Thursday, April 12, 2012

on the sea

Portland artist Matthew Dennison sketches a quick piece every day as an exercise, as a study for new paintings, as a study of the mind. Inspired by this, I decided to try to do the same thing with my writing. Just a quick something every day, no matter how rough - in fact happily rough, giving myself the permission to just brattle something off on the computer and let it go. I'm sure plenty of writers do something similar, but because Matthew was my particular inspiration, I've been calling my little file the Dennison Project.

[Full disclosure. For me, one-a-day is more like one-or-two-a-week...]

Today, I thought I'd take the Dennison angle one further and use his sketch as a prompt. Here's where he took me.

"On the Sea"

This predicament, Dennison could have seen it coming. Or actually, or more accurately, what he could have seen coming was that he wouldn’t see it coming. And he hadn’t.
            So, he sat and floated in his little wooden box, slow drift and sway along blue-black water. This forever of water, where horizon was just a maybe-something, an unreachable nothing, beyond the curve of the earth. At least what lay in hammered steel sheets across that water was sun. At least it was a nice day.
            Through the holes in the little wooden box where his legs stuck out, water was filling up the box. Water will do that. Water will seep in and soak your trousers heavy and send that ice chill up through your middle. Water will reach a hold and sink you straight.
            At least she would miss him.
            Or actually, or more accurately, she wouldn’t.
            In the distance, the crow-nosed plane fell.
            At least he was wearing handsome shoes.

I love Matthew's work. He shows at Froelick Gallery in Portland. You can check him out on his website here.