Thursday, May 24, 2007


Created from a prompt for a writing exercise.


It’s not a name but a state of being. Immediately you would assume purity and piety, but that isn’t it. White is death—the gleam of teeth seen from the corner of your eyes. They’re in your throat before you can think to run.

He is called white in the tongue of a people who understand symbols and ceremonies. Ranks and chains of command.

We think it is an honor to be set apart as one called white in a family of white. It is separation. Distinction. An inescapable fate resonated by his very name.


Purple would be the same—what we’d see as royalty. We ignore how it fades, becoming a tired lilac. There was a court woman called Purple, and she faded, wrinkled, and passed on. But her words are unchanging. The world’s first novel was written by the woman who history calls purple.

We are eager to seek out the royalty of this color and wrap ourselves in it. But purple fades past lilac if given enough time. It fades to white. Royalty fades, too. Those who wore awe and fear like a purple become names in a history book. Not even written in purple or gold ink.


Green is more fickle than purple and harder to predict than white.

Green is life and sickness. Virile and vile. Vitality and venom.

You can’t trust green. Not the ever-changing shades of greed and envy. Green has claimed many shades of purple. They mingle and transform into a muddy brown that makes even the most regal of colors common and vulgar.

1 comment:

Rachel said...

INteresting exercise!