Saturday, May 13, 2006

SUNDAY SCRIBBLINGS: The Books I would Write

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I took this photograph at a defunct cranberry bog near my home where we often walk our dogs. Though it is spring, there are corners of the bog that have succumbed to a spooky eternal winter. The trees are silver with death, their branches devoid of buds. We keep the dogs away from those areas. In past years, the wild quacking of the ducks who returned every year, would drive the animals into a frenzy. This year we've only seen one. When we've visited the bog this year, the solitary duck is silent.

If I could, I would write a book that could make a reader SEE the formerly riotous colors of the place, the scarlet fields, the incredible lush green of the ducks' necks, and HEAR the competing barks made by ducks and dogs.

I would write a book that would make you so hungry for colors like that you would search the world trying to replicate them.

I would write a book that asked questions about the abandoned bicycle in the photograph.
Who owned it, and where did they ride it? How did it end up here? Are they still looking for it, or have they outgrown and forgotten it?

I would write a book that would make you care deeply about questions that never concerned you before.

I would write a book that would keep you up at night, desperate for answers.

I would write a book that would make you thrill at the newness of spring, bicycles, hope; and weep at what is lost forever.

I would write a book that would make you examine one small patch of ground with the the passion and exactitude that my dogs scour the bog with their noses.

If I could, I would write a book that would make you peer into the murky waters, and see yourself.

I would write a book that would make you watch the sky, waiting for the ducks to return and the trees to recapture their green splendor.

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So, can you see the duck?

37 comments:

rdl said...

But you already have :D We can't wait to read them! And yes i can see the duck(with the damn ole lady glasses on). :D

Jennifer said...

you would, could and should. Hmmm I think I like the way you "see"

Peter said...

Well, it would hardly be sporting of me to give the duck's location away. Me being one of the first to comment and all.

I think you're the one to write this one!

Sky said...

Yes, I can see the duck. And, please write the book...I am ready! It sounds like a delicious read - one which would provoke much thought as well as feed us. You usually do just that. :)

Laini Taylor said...

I love the way you're talking about one little patch of earth, but that your questions can be either small and specific, or big and universal. Very thought-provoking, and a quirky, interesting response to the prompt! I also love to imagine the stories behind discarded things, like that bicycle, and stories that trace the life of an object, like Accordian Crimes and The Red Violin.

paris parfait said...

Fascinating post; I like the way you take a simple subject and expand the horizons.

In Otter Space said...

Yes I can see the duck and so much more.

Your photo of the abandoned bike is awesome. It is a story starter that leaves the viewer wondering, waiting, staying up all night....

chiefbiscuit said...

It all sounds fascinating and worthy of writing and being read - and it sounds like you are the one to do it!

Living Part Deux said...

I think you will - I believe it. The questions are too deep to deny. I would love to read that book.

bb said...

i am drawn to recording delapidation, too. it sounds like a book of rich potential, intertwining the 'what ares', 'what could've beens' and 'what might be stills'. beautiful.

andrea said...

Awww, but in just these few bits YOU DID! Amazing.
a.

Left-handed Trees... said...

"If I could, I would write a book that would make you peer into the murky waters, and see yourself." This line breaks me--I think this is what all writers seek to do...thank you for pinning it down in such a lyrical way.

robin andrea said...

I love the passion in this post, Patry. I would love it if you would write that book. I not only see the lonely duck, your words make me feel him too.

Cate said...

Oh, as someone who was up, late last night, immersed in a new book, a book that made me question ideas that I had never before considered, I say, yes, yes, yes, that is the kind of book I want to read!

Glorious thoughts, Patry; the absolute truth.

Simply Coll said...

Such beautiful words. I would read your book.

floots said...

sure can
and
thanks to you
i can hear the gentle ticking of that cycle free-wheeling through yesterday

cheers :)

Tarakuanyin said...

I love the imagery, though it saddens me too: that eternally wintry world. I'll read your book when yuou write it...

MB said...

I'm so glad you write.

Marilyn said...

I love that you conjured up beauty in a sight where many might not have seen it (at least initially). Wonderful post.

Kerstin said...

A wordsmith indeed!

boliyou said...

You're off to a great start with your ideas. The yearning carried me away with you. And yes, I saw the duck. I wonder if he saw you. :)

liz elayne said...

i love your take on this prompt...and my mind is turning with thoughts of how that bicycle got there. you should write that story...

HoBess said...

I love this post ... I love the idea of examining one patch of ground and being able to learn as much as my dog can through her nose. If only she could give voice to all she takes in! Maybe that's why humans don't have such an advanced sense of smell ... we might get overloaded. Please add me to the list of folks waiting to hear about that bike. Glad I stopped by!

kenju said...

Yes, I see the duck, and I would read that book!

kenju said...

Ahhh, you like ginger too? Have you ever had ginger beer?

Thanks for the visit.

Fred Garber said...

Patry you post really resonated with me. I know a little pond that looks like your bog. It seems to get drier each year and reveals new artifacts that had previously been hidden by the water. I am going to drive out there this weekend and take another look.
When I was a Boy Scout at summer camp we had a little exercise. We had to go out into the woods and sit down and observe one square foot of ground for one hour. We were to record what we saw, touched and heard. We then had to report what we had observed.

Swirly said...

I do see the duck! What a brilliant idea to ponder - "The books I would write". I am going to use that today to brainstorm. THANK YOU!!

Swirly said...

I do see the duck! What a brilliant idea to ponder - "The books I would write". I am going to use that today to brainstorm. THANK YOU!!

Swirly said...

I do see the duck! What a brilliant idea to ponder - "The books I would write". I am going to use that today to brainstorm. THANK YOU!!

Swirly said...

I do see the duck! What a brilliant idea to ponder - "The books I would write". I am going to use that today to brainstorm. THANK YOU!!

Brenda said...

This piece of writing has the anger and passion and empathy and imagery of a poem... it works just as it is, a powerful reminder to care for our beautiful world. The sadness of the abandoned bike, the skeletal trees, these speak for themselves. The photographs and your strong words, a very moving message. Would they hear it in the boardrooms where decisions are made? Could this be a reminder for the entrepreneurial dispossessed?

finnegan said...

you should write a book about what really happened here. Everything is not ducky.

Jess said...

I hope you don't mind that I've printed this out. It's something I want to think about more. Thank you!

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