Broken Winged Buzzard Dreams Part l

Buzzard and Bugs Bunny Cartoon


Hold fast to dreams

For if dreams die

Life is a broken-winged bird

That cannot fly.

Langston Hughes

Okay, so the poster in my eighth grade english class portrayed a seagull with wings spread, floating against an azure sky, but I still remember it, lo, these many years later.
Hmm…(clearing throat) This post about my writing dreams is not shaping up well. (I yawn.) Maybe I should go take a nap.
(I have a cold, so I blow my nose, too.)
Maybe instead of writing about my writing I should write about Gramps’ snoring again. I have plenty of material…
No. Better not. He might decide to start blogging about my…er…problems. That wouldn’t be funny.
(Several minutes pass while I look on Youtube for songs. I watch this amusing–and apt–Starburst commercial. You may need to watch it several times before the end of this post, as well.)
Well, for pity’s sake. I know there are literally ten people out there who want to know this stuff about me, so I’ll just have to dive in.
I write books and stuff down here in Southwest Oklahoma on the home place.
I was a teen-ager when I first ventured into novel writing. My first attempt was set in the 1800’s and featured a protagonist named Rory. I forget his last name. He rode a big horse–black, I believe. His love interest was Kate.
Once, I showed the first chapters of this masterpiece to my grandma, a voracious reader. She got a funny look on her face. I interpreted it as: You’re my granddaughter and I love you, but this is drivel and I don’t know quite how to tell you that.
“Well…” was what Grandma said. “Just keep working on it.”
I did for a while longer and I think it went something like this:
Rory raced his freshly shod, big, black, shiny, deep chested Quarter Horse horse with four white socks and a blaze face up to the burning wooden cabin and slid to a sliding stop. He jumped off the saddle and ran quickly up to the door burning hotly, vowing to stake the devil who had done this to Kate onto an anthill of ants.
“Help, Rory, you big, strong, very good looking man, you,” Kate cried feebly from inside the burning inferno somewhere.
Oh, goodness! She was fading fast!
“Kate, darlin’!” he cried out desperately. “Hold fast to our dreams, for if you die, they’re pretty much all out the window! Darlin’! Oh, and by the way, throw the kids out to me if they’re still with us…”
I wasn’t much of a plotter and I don’t think he said that about the dreams, but y’all get the idea.
Anyway, I always sketch my characters, but at that time I probably sketched as bad as I wrote. My sketch of Kate–and I confess this to my everlasting shame–I made behind a locked door and while looking into the bathroom mirror. She looked pretty good except for I could never get that one eye to look quite right.
I imagined my sketch of Rory looked like Tom Selleck. (Not old Grampa Tom Selleck like he is now, but like he was in his Magnum PI days in the last century.)
Tom Selleck Magnum PI
Possibly, he more closely resembled Barney Fife.
Barney Fife
But the point is, I can’t check up on Rory, now, because at some point, in a fit of self-disgust, I threw him, and his story, and my dream into the trash. And I wish I hadn’t now, because that story would be like a blogging gold mine. We could have laughed hysterically for many posts…
Well, anyway.
I’m actually in pretty good company. Have y’all ever read Margaret Mitchell‘s (author of Gone With the Wind ) first novella, Lost Laysen, written when she was a teen-ager? Or Georgette Heyer‘s first book, The Black Moth? Very high drama, indeed. Not even Rory and Kate could match it.
I’ll get back to blogging about ranch/farm life, now, but if y’all don’t throw rotten tomatoes at me over this blog post, one of these days I’ll post PART ll of my continuing writer’s journey where I salvage the broken winged buzzard of my dreams. Kinda.
Until next time, God Bless all y’all.
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13 thoughts on “Broken Winged Buzzard Dreams Part l

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  6. I remember Rory very well, and I always KNEW Kate was drawn in your own image!! Even if Rory was drivel, I was interested. I’ve always been intrigued by your stories. I remember you telling us romantic Zane Grey stories before we went to sleep. Delicious. Anyways… enjoyed the post.

  7. Poor, poor Rory. Our first protagonists are much like our first loves–even if they are horribly written, you still remember them, never get them out from under your skin. They are there to stay. My first protagonist was Shana set in Medieval England, and she too was riding a big black horse! (I was about 12 when I wrote her story and it read pretty much like Rory’s. *sniff* Wish I hadn’t used those pages to wrap fish….) Love the post, Danni, and the honesty 🙂

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