Auricle, formerly known as Jane, had a ‘thing’ for ears. Nothing kinky but absolutely a bizarre fascination that turned into a full-blown idolization by the time she was 20 years old. Her most recent tribute to her favorite body part was her name change. Auricle’s obsession had developed slowly throughout her life but really ramped up in her late teens. She began eating only chicken and fish as protein sources because, of course, they didn’t have visible ears and she refused to eat beef, pork, or heaven forbid, rabbit because displacing precious ears just to consume something was the most barbaric thing she could imagine! Finally, Auricle’s agastopia became something more dangerous than weird when she started stuffing cotton into her own ears and wrapping them in layers of insulated flannel fashioned into form fitting caps during a bitter winter cold spell. The worry over ugly black frostbite on her ‘beloveds’ actually kept her up nights. Yesterday, it was 5 degrees after a 2-foot snowstorm the night before and Auricle had her first biyearly ear exam with a specialist that was kindly arranged by her newest therapist. All the roads were still nearly impassible, and Auricle knew she’d have to walk the two blocks to such an important appointment. She bundled up her ‘darling’ appendages as tightly as she ever had and climbed a snowbank stepping out into the narrow street…
…The distraught snowplow operator could be heard screaming, “But I blew my horn, and she didn’t move!” as the morgue vehicle removed her body from the bloody scene.
——— I had never heard of agastopia until now. Thanks for the fun, informative, and ultimately sad prompt.
We have a phrase this week to serve as your writing prompt.
…passing through a doorway in history
There is no restriction on format of the piece. There is no last date either, unless you wish to be featured in the Weekly Wrap.
Duncan’s head hurt. His pursuit of truth is a hunger he knows can never be satisfied in a conclusion. He wonders, “Is the past truly a mosaic of endless opinions or is there more?” To become an observer by passing through a doorway of history would give him more evidence but trusting his eyes and ears has limitations. The “who he is”- a being marinated in modern day culture and sensibilities- would be a tremendous disadvantage to an unbiased reenactment. He knows that the understanding of history is disserved by only studying collections of modern intellectual interpretations after the fact. It needs to be excavated for evidentiary fossils that prove each past moment was once alive and three-dimensional. So, Duncan reads everything he can find… journals and diaries, essays and articles. His focus is on the founding of his country. Not from any patriotic duty or political position, as one might guess, but because he has Spatial Sequence Synesthesia, and his personal ‘mental map’ oddly always balances on a fulcrum in the late 1800s. His internal visual timeline stretches to infinity toward the past and future from the 1860s every time he withdraws his focused perspective and tries to ‘see’ all of Time. His ‘gift’ is either a peculiar mental defect or a sign of something special and Duncan doesn’t believe in coincidences, so he feels compelled to understand more. He’s somehow tied to that period.
I wish him well. He may never find a full understanding, but Duncan doesn’t care as long as he collects knowledge that he can absorb through his 5 senses and his heart, bringing the past alive again. He’s a guy I’d like to talk with!
Here’s what to do: *Write a poem (in any form) in response to the challenge: to pick three or more words from the spice list above to use in your poem.
On a paprika and saffron sky Subdued by vanilla clouds We bid the zest of day good-bye On a paprika and saffron sky. Time to savor a lush lullaby Dispersed are imposing crowds On a paprika and saffron sky Subdued by vanilla clouds.
What came to mind immediately was the idiom “ring true”. I looked up its origin:
Ring false and the antonym, ring true, which means “seem genuine,” allude to the old practice of judging a coin genuine or fake by the sound it gives out when tapped. This practice became obsolete when coins ceased to be made of precious metals, but by then the idioms were being used to refer to other matters. [Mid-1800s]
The phrase ‘ring true’ takes on a lot of weight these days. Our media has worked overtime sensationalizing everything and simultaneously has avoided doing much factual investigation. I don’t know about you, but I feel as though I’m in a never-ending game of “Gossip”.
To anyone who is unfamiliar with the game of Gossip, it starts with a phrase whispered into a person’s ear then that person hastily whispers it to the next and so on around a ring of several people. By the time it reaches person #1 again, the phrase’s words and meaning are completely different. It’s comical as a game but tragically lacking as a source of reliable information.
Our media is a ‘for profit’ group of businesses that rely on getting the public’s attention. So, using flashy, salacious, material, and misleading headlines, works well for them, especially in our fast-paced (short attention span) American society. Clever a-moral people have discovered this lovely way to spread ideological propaganda AND make money. Worse than that, social media companies are “in” on it too by manipulating search engines and censoring sites who might ruin their hypnotic promotion of a single ideological message. I fear that a large number of people are becoming unwitting tools of a totalitarian movement. I also fear that our Constitutional Republic is in grave danger. Freedom of Speech and ‘thought diversity’ are the most essential elements of a free society. We’re losing them both at an alarming rate. Those who question mass media information as not “ringing true” are being cancelled, arrested, and destroyed (many are now labeled domestic terrorists!) while a comfortably numb public doesn’t even notice… most don’t care to know. Seeking comfort, a group belonging, and a sense of virtuous superiority, has replaced the need to be ethical, reasonable, and truth seeking. I know this sounds like a finger wagging rant and I suppose it is. Telling-it-like-it-is and pursuing Truth aren’t things I will watch die off without speaking my own mind.
Have a nice Saturday and please keep your ears, eyes, and minds open. Our country’s future needs your support. ❤
I'm nobody! who are you? Are you nobody too, then there's a pair of us. Don't tell! they'd advertise you know. How dreary-to be somebody. How public-like a frog. To tell one's name-the livelong June, to an admiring bog. Poem by Emily Dickinson.