#SixSentenceStories(seconds); Fair

The prompt this week for Six Sentence Stories is “fair”. Not too long ago one of my favorite characters, Hope, was at a county fair riding a carousel for a Carrot Ranch challenge. This six sentence story follows that one but is also a further exploration of Hope’s mother, who, as these characters randomly show up, has hesitantly revealed herself to be Indigenous. I hesitate to write her but know she has things to say.

Traditional Fair by D. Avery

After Hope dismounted, her long hair as shiny and black as the carousel horse, she and her father walked across the fair grounds to the hall where the baked goods and vegetables were displayed for judging.

“Think your mother has a ribbon for her pie?” he asked Hope, still surprised she had wanted to compete, even after he told her that Mrs. Smith always took the blue. 

“Maybe, Daddy, Mommy’s pies sure are good, and look, there’s people talking to her.”

With a thin fixed smile Hope’s mother engaged with the people who paused at her pie, displayed in front of the container she’d carried it in, but when Hope and her father got to her there was no ribbon.

“These people are not interested in my pie,” she said, “they only want to know about the basket I brought it in, want to know if I’ll make more, offered money, but I tell them I don’t sell baskets.”

She saw the questions in his face but needed to work out for herself her feelings about making baskets; about seeming always to be in the wrong hall, about winners being preordained. 

25 thoughts on “#SixSentenceStories(seconds); Fair

  1. Thanks for the link to The Fold. I’ll check it out.
    I wonder, while perhaps Hope’s mother’s pie is better than anyone else’s, and she most likely will never have a chance at the blue ribbon because the “favorites” always win, that she’s unable (refuses?) to see what others do in the baskets she brings them. Focus. It can be a good thing. It can be a bad thing.
    Thank you for linking another Six, D

    Liked by 1 person

    • Her pies may or may not be better, but her mixed feelings about the basket have to do with being Native American. For centuries now Indigenous peoples have compromised their traditions and economies to survive, first through the fur trade and then through basket making and other handcrafts. She has a choice and is wrestling with that choice. And while she hadn’t intended to display her basket, she knows that now she will always be, always has been, seen for her basket not a white-flour pie.
      These six sentences came to me and have given me a lot more to go on with this character! She is emerging as the mc recently. You may not find too much help with this snapshot from the others. I have work to do, should I be so inclined.
      Anyway, thank you for the prompt and comment.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. I gleaned that, about her feelings regarding basket making and how she is viewed however, I can’t help but wonder, and this from a person unable to identify with her heritage and culture, that the making and selling of her baskets would be a good thing from perspective of representing an aspect of her heritage.
    I’m glad the SSS has served as inspiration 🙂 May your characters flourish.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Putting this into an Indigenous art context adds another layer to the judging going on. If I get your drift that it’s the mother that’s becoming the focus of the story, run with that because IMHO that’s the most real part of this brief piece. You’re on a winner, D.
    I know I’m a bit (well, a lot) weird but I couldn’t help but hear echoes of musicians and singers who’ve moved on to new interests but the fans only want to hear the old hits.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Pingback: Six2 Sentence Story -the Wakefield Doctrine- | the Wakefield Doctrine

  5. …but, if she makes very good baskets, that’s a good thing, no?

    (I was not aware of Hope’s mom’s backstory until your Reply to Denise), what an excellent dimension!

    On the more superficial, interpersonal level, her ambivalence casts a light on many of us; what is our value, that which we identify with or something that has been ordained by others (most of the time family)?
    And, one might think, holding on to the right to feel validated by only that which we are willing to embrace, surely we are limiting (ourselves) as much as being defined by others.

    But then again, to borrow an old joke, sometimes a story is just a story.

    Been a very enjoyable weekend here at the Café.

    Liked by 1 person

    • ” …holding on to the right to feel validated by only that which we are willing to embrace, surely we are limiting (ourselves) as much as being defined by others.”

      Your comment highlights some of the complexity of what this character is feeling. If I don’t leave this Six (and all the other Sixes and 99’s featuring this family) as stand alone stories I certainly have my work cut out for me. Yikes.

      Yes, a most enjoyable week at the Café!

      Like

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