Saturday, 31 January 2009

Vignette

This is such a beautiful word. As well as the usual black silhouettes so beloved of the Victorians, it conjures up visions of cameo brooches; in my mind I see the delicate shell carvings of aristocratic profiles and flowing locks on pale, pink tinted backgrounds. These miniature works of art, small and beautiful, have the quality of wonder about them. How did the carver see the possibilities within the shell, let alone translate his inner vision for others to share?

So when Angie used the word vignette to describe my yesterday's 'Thames Twilight', I considered it high praise indeed. When I wrote it, I was merely trying to share my thoughts about the scene laid out before me. I guess I was translating into language my perception of that one moment in time, for others to almost experience it for themselves as they read my words and allowed their imagination to come into play.

Although I love to write, I've never felt drawn to attempt such grandiose work as a novel. I stand in awe of people who can construct plots and characters and let them weave their magic. But the lure of words has me firmly in its unrelenting grip. Add this to a kind of photographic memory and you will understand why the next part of this post came into being.

The Shopper - A Prose Poem

Stooped, slow moving, the little old lady shuffles past towering supermarket shelves. A tapping stick provides some semblance of security for her, as she gazes awkwardly with head lowered, because the bent back no longer allows her to carry it proudly erect as she did when young.

She exudes an air of timorous frailty; even the fabric of her ankle length cotton dress quivers in sympathy with the slight tremor of her gnarled and knotted fingers. She slowly grasps a packet from the shelf and brings it closer to her cloudy eyes to confirm its contents.

She seems almost to shrink whilst you are looking at her. You feel that if you were to blink in slow motion, when your eyes reopened, there might be nothing left to see but a heap of whisper soft material on the floor, alongside the straight, brown, wooden walking stick.

9 comments:

  1. My - how wonderful you are with words, I get an odd spurt now and again, but nothing compaired to your flowing River of words with such feeling that puts me right in the centre and on the doorstep of your wonderful tales.

    Thanks for your visits and kind comments.

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  2. You are a great observer. I saw her and felt her.

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  3. Yes ma'am. A vignette creator you are! Loved today's poem, especially the resonating vowels. Can see/hear her swish and stoop and shrink. :)

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  4. Very sweet, Jinksy, and using timorous so acutely is fabulous, just after Burns' Neet! x

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  5. I'm just a tiny bit jealous of your way with words. My excuse is valid though, I don't know half of them! Great writing/painting as always Jinksy.

    How are you holding up there? Covered in snow?
    X

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  6. Yes I agree...the feeling of reality, certainly grabbed me in this work.

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  7. You are good with words - even a foreigner can grasp the situation, "see" the old woman in the supermarket.

    PS Thank you for the comment - you are also good at seeing the important point about my pictures.

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  8. I have a dear friend, Hannah, 84, who fits this description in every minute detail. thank God talented people can write these for me since I can't. This one is being filed away for future.

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