Monday, May 21, 2012

Timed Writing: 5/20/2012


Time: 10 minutes
Prompt: "... the poet, desperate, tried to gain time..."
Source: 4 x 3 x 4 + 2 x 5 = 58 = Baudolino by Umberto Eco

They guided him to a rough table, pressed a chair into the backs of his legs until he was compelled to sit down, and provided him paper and a felt-tipped pen -- nothing that might readily be employed as a weapon.

"Write," they intoned in perfect, expressionless unison.

But the poet, desperate, tried to gain time. "Please, good masters," he said, "I'm not certain that I understand the terms. Does my time start when I begin -- when pen touches paper, that is -- or has it already commenced?"

"Write," they said, and they left him.

They dissolved, it seemed to the poet, into the chilly fog, the fog that stank of decaying flesh and singed hair, the fog that obscured the walls of the chamber and that only glowed a vaguely lighter shade of gray in the direction of the doorless arch through which they had entered. The prospect of escape danced haltingly in the poet's mind. No gate or bar had he encountered during his ushered journey through the maze of brick walls and live wood hedges. Only the gloomy pillars of black robed escorts, shifting and circling round, opening paths forward and closing off his return... and never speaking more than a single word per command. Now they were vanished and he sat alone with the implements of his profession arrayed before him: ink, blank sheet, and the light of a single directed beam that cut anomalously through the vaporous gloom to illuminate his assigned station.


(about my timed writing exercises)


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