September 7th, 2010
Before I left for the mountains Saturday morning, I’d been feeling a bit out of sorts; caterwauled, twitterpaited. For months, I’d been a receptacle for millions of megabits of input from hundreds of other people, mostly via various social media channels. Information kept hitting me upside the head from all sides, begging for response, acknowledgment, awareness, yet I was quite full up, thank you. Not open and receptive. For awhile anyway. Quite simply, I needed a recharge.
I didn’t expect one so soon though. I mean, the mountains sure. Peaceful and all, but with two children and a cabin full of other families? Quiet is hard to come by, possibly impossible, yet one evening I found myself alone for an hour or two, and amazing things began to happen. First of all and most importantly, my cell phone didn’t work in my neck of the woods. No calls, no texts, no web. Secondly, I couldn’t access my laptop. I’d brought it with me, because I’m codependent, but I couldn’t use it, not in the way I’d planned at least. So after an unsuccessful attempt to access wifi, I succumbed to radio silence. That is, I dragged an old rocking chair out to the cabin deck, sat resplendent in alpine beauty, and beheld nature’s majesty.
I took a breather and listened. By God, I swear the trees talked. A subtle, whispering but insistent wind rustled the leaves and the earth’s energy was palpable, vibrant, electric. I felt it, felt it fully.
Soon enough, my mind relaxed and I realized…not only was I filling myself up with silence, blessed, lovely silent silence, I unlocked the puzzle of my novel’s plot stuckedness. Because here, right there, complete in front of me, was my book’s setting.
Annie peered into the blue distance. There was nothing out there. Annie’s own yard was swathed in the moon’s translucent light and she watched as her tire swing circled in a slight breeze. She shifted her gaze to the woods a half mile behind her house where hundreds of pine trees poked their way into the sky.
Her eyes swept the back yard again. A ways ahead, rose the family’s thatched roof guest cottage where their friend, Mrs. Lokken, lived. Annie always thought the cottage looked like a secret fairy tale house hidden in an expanse of thick trees and long forgotten trails.
They tiptoed through a carpet of leaves and branches, taking great care to not crackle the dry foliage underfoot. There were some old dirt bike paths leading through the woods, and the girls made their way to one of them within a few minutes.
Coriander shook her head until it looked like it would break off. But before she could stop her, Annie took off through the trees.
After a second, Coriander could see that Annie was scared half to death, and followed her eyes as she turned back toward the scene in the clearing. Mrs. Schlocken had disappeared. Swallowing hard, Annie heard a rustling in the treetops.
Right there in the vast distance of my quiet hour, tt all came together, it really did.
Thanks to me just shutting up for a minute or two.
What do you want to come to you in the silence?
And/OR: What is the setting of your work in progress?
This is a buried PROMPTuesday.
Please post your answer to the question above in the comments OR post in your blog and leave a link to your blog in the comments.