Whispering Horse

36

March 22, 2013 by petrujviljoen

Friday Fictioneers is hosted by Rochelle Wisoff-Fields whereby a 100 word fiction is written prompted by a photograph. This week’s photo is courtesy of Douglas MacIlroy who holds copyright.

fri fict thirsty photo D McIlroy

After some very valid comments from Rochelle and Erinleary, I rewrote and this is the new, second, draft. Kindly comment. I’d like to learn.

Already outside, she watched the sun rise, sipping coffee. The silence and space balm for a raw psyche.

She felt the horse before she saw it. It then claimed her full attention. Instinct kept her still, bearing its gaze for the duration. The horse nodded its head and continued grazing. Imagination? She now knows better.

She approached the powerful animal, keeping a respectful distance. It moved closer and nibbled the grass directly next to her foot. A sob welled from some distant interior. Folding double, heaving, she tore at the edges of her dwarfed spirit. Healing had just become possible.

………….

First draft:

Dawn found her outside, sipping coffee. The silence balm for a raw psyche fresh from the city.

She felt the horse before she saw it. Then it claimed her full attention. Instinct kept her still, sustaining its gaze for the duration.

The horse nodded its head and continued grazing. The spell broke. She approached the powerful animal, keeping a respectful distance. It moved closer and nibbled grass exactly next to her foot. Its head measured to her thigh. She was a tall woman. She realised the sacredness of that moment. Her face felt strange. Surprised, she realised she was smiling.

Advertisements

36 thoughts on “Whispering Horse

  1. I shall confuse you even more I liked parts of the 1st and parts of the 2nd 🙂 Learning is what we do best and what better way than to have talented writers to give us advice, this is invaluable to us writers. I love horses and the connection we have with them. I wrote a piece (humorous) but when I was about to submit it closed. Keep up the good work.

    Like

  2. I read both versions, but prefer the First Draft. A tip: I had difficulty reading all the comments because the color gray-blue does not come through clear enough for me… it’s hard on the eyes and I found myself squinting to read them. Wonder if anyone else has the same problem?

    Like

    • petrujviljoen says:

      I didn’t realise that the comments are in those colours! I’m not very tech-savvy so wouldn’t know how to change it. Thanks for liking the fiction. The input is valuable.

      Like

  3. kdillmanjones says:

    I actually like the first draft better. But that is probably just my own taste. Nice writing on both!

    Like

  4. I love the tone in the story, it came across as a deep connection being established…

    Like

  5. “Her face felt strange” is a very poignant line. I’m glad it didn’t get cut in editing.

    Like

  6. Dear Petru,

    What friends you have who will patiently work with you to tease out more meaning and nuance from your words. peaarls beyond price.

    Aloha,

    Doug

    Like

  7. Your re-write is smoother it reads much easier. It’s a tranquil story. I love early morning and peaceful atmospheres.

    Like

  8. rgayer55 says:

    I liked the first draft. Sure it needed a little tweaking, but what story doesn’t. Sometimes escaping to the country is just what the doctor ordered.

    Like

    • petrujviljoen says:

      Indeed. Moved to the country some two years ago. And one takes part in exercises like these to get the input – better than struggling on one’s own, not knowing how one is doing with the writing. Thanks for stopping by.

      Like

  9. I think the opening sentence of your first (second here) story was fine. I’ve seen similar sentences written the same way. To make it sounds as though dawn were the drinker, it would have to be written “Dawn found herself outside, sipping coffee”. If substitute a name and you write for instance, “Janet found her outside…”, no one would think I were sipping the coffee. This, “she watched the sun rise, sipping coffee” actually sounds more like the sun rose and is sipping coffee. 🙂

    What I would change is putting your first two sentences together with just a small change, as not only is the second is a fragment, I don’t think it stands well by itself. “Already outside, she watched the sun rise and sipped (or “her”) coffee, the silence and space balm for a raw psyche.” If I read it out loud, it seems to go together just for the flow and not even any other reason.

    Hope that’s all clear as mud.

    All that aside, I like that she’s finding healing through the horse and I think there will be more that they can accomplish together.

    janet

    Like

    • petrujviljoen says:

      Thank you!! Love constructive critique from various people. Horses are fantastic animals. I do think, no, I do know, that they are capable of interaction with humans or any other animal, as described in the story.

      Like

  10. Sandra says:

    Without reading any of the other comments, my first thought on the second draft was that the sun came up sipping coffee. I was also uneasy about the third sentence ending with ‘it’ right next to the fourth sentence starting with ‘it’. I think the idea’s good though. And I liked it. Well done.

    Like

    • petrujviljoen says:

      If not the sun then the horse, anybody but the woman drinking coffee! Very funny! The it & it, 1st or 2nd draft? Thanks for the criticisms, I really appreciate constructive feedback.

      Like

  11. Joe Owens says:

    Healing can come from many sources if we are open to the experience.

    Like

  12. erinleary says:

    Hi Petru,

    I hope it’s OK to suggest a few edits. I had to reread it a few times to be sure of your meaning. The opening sentence was a double confusion- I first thought the character’s name was Dawn and the horse was sipping coffee. 🙂 i loved your story and how the woman was soothed by the encounter. I hope this helps.

    Erin

    “Outside at dawn, she sipped her coffee slowly. The silence, balm for a raw psyche fresh from the city.

    She felt the horse before she saw it. Then it claimed her full attention. Instinct kept her still, they sustained each other’s gaze for the duration.

    The horse nodded its head and continued grazing. The spell was broken. She approached the powerful animal, keeping a respectful distance. It moved closer and nibbled grass right next to her foot. A tall woman, The horse’s head measured to her thigh.

    She realised the sacredness of that moment. Her face felt strange. Surprised, she realised she was smiling.”

    Like

  13. Dear Petru,
    A little bit of a disconnect here. While I enjoyed the tone of your story, the first sentence confused me. It comes across as the horse drinking coffee. Overall, a nice sense of peace and tension release.
    Shalom,
    Rochelle

    Like

    • petrujviljoen says:

      Do you think so? I’ll edit if I can. Thanks for appreciating. Some real no holds barred critcism is welcome.

      Like

    • petrujviljoen says:

      Rochelle, I rewrote and updated, kindly have a look when you have time?

      Like

    • Dear Petru,
      You are an apt student. I was hoping my comments wouldn’t offend. So much better! I always appreciate brutally honest critique. I’m fortunate in having friends who will be that for me and, thus, strengthen my writing. Very nice. You’ve made my day, sir.
      shalom,
      Rochelle

      Like

      • petrujviljoen says:

        I would imagine it’s why one does this, to get the feedback and input. I don’t have an ego where criticism of my work is concerned. Wouldn’t learn otherwise. Looking forward to next week.

        Like

  14. zookyworld says:

    I like the tenderness of your story — such a nice moment of calm. And a great description of “silence balm for a raw psyche,” as it makes me wonder what happened to her before the story.

    Like

  15. nightlake says:

    the relationship between horse and a psyche..this was lovely

    Like

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

Copyright

Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material or any part of this material without express and written permission from myself is strictly prohibited.

proartist.viljoen79@gmail.com

Join 453 other followers

Artist Statement or rationale or why do I do what I do

petrujviljoen

petrujviljoen

I make art, I read a lot and I'm now trying to write as well. Otherwise I belong to a cat by the name of Charlie that drives me nuts sometimes and other times makes me melt with love for her.

Personal Links

View Full Profile →

%d bloggers like this: