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Monday, March 21, 2011

Stories Inspired by HFR

Here's something that we at HFR think is really awesome...

A local middle school teacher tasked his 7th grade English students at BASIS in Scottsdale with an assignment based on the latest issue of HFR. The prompt is: to write a 500 word story or scene inspired by a photo in the most recent issue. I think HFR is developing a new fan following. The stories we have received so far are excellent, and we are thoroughly enjoying reading them. These blossoming writers are exceptionally creative, and really took the prompt and ran with it.

We will be publishing a student's story (and the image from which it was inspired) every couple of days on the blog. First is a heart-wrenching and powerful story by Amanda C. This story is inspired by Debbie Fleming Caffery's "A Horse in the Hall." Enjoy.

High above the dangers that lie below on the forest floor, a frail boy is staring off into the eye of the night sky as branches of the ancient trees protect him from the painful wind, but a wolf’s cry breaks the boy’s concentration as he snaps back to reality. Noticing how much time has passed by, the boy quickly slides down the tree trunk, running quickly as he can as leaves crack and crinkle under his feet. Blinding lights shine out from the living room window as his feet drag him closer and closer towards the back door. The boy pushes the handle down and nudges the door forward as he holds his breath. Warm air embraces his body, sending shivers down his spine; one of his sneaker covered feet takes a careful step forward. Suddenly a large calloused hand slaps the back of the boy's head. The blow sends him crashing into a cabinet.

The impact scrapes his forehead; warm liquid drips down into his eyes as he instinctively brings his arms up to protect his head. A single blow from his father’s leather shoe knocks him unconscious. A painful jerk from his hair brings him back to reality; the pain devours his body like a wildfire. As the boy slowly lets the darkness envelop him he sees a white blur.

A chirping noise awakes the sleeping boy; pain instantly hits his body hard as he slowly crawls on all fours. Noticing the blood on the floor the boy slowly creeps his way towards the storage room to grab a mop. The mops sucks in the blood, tinting its dreadlocks a pinkish color. Lifting the mop, the boy walks wearily back to the storage room making sure not to drop any water on the floor.

After the boy returns back to the hallway, he looks back to where he saw the white blur, a rocking white horse meeting his gaze. Overjoyed, the boy forgets his pain and hastily climbs onto the horse, resting his body upon it. The boy continues to rock back and forth upon the horse, his eyes slowly growing heavier with each flutter of his eyelids, and suddenly they shut close. A sudden slam from the boy’s father wakes him up. Frightened, the boy runs to the back door, escaping into his haven, the forest, as his father walks through the front doors. The boy’s father rushes to the sound of creaking in the hallway only to find a wooden horse rocking on the glossy floor.

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