Saturday, October 23, 2010

Death and Politics at the end of the world

This is an excerpt from my first chapter of 'Death and Politics'. My character is going home to Key West (where else?) and nothing has been explained so you're not missing pieces- it's all being introduced a little bit at a time right here. I have adapted this a bit because there is more going on than there is space here for but I am interested in hearing what my blogging friends think of this so far. Feedback would be lovely!

The initial moments of my entrance onto the island were always cacophonous and strengthening. I ease my vice grip on the wheel, clicking the red ruby slippers of memory. “There’s no place like home. There’s no place like home.”
Involuntarily, yet necessarily
drawn to the water,
I drive. 

            Past the turn in to an abandoned bar;
                                                past palm and pond;
            past bougainvillea and banyan;
and finally,
 past the fort . . .
past the past.
Bread crumb colored shoreline nearly deserted.
The gulf breeze tousles my hair
I come to myself, agape… 

 “So you come to the end of the world, Child,” a lyrical voice breaks my reverie “What you think you’re going to find here?”
            The question hovers, a sparrow caught in a headwind. 

            “Trying to find yourself?” She emphasizes ‘find’ with a tangy lilt that exposes the question’s banality.

            I squint, amused that she is so dispositioned to entice consumers, approaching them regardless of their susceptibility. “What are you selling, Grandma?”

            Her fake grin dissolves. Thick webs of tangled braids oscillate around her counterfeit affability. She smiles wryly. “Lookin’ to tell Martha Money how she will meet the love of her life.”

            “I’m not interested in having my fortune told. Save it for Martha and the rest of the rubes.”
 A lobster-colored young couple lies motionless side by side. An elderly woman creeps to the concession stand. Gentle waves lap onto the beach and I long to be enveloped in their welcoming embrace.  
            “You’ll find many things- here - at the end of the world, child…” Her voice blends into the music of the beach and I turn back away from the beckoning waters for the time being. My senses are awakened by the metallic melody of bicycle bells, the roll of engines, searing sidewalks, and piquant seafood- I was home and I turn toward the parked car to finish my journey.

*Picture painted by talented artist (and my friend!) Amanda Wiese 


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