Spectacular Settings Entry

Found on zagzagael.livejournal.com
Found on zagzagael.livejournal.com

Why this image stopped my heart: This is one of my favorite images, ever, that I have seen. Given how much I love photography, that is a strong statement. I love how the relative simplicity of color and subject (green and white, tree and bone) emphasize the primal, otherworldly feel of this image. The verdant, unapologetically masculine feel of the image reminds me of old mythology, of Pan and Herne, of a time when the land had a sacred, unspoken, heartbeat.

The fic(s). In keeping with my goal to use the tarot in conjunction with my writing, I made the decision too write inspired by a card from one of my tarot decks. I chose Come to Life

photo credit: me from the Sacred Rebels Oracle Deck
photo credit: me
from the Sacred Rebels Oracle Deck

Here is my fic:

It stirs.

Somewhere in the dark verdant silence. It stirs.

This is what it was like once: a branched silhouette in the winter sky. A dark movement flashing against the hedgerow. The silent rolling thunderclap of hoofbeats across the mossy floor. Strong dark flesh that gave way under predator teeth and red blood that throbbed-and spilled in the rhythm of the forest.

It had that once-the throbbing-and the sky. The falling-and the-tearing.

It stirs, but it doesn’t come back. Memories don’t come back, because they don’t leave. It stirs, and it stays. Twining it’s memories across the damp grass in bone-bleached curves. It stirs, and it stays, sweet and dark and eternal.

“Only stay here,” the forest whispers in sibilant green whispers. “Only stay here, your bones held in my branches. I’ll hold your antlers. I’ll hold your memory in my bones. I’ll hold your silence in my bones. Only stay here and I’ll hold your bones within my bones.”

12 thoughts on “Spectacular Settings Entry

  1. Hello there Jovan. I understand why you were inspired by that photo. It’s like the form is lying there, waiting to be awakened. It makes a stunning picture in that environment.

    I enjoyed your flash fiction, too. I can see your inspiration from both the tarot card and the picture you shared. The setting is evocative with its ‘… branched silhouette in the winter sky.’ I could see it. The repetition of ‘it stirs’ works so well, as I imagine the skeleton stirring.

    Thank you for sharing this spectacular setting with us. I loved reading it!

    Denise 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Wow, what an image – the skeletal remains but still with the antlers standing proud and tall, I’ve never seen this before, also a feeling of sadness of a magnificent animal gone. Your fiction to go with the tarot card and your image is thought provoking and evocative, memories stored forever somewhere waiting to be re-awakened, great stuff.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Jovan

    That photograph is magical, and mysterious. A King has found rest in the arms of the forest he rules. I love the woods and all the secrets they hold, and this picture captures all of that. Thanks so much for sharing it with us.

    Your flash was also brilliant. This is a great tribute to the photograph. The tarot and the title Come To Life, first-rate. All your choices for this challenge were outstanding.

    ‘I’ll hold your bones in my branches’ – exquisite!

    Thank you Jovan for submitting this amazing piece for the WEP Spectacular Settings Challenge, I hope you consider returning for our October Halloween challenge!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks! Yes, I think photography has deepened the way I approach my writing, because I think visually as well as with words to describe a scene/story. I think every writer should take up a secondary pursuit (painting, singing, photography, etc) and see how their writing becomes even more multifaceted.


  4. Oh, this was so very deliciously mystical–the image and the words it inspired! I’ve a feeling you’d like the work of author, Maggie Stiefvater, her Raven Boys cycle, in particular, and the new tarot deck she designed for the series. There’s a scene in the third book, “Blue Lily, Lily Blue” that takes you into an underground cavern surrounded by the standing bones of a hundred animals, as if suspended in time, waiting for the right moment to awaken.

    The Weight of Wonder

    Liked by 1 person

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