42 Maple Contemporary Art Center invited area schools to participate in the unique writing challenge offered with Craig Pursley’s body of work, “Pieces of Dreams”, featured art for the month of January 2015.
Lori Innes, English teacher from Profile School accepted the challenge, and brought her AP Languange and Composition class to the gallery to study Craig’s art, choose a painting, and write a story or poem in 500 words or less. Also in attendance, was Littleton Courier editor Darrin Wipperman. The exercise was featured in a local newspaper. Please check out our Press page to read more about the experience.
Below is one of the many stories generated by Profile high school students as a result of this experience.
The House at Colfer Crossing
The man checked the time. 8 o’clock exactly, Mass is just starting. He wouldn’t be making an appearance at church today. Not today and not ever again. To say he lost faith would be an accurate statement. His world, now submerged in darkness, has yet to see the light of day since the accident, He can hear the train chugging along in the distance and he shuts the door in attempt to block out this everyday nightmare. Just about a year ago now, his life was turned upside down.
He was driving his wife and children to 8 o’clock mass. Usually a man of punctuality, time had slipped away from his grasp this particular morning. The church being a 15 minute drive down the road, he always aimed to leave the house at 7:40, just early enough to allow the proper pleasantries and common chatter in front of the church doors. It was 7:55 as he huddled the children into the car, his wife climbed into the passenger seat. The car came to life with a roar and then he quickly sped down the road. The kids were in the back, singing loudly and jubilantly. A rowdy bunch he thought, but happy nonetheless. But as the car proceeded over the tracks, he heard his wife screaming in terror, looking right past him to their left. Puzzled, he turned, searching for what could possibly be so horrifying to evoke such a scream from his wife. And then he saw it. The train barreling towards them at an unbelievable speed. Then darkness.
Since the accident, sadness has plagued his life. Everyday the chugging of the train and the blow of the whistle serve as a constant reminder of all the was lost that day. His family, pulled out of his life so quickly and easily, just like the removal of a tooth. Why me? was a question he often found himself asking. Although an answer never surfaced. He was a good man. He worked hard for all he had. He went to church each Sunday, didn’t lie, didn’t cheat and most of all he provided for his family. He found happiness in their happiness.
But regardless, the tragedy occurred and he now had to live with it. The days seemed all strung together now, being almost impossible for him to separate one from another in his mind. Yet the world kept spinning,and even though it offered him no solace the sun continued to rise and unceasing set of the sun reminded him that the day was coming to a close. The nights where he was able to sleep, although they were few, he dreamt of his family. The time they shared together was too short, and he often wished he would have cherished it more. He was working too much. He was determined to provide a full life for his family with all the riches, but that doesn’t matter now. He lived a sorrowful life now, full of regret.