Practing Imagery

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3 Pointer

“Oh, it was a beautiful shot. I jumped higher than a grasshopper, threw the ball up, and heard ‘swoosh.’

For this exercise, students wrote 25 “mini-paragraphs” in which they captured images from their life. They were instructed to “write from their mind’s eye” — they could only write the image if they could visualize it clearly — using sensory details specific nouns, and active verbs. Here is some of what they came up with:

“It was snowing huge presents, warm with the smell of cookies in the air. My uncle came with a  huge box. I opened it and there laid a puppy, a Pomeranian puppy.”

“The oh-so-sweet scent of Pepsi from her mini soda refrigerator as you enter the room. The delightful sounds of soap operas and her yapping pigeons squawking every two seconds. The sight of the sun rays beating down on her florescent strawberry hair with that delicate smile on her face. The taste of Laffy Taffy and cold Pepsi in your mouth.”

“Walking into the last period of the day, Bible study. The air as stiff and musty as the boys in there. Mr. What’s His Name staring at me in awe as I lazily walk into class. The whole class full of judgmental stares, and smirks. I made my way into the old creeky chair in front as Mr. What’s His Face told everyone to give me a warm welcome and the whole class tauntingly exclaimed ‘F— You.’ I snapped.”

Seeing Their Potential
“5, 6, 7, 8… My loud, high pitched voice yelled at them. They were kids under the age of 12 trying to dance like someone professionally. I slowly watch pig tails with bows attached to them and little sloppy arms flinging around in broad circular movements, that my eyes bulged out a few times. I didn’t understand why they weren’t comprehending the moves I gave them. Brushing it off I look once more — this time I see smiling faces, joy, and confidence. I also hear loud laughter filling the room.”

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I love Starbucks, but I’m pretty sure I love him more. The stride in his step, the inflection and smooth tone of his voice, and the way he can get on my fiery nerves more than anyone else. Vague smiles and slight glances as we sip and go.”

Spring Break
“In the month of March on a warm sunny day, a few friends and I went to the Delmar Loop. At the Loop we encountered a short, skinny white man shouting ‘God Doesn’t Like Gays’ while holding a cardboard sign with anti-gay slurs scribbled across it. Another encounter was with a couple of teenage boys break dancing in front of Fitz’s. The boys were dressed in ripped jeans and tye dye shirts.”

Spaghetti Legs
“Hiking on the Appalachian trail on a beautiful day was excruciating. My feet were bowling balls attached to spaghetti legs. Progress was slow. The sunlight beat down on my neck from the east.”

“It seemed as though I was in the air forever. My stomach dropped to my knees. My body quickly, frantically looking for someone’s assistance. But their face call bore big, bright smiles soon followed by laughter when body smacked upon the surface of the glimmering navy blue pool.”

Raise a Glass to Freedom
“I bobbed my body up and down to the beat of ‘The Schugler Sisters.’ My ears blasted with the sound of Angelica’s beautiful voice. Every time the song reached the line ‘You want a revolution, I want a revelation…’ I began to cry of happiness and feminist power.”

Farewell Cookies
“Yum! The smell of sugar cookies filled the house, so I knew that they were almost done. I rushed upstairs to finish getting ready for my party — the time was approaching. 5 minutes into getting ready the delicious aroma of cookies dissipated and instead, a burnt smell filled the halls. I ran downstairs to see what was wrong, and once I opened the oven I saw the horrible sight. All of my sugar cookies had turned to charcoal.”

Surprise Package
“I missed seeing him, pushing his glasses up every five seconds and hearing his little smart comments. ‘Ring ring’ — it was 8:58 in the morning and I got a call from him saying you got a package. I didn’t respond until he told me I needed to sign for it, so I walked to the door, and I saw him waiting there. I smirked and said thanks.

It’s Official
“Working on a watercolor at my desk under the natural light of my window. The cool breeze drifts in the room, carrying the perfume of the earth after it rains. My headphones pause as I receive an e-mail. Automatically I believe it’s another college trying to get me to attend their school. Not this time. Just the top school I want to go to informing me I’m accepted… Wait… Let me read that again…”

“They sit, under the straw, pavilion-like structure, in lines on the floor. We step onto the muddy concrete. The sky has dimmed and it’s starting to drizzle. At first glance, the weather’s mood seemed to be reflecting the crowd. Every face was cast down, shadowed, with the look of someone who is only beat down, day by day. They were lepers. Suddenly the food and bandages we brought with us seemed scarcely enough.”

Digging Up Memories
“I look over my shelves and drawers full of books, drawings, old homework assignments, and random pieces of toys and trinkets from long ago. It nags at me a bit, so I decide to sort through the mess. I find myself lost in a sea of nostalgia, as I look at doodles from 2003, random photos of my friends and me on the school playground, broken crayons, and poorly colored coloring book pages. I smile as I reminisce, and find myself digging for three hours.”

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“The nervousness kicked into overdrive resulting in my sweaty palms and inability to stand still. A thousand thoughts clouded my mind. Convincing myself I would do great! Standing on the Sun Theatre’s balcony with a cold metal box. The light from my phone was the only way I could see the light buttons and switches on this icy, smooth, metal box. My eyes darted around the freshly opened stage, searching for the cue. The scrim glowed with the playbill image of The Princess and the Frog, and slowly the picture faded to a green haze as the soft hypnotic melody began to fill the space. My eye caught sight of the red ribbon tied around the hat. My hands quickly pressed down on the red spot button. Tobias’s voice filled the sun as he was illuminated in a soft red glow from the spot, my spotlight.”





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