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Friday Flash Prompt: Ekphrastic-tastic


This evoca­tive pho­to­graph by Alessan­dra San­guinet­ti was on the cov­er of Cab­i­net some months back.

My prompt is ekphras­tic: Write a response in 300 words or less (in any POV you’d like) to this image. What’s hap­pen­ing in the world of this pho­to­graph?

(I’d advise against Googling—you might find out too much!)


Far out in the black, hea­then mists, of the unchart­ed planes of nowhere, the ter­ri­fied moth­er grasped the trem­bling stick fig­ure of her brood and held his shiv­ver­ing body close. Obliv­ion was upon them, it’s ragged teeth rend­ing the hori­zon like some unquench­able myth­i­cal beast. The black­ness of its maw stood aloft like a peek-hole into obliv­ion.

There was only one chance…

Grasp­ing her fledg­ling off­spring, she held him close. In a few peace­ful moments, she would absorb him back into her flesh. His body would become her body once again. His being would be recom­bined with hers. Then the oncom­ing hydra could deal with her as it wished. She would accept it, know­ing that her child was held for­ev­er in the warmth of her final embrace.

My stom­ach is like an inner tube, bloat­ing under my bathing suit, and when I think about slic­ing through it and cut­ting it off, I won­der if I’ll still float?

From Alina L.

JLS, I dig this. When I look at this, the weather’s sec­ondary to the girls.

I agree with Ali­na L. This piece tran­scends the prompt in the way it shows us the girl’s inner land­scape.

From karen

The storm can­not be avoid­ed
And beyond it warm and peace­ful days 
Also can­not be avoid­ed
Your frail body will hold up to them both
You will grow roots and a fat trunk 
From the wear of the wind
And the beat­ing rain
And the rav­en­ous sun­shine
And you will stand here
One day
With your daugh­ter and whish for her only sun­shine
But you will bear her what she needs 
For the storms
That can­not be avoid­ed

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