges.. but i like it for some strange reason. I feel it has emotion, and depth which really isn't there... I also have an idea for a story behind it.. I might have found my story, and perhaps my style. Perhaps indeed.

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Isn't it funny, how one solitary moment of life can completely encapsulate not only our emotions, but our entire existence? As I slouched in the chair by her bed my entire thoughts were transfixed on the cracked corner of the ceiling. The cracked paint, the mildew stained corners with dense cobweb canopies between verticals and horizontals. The ceiling had the same lived-in feeling that I had right now. I felt old when I really wasn’t. I felt like I’d had more than my fair share of cracks in my life, a generous scattering of stains on my otherwise perfectly competent personality and now I felt old like the cobwebs. Like the cobwebs veiled the ceiling I felt oblique somehow. I felt like I once knew myself inside-out, knew exactly how I’d react to anything but as my life went on I knew not more but less about myself. I had become shrouded in cobwebs.

She would sleep forever in my eyes, never wake. The sleeping beauty I would leave her and she would die the very same. Her innocence grabbed out at me, for me, as she lay there - It begged for me, to comfort her in times of desperation, to inspire when she lacked it and more than anything just to be there for her. I slid my hand lightly across her cheek feeling her warm, tingly, enlightening glow one last time. I turned around, shutting my eyes tight as I did. I needed to get out of here before I changed my mind. I couldn’t look back; it would be the end of me if I did. My mind leaped from thought to thought, the consequences of my actions were flashing through my head. I knew this was the right thing to do. I knew this was the unselfish thing to do. This was best for her. She deserved better than me, and although she didn’t realise it now she would someday, soon probably. She’d forget me, go on and find someone better, someone worthy of her delicate touch, her true beauty.

I stared into the corner again, the wind chime dangled loosely, ringing from time to time as the light breeze fed in through the window. The one highlight of the otherwise barren landscape of the ceiling was a gift from her. It was fresh, reflected light softly into the room off the metallic cylinders and sent me to sleep night after night with the soothing harmonies it effortlessly orchestrated. I stepped forward, my eyes following it until it was blocked out by the rotten door frame. I took a slow, deep, oxygen-rich breath, stepped forward and never looked back.

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Comments by other Members

noddy at 14:28 on 22 June 2003  Report this post
Hi Matt,
There's some great writing in here. My only comment would be that I would like to have a few more clues about what's going on. At first I thought that this was based in a room in a hospital, and that 'she' was dying.. perhaps because that's the only time I've ever sat on a chair beside somebody's bed. It kind of became a little bit clearer with the wind chime and the last paragraph. As I said, though, there's some great descriptions in here so definitely worth fleshing out. I've just read some of your other work as well, and I'll post comments up a bit later for those...
Best Regards

Becca at 15:35 on 22 June 2003  Report this post
Like Noddy says, what is happening? I know it's only 444 wds, so perhaps it's not fair to ask you. It's very much reflection and observation, and some good sentences in it. Watch out for anything that remotely resembles a cliche, 'oxygen-rich'. There is a huge temptation to 'withold' in fiction writing, I struggle with it myself. I think witholding is all right if it has a real purpose, but for its own sake, it only irritates the reader. I'm glad you've got an idea for a story behind it, but I wouldn't settle too firmly on the notion that you've found your style, otherwise what's going to happen over the next 60 years of your writing, shall you never develop? Nit picking now: your character is in a high state of emotion, and yet he slouches, - indicating disregard, or distain.
It's a very romantic piece, Matt, but I think you can make the romantic feeling more so by juxtaposing it with much harder, grimmer things, so that the tender moments really shine. Is this making any sense to you?

Nell at 16:42 on 22 June 2003  Report this post
I'm new here, and posted my first piece of work only today, so I feel as though I'm jumping into the deep end with this posting. Nevertheless, here goes.

Personally I liked the mystery of not knowing exactly what's happening. It makes me want to read on and find out. I like the way you've used the surroundings to parallel the narrator's feelings, and you've created a moody and romantic atmosphere with some good visual images. I could almost hear the wind chimes as they 'dangled loosely'.

You did say it was a little jagged around the edges, and there are some solecisms and repetitions which tend to trip the eye and detract from the piece as a whole, and it would be interesting to read it again when you've polished it.

Hope this helps, Nell.

Sarah at 10:58 on 25 June 2003  Report this post
Hi Matt,

This is an interesting piece in that it all happens in the one room, with very little detail used to describe a person's state of mind and actions. Not an easy thing to do.

I think you could do with getting rid of the first line. You know, show don't tell. You create expectations and distract a little with this first line. let the reader draw that conclusion (make it inevitable...)

I agree with the others that it's difficult to know what's going on. What is significant? Why is this story being told? I think if you ask yourself those questions when you rewrite, you'll come up with a few solid things to put in there which will make the situation clearer and even more engaging. Best of luck to you!

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