Robin Hawke


Serving
March 19, 2012, 2:36 PM
Filed under: Three Sentence Stories

People with jobs enjoy grass; flowers on the side please. His mother, who disliked taproots and beggars, requested short, manicured spears. Clark, owning time, served violets and dandelions to the family table and complained about tips.

 

There was a story on the news about the number of graduates living at home. When I added the phrase after the semi-colon I found the story. Immediately the title became clear–ordering and serving often indicate class distinctions. As I wrote each sentence, I edited to follow the analogy of perfect grass with a serving waiter to find the verbs and nouns. For example: ‘requested’ was originally ‘begged’, then ‘bidded’—notice I added the ‘beg’ back in to repair class differences.  The word ‘enjoy’ could be tightened; I left it in only because I was afraid of beating up the story. It was simply fortunate that violets and dandelions are weeds, edible and beautiful colors. 

The comma is missing before the word please: does this omission help create a perfunctory voice?

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3 Comments so far
Leave a comment

I like it without the comma. Much stronger.

Comment by Janet

I agree about the comma. It adds that air of disdain.

Comment by jmmcdowell

Love the feedback.

Comment by Robin Hawke




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