Wednesday, May 29, 2013

The Sand Sweeper

As is so often the case these days, I'm obsessed. This time it's The Sand Sweeper. Perhaps it's this time in my life that has me dreaming and imagining - no, I guess I've been doing that since the day I could put together two coherent thoughts. The storyteller has been awakened. The one who thought she could only say it visually, through her paintings, is now streaming words. These vignettes seem to end in cliff-hanging anticipation and I realize, finally, that it is because they are related. They are all fragments of a larger picture, an epic Edda/Rune/Skald that has been percolating for quite a while. I look forward to each segment revealing itself, and then, to the angst of bringing them all together.

Here is the beginning of the next character - The Sand Sweeper:

The Sand Sweeper walks the beach in the grey of the early morning, as the spray from the roiling surf shrouds the driftwood in glittering capes of moisture. She studies the sand, looking for disturbances in the patterns traced by the sea nymphs. These she sweeps urgently back into the relentless waves, doing her part to ensure that the balance between sea and land is maintained, that Gjettling won't be disturbed.

"I saw her this morning, Mama!"
"Who did you see, child?"
"The Sand Sweeper! I saw her but she didn't know I was watching."
"How do you know she didn't see you, child?"
"Because she was making strange motions with her hands and singing and then she started sweeping very hard". Liv's voice dropped to a whisper, "and, besides, I was hiding" she breathed. Mama smiled, "Maybe your were dreaming. The sunsprites often play games with young children in the afternoon, when the gentle breeze helps lull then to sleep."
"No Mama, it was real! I know it was her! She looked just the way you told me when you read me the poems from the Northern Skalds. She was tall with long, silver hair. Wisps of foam clung to the strands and crystals were twined in between, crystals that made song!"
Her mother turned sharply towards Liv, "what do you mean: the crystals made song?"
Startled, Liv looked at her mother, "I don't know how to explain it, Mama. There was a beautiful sound in my head and I knew it came from the crystals and I knew the melody and I knew the words and I was singing the song - I just knew it...... somehow."
Anne-Brit's breath caught in her throat. "She saw you," she whispered. "She knew you were watching!"
Grabbing her daughter's arms and pulling her close, Anne-Brit demanded, "This is important, Liv. Tell me everything you remember."
Liv's beautiful, hazel eyes grew large with fear as she looked at her mother..........


  1. This piece is going to be great! Can't wait to see if finished.

    1. Thank you, Sandy, I want to see this one finished also. It's very intimidating, flying by the seat of your pants, don't you agree?

  2. Wow! The stuff in your brain.....don't know if I am more intrigued or scared! lol

    Looks gorgeous...can't wait to see how it evolves from here. And maybe one day you can pass on the whole how the heck you fly by the seat of your pants? I think that is something I seriously need to work on!

  3. Hi Lisa, I really appreciate your feedback. Your response is interesting - several people have felt it was frightening/intriguing. I hope I can pull the final thing off without having it turn into a "Nightmare on Elm Street" type of tale!
    As for flying by the seat of your pants, the first, most important thing is that you very left-brain arrange everything you might need within eyeshot. Then you tell your left brain to go fly a kite, put on your favorite music, stick a rose in your mouth, dance like there's no tomorrow, sing lustily between rose thorns and pick up your art material and GO!!!!!!! No thinking, no second guessing, no wondering, no angst, anxiety, fear, just the enthusiastic confidence of a young child with a slew of art supplies in front of her and a beckoning piece to work on.

    Hope this helps.

  4. Hi Vickie,
    You really had me going with the Sand Sweeper story. I was totally in to it and then, "to be continued". I could feel the mist, hear the waves and even hear the crystals. They sounded like those crystal bowls that make a beautiful sound when rubbed with a finger. I like the story and the item you made. It's the kind of object that tells its own story when you look at it. Is that a special copper wire? It seems to have an unusual color to it. Very nice. It looks likes one of those things that leads you while you are working on it. I wonder how you are going to pull off the sound of the be continued. Can't wait to hear the end of the story, if there is an end. Sorry, I'm still on the beach listening to the music.
    Take care, Jay

  5. This vignette/tale is most intriguing. I love stories told in the voice, and from the perspective of a child. I think it allows for us to return to our imagination. To the voices of the natural animals - the ones that have disappeared, or been drowned out with the 'adult' world that we feel we must remain within. This piece of jewelry is most intriguing as well! It truly does evoke images of water - and I see a skiff or small boat dancing on the waves. Please let us know when this story develops.

    PS: I am so glad I am not the only one who struggles with the dilemma of having a name attach itself to an unfinished project. It truly can be a conundrum at times.

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