Friday, February 12, 2010

Wordzzle 99 - The tower

This is my contribution to this week's Wordzzle. Wordzzle is a game in which each week word lists, used to create stories, are given on the blog Views from Raven's Nest. Participating users post their stories on their own blogs.

This is my entry number 43, for Wordzzle week 99.

Ten Word Challenge:

apple dumplings,
watch tower,

All along the watch tower
the apple dumplings watched.
Lichen covered sparrows
washed up upon the rocks.

Seven painful pancreases
waited to cross a road.
If they ever made it
still has not been told.

The thermometer was steady,
in an unsteady sort of way.
The sudden chills and heat spells
evened out they say.

Long languorous Saturdays
marched by everyday at noon.
Pandora opened up her box
and began to play a tune.

Vivid scenes aplenty,
remembered for a while.
Now it's time to go to sleep,
so good night my child.

Mini Challenge:

web cam,

The web cam saw the tree in the forest fall, but it had no microphone to record any sound that was made.

It wasn't lack of vitamins that had killed it.

Some vines had wrapped around the tree like ribbons, squeezing its rigid trunk, choking it.

It lay there now, dividing the forest floor into before and after.

To those near or on the tree as it fell, the results were physical and sometimes even traumatic.

To distant watchers on the Internet, it sometimes had a more spiritual component.

The web cam itself made no judgments, but merely watched.

Mega challenge:

apple dumplings,
watch tower,

web cam,

In the middle of a barren plain
a lonely watch tower stood.
From its heights a watcher watched
was he up to any good?

He had no web cam to help him out,
or assistants of any kind,
and his days were all spent watching,
usually well into the night.

Occasionally he'd see travelers
passing through from there to there.
Often they'd be merchants
on the way to sell their wares.

Sometimes people would stop by
and he'd hear tales of other places.
And sometimes he would buy some things
but not in all cases.

He also had a garden,
and a well that was drilled deep,
and a small grove of trees
with fruits and nuts to eat.

There was also a stand of windmills
to supply electricity,
and a small pond nearby
to attract ducks and geese.

The winds tended to blow briskly
whether it was dark or light.
The thermometer changed swiftly, though,
as day went into night.

In times of plenty he ate well,
with roast duck and vegetables and fruit,
and gravy and biscuits and homemade bread,
and apple dumplings too.

But when food was scarce it might be
sparrow and pancreas pie,
or leaves and bark and insects,
as the days and nights went by.

He watched from his tower
high above the barren plain.
As the days and decades passed
he watched and watched again.

The view was usually vivid,
with little chance of rain,
and usually changed little,
remaining much the same.

Sometimes he felt he was caught in
one of the ills Pandora released,
listless and languorous,
trapped there in defeat.

One day he took a piece of stone
off the tower by a crack,
and threw it out as far as he could,
and the next day it was back.

Most days he felt better,
and was satisfied with life,
and felt full of vitamins,
and his mood was light.

The choice he made so long ago,
almost like a spiritual thing,
he still felt was for the best,
and still made his heart sing.

One day some merchants stopped by,
but were not met at the door.
They found his body in a hallway,
laying on the floor.

They held a small service,
and spoke the words that came,
and fashioned a marker for him,
and buried him in the plain.

As travelers went by the tower,
sometimes stopping to pick fruit,
they swore they felt a presence
and sometimes saw one too.

And sometimes a dark figure
was on the tower high,
watching all the scene below
as in the days gone by.

Some people stayed away,
though others came to see,
but as the years went past
it faded to history.

One Saturday a traveler stopped
and saw the garden overgrown.
The trees were hanging low with fruit,
and the wind blew a mournful tone.

He saw the marker in the plain
and the grave where the body lay,
and he found other markers
marking other graves.

He went over to the tower,
as if he'd heard a call,
and put his hand on the lichen-colored stone
that made up the wall.

His schedule was not so rigid
that he could not stay a while.
There was so much here that he should do
he thought with a smile.

He would clean up the garden,
and eat some fruit from the trees,
and go all through the tower,
and see what he could see.

The days passed as he worked
and ate the vegetables and fruit,
and he often went to the tower top
to take in the view.

He decided to clean the tower too,
and read some journals he had found,
left behind by those who'd come before,
now bodies in the ground.

The days turned into weeks and months
and there was always more to do,
and more and more he was on the tower top
as the wind about him blew.

The dreams of travel faded
as into a routine he grew,
as he became part of just one place
instead of a salesman on his route.

One day he realized a year had passed
and that he was here to stay.
He put some long ribbons on a pole
to celebrate the day.

He put the pole upon the roof
so everyone could see,
and the ribbons flapped along their length
in the constant breeze.

Distant travelers saw the sight
and knew what it meant.
The empty and haunted tower
had a new resident.

In the middle of a barren plain,
a lonely watch tower stands,
and from its lonely windy heights,
a watcher watched again.

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Blogger Raven said...

So imaginative as always. I thought the tree falling in the forest was going to be my favorite, but the fable of the watch tower got to me too. You have such a gift.

As for finding patterns in things - for me as a child it was this ugly wallpaper on my bedroom wall....

9:51 AM, February 18, 2010  
Blogger Argent said...

There's a word for finding patterns in things - apophenia. You have a nice light touch with the rhymes in your verse - it's easy to become mired when trying to find things to rhyme, but you pulled it off. I really liked the web cam watching...

3:28 PM, February 18, 2010  

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