Dance #writephoto


Photo by Sue Vincent

“Awake or asleep?”

Ed was sure that he was awake, that he had gone out exploring on his own, but the world was unearthly, much more like his dreams.

He thought about the journey that he had been on each night, through the pillars and then trees, down to the sea.  Where was he going?  And was he following a similar path while walking in the sunshine?

He shivered.

Not that there was much sunshine.

The feeble home-star was attempting to cut through the thick fog in vain, hanging like a ghost in the sky.  The world had been erased in grey, except for green path forward.

“It isn’t possible,” Ed mumbled to himself.  “I know I’m awake, or at least I think I am, yet this is so like my nightly journey.”

He shrugged and followed the greenway forward.

As he walked, he could hear that woman’s voice again, singing it’s song both as fresh and catchy as the latest McCartney tune and as complex and difficult as anything Schoenberg could dream up. The voice was growing louder, so he must be going in the right direction.

Then, if not following the green path, which way would he go?

He continued.

Something was ahead.

Slowly as he made his way forward, he realized that there was a large ring of stone, seen mostly as shadowy pillars rising out of the fog.

He thought of all of the pillars in his dreams, but this was different.

And, unlike the dreams, he saw movement.

As he drew even closer, he realized that a woman was dancing.  Her fluid movements matched the rising and falling of her song.

Was this really her? He had never seen her, just heard the voice.

Not that he was seeing her now, just the dancing shadow in the middle of the ring.

The greenway went right through the middle of the ring, but Ed stopped at the edge, transfixed by the graceful beauty of song and dance, even if it was just a shadow play.

A voice, a male voice, whispered in his ear, “You are seeing our side, don’t you know?”

He turned and the world changed.  Shifted.

It was as if he was suddenly a half an inch to his left and for a very tiny fraction of a second almost saw himself that half of an inch over, but then, there was nothing, but everything.

Ed was standing at the edge of a stone circle.  It wasn’t huge, yet it was complete, with many upright pillars of rock.  The sun was shining brightly.  No longer covered in mist, it was no longer mysterious, just an ancient monument from a people long gone.

He walked around the stones for a while before heading back.  Strangely enough, he could not find the green path to follow, so he used his somewhat limited sense of direction.


After dinner, Ed asked Liza about the circle.

“Ah, you must have found the Fairies Dance.”

“Fairies Dance?”

“Yes.  You’ve heard the term Giant’s Dance, haven’t you?”

Ed, feeling a little foolish, shook his head, no.

“Well, look it up.  Anyway, local legend has it that the fairies did a magical dance and so moved the stones through the thin air from a great distance to the present location.  It seems that their music was so powerful, that the stones themselves wanted to dance.  When the music stopped, the stones stayed.  Or so they say.”  She shrugged.

“Why haven’t I heard of this place?  I would have thought every tourist to England would want to see it.”

“Well, it isn’t so easy to find, you know?  Local legend also says that it can only be found if it wants to be found.  So, consider yourself lucky.”

After dinner, Ed spent a few hours going through his great uncle’s notes.  Sure enough, there were many references to the stones.  Strangely enough, his uncle said that they were best viewed from the world of the hobs.

As Ed fell asleep, he had a half dream that he was watching the woman dance again.  This time he walked up to her.  She stopped dancing, but continued to sing, her back towards him.  He so wanted to see her face.  He tapped her shoulder.  She began to turn.

“Mr. Pulman, are you awake?”

Ed’s eyes snapped open.


“I’m sorry, I just found some photos of the Fairy Dance I wanted to show you.  They can wait until the morning.  Good night.”


Ed stared at the ceiling for a while before drifting back to sleep with the strange melody in his ear.


This was written for Sue Vincent’s writephoto challenge.  The photo at the top is hers and she gave us the key word “Dance”.


I wrote this as a side chapter to my larger work, Of Wind and Wings.  If I do fit it in, it would be close to the end.

31 thoughts on “Dance #writephoto

  1. Pingback: Photo prompt round-up: Dance #writephoto | Sue Vincent's Daily Echo

  2. Pingback: Dance #writephoto — Trent’s World (the Blog) – Experimental Film & Music Video Festival

    1. trentpmcd Post author

      Thanks. He’ll find out at the end who she is…. Actually, the next chapter, and the rest of the story, was written a couple of years ago, I just went back and put this addition in… I may some day do something more with the story, but you can read it in its very rough form – at the end of this story I left a link to the table of contents of the full novella.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Pingback: Dance ~ Trent P. McDonald #writephoto | Sue Vincent's Daily Echo

      1. Prior...

        Thanks – it is the only one I have right now – but it kind of does not look like him to me at all – but is a stately portrait – he is actually a lot more brown and younger – more coming later and thanks for asking about the pup
        Woof woof

        Liked by 1 person

    1. trentpmcd Post author

      Thanks, Robbie. In ways it is fun to go back and try to recapture the flavor of an older story. That story was based on Sue’s photos as well, so not super difficult ;)

      Liked by 1 person

        1. trentpmcd Post author

          I’ll admit that I never read it, but I did just look at a quick synopsis. In some ways. His dream is kind of parallel world and the struggle he is having in the real world is semi-reflected in the dream world. the dream world is like a maze that he has to solve as part of his more outward self-discovery. I wrote very stream of consciousness (most based on Sue’s weekly photos), so if I ever decided to make it into a book, I would have to draw more of those symbolic lines between the two worlds. A few things (giving a way the end a little) – he comes to his final solution of the maze by facing unflattering truths about himself in the waking world, and the voices and music he hears and follows in the dreams are often heard by him in the waking world. And the very end, instead of being ambiguous, creates a new reality ;)

          Liked by 1 person

            1. trentpmcd Post author

              Thanks. I finished the very rough draft in December of 2018. I’m not 100% sure if I am going to try to shape it into a book – it will need a huge amount of work if I do! But there are some concepts in it that I really like, so, maybe…

              Liked by 1 person

                1. trentpmcd Post author

                  It could be a novella, but what I mean by work, is that in many ways the story is a mess – it would most likely be a 100% rewrite. A huge part of it would be redoing most of the story-line from scratch – I have done other “serial” stories using the prompts and came out with a pretty good plot-line, but the plot-line in this is awful. It just rambles on. So I could do it, I just don’t know if it would be worth the effort…

                  Liked by 1 person

  4. Sue Vincent

    “…it can only be found if it wants to be found…” I know a few circles like that ;) One very close to this one too…
    The story took me straight back to the original tale, Trent.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. trentpmcd Post author

      I’m sure that there are places and circles like that… I am not sure if I will ever do anything with that story, but I have added to it a couple of times recently, so who knows?

      Liked by 1 person

    1. trentpmcd Post author

      As part of the larger story I used a lot of synonyms for “fairies” or “fair folk”, because if there really were these people in the story, they aren’t what most people think of today, but closer to the medieval definition. I think “hob” comes from the same place as “hobgoblin”, but they aren’t “goblins” as you think, but closer to elves. And as to elves, it is similar to the Lord of the Rings style elves. I also found that “sith” did not come from Star Wars, but was another term in Gaelic for elves or fairies! Thanks.

      Liked by 1 person


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