“Go to a local café, park, or public place and report on what you see. Get detailed: leave no nuance behind. Today’s twist: write an adverb-free post. If you’d rather not write a new post, revisit and edit a previous one: excise your adverbs and replace them with strong, precise verbs.”
The backyard shivers in the morning wind. The large, rampant leaves of the squash plot roll from side to side on the ground. They reveal in their jerky rhythm yellow flowers hidden within. On either side of it are two bushes. Squat balls of green reminiscent of Tolkien and his dwarves, they stand guard with barely a quiver. In the corner, bent toward the east, sun flowers as tall as a man sway on their stems like they might break at any moment. Their leaves ruffle like beach towels shaken clean of sand in the breeze. They do not have flowers yet -they are but younglings still- and where flowers will be in a month’s time their stems end in alien-looking jumbles of green tendrils.
It’s rained more than usual lately and the grass is greener than it’s ever been, although soon the Texan summer will roll over us and dry it yellow in no time. Chickens roam the stretch of green. Their fluffy butts pointed at the clear, blue sky above, they peck at the blades of grass like jackhammers. There are scores of ants swarming the grounds and the hens seem intent on leaving none uneaten.
The sun clears the yard’s fence. It filters through the oak tree tall and rich of leaves in the middle of the yard, and falls in pools of light onto the grass.
In the eastern corner there’s a a stump , wide and thick of roots long dead. On it is an equally old barrel from which pickle plants overflow. The wood of the barrel is grey brown, in parts almost black, and its steel rings are auburn of rust. The pickle plants fall over its sides like a cascade of trembling green. These too have yellow flowers, though petite and fragile compared to those of the squash.
Next to the barrel is a bush of roses. It’s encased in netting lest the hens eat away its flowers. It rests against the fence like a drunk on a friend’s shoulder. Its leaves are petite and dark green, and stark against them and the grey of the fence are its flowers of orange, deep-red, rose, and bright-yellow. Some look aged, missing petals lost to the wind, others are in their prime and are open, vibrant, and beautiful like sunsets, others still are but small buds barely sticking their noses into the wind.
By the rose bush, is a long, leaky hose. It’s skinny and dark like a sleeping snake lounging on the lawn.
I sit coffee in hand on the patio. The backyard shivers of spring and wind and the hens eat away their morning.
Cyril Bussiere 06-11-2014