As writers, we are always looking for inspiration. Whether it is from other art, nature, or the people we meet. Some of my favorite stories came to me in dreams. Today I had a hard time starting a story and I began looking around my house, grasping at anything for inspiration.
First I looked at the spider plant sitting in front of me and wondered if there could be a whole community of tiny people living on the soil under the protection of the three plants in that pot. Their day would begin when the sunlight comes through the window and lights up their minute world. They may toil around in the soil to find the nutrients that they eat. Perhaps they use the leaves as slides and maybe they climb to the tops of the highest leaves and look out at the giant world around them, much like we do with space.
Next to the plant is my coffee cup, there are a few grounds left in the bottom. What if those grounds told me the future or at least what would happen today? Of course I am a great fortune teller and I could put on lots of makeup and dress in all my best scarves and throw on my belly dancing belt and hoop earrings. Then I could tell myself that today will be one of the greatest days I’ve had yet. Today I would discover a hidden passageway in the basement of my house and it would lead to a secret underground layer. This room would be painted in deep reds and golds and have pillows all over the floor. There would be holders for incense and lanterns for candles and the whole room would smell of delicious sweet spicy herbs. There would be a fountain and the water running into a little pool at its base would taste sweet and cool. It would heal all that ails me. After drinking it, my waist would shrink, my skin would clear and I would feel ten years younger. When I would get up to dance with joy at my new found youth, one of the pillows would be displaced and a trap door in the floor would be revealed. When I open it, I would find a treasure of gold and jewels and hundred dollar bills in an ornate chest with my own name on it. Today I would have college funds for all three kids and not blink an eye over money again. When my boyfriend arrives home, I wouldn’t have a chance to tell him about our new found wealth before he gets down on one knee and presents me with a ring that would represent his love and ask for our journeys to be on the same path for the rest of this life. When I would make dinner tonight, I would serve it with water from the fountain and my whole family would feel the best that they could and we would have all of our tomorrows to have even better days.
We’ve began decorating for Halloween and there are jack-o-lanterns portrayed in ceramic and tin around this room. I could tell the story of a pumpkin patch where a scarecrow lived. I say lived because on Halloween the line between the living and the dead is the thinnest and all kinds of supernatural activities happen that night. On that night the scarecrow lives each year and he searches for his long lost love. You see, he was a fifteen year old farm boy named James in 1906. He fancied a girl named Juliette. Her family would buy food from his dad and peddle it in a nearby town. During the last visit Juliette and her father had to the farm, James had proposed to Juliette and then they were raided by theives and the farm was burnt to the ground. James had been shot by an arrow and Juliette held his head in her lap. She had been practicing magic and she saw the scarecrow nearby. She tethered James’ soul to the effigy to save him but she was then struck down by a flaming log that had been a corner support of the farmhouse. James watched Juliette’s spirit float away through the eyes of the stuffed doll and wished to go with her. So every Halloween he musters the strength to wander around looking for her spirit that might be wandering around Allhallowtide looking for him in hopes that she can untether him from his unglamorous prison and they could float off together at last.
I now feel sufficiently inspired and I hope everyone else does too. Inspired to make this their best day ever, use their imaginations and love unconditionally.