Sunday, September 30, 2012


Roz Morris posted this writing prompt, really a blog hop and a challenge: To write about strangers who appear in a photo you've taken. 

So I selected this picture at random, a side street in Rio, taken in January 2009. The picture is quintessentially Allen. I play with my camera and wait beside the small neighborhood floral shop as he consults Lonely Planet, his mapping skill gained from years of traveling, but one he now fears he can no longer do as well. 

Behind him a couple strides determinedly. An older couple. Are they married? Are they Bazillian? Perhaps they are tourists, as we are, here for such a short time. Perhaps they are émigrés from Europe, for despite its pulsing samba beat and impossibly white sandy beaches(Ipanema, Cococabana, how these names linger), Rio has a decidedly European flavor. Brazilians drink espresso in small coffee shops with fresh, delicate sweet breads and stroll at all times along wide boulevards.

A couple strides past
my husband, lost in a guide book,
as anonymous as flowers in pots
lined up by the door of a small florist.
None of us notice the
raw pink vine flowers that blossom above.
The couple marches, arguing,
he has a lover,
she wants a divorce;
he cannot find his way.


  1. 'The couple marches, arguing...' Nice piece of conflict you've got going there, Beth - they certainly look vigorous enough to be arguing. They could probably complete a marathon and not resolve that discussion. Thanks for taking the challenge from my blog!
    BTW, I notice in your sidebar that you've got The Book of Lost Fragrances on your TBR list. MJ Rose did a guest spot on my other blog, talking about the music that helped her create that novel. You might like it...

  2. Thanks for visiting, Roz, and for treating me to a bit more info re M. J. Rose and your blog interview. Lovely!