Wednesday, June 28, 2017

Paula's Prompt

Welcome to QueerBlogWed! A day to blog about all things queer. This story should qualify in more ways than one. :) It's a response to last week's Wednesday Words prompt provided by Paula Wyant (see Every Wednesday, she offers up one. I've been trying to get myself into the habit of responding the following week at this Cauldron.

On Wednesday; June 21, 2017, she offered up a wren, a bowl, and a wreath. Here is the story inspired by those things.

“Wren, pretty wren, take a flower from my wreath. Wren, pretty wren, come and drink from my bowl.”

Wren called for the bird she’d been named for. She lay a dish filled with water right in front of the stone. If she stared hard enough at the rock’s surface, she might see a face within its bumbs and ridges. 

She averted her eyes, taking the wreath from her head. Wren put it down on the stone, covering the face. 

She rose to her feet, backed away a few steps, before falling to her knees once more. She didn’t know if the wren would come. 

A small, brown bird flew down from a nearby tree. It must have been watching. The little creature fluttered over to the bowl. It dipped its beak within the dish. After a few moments, it raised its small head. It hopped up to the stone, bent down to snatch a white blossom from the flowers and vines embracing each other. The bird took flight afterwards. 

It hadn’t been a wren. The girl exhaled in a sharp hiss of disappointment. 

“Once more, the ritual failed. The wren didn’t come.” She dropped her head, looking down at the grass stains on her white skirt. 

“Didn’t she?” A voice, low, feminine, and teasing came from the grass, the rocks, and the earth beneath her. “Your efforts were appreciated, if not in the way you expected.”

Wren frowned, trying to comprehend these words. She didn’t understand the force she worshipped, yet it was part of her, all around her. It spoke to her in a way it did to few others. 

“Why do you ask me to sing songs and complete rituals, which never work?” Wren raised her head, dared to look at the rock she’d crowned. “Your purpose is a mystery to me.”

“Who knows?” The murmur tickled the hairs on the back of Wren’s neck, slipping under her heavy mane of hair. “Perhaps I simply like the sound of your voice.”

“Why do you ask for specific songs and offerings?” Wren dropped her gaze to the bowl, sitting silently before her. Ripples disturbings its surface were finally stilling, returning to something more tranquil. “Why not just as me to sing?”

“Who knows?” A breeze crept under the girl’s skirt, making her ankles itch. “Perhaps I simply like it when you bring me gifts.”

Wren trembled, but she looked up at the stone once more. “If all you want are gifts and to hear me sing, why have me kneel before you?”

“Who knows?” The grass beneath her knees turned into tiny fingers, stroking and caressing her flesh. “Perhaps I want more.”

Wren’s legs wobbled. She lost her balance, falling on her side. Her skirt rode up. She moaned to feel the earth and the very life pulsing with it while it moved against her. 

Never had her worship been more directly rewarded. 

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