This blog is for all who desire to create with words and images.
You are encouraged to participate in any way that is meaningful to you.

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All prompts beneath the photos are only suggestions.
You are free to use the photo to be inspired to write any way you desire.
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Write and you are a writer.

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Gondolas

Photo by Reno
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Suggested Prompt...
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Take a gondola ride into the mist.
Write in any way you are inspired.



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"Step this way," said the smiling tour guide, as he held out his hand to assist me into the little boat.

As I sat, I arranged my sweatshirt, tucking my hair into the hood, and tugging on the lace to tighthten it.
It wasn't that it was extremely cold, but the mist crept over me, slithering its soft fingers over my skin. I shivered involuntarily.

As we glided over the water, the tour guide spoke about the history of the buildings. Including myself and the guide, there were four people balancing the boat. The woman asked the guide something about ghosts, as she did she laughed nervously and glanced at her companion.

"Oh, yes," he replied, "these waters are indeed haunted."

He smiled impishly, then continued with the usual historical information.

I took my camera out of my pocket, and took some snapshots. As we floated around a bend, I scrolled through what I had shot.

One photo made my heart skip a few beats and my hands turn to ice.

There was a woman in the water.

I looked up to see the guide watching me.

"You saw her?" he quietly asked.

Instead of answering, I looked behind us, where there was nothing but water.

~ Jen


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12 comments:

katwilkens said...

I still have a letter I wrote to my parents when I was 20 years old:
"Now we're in Venice--undoubtedly my favorite place so far! You have to see it to believe it--so romantic. There are no cars anywhere. It is so quiet and peaceful. The "vaporetto" which is a canal-going bus, takes an hour to go the length of the Grand Canal. Gondolas are for short runs and canal crossings. They are expensive. There is even a motorboat taxi service. Police boats, fire boats, etc. It looks like a huge flood--the buildings come up right out of the water. At night all the different colored lights reflect in the canals--a beautiful sight. It is like a dream."
I have never been back to Venice, but re-reading my letter, even though it sounds immature to me now, makes me want to return someday to see how Venice has changed since June 15, 1967!

Dan Felstead said...

Kat,
Doesn't sound immature...sounds like words from the heart. I was in Europe for about 6 months when I was that age as well, so I can identify with the feelings you must have had when you wrote the letter...thanks for sharing it.

Dan

katwilkens said...

Thanks, Dan!

SSQuo said...

The gondola was leaving, and when Pierre turned around, he saw the frazzled girl, hair blowing wild take an miscalculated leap into the gondola. Splash!! She was not going to miss this ride, come what may!

A minute later, things were normal, she arranged her hair, took her place right next to the old man wearing the red hat, and smiled at the glorious sun.

“She was beautiful”, Pierre thought, as he swam back to hard ground.

shabby girl said...

I know the fog is rolling in but it is such a short distance to the island. And let's face it, we are heading straight towards it. Not a chance of getting lost.
What is he waiting for? Why is he just standing there talking to that guy? I have to get across. Alright take a deep breath. It'll work out. It always does.
Well this is just ridiculous, come on! Let's go!
Finally! Oh, a little chillier than I thought it would be out here. Wish I had worn my heavier coat. Shoot! My hair is going to get all frizzy in this fog!
Hmmm. A little farther than I thought too. Fog's getting thicker. Why did he have to take so long to get going? My stomach is all knotted up now. He's going to hear it from me when we get to the island.
Getting kind of dark now. I wonder if I should say something. Too late to turn around, surely. Can we go any faster?
How far away is this island anyway? We've been riding along for a half an hour now and it still looks so far away. Surely it's just the fog distorting the distance, right?
Just me and him alone in this tiny boat, foggy, getting dark. What if we tipped! Nobody would know.
I hope he knows what he's doing. My teeth are chattering; I'm so cold!
Oh no. I can't see the island! I can't see the island!!! Did something just bump the boat? We're far enough out that there could be something big enough to knock us over! There it is again! Oh my gosh, I wish I could see! The fog is so thick!
Oh. Okay. The dock. Yes. We're here. Of course I'll get out.

Dan Felstead said...

When I first saw the photograph, I immediately thought of Myst...the role playing game. Myst Island even has a clock tower. I get the same feeling here...uncertainty, mystery and a foreboding. It is as old as human history...fear of the unknown. As shabby girl so aptly put it...what lurks between the dock and the island. Only a short distance away but an eternity when one is being stalked.

shabby girl said...

Dan,
What is it about fog??? It blurs reality? You can't see clearly?
I know when I lived along the coast, the fog was cold, but a comforting blanket as well.
And, damn it! It frizzed my hair!
But in a story...it always produces the victim.

Alpha Whale said...

Cut the boat loose
no paddle
no oar
no need
desire
but to be loose cut
Enter the fog
it clouds
it blankets
it blurs
obscures
and I welcome it
There is no more past only
the present
the fog
the boat
and I

sink it

cw2smom said...

What a lovely, lovely photo! Lisa

Simply Heather said...

As I approached the dock, the little boats looked like the definition of serenity to me. I just had to jump into one and let it take me into the middle of the mist, the water, the world.

I hopped in, alone with my book and let the little boat drift out from the dock. I opened my book and became absorbed in the words that spoke meaning into my being. Suddenly, I became aware of the peace around me. I could hear the water splishing and there was a faint sound that I couldn't put my finger on; such a wonderful moment. I looked up and I couldn't see anything. The fog was so think, I was alone...completely alone. Fear stole my moment away from me and I became anxious.

"Dear Lord, where am I? I'm a bit scared here, all alone..." I heard the faint sound once again, still unable to figure out what it was. I heard His voice within me say..."Close your eyes."

I closed my eyes and just allowed myself to breathe slowly. Relaxing and trusing in God to calm my heart. I had just begun to relax when I heard Him say..."Open your eyes, Child."

As I opened my eyes, the sun was shining in front of the little boat. I looked up to see a beautiful mountainside covered with flowers and there were sheep grazing near the trees. That's the sound that I had heard, it was the sheep. I felt the boat bump and realized that I had drifted onto the land. I stepped out of the little boat with my book in hand and began on an adventure of discovery, no longer afraid.

Jen said...

"Step this way," said the smiling tour guide, as he held out his hand to assist me into the little boat.

As I sat, I arranged my sweatshirt, tucking my hair into the hood, and tugging on the lace to tighthten it.
It wasn't that it was extremely cold, but the mist crept over me, slithering its soft fingers over my skin. I shivered involuntarily.

As we glided over the water, the tour guide spoke about the history of the buildings. Including myself and the guide, there were four people balancing the boat. The woman asked the guide something about ghosts, as she did she laughed nervously and glanced at her companion.

"Oh, yes," he replied, "these waters are indeed haunted."

He smiled impishly, then continued with the usual historical information.

I took my camera out of my pocket, and took some snapshots. As we floated around a bend, I scrolled through what I had shot.

One photo made my heart skip a few beats and my hands turn to ice.

There was a woman in the water.

I looked up to see the guide watching me.

"You saw her?" he quietly asked.

Instead of answering, I looked behind us, where there was nothing but water.

J Cosmo Newbery said...

Transports of Delight
(a villanelle)

Gently they are rocking at evening rest,
Tarped in blue, moored for the night,
These romantic vessels of love finessed.

Coal black ferries to a town possessed;
Venetian transports of delight.
Gently they are rocking at evening rest.

Gondoliers, traditionally dressed
Sing songs of love, of passion bright,
On these romantic vessels of love finessed.

Young women doing what they do best,
Playing Princess to their kneeling knight.
Gently they are rocking at evening rest.

How many a girl has acquiesced
To heartfelt deliveries of a lover’s plight
On these romantic vessels of love finessed?

Sleek confidants to the mating rite —
(Can we, should we, will we, tonight?)
Gently they are rocking at evening rest
These romantic vessels of love finessed.