Monday, February 3, 2014

Sentimental Ash and Unabashed Jubilation

Sentimental Ash
     The night clouds, blocking out any trace of stars or moon, glow with an unforgiving crimson red. It turns the world a tainted hue that tears at my insides. My eyes glaze over with numbness, an emotional paralysis used as a defense mechanism against more harm. The heat of the blaze makes my skin burn, even from a safe distance. Sharp tendrils of fire snake around the building, in and out of old holes and new. They wrap themselves menacingly in a tightening grip. The flames are crushing all life out of the wrinkled, aged building that has no means of escape. A small crowd stops and stares, including firemen, with the ability to do nothing but watch the soul of the ancient structure crumble away, until all that remains is a pile of sentimental ash. Any tears that manage to fall evaporate away from my skin before I can lift an old, trembling hand to wipe them away.

Unabashed Jubilation
     Brisk dawn broke on a lazy Sunday morning. Quiet flames played tenderly with the sky, licking clouds as they floated by. The cool air mixed with the radiant warmth contrasted delightfully on her skin. The corners of her lips turned up, and she gazed with unabashed curiosity at the flurry of light and color before her. Candy apple flames entangled themselves in the pale yellow rays of sun against the baby blue sky. Every breath of air in her lungs made her feel alive. The excitement of the fire wrapping itself around the building like a bow lent her its jubilant energy. Bits and pieces of the walls jumped into the heart of the flame to play in the wonderland of fire. The heat emanating from the building crept into her heart and warmed her from the inside out. She felt like dancing in appreciation for the gift given to her that morning.

Author's Note:

     This might be one of my favorite prompts I ever received from back in 2012. It was a simple task of describing the exact same image through the eyes of two different characters who are experiencing drastically different emotions. I don't talk about the characters or emotions, just the image. My strong suit in writing narrative fiction is descriptions, which I think I got from reading Tolkien and Rice, so this assignment really floated my boat.

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