Today is our final day of “where” writing! To finish off let’s transport our minds into a “canoe on the river”. Let your senses show you the way!
The lapping of water onto the hull of the canoe consistent and repetitive like a guided meditation reminding me to breath. In, and out, with soft rocking and deep breaths I’m reminded I am alive. Being taken by the will of the currents, being pushed and pulled as if being guided through a busy city street but not provoking the same anxieties, but instead releasing them. Each breath stained with the freshly melted ice desperately trying to find its purpose in the great lakes, or oceans where it will find itself among its ancient ancestors once again. The trees lining the river cheer on the marathon of water, the cheering conveyed as rustling of the leaves when the wind decides to show up.
Water bug ripples and plastic bags on pines surround me. Backsplash from each oar strike sends tiny droplets into this hollowed out fiberglass tree. The water elegantly dances in figure eights around each of my wooden arm extensions. The light breeze wheezes a stinging odor like pungent floor cleaner, harshly renewing. I watch the launching pier disappear in the haze behind me. I hear crickets beginning to creak and chuck-wills-widow wallowing in the umbral turquoise arms of dusk’s hug. Soon, each stroke will ignite the bioluminescent cells on the water’s surface. My burning arms will rest like Sisyphus reaching the apex finally. There, maybe sleep will finally find me and the moon will provide its blanket for this hard, moist mattress.
The lapping water becoming entrancing is truly a wonderful use of auditory imagery leading to an internalized feeling. Comparing the roughness of the city street with the calming rock of the water is really cool, the contrast by similarity. The breath line kind of lost me, but I’m taking it as maybe the condensation of the moisture? It is a neat thought to tie it all together with the past. The last line is good, but becomes a little more “tell-y” than “show-y” when you have to explain it. Just restructuring it a little may help “The audience of rustling leaves cheers on the marathon of water…”, but I really dig your imagery.
I really like the parallel to a busy street - the contrasting comparison somehow makes it more spacious i.e emphasising the environment we are not in and therefore leaving just us and the river. The same with the energy you have injected with the trees cheering a marathon of water, there is something very effective going on here that I can’t quite articulate properly today. Also, the imaginative imagery adds to the whole daydreaming vibe that you get when you are floating carelessly along the river. Really lovely stuff!
The tip of my wooden cocoon peers over crumpled waters, forging a quiet wake. The river is a soft friend today, kissing the edges of my oar as it slips into the water, unnoticed under my familiar hands. Here, there is no resistance, only a gentle claiming of a path in a direction that I cannot fight. The polished edges of my chariot sway at the meeting of water. I listen as the river claps for me, slapping the sides of my vessel, taunting. We dance downstream, the river and I, swaying to the whip of winged birds and the whistling arms of trees, which lean down to tickle my summer skin. The wind whispers secrets of change to come as clouds tease the canopied sky.
I love the “stained” breath great word!! I like the flow of your words especially up till the last two sentences. They read with a kind of a rush and then pause, that mimics the feeling of breathing in and out.
The water dancing figure 8’s is so beautifully descriptive I can seee the tiny tornados that oars make in the water. Really nice descriptions great job.
This is beautifully written!
The imagery of dancing downstream swaying with each other is beautiful, especially when saying its a soft friend in the lines earlier really gives a solid foundation of having a relationship with the water and its surrounds!
I agree the end became abit more telly than I had wanted, and awesome suggestion of using the rustling leaves themselves as an audience.
I need more of this guys i want you all to gently tear my shit apart so I can rebuild a stronger foundation!
The moon providing a blanket for a rough night ahead is a really nice visual image
I’ve got real writers envy reading this - very nicely done Maddie!
I like the contrast to the classic wanderlust imagery that the other entries point to, how the tranquil paradise has been stained with plastic bags and pungent floor cleaner. The disappearing pier and the tired haze set a very raw scene - well done!
Understood - standing by to tear your next entry apart!
The wooden cocoon is amazing. It’s like the safe place to await transformation. So powerful, especially contrasting the water being “crumpled”. You have a wonderful way of relaying time passing. I have noticed it in a few of your writings. Here, the cocoon is place to pass time, then water carrying you of its own accord in a way you cannot divert from, then you bring it all home with the wind whispering about change. That time passing is an internal sense of movement that you capture in outstanding manner.
My shoulders are burning, so I pull the splintered oar onto my thighs. I try to relax, but feel constricted by my obnoxiously oversized vest. Drops of rain begin to pierce the otherwise perfect stained glass water. Each drop seems alive, creating endless patterned circles. I’m alone in the water, but on either side of me an entire universe is scurrying about, hidden deep within the neon yellow and green marsh.
I look ahead and see the sky in the water. The sun is white hot and hiding behind a mask of clouds. My eyes squint in opposition.
A fishy breeze sweeps by, causing goosebumps to cover my pale legs. I center myself and carefully dip the oar back into the water.
The “obnoxiously oversized vest” is great. It really brings it home for me. It has the tactile feeling that I can sense, as well as that internal discomfort. Shoulders burning is nice because of the initial ambiguity (sunburn or muscle soreness). The feeling of being alone, but surrounded by bustling life is also a nice contrast. The bright sun and squinting eyes is very, very sensory heavy because it shows the reaction from the visualized stimulus (again blending the internal and external imagery). The fishy breeze is nice, kind of offering a solid jab at something that was supposed to be tranquil, but ultimately kind of sucked… Ha. Good job.
The paddle slices the water, a slice of tranquility as it moves and shifts. Panning out, aged oak lines the bottom with summer camp graffiti messages on the sides, messages from another time. I scoot and the boat balances to one side while my weight moves the other way, a correction. Squinty eyes peek open, sunlight peeking out from the depths of the river. Water quietly slaps my boat, encouraging me to continue moving. Sunscreen slathered across my neck and shoulders, sweat drips down my back and in my mouth, salt to the taste, freshwater all around us.
You are very good at picking out very specific details such as the graffiti marks on the bottom of the boat - those are the sorts of details the audience loves to hear - even if they haven’t ever seen this in real life before. Well done!
Great uses of verbs to really draw us in. Using nouns and verbs interestingly is a very powerful tool, and allows us to go deeper into the world you created.