Encounters with the Writing Process
|Déjà vu, page 131 from The 3A.M. Epiphany by Brian Kiteley : Write a short sketch of a scene in which a character has an experience that causes her to recall a similar past experience. Juxtapose the present scene with the past scene. Show the remembered scene in italics.
Moonlight on Snow
The awning on top of the porch had let only a dusting of snow. She reached for the red broom and, with precise motions, swept the snow out into the backyard. By tomorrow, more snow would come and she’d have to sweep again, but it didn’t matter. Didn’t she always do things over and over again like Sisyphus pushing the stone up the mountain? She turned off the porch light and looked ahead.
The rays of the half moon glimmered over the white coat in the backyard like nobility walking on red carpet in fluid splendor. By the next day, all her sweeping would be for naught and the moonlight would go away. The fields around where she had grown up had shimmered under snow on moonlit nights, too. From her mother’s cottage, she could watch the whole area wearing the white cloak with all its spangles.
She turned to go in, but the door was stuck. She forced it but couldn’t open it. On second thought, she gave up.
The same way the door got stuck now, her window in her room in her mother’s cottage used to get stuck. The window from which she used to watch the moonlight on snow. The window from which she had sneaked out to meet her lover on one moonlit winter evening. It was that window later that had gotten stuck to prevent her from getting inside the house to save her mother when the electrical wiring caused that damn fire.
Her mother with the gap in between her front teeth. Like the black gap in the face of earth where their cottage had once stood.
She raised her arms to the moon and tossed back her hair like a character in a bloody tragedy and screamed. “Nooooo…”