Thursday, August 30, 2012

Friday Fictioneers: "Clouds in Toronto"


This is my fourth effort for Friday Fictioneers.  See the rest of the party here. Join us!



Clouds in Toronto

Calliope picked her long-legged way through the knee-deep fluff--one step down, then another, then an eddy back into the brightness. Hanging from a plume out over the insubstantial landscape, one finger pinched in her book, she wondered: What can be done here, if this is the best they have for summer? No shimmering cliffs blazed by the Aegean sun? No sea foam upon which Neptune could ride? Instead bleak towers sprung up from dark, dense woods lapped by an insipid lake.

Ah, but that could be a poet there, on that balcony, or could become one. Blindness could help here.

101 words
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(In The Lively Art of Writing, Lucile Vaughan Payne says that if you have to explain a literary allusion, you've lost it. So I won't explain. :-) )

17 comments:

worksbyclaire said...

I loved 'picked her long-legged way'. I have to admit that I went and looked up Calliope, but once I did, all became clear (or at least, less cloudy).

Boomie Bol said...

Didn't get it completely at first... now i do, very nicely done and i learnt a new word too :). Mine is here
http://boomiebol.wordpress.com/2012/08/30/where-are-you-friday-fictioneers-831/

The Contradictory Optimist said...

the bite of the mythology bug! Beautifully written. I find your last line so true..

Sandra Crook said...

Thanks for the opportunity to learn something new. I was familiar with the name but needed to google for complete understanding. A well-crafted piece from an original viewpoint.

vbholmes said...

"Blindness could help here." Do hope Calliope doesn't visit all poets--

Cindy Marsch said...

Thanks, friends!

janet said...

Lovely use of words, Cindy, and a unique point of view and story. Having been in Greece, I could completely understand her lack of enthusiasm for cloudy Toronto. However, she should come back on a good day. Toronto's a lively place! :-)

swirlingturnip said...

I have to admit, I had to go read up on Calliope. Well done.

Cindy Marsch said...

Turnip, I had to look her up, too! In fact, I had a vague kind of notion of something muse-like, mythical, and the name Calliope came to mind, probably because she's one of a series of paintings we love at the Cleveland Museum of Art. Here's a link to her portrait, first, and then to her in context of the other paintings:

http://www.flickr.com/photos/sphericalbull/6161122314/

http://www.flickr.com/photos/sphericalbull/5544657743/

My husband took these photos--he does great work!

But don't feel bad--I had only vague associations and relied on Wikipedia to fill out the story. :-)

Cindy Marsch said...

I'm sure Toronto's great, Janet, but I expect they get a lot of our kind of weather, too. :-)

Rochelle Wisoff-Fields said...

Fun piece. Count me among those not up on her mythology. Had to look up Calliope. You made me learn something. Thanks.
Rochelle
http://rochellewisofffields.wordpress.com/2012/08/31/writers-catharsis/

Douglas MacIlroy said...

Dear Cindy,

The last line was brilliant. Whole story very good. This one bears reading again, for your choice of words was intriguing. Nicely done. (And I learned about Calliope. Thanks.)

Aloha,

Doug

http://ironwoodwind.wordpress.com/2012/08/31/satisfaction-brought-them-back/

Reading Pleasure said...

A fine take on the prompt. I learnt a new word. Thanks! Mine is here: http://readinpleasure.wordpress.com/2012/08/31/friday-fictioneers-harmattan-rain/

elmowrites said...

Oh dear, poor Toronto. Although I guess by comparison to heaven, most places are going to look a little dull.
I love the conclusion she reaches about poetry and blindness. Great ending!
I'm over here - http://elmowrites.wordpress.com/2012/08/31/friday-fiction-white-pegasi/

Cindy Marsch said...

Thanks, new commenters, for your generosity in stopping by to read and to post. I really appreciate it.

At least two have mentioned learning a new word, and I wonder which one it is -- calliope, eddy, insipid?

Rachel Paterson said...

Great read, thank you. I think this one will stay with me.

Ilyan Kei Lavanway said...

Creative and well written. I like the line, "bleak towers sprung up from dark, dense woods lapped by an insipid lake."

http://ebooksscifi.wordpress.com/2012/08/31/fallout-copyright-2012-ilyan-kei-lavanway/