I came across her… sentinel on a country lane… green mottled skin slowly rusting to a different hue. I was conflicted in my feelings toward her. First surprise, then awe at her beauty. But so many questions. Whose? Was she afraid, tucked away in the woods beneath a blanket of leaves? She looked so forlorn in her abandoned state… yet, somehow majestic in her loneliness. I was in love. I wanted to paint her.
I would always take a moment to visit.
Then today… Gone! Whisked away by an alien starship, the ground dusted for prints and wiped clean.
It’s Friday, and time for 100-word Flash #FridayFictioneers…
Flash Fiction over at Madison Woods
When I saw Madison’s photo, I knew exactly what I was going to write about, except I didn’t know how I was going to do it. After all, this is supposed to be fiction, and I had been kind of cheating lately with the memoir thing. I think this may be a combo.
I was on Kanaka Bay Road one day (and no… this Island isn’t Hawaiian) and came across this old truck, parked next to the road. It was beautiful, sitting in the shade, and I thought it would be a great subject to paint. I love paintings of old abandoned things. My friend Matt, had painted one recently and I thought he would be the perfect guy to do the job. He may have been in his Hay Bale Period by then, because I begged him to do it and he wouldn’t budge. But in his defense, he really would rather do boats, and he is very good. Next, I begged my friend Jill, but she was more into crows and nature. I tried to explain that there were trees and things, but to no avail. Lately she is doing landscapes and has just done a rooster that I think is wonderful.
This begging went on for years with those two.
San Juan Island is blessed with many fine artists, and one of my favorites is famous for her dog paintings. I should have asked her, but Jaime has moved on to bigger animals now and would most likely not be too interested in my truck. I might have been able to con her daughter, Jennifer, into doing it… she did a tractor design on one of her County Fair T-Shirts one year… wearable works of art.
I, of course, am far too insecure to try to actually draw or paint the truck myself, although I fully intend to hand tint a black and white photo I made. I once took a course in hand tinting B&W’s, from Dianne Poinski in Sacramento.
I was walking through the Sacramento Airport a few years ago, and was stopped in my tracks, just like with the truck, by a photo of The Palace of Fine Arts in San Francisco. That building is another obsession of mine. It was part of a display of Dianne’s works. I copied the info, and ended up purchasing a hand tinted photo… it is one of my proudest possessions, right up there with the sketch Christopher Young did for me, of Madame X (another passion), at the Met in NYC. And a favorite photo of the State Street Subway Entrance, that I had used so many times in Chicago, taken and printed by Jamie Powell Sheppard. So, I guess I could have done the truck, and still will someday. When I took the course, Dianne gave us prints of her photos, on special paper, to learn on. She is a pretty good teacher, because I thought one of my efforts came out pretty well, and I love the photo.
Two days ago, I went back out to Kanaka Bay. I had not been on that road for about six months, and was looking forward to seeing the truck again. But, it was gone. I wasn’t sure I had the right place, but it had to be, since the old fence with the weathered ‘No Trespassing’ sign was there. There was not a trace of the truck to be found. I was amazed and a bit disjointed to have lost an old friend. Perhaps someone is restoring her beauty somewhere… and I will get to visit again.
Thought I’d share this with the Moonshiners this week. One of my first tries to combine a 100 word flash fiction story with a photo essay. I had been in Friday Fictioneers less than a month, and had only written one fiction piece for Quill Shiv. Actually, this is more of a vignette or memoir piece, what would you call it. But, this was the first time I expanded to write some kind of essay afterwards. Tune in next week to see what happens to the truck.
Thanks Natalie for keeping the lights on at the Still.