Wednesday, May 20, 2015

Writing Challenge - Spartan

Writing Challenge - Spartan

The writing challenge for the next two days: 4-6 lines about a place that evoke an emotion through description of that place itself.

The space was even and regular, angular in a way that highlighted perfect corners and solid edges. Even the bed was impeccably dressed, no trace of softness to the blankets, or the stiff, single pillow that adorned it. There was no art on the walls, no accents on the tables, nothing gave off visible light save the soft glow of sunlight from the windows and the skylight. It could have been a magazine cover, or carefully tailored by an artisan's hand for a photographer. All that, save for a single dying rose on the bedside table, crinkled and beginning to flake in decay.

Tuesday, May 5, 2015

Writing - Politics

Writing - Politics

On Saturday, Matt came over to help me out with some furniture and put up posters in my place. One of the ones that is most important to me is a poster that is the iconic picture of Tiananmen Square. Everyone has seen it. It's a young man, a university student with two bags of shopping groceries standing in front of a column of tanks, unphased.

I have a lot of stuff up on my walls, big art, small stuff, post cards, pictures, paintings. I have wall scrolls, and movie posters, game posters and everything in between. But that's probably the only really political piece I have.

I have it up there because it's an open reminder, for the last ten years of my life. I keep that poster, I put it up everywhere, I remember, I think and reflect on it.

It reminds me that it only takes one person. One person, to stand up to atrocity. One person to enact change. One person with a belief that things can get better, and that there are things that must be done. It reminds me that there are masses of people looking outside for inspiration, but for me, and for that man I hope, there was something internal, a reminder that the possibility of a better world exists. And that we all just need the courage to stand up for it.

Be loud friends.

Today is the election in Alberta, and I hope each individual one person, will also stand up for what they believe in.

Stand up.  You can't back up into the future.

Tuesday, April 21, 2015

Life - Litter

Life - Litter

I was playing video games in my living room when a group of six teenage boys walked down the sidewalk past. They're loud and laughing, telling jokes in the rain as they pass by, when I hear a clatter.

I look outside. Over the headset microphone, several of my squad-mates ask what that sound was.  The boys have tossed two cans onto the walkway of our house. Still laughing, they start walking away.

I am seized by something. I put the controller down, pop the headset off and immediately stand up. Before I can even fathom the movement, I have thrown the lock on my front door and am standing out on my own steps.

I roar. In the voice I only use to call above the din of concerts and into fly galleries. In a voice I only use for theatre to carry several stories up or over loud music.

I am angry. My roar carries across the street up and down the avenue.

You damn kids! Come back here and pick that up!

They stop, hesitate, two of them make to keep walking.

Is that what you are going to do? Walk away? You think people don't see? We don't notice? Well I saw. I saw exactly what you did! Now come back here and pick up your damn trash off my property! Right Now!

One boy shuffles back, his head bowed low. He stoops into the grass and grabs the cans, then flees back to the group of them.

I see my neighbours across the street peek out from their windows. I see a lady and her toddler across the street pause to watch the whole thing.

I shut the door. Exhale.

I put on the headset and pick the controller back up.

Sunday, April 19, 2015

Writing - Rynyalla: Kanilay In The Dark

Writing - Rynyalla: Kanilay In The Dark

If darkness was a lover then it was one she knew well. Coiled and shifting, it wreathed its way around her, holding fast as the unearthly ship’s prow plunged onwards. Behind her, the crew moved with an unflinching accuracy, even in the pitch of unnatural night. The creak of sinuous rope and the buckle and grate of bone beneath the feet were the only sounds to accompany the slow lap of waves beneath.

In the distance glittered the jewel of the Eastern world. Myrefall. Ships fled their approach, tacking hurriedly and dashing away across the waters, fleeing for some safe harbour. There were no such places. Her fleet arrayed out behind her, a mental command as the rows of ships fell into formation.

The thump of booted feet approached behind her. A minotaur guard, clad in dull green platemail, his seven foot frame of rippling muscle bent in subjugation. “My lady. Landfall approaches.”

She waves one hand dismissively, he retreats. Clearly she can see beyond sight the city, even with the mask adorning her face. Instead, she raises a finger as though to hush the darkness...and speaks.

“Cull the city. Bring me the tribute that our lady seeks.”

Waves crash, and bodies groan, and the fleet pushes forward.

And Kanilay waits in the dark.

Thursday, April 16, 2015

Endless Horizons: Flatline - Texting

Endless Horizons: Flatline - Texting

The rack spun up in the dark. Mechanical processor started whirring, lights clipped on and the temperature rose by a degree. Flatline was sleeping, face down in the synth-cotton sheets. RAM spun and binary drifted. GUIN worked in the nanosecond spaces between nowhere and nothing.

The young hacker stirred, his eyes half open. Oculars and the synth jacks didn’t kick in yet, awaiting a mental command he never sent. Instead he lay awake, between awareness and not, half listening to the sound of electronics.

The myriad of terminals were sending a twist of digital code as they folded in on themselves again and again. On one console though there was the slow play of text unfolding, into a plain-char document that sat on a scratch-tunnel drive waiting to be uploaded to his wafer.

GUIN was writing something there, writing and erasing and writing again. Paragraphs appeared in an instant, the indicator dancing like wildfire down the page, before erasing it back again into missing digital particulate.

Over and over it happened, as he watched mesmerized.

The minutes ran into an hour, another.

Until the pulse of twisting text became just a single, simple sentence.

“Who am I?”

He closed his eyes.

Saturday, March 28, 2015

Writing - On The Cascade of Humans

Writing - On The Cascade of Humans

Oh what these glorious monsters, astride in silence looking out into the darkness. I sat in quiet vantage, contemplating their movement and found myself alone. To behold their freewheeling paths, that which made them both envious and enviable.

Words bespoke one another, and gestures too. They tried to share their experiences, but words and language fail, they turn to pictures and then to long pieces of video, carefully constructed for the human mind, frame by frame at a galloping 60 per second.

These too fail.

I kept a silent vigil, long into the night. A cloak of cascade water, and a weary eye alight.

Friday, March 27, 2015

Celebrate - World Theatre Day 2015

Celebrate - World Theatre Day 2015

World Theater Day Message 2015

The true masters of the theater are most easily found far from the stage. And they generally have no interest in theater as a machine for replicating conventions and reproducing clich├ęs. They search out the pulsing source, the living currents that tend to bypass performance halls and the throngs of people bent on copying some world or another. We copy instead of create worlds that are focused or even reliant on debate with an audience, on emotions that swell below the surface. And actually there is nothing that can reveal hidden passions better than the theater.