The second night of writing music continued, and I was treated to the soundtracks from Studio Ghibli movies. Instead of levitating snowflakes. Yellow flower petals softly fell down in the foreground of a small Japanese village overlooking the sea. One school girl made her way down a winding hill with her bag in front of her and I thought about our next prompt.
In the past, I’ve challenged everyone to write using a photo reference. Well, today is a little different. Our writing prompt for today will use an illustration, and not just any kind. Take a fantasy illustration and write for 5-10 minutes as if you’re in that world. Are you the character? Is the character even human? Let yourself walk in the shoes of the school girl. Or, are you the boy walking behind her to see that she gets to school safely?
The point of this prompt is to take ourselves out the worlds we know and explore. I started the year with thoughts of embarking on a literary tour around the world. Then, it leapt into the second month with a story set in Paris. Now I have to research all the arrondissement of the city of light. Does the light of the city still carry around the corners? Or has the darkness grown? Hopefully, my story can stretch old romantic notions through the streets again. I guess we’ll have to see because nobody does melancholy, or misery like the French. They can do it so well you want to walk in the rain with them without an umbrella.
In my opinion, nobody matches their cinematography. They know how to set their cameras to the landscapes, like eyes that never miss the perfect mountain peak, or flower filled valley. The master of wide angle lenses, and artistry are still the top crafters of their trade. I also still think they are still top of their class when it comes to culinary skills. After following foodies around the world, I would never turn down a French meal or sweetly and shiny desert.
I am that school girl winding my way down the hill that overlooks the small bay of fishing boats early in the morning. A small buzz of motors brushes past as I inhale the morning breeze. Salty ocean, with a hint of the early morning catch still in crates on the dock. I breathe again and smile. I can still taste my mother’s cup of green tea from this morning’s breakfast. A small bowl of rice warmed my hands as the frying of the omelet filled the kitchen. The square pan lightly hit the gas burner as mother tucked and rolled the eggs one more time.
My chopsticks picked up the fanned cherry tomato and I savored the sweet acid as the seeds rolled over my tongue. This was my favorite time with my mother. No words in the quiet of the morning before school, just the scent of warm food and her humming. My own hands mimicked hers as she delicately cut the tomato on the cutting board. Her soft white wrists stayed straight and quick with the knife, like she was playing the crescendo of her piano pieces. She didn’t realize that her eyes smiled when she cooked, and I always wanted to know what she was thinking but I didn’t ask. I just listened to the rhythm of her movements.
Today, she practiced a fan dance. Thursdays, she always joined the older ladies of the village for morning dance practice after she walked me to the gate and waved goodbye. Sometimes I turned back to see her eyes drift off and smile again. She had that same look when she looked at her father when he fell asleep after dinner.
I looked down at the bay looked for the blue stripe of his fishing boat. He must have gotten up early and gone to his favorite spot around the corner of the bay. Her eyes watched a few small boats making their way through the break before they passed the deep blue line. I laughed out loud and then looked around. No one else heard me. I always thought it was funny that my father was the one who brought back the town gossip, and not my mother.
My lips started to hum the same song this morning. Her mother always hummed the song she was going to play during their morning exercises. It took a while for the village women to accept her mother because she grew up in the city with rich parents. Mother said it took them a long time to gain their trust but now they expect her to play the piano every morning. They say she’s the only one who keeps them on beat.
My eyes wander at the old houses and the old road winding road that never changes. I’m happy that I grew up here, and I couldn’t imagine growing up in Tokyo with my grandparents. They remind me of the stone statues in their garden, cold and unfeeling. It’s not wonder mother moved out here.
As I turned the corner, I felt my cheeks blush. I saw his house in the distance. Kenji’s house was only a few more feet down the road. They never spoke as they walked together but he always waited for her to reach the edge of their wall before he walked out his door to meet her. Even if I was late, or early he was there every morning before school.
I hugged my bag to my chest. I kept the piano music he handed me morning. He said it was for my mother but I knew he wrote it for me. I asked my mother to play it and wondered if he heard all my missed keys down the road. My head lifted when I heard the creek of his door. His gate opened like clockwork and we walked down the same hill overlooking the fishing boats in silence. Once our hands brushed over each other and his face looked redder than some of the fish my father caught.
Our steps were in rhythm just like the ladies of the village and their fan dance. Each step reminded me why I loved this small village of old houses. My eyes glanced over at Kenji and his eyes squinted handed at the boats going out to sea. His cheeks started to grow pink and I looked away. Cherry blossoms. If only the day stood still, right before the cherry blossoms opened.
That’s all for my writing exercise today. The challenge with this prompt was keeping the same point of view and not switching into third person. I kept it in first person, like a mental diary note of a young girl.
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2 thoughts on “Fantasy Writing Prompt”
Thank you for sharing!
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Thank you Olivia for commenting!