Wednesday, October 17, 2012

The Look Challenge

Linda Hoye, author of Two Hearts, invited me to take part in The Look Challenge for writers. According to Linda, “The premise is simple: find a passage in your manuscript or book that contains the word “look,” post it on your blog, and tag five other blogging writers to do the same. Seems to me like a great way to introduce readers to other writers, so I’m all in.”

And I’m all in too. Here is a one of the poems included in my memoir Leaving the Hall Light On – it even has the right title for this challenge.

The Look
(inspired by the movie “Revolutionary Road”)

She looked toward him
from the counter
and offered him a glass of orange juice
freshly squeezed.
She was fully dressed in blouse and skirt
and little wedgie shoes,
Her makeup was perfect.
Her long blonde hair just so.

She then invited him to sit down
at the table.
“Scrambled or fried eggs?” she asked.
He said whatever is easier, scrambled
probably, and unbuttoning
his suit jacket sat down,
looking at her all the while.

She stood at the sink scrambling and
when the eggs were cooked,
she sat down
opposite him and they ate.
Not much talking, mostly eating, and looking
closely at each other’s eyes.
He got up to go.
“That’s the best breakfast you ever made
for me,” he said.

And before he left, he asked her
if she was still mad
at him from the night before.
They had yelled at each other and showed so much hate
that she ran off into the woods
beyond their yard.
“Leave me alone,” she screamed,
“I need to think,” and he went to bed

But this morning there was complete calm.
Her eyes clear, her face luminous,
showing none of last night’s horrific pain.
She had the look that said
she had found her
peace. And, it didn’t include him.

I saw that look once before
on my son’s face, the night before
he took his own life.
So I knew what was coming.
It was eerie to be so certain
that this was where this story
was going.

As she said, “No, I don’t hate you,”
she took his face in her hands
and smiled slightly.
She then walked him
to the door and stood there until
he drove away.
She turned and went inside.
That was the last time
he would see her alive.

Now, I extend the challenge to these five wonderful writers. Please take a look at their websites and become familiar with their work. You are in for a treat.

Angela Felsted, editor of Poetry Pact, 2011
Eleanor Vincent, author of Swimming with Maya
Sonia Marsh, author of Freeways to Flip-Flops
Doreen Cox, author of Adventures in Mother-Sitting
Laurel Garver, author of Never Gone

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