Saturday, August 11, 2012

Sleeping Beauty's Rose Petal Dreams

Photo credit: http://www.viona-art.com/portfolio/archive/fairytale

If roses were dreams, mine would be pink. Not frilly and edged with lace. But thick, suffocating folds of mauve, like the velvet gown I wore to last night's ball.

They call me Beauty. But they do not know my name. The name I was born with--Briar Rose. They do not know that underneath the surface, my thorns are black, and sharp as the beak of a crow.

They're breaking in. It was only a matter of time. The roses are snaking in the windows, twisting up the bedposts, curling around my wrists.

They said it was the witch who cast the spell. But it was me. I pressed my flesh into the tip of the needle. I let the drop of blood fall. I know what they want from me. But I cannot do it.

For it is not a prince I seek. But a man of the woods. One who does not fear the thorns. Or the wall of roses--a hedge, thick and tight as a corset, encircling this forgotten palace where I lay. In the highest chamber, in the tallest tower. Dreaming of roses. And him.

No. A prince could not give me these dreams. These rose petal dreams that blind me with longing. He, only he, will know to look for me here. The one who will not recognize me as Beauty. But as Briar--a tangled knot of thorns and velvet petals.

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This is my second attempt at flash fiction. You can read my first, "Drinking in a Lavender Rose Petal Spell," here. I find flash fiction so soothing. It's much more freeing than writing a novel. Because you can give into a creative impulse instead of worrying how each sentence is going to affect every little thing that comes after. I'm used to writing novels. Novels take so much time and patience and thought. Flash fiction is really just a "flash" of inspiration I might get walking or gazing out the window or finding a pretty picture on Pinterest. Loads of beautiful images to spark the imagination on Pinterest. I hope you enjoy my twist on Sleeping Beauty. I'd love to hear your thoughts. :)

34 comments:

  1. Beautiful! Was there a reference to the recent movie? I liked though that you brought in the Grimm version of how her finger got pricked

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    1. I wasn't thinking about Snow White and the Huntsman when I was writing this, but now that you mention it, I LOVED that adaptation. Might have been floating around in my subconscious! I really like the idea of a woodsman over a prince. Maybe we can start a new fairy tale trend. :)

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  2. I loved this! Makes me want to know more about Briar's journey:)

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    1. Thanks, Rachel! I had a great time writing it. Who knows, maybe it'll lead to something more... :)

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  3. karnapfeifer@aol.comAugust 11, 2012 at 8:17 PM

    You reeled me in! I want to read more. I like the spin on a man from the woods..very captivating Sophie!

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    1. Thx, Karna! I'm a big fan of men from the woods. :)

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  4. Beautiful! Love this flash fiction idea. You could always spiral one of these pieces into your next trilogy...

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    1. An intriguing idea... I will tuck that one into my pocket. :)

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  5. Sophie, I can't say enough how I love this twist and play on the original fairy tale. The man of the woods reminds me of the Celtic Cernunnous, the green man. He fits nicely with her portrayal as Briar Rose. You and Anna are making me long to write flash fiction!

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    1. Thanks, Lori! I'm not familiar with the Celtic Cernunnous, or "green man." Must look this up! Thanks for bringing it to my attention. And you SHOULD start writing flash fiction! I love the snippets I've seen of your fantasy novel. You'd be great at it!

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    2. Sophie, I keep reading this over and over. Both your words and the picture are captivating. I know you have your hands full with Selkies for a while, but I hope that one day you will take this snippet and perhaps develop your own Briar Rose version of this fairy tale!

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    3. The selkies are gentle, understanding souls. I'm sure they'll let me go in whatever direction the wind blows after I finish the next book. :) I love the idea of a mainstream fairy tale retelling trilogy. I've got a few ideas stirring and am enjoying dipping my toe into a few of them with these flash fiction pieces! Thanks for your sweet comment, Lori. Means a lot to me that you like this piece so much. :)

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  6. I LOVE this! It's such a different point of view for the character? I feel almost as if this is how the story always should have gone.

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    1. I agree! Enough with the princes. Bring on the woodsmen!

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  7. I love it Sophie! I feel the same way about poetry & short stories. Much more free. This is really beautiful!

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    1. Thank you! I completely agree. Poetry feels the same way to me as well. Capturing the essence of a moment rather than telling an entire character's journey is so relaxing and freeing. I'm really happy I started doing this to let the inspiration and creativity flow. You are an amazingly talented poet and your kind words mean a lot. Thank you for dropping by. :)

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  8. I love this! I think the consensus is that you need to write more of this Flash Fiction (please)!

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    1. Thanks, Kristy!! I will. I really enjoy writing these. Off to Pinterest to search for my next fairy tale rose picture. :)

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  9. Wonderful, you definitely do have a way with words... this has a gothic feel to it. What did Briar do to make her so dark? Who are "they" and what do they want of her? :)

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    1. Thanks, Laura! "They" refers to the roses. But it could certainly refer to something else if I ever expanded on this. I like to leave a little mystery in my writing so it's open to interpretation. :)

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  10. Love this! I like the contrast of beauty, pain and her twisted mind.

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    1. Thanks, Susie! That's exactly what I was trying to convey. Along with her yearning for a man who would accept her for all her inner flaws. Which are far too dark for a golden fairy tale prince.

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  11. You are a beauty, Sophie, just as your piece is! If I wasn't so sleep-deprived then I'd write a sonnet for you :)

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    1. A sonnet from Afsaneh! I wantssss a sonnet!!! LOL! Thank you. So kind of you to drop by before drifting off to sleep. Hope you dreamed of roses... but not pink ones! :)

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  12. So beautiful and original! Your talent is awe inspiring--the way you seamlessly write such lush and multi-layered novels and in the next breath write something as lovely as this! More, please! : )

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    1. Thank you, sweet Diane. What a wonderful comment to wake up to. :)

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  13. Another beautiful piece of flash fiction, Miss Word Weaver! And don't we all want to be known the way Briar does, and loved still, despite our deepest darkest self?! You have captured it all so eloquently...

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    1. You win the prize, Patricia! You understood exactly what I was trying to convey!! I like to leave a little room for interpretation in all my pieces, because I'd rather let the reader decide what the story means for them. But this is exactly what I felt when I saw this picture and wrote this piece. :) Thank you for your lovely comment and kinds words. :)

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  14. I really love this Sophie! The first paragraph draws you in and you don't feel the prick till it's too late. Excellent!

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    1. Thanks, Anna! And thank YOU for luring me into the beautiful worlds of flash fiction and Pinterest! :)

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  15. This is indeed lovely, Sophie. So beautiful, in fact, I can almost smell the perfume from the velvety roses :))

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    1. Thank you for your kind words, Jo-Anne! I appreciate you stopping by to 'smell the roses'. :)

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