Ancient room, ancient people (another excerpt from my 1st draft)

A butler with a stiff, flat face and long, black coat,
Who half shuffles and half floats,
Is waiting for the car as it stops at a grand front door,
And escorts Victor across a grand marble floor,
To the threshold of a room so grand,
It insists you stand,
To attention.

Despite it’s size,
The room is poorly lit.
17th Century dust hides,
In the shadows,
Of wood panelled corners,
And a solitary greek statue is a hermit,
Dreaming of battles and oceans,
A perfect specimen in milky stone,
Built for an empire,
Now standing alone.
The long-since-dead,
Sprawl in faded colours,
In ever-evolving poses,
Across the walls,
Witnesses to the slow decay around them,
Their expressions transparent,
Clearly appalled.

In the centre of this yester-world decoration,
Is an island,
Of three armchairs,
And a floor lamp,
That’s a glowing perforation,
In the gloom.
A frail couple are sitting,
Directing expectant stares,
Towards Victor.
Their slouched posture,
Is at odds with their formal dress,
But they say nothing,
Leaving Victor to guess,
That he should join them,
In the remaining seat.

 

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17 thoughts on “Ancient room, ancient people (another excerpt from my 1st draft)

  1. beautifulorange Post author

    Thank you so much – I really appreciate that. Like I said on your post yesterday, the narrative is often getting in the way of the language – but the one thing that I’m generally happy with is the way that the structure is working… the way the language is flowing. If I can get that right but still make accessible then I’ll be happy (isn).

    Reply
  2. lyriquediscorde

    This is my favorite yet, I love the details, the way you paint the scene…so evocative. Love this:
    “17th Century dust hides,
    In the shadows,
    Of wood panelled corners,
    And a solitary greek statue is a hermit,
    Dreaming of battles and oceans,”

    This is such intriguing writing you are doing…

    Reply
  3. beautifulorange Post author

    I really appreciate that – so glad that you like it! You never know what people are going to think when you upload something new… especially when it’s a little experimental and only a short excerpt from something much bigger.

    Reply
  4. georginaguthrie

    This is really excellent, your structure is very good – it reads so well. I like this bit:

    In the centre of this yester-world decoration,
    Is an island,
    Of three armchairs,
    And a floor lamp,
    That’s a glowing perforation,
    In the gloom.

    It reminds me of something that should be in TS Eliot’s The Wasteland. But different, of course. you have a unique tone.

    Looking forward to the next instalment 🙂

    Reply
  5. beautifulorange Post author

    I’m a little embarrassed by the comparison!… but I appreciate it. And I’m glad you’re enjoying it. As the writer, I worry that the imagery I have in my head when I write won’t translate to the reader so I’m really happy that people are getting it, even in small doses!

    Reply
  6. ioniamartin

    Your repeated use of the word ‘grand’ in subtly different usages made was a nice entry to a piece that felt a bit paradoxical. I enjoyed the fact that this didn’t feel like it was rushing to get to a destination and yet arrived there seemingly without effort. I am highly intrigued.

    Reply
  7. beautifulorange Post author

    Ha, I’ll let you off. And thanks again for your comments – I’m actually very conscious in writing this to give the settings and set-ups room to breath while at the same time ‘getting to the destination’ quickly and (seemingly) effortlessly. Where was it that you felt the paradox?

    Reply
  8. ioniamartin

    I didn’t realize you responded to my comment until just now, I didn’t get the little message thing on my phone for this one. hmmm. So, the paradoxical portion of this for me was that the image of this grand place, this amazing and timeless structure which has seen many era’s and the couple you speak of, somewhat similar in the regard that they, too, are slouching and at odds with their formal attire, just as the slow decay of the statue itself. Both once glorified in some way, now only a whisper of once was. So alike and yet so different. I hope that makes sense, I often find it difficult to put the images in my mind into words.

    Reply
    1. beautifulorange Post author

      No worries! And yep, it was intentional to try to show the parallels between the couple and the house they live in. Thought it would be interesting to see one reflected in the other, like when you see owners and their dogs looking the same and you’re not sure which has influenced which!

      Reply

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