On Macro Photography

This was for an assignment where we simply had to write a “short-short story.” When writing this and the piece on prose poems, I was having so much trouble getting my thoughts together, but I do like how this one turned out. One question I have is: am I telling too much at the end?

On Macro Photography

A young man sat in his study trying to write a story about something deep and philosophical. He had Nietzsche and Marx on his mind due to the gloomy political atmosphere that he couldn’t wrap his head around, but nothing made sense on the outside and inside. The enormity of the election in regards to how many people who voted for a billionaire con artist could only be explained through philosophy, he thought, but instead, he found himself sitting on his computer looking at macro pictures of all kinds of things like coins, flowers dipped in gold, nuts and bolts, a pile of cogs, and master locks. Before, the young man felt safe with the idea that our way of living could not survive, along with the idea that none of it mattered anyways. His passion to find something with their works to explain what was going on came to a sudden halt when he realized that he was approaching things from the wrong point of view. Picture after picture on the forum were macro shots. Everyone was showing off the new worlds they discovered, which were right under our noses the entire time and the answer to our calls for escape.

The Disused Train

Sorry I already choked with this goal of writing everyday! I skipped a day two days ago, and actually wrote this yesterday with the intentions of writing another story, but I didn’t get around to posting it here. I wrote this in Starbucks and it’s based off a picture my girlfriend chose off Flickr. The picture I’m posting on here is obviously not mine, but you definitely need to see it in order to understand what’s going on. I am going to try to have one or two more stories for you today. I’m going back and forth between this and reading before my semester starts on Monday. I know if I don’t get it done now, I’m going to have to put it off until school’s over. Enjoy!

Alright, I can’t upload the picture for whatever reason, so here’s the link instead: Disused Train

Disused Train

Winter storm clouds slowly roll over the mountains into the valley where a lonely train waits to leave the empty station. Every day, people with cameras pass by to take pictures, but never stop to see what’s wrong, why the train hasn’t moved in years. Even the station itself has been abandoned to the harsh elements.

The train looks at the storm, envious of its ability to pass through the mountains. A tunnel was made just for this train. So much work was put into it, so many hours, lives even, going to waste. Where did everyone go? How did they leave without using the train? The roads haven’t been paved in years. The tracks are still in good condition. But they’ll soon be covered by the snow. And so will the train. The last thing it wants is to be forgotten, again.

 

 

Take Off

Hi everyone. One day I’ll start a post without having to apologize for the lack of writing. I wanted to wait on this one, because I was waiting to see if I would make it back onto the website from last time. Turns out I did make it! Yay me! I have a feeling they’re publishing everything they get, but who cares? I enjoy doing it!

If you want to see, this is the link: http://visualverse.org/submissions/take-off/

If you’d rather just read it here, I’ll copy and paste the story. But it does go with a picture, so you should look at the link too! In other news, I decided that I’m going to start working on my first big story. I want to expand upon a story I wrote my first semester. I think it would have a chance. There’s something in there that everyone can relate to, and that’s my goal with my writing. We’ll see how it goes. The most I’ve ever written is thirty pages. This, I hope, will be much, much more. Enjoy the story below!

Take Off

The sun was setting, hanging on by a thread in the orange and purple sky. He stood at the edge of the dock all day watching the others. His reflection in the water was mocking him, too. His silhouette danced between the tiny waves blowing in the breeze. The more he waited, the more he psyched himself out, found reasons not to jump, why it was stupid to jump. It would be the end of the world if he jumped. He needs to learn to let the past go.

But what was beneath the surface? Would he see schools of colorful fish darting between the coral? No, because it’s late. All the other children have gone home. All the fish are hunkered down in their rocky homes, waiting for the sun to rise again, hoping he won’t jump, taking bets. He thinks about the lack of sun. How would he get back to the surface? He never could float.

I silently watched him from behind. I was there before. “Shit or get off the pot,” my father would tell me. And I’d cave. Every time. I sat silently, camera in hand, the battery going down with the sun. I wanted him to jump. I thought he would. He was not the type to let things go unfinished. Just wait him out. Don’t look. Give him a chance.

He bent down and raised his arms up like the seagulls still scavenging the dock for leftover sandwiches left behind by screaming children and sleepy parents. It looked like this would be it. If he didn’t do it now, he never would.

As a parent, you want to go up to him and explain how this would be the moment that defines who he is as a person, and give him a little push, words of encouragement, you want to let him know the battery is about to die on the camera, and that traffic will be the worst. But that familiar look of determination was in his eyes, he bent down as if he was going to jump to the moon. A smile grew on his face, his tongue sticking out. He refused to hit his head again.

Deep Down

I know I haven’t posted anything in a while. I’m catching up with so much reading that I had to put off when the semester started. I just finished the third book in the Neapolitan Series by Elena Ferrante and just started the fourth and final book.

But it doesn’t mean I haven’t been writing at all. One of my professors told us about a website that posts pictures and people have only one hour to write a 50-500 word story based on that picture. I decided to try it out and my story was one of a bunch that were mentioned on Twitter.

Follow the link and give it a read!

 

Hall of Color

My first semester of grad school is finally coming to a close. I have one last paper to write, and one last class to attend. After that, I’m all yours, provided the holiday season at Target doesn’t kill me.

Anyways, our last assignment for my fiction workshop was to take a picture of one of the photographs in our school’s museum and write a 100-word story about it. I find that the trick to these is to write more than you have to and revise after, meticulously cutting the unnecessary words that you originally thought defined the story. After spending at least an hour cutting over 100 words, this is what I came up with:

IMG_0131.jpg

Hall of Color

The walls are colorless and bare, the hall full of fresh air seeping through its blue cloth canopy. Between ancient and modern, the beige walls, the glass doors, and the stone floor with a grove in the middle go unnoticed.

Translucent head scarves and colorful carpets hang high over everyone’s heads. Women with arched backs and wrinkles suggesting this is their life find a moment to blend in with their merchandise before forcing themselves to part ways.

A younger woman—newly thirty, relentlessly holding onto her youthful beauty—notices my camera. She grabs her wrist, concerned, hopeful, as I approach?

Deer in the Fields

CSC_1236

Yes, this is just a picture of a deer in a field behind my backyard upstate, but the story of how I got this is much more exciting. I was thinking about writing a fiction piece related to the picture, but there’s no need. I’m going to just tell you guys exactly what happened.

 

Deer in the Fields

I’m with my uncle, taking pictures of the trails we’re walking on, looking for butterflies floating over the tall grasses that hide the yellow and white wildflowers.

We stop briefly to talk about how people subconsciously love the idea of being in fields. My uncle tells me that people will say they love being in open fields and meadows, but they aren’t sure why. The reason, he says, is because they aren’t looking close enough. When you stop and really look closely, you see tiny flowers and on those flowers, tiny insects, all hidden underneath the tall grasses that bigger insects use to rest on. Slithering through the grass are snakes, and watching from their perches located on or close to the treeline are hawks and other birds of prey, like turkey vultures. Chipmunks stay close to the rock wall that divides my property from someone else’s, calling the wall home, along with the rotten tree trunks still standing upright and filled with holes, like windows on a sky scraper. Life, my uncle continues to stress, can be found in all corners of the world, and it’s all beautiful.

Butterflies, as expected, are prevalent in the field, so we follow them around, hoping for the “perfect shot.” I already have the “perfect shot” hanging on the door leading to my basement. It’s a picture of a bumble bee and a tiger swallowtail collecting the nectar of a wild thistle plant. We both hoped to get a shot similar to that, but the butterflies were filled with energy and it was still early in the morning, so we couldn’t keep up.

We take a quick break and talk more about random things and I notice what looks  like a bird flapping its wings on the ground no less than a hundred yards away. I tell my uncle and he goes to investigate. The “wings” I saw turned out to be the ears of a deer, resting in the bed it made from the matted down grass. I wondered how it couldn’t see us considering how close we were and how loud we were, but then we realized the wind was blowing favorably towards us and loud enough to dull out the noise we were making.

My uncle saw this as an opportunity to see how close we could get and I quickly imagined how easily we could have downed it if we were into hunting. Each step we took created tons of noise. We had to maneuver through vines and shrubs, and as we did this, we inevitably broke sticks and made enough noise to spook it if the odds were in the deer’s favor. Next thing we know, we’re no less than fifteen yards away from a full grown doe, still completely unaware of our presence. I take out my camera, which only had a 35mm lens attached, and manage to take a clear picture. I knew I would have to crop it later, but I was still amazed at how close I was.

The deer finally heard us when my uncle took a picture with his camera and darted off. We were ready to head back when my uncle, this time, spotted another deer (the deer in the picture above). To make a long story short, we crept up on it the same way, wondering how it missed its buddy run off. Again, we took pictures and my uncle let me do the honors of seeing how close I could get.

I managed to get within the same distance as the last one, but this deer considered standing its ground, and rightfully so. The deer flapped its ears and grunted, while slowly coming closer to me. I slowly backed off, but it kept coming. The thought of being in serious trouble for pushing my luck entered my mind and I looked back at my uncle, who reassured me that I was doing the right thing. The second I turned my head back to the deer, it grunted loudly, figuratively giving me a heart attack, and it darted off in the opposite direction.