The Color Of Tomorrow

Have a look at the new Spring Issue of “From the Depths” by Haunted Waters Press.
What a lovely literary journal with a stunning design!
I am honored that my story “The Color Of Tomorrow” is part if it, as well as an author’s interview.

A great night music

There are Nightingales singing all around the house. It is wonderful by day, but the real magic came last night. All was fresh after a heavy spring thunderstorm, silent but for a quiet silver dripping that played in the background. The wind had strewn the paths with blossoms from the apple tree. Their white was luminous in the darkness, and the magnolias and anemones echoed the stars, nearer only and more openly grand. The smell of lilacs lay thick over the garden.
And then the nightingales began their song again.
Greatness and humbleness, sorrow and joy, farewell and welcome, hope and remembrance, all of those and more lay in the liquid, rising, drifting notes, in the whole scene, wove it into a complete, stunning music and an unforgettable moment.

When stories nest

A pair of blackbirds is building nest after nest in our garden, then give it up. Too drafty, too many cats, squirrels and humans, too noisy – who knows. Or maybe they just enjoy building, though I doubt it. Yet, when they have finished one, perfect, inviting and pretty, there seems to be an almost human gleam of satisfaction in their eyes.
It is as with writing stories. We enjoy the effort and process of crafting them and take pride in the finished work, even if it sits abandoned in our desk drawer, sleeps in some publisher’s slush pile or collects dust in print on the shelves of some bookstore. And promptly we begin again. A story always has potential. The nest could be filled with eggs that give life to chicks who eventually stretch their wings to join in the greatest story of all. Our stories could find readers out there, delight someone we will never hear of. If not – well, they give us writers the ultimate freedom, the chance to imagine us into a life different from ours for the time it takes to plait it into words, sentence by sentence, as the blackbird adds twig by twig, breaking into song in between.
No matter what time of year, in a way it is always spring when a story is begun.

Too green for writing

Some days are just too green to spend them writing. This unfolding luminescent green seeps into every thought, every nook and cranny of my mind and all I can do is be part of the song and dance outside: the softness of young grass, the colorful taste of spring air, the blackbird’s liquid notes drifting through the april play of rain and light and the tiny inquisitive winds whispering around corners. This morning a robin was splashing in the birdbath in the middle of a shower, doubling the silver drops that clung to my small part of the world like a statement of joy. Surrounded by all this growth and exultation, I feel like a diminutive, happy and breathless creature.

Green lights

 

Green lights appeared in our hedge today as the sun lit up the first young leaves. For me, after the wordless feeling of beieng stunned that set in a while after my father’s death, they seem to be a green light that tells me to get moving again. There are new thoughts daring to sprout in my mind, encouraged by the the friedly anemones and undismayed violets at my feet.

When I started this blog I meant to write a little something every day, and bilingual. It didn’t work out that way, partly because my days are too full, partly because it cost too much strength right now. So instead this is going to be my english hideaway, a sort of inner seashore to dig my toes in and splash around at balmy edges. English relaxes me more than german, even though my life happens in german nowadays.

So I started to translate a children’s story I wrote in german. I like the idea beheind it, even though it is  far from perfect, and probably my translation will be full of mistakes. Nevertheless, in the end I want to make an e-book out of it.

Maybe I’ll post the beginning here and see whether anybody thinks it worthwhile.

Even if not, it’s a fun project.

Fellow creature

I met an ant today. For an ant, it was quite large. For something that one meets, it was very tiny. For me, this speck sleepily crossing my way like an idea for a story and causing me to pause in my errand was something hugely wonderful, because it was the first insect moving after this long, cold, snowy winter. It survived, it lives, it’s on its way in a new spring. I felt I had a comrade there. I would have liked to say hi and shake its hand – ah, foot. That being difficult, I gave it a place in my memory.

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Ich habe heute eine Ameise getroffen. Für eine Ameise war sie ziemlich groß. Für etwas, das man auf der Straße trifft, war sie sehr klein. Für mich war sie etwas wunderbar Großes: dieser winzige Punkt, der mir vor die Füße lief wie eine Idee für eine Geschichte, war das erste Insekt, das sich nach diesem langen, eisigen, verschneiten Winter bewegte. Sie hat überlebt. Sie ist unterwegs in einen neuen Frühling. Ich hatte das Gefühl, einen Weggefährten zu treffen. Am liebsten hätte ich ihr guten Tag gesagt und ihr die Hand -äh den Fuß geschüttelt. Da das schwierig ist, habe ich ihr einen Platz in meinem Gedächtnis gegeben.

Between day and night

Dusk is my special time of day, especially now, just before the beginning of spring. When the sky has this glass-clear luminuous quality behind the pencilled net of naked branches, there is magic in the hour and I feel strangely light and free. It is a time for thankfulness, stillness and wonder, and the best stories.

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Die Abenddämmerung ist meine besondere Tageszeit, vor allem jetzt, ganz am Anfang des Frühlings. Wenn der Himmel dieses glasklare innere Leuchten hat hinter den Bleifstiftzeichnungen der kahlen Äste, dann liegt ein Zauber in der Stunde und ich fühle mich seltsam leicht und frei. Es ist die Stunde für Dankbarkeit, Ruhe und Staunen, und für die besten Geschichten.

A tiny teacher

It is impossible for me to have a favourite flower, but I think the one I admire most is the snowdrop. So simple and clear, white in a gesture of courtesy to winter, but with a hopeful core of green speaking insistently of spring. It gets up earlier than all its comrades, defiantly pushing through hard, frosty earth and emerging when you least expect it. Its slender leaves point towards the sky, leaving no doubts as to its aim. It ducks smoothly under layers of snow, but rises unfazed as soon as possible. Its flower hangs from a thread-thin stalk that dances in any storm without breaking. It opens its petals to sunlight only, and otherwise patiently bides its time. I would like to have some of its qualities, and every year the snowdrop is here to remind me to work at that.

Calls from above

Dawn brought me a surprise. Daylight was still sleepy when I woke and heard the call of cranes flying north, somewhere high above. This moment in spring is always special to me. Their call speaks of the baltic ocean where we have spent unforgettable days brimming full of cloud colors, water sounds and ocean scents. And they tell of the spring and summer to come, and today they carried an idea for my current novel with them. For a while they make me  feel light, and time seem new and young and full of possibilities. The call of the returning cranes is always a beginning.

Coloring the day

Grey was everywhere, in the air, the sky, on the moor which looked as if nothing would ever grow green there any more. Then I stumbled upon pictures on the sidewalk, drawn with chalk in bold and defiant colors: A house, a sun, a flower, the way children  of all times have drawn pictures on sidewalks. Only they were so unexpected. I had not seen their like for a long time. Thir colors seemed to me to touch everything, the grass, the sky, my state of mind. Back home I found a piece of chalk in the kitchen and drew a smiley and a flower in front of  our garden gate. I simply had to.