There is a Lighthouse in my Room
Emily had the following prompts to choose from:
Amy- Sunflowers on steroids
Cameron- We were arguing over different shades of beige.
Erika- The lighthouse in my room
Jen- Describe some food and make me hungry, a scene will do. Bonus points if you also write about eating said food.
Wendy- Larry Porter and the Philanthropist’s Cone
She chose… Erika’s.
Hi everybody! Thank you so much for inviting me to be a guest writer! I had tons of fun with this and I’m excited to have the opportunity to share my work with all of you! Enjoy! -Emily
Four walls, painted a shade of yellow that is supposed to be cheery, but feels like it’s trying too hard. A slanted ceiling covered in those sticky, glow-in-the-dark stars that every teenage girl born in the nineties owned. A faded wooden door, with the finish peeling off it from taping on too many magazine posters of teenage heartthrobs.
I glance down at the paper gripped tightly in my hand, wondering how in the world I am supposed to find something interesting in my room. As much as I pride myself on being creative, there is nothing “special” or “unique” in my room that could fulfill the requirements of my summer art camp.
Up until a few weeks ago, I had no intention of actually attending art camp. Thinking it would be full of long-haired hippies strumming guitars and dark-haired girls bent over journals, scribbling the lyrics to some deep, sad, and emotional song about their lives, I had politely declined my mother’s suggestion. However, curiosity won out and I eventually gave in to my mother’s wishes. And I enjoy it. There are a few long-haired hippies, but all of the attendees are talented in some way. They know how to paint, draw, sing, dance, and write, among other things.
Each week, we are given assignments intended to “broaden our artistic minds” and “encourage creative expression.” At least that’s what the papers say. I had been successful in my previous attempts and felt fairly confident about this week’s assignment. Until now.
Looking up from the paper, I turn in a slow circle, taking in every aspect of my room and willing something unique into existence. Nothing. The only point of interest in my room is the incredible amount of dust that somehow escaped my mother’s notice. I toss the crumpled paper onto my bed, allowing the sweet ignorance of procrastination to take over.
I’ll go for a walk, I tell myself, picking up my sandals and heading toward the ocean. That’ll clear my mind. Once I reach the beach, I kick off my shoes and dig my toes into sand. Leaving my room and my lack of creative thinking behind, I wander up and down the beach, balancing on the line where the sea meets the sand.
Above me, seagulls zigzag across the sky and to my right, the waves lap against the shore, creating just enough background noise to distract me from my perils. The sun is barely visible over the horizon, and the hazy glow of twilight surrounds me. I look out across the wide expanse of the ocean when, to my left, a sudden twinkling of light catches my eye.
I focus in the direction of the light and see it again: a quick, bright blink, followed by darkness, and then repeated. The lighthouse. From my stance on the beach, I can just make out the shadowy outline of the old lighthouse on the ridge, its shining light welcoming home people at sea. I stand and watch, mesmerized by the beauty of the blinking light. Mesmerized by the artistry and thought involved in building something so simple yet powerful.
Eventually, I notice goose bumps on my arms and a considerable amount of water engulfing my feet. Grabbing my shoes, I head home, reluctant to admit that after hours of aimlessly walking and gazing toward faraway lands, I have come up with nothing. Again.
As I walk up the stairs to my room, I seriously begin to doubt my artistic abilities. Maybe my mom wanted me to sign up as a joke, and I’ve been reading her encouraging comments about my art entirely wrong. It’s possible. I reach my room and am just about to turn on the light when another flash catches my eye.
No way, I think, crossing the room in a few clumsy strides that will inevitably leave unattractive bruises on my leg.
I push aside the curtains and peer out at my view of ocean, the same view I’ve had for years. I scan the horizon, hoping to see another flash of light. Sure enough, like a beacon, a light blinks in the distance and I smile slowly, shaking my head in disbelief.
Through my window, I see the lighthouse, framed on either side by old, frilly white curtains that I really should take down. The light is so bright that it shines into my room, lighting up the crumpled paper on my bed. There is a lighthouse in my room.