Over a month ago I wrote a post that talked about the way some simple impression can be the spark to new creation. It also talked about my seeming inability to let my creativity flow in new directions while trying to edit my novel. Now that the editing is on pause while I await to hear from its first readers, I’ve been so busy with my paying work I’ve still not allowed myself to do the work I love. I decided today I needed to awaken those muscles a bit.
The photo on that post was put there because when I saw it I thought – that should prompt something! Here is what it prompted:
Sovann took a long drag of his cigarette. Out of the corner of his eye he saw some tourists staring. ‘Screw them’. He was only in this Monk’s garb because of family tradition . . . honour. He tried to hold back a smirk. Honour. As the oldest son he had to fulfill his year’s sentence. Sovann took another drag. He cared nothing of honour. He was putting his time in because if he didn’t his father promised to cut him out of the will. Sovann had grown accustomed to a certain lifestyle. Work was too pedestrian. He noticed the water girls, pandering to those same tourists. Scraggly, dirty little things walking around all day just trying to ‘make a buck’. Not that he’d ever have to do such degrading work, even if his father did cut him off. His family name, the education he’d been forced through would prevent that. The idea of being in some stupid office though, or working in a bank, made him cringe. He was above that. His time would be better served in other endeavours. He smiled at the thought of the first thing he’d do when he got out of these garbs. Ten more months . . . Sovann sighed. It might as well be ten years, the first two had crawled by. He took another long drag. They were staring at him again. He stifled a glare. One of the wenches had just taken a photo. He put out the cigarette and stood. He tossed it in the river, grimacing at the woman and her child bathing in the garbage infested water. How could people succumb to such filth? He cast a sidelong glance back at the tourists. They’d probably taken a picture of that too. They came to his country looking for experience. He bet they knew nothing of the true experience Cambodia had to offer.
Sovann passed a group of monk’s from his monastery. He smiled peacefully and gave them a nod. It’d be interesting to know many of them truly believed and how many, like him, wore a mask. He’d believed once, when he first entered the monastery. It’d been six months at that time, and they’d flown by. He remembered the sweet peace he’d felt during prayer and meditation. He was so young, so naïve. He shook his head at the memory of his 11 year old beliefs. It was all a lie. He knew the truth. What was that saying? The truth will set you free. He wasn’t fully free yet but he would be soon. He thought of Channary, of the world she’d introduced him to, of the exquisite delicacies his father’s money would provide. Entering the shrine, he put his palms together and bowed before his teacher. Oh what he’d do with that freedom.