This post is part of the August Blog Chain at Absolute Write. This month’s theme is color as a metaphor for an aspect of one’s writing.

Graham’s apartment was lit well enough from the streetlights below that Allison was able to find her way around without fumbling for a light switch. WJR was playing quietly in the dark, combining with the rain on the windows to generate a sheet of white noise.

“Nice place,” Allison muttered, glancing at the spare surroundings and the heap of dishes in the sink. Her gaze alighted on the overstuffed armchair in front of the radio. “What’s with the purple loveseat?”

“Purple’s my favorite color,” Graham said. “I’ve loved it ever since I had a little cast-iron toy truck that was that shade. Poor old girl was down to her last flecks when Mom melted her down for a scrap drive during the war.”

“Even so, purple doesn’t seem like your color,” Allison said, settling into the chair. “It wouldn’t strike most people as very manly, though it’s anyone’s guess how much raw masculinity matters to someone in your line of work.”

“Not just any purple,” replied Graham. “A very ancient and powerful hue they called ‘Tyrian purple.’ You could smell the sea-slugs they boiled in its manufacture for miles, and only emperors were allowed to wear it. Then, in time, people got to thinking it was a softer color, a pretty color, and now if you see purple at all it’s on a lady’s dress. Slumming in the fashion industry to pay the bills when once only the most powerful man in the world had the right to use it.”

“You think that’s a sad fate for a color that once represented absolutist oppression, huh? Some might say that purple’s gotten its poetic due.”

Graham shrugged. “I feel like purple and I both have a lot in common, in point of fact. Our best days are behind us, and we’re left to grind out what we can in a long, slow afterlife. Such potential, at the beginning, all wasted. So it’s livening up ladies’ dresses while I sit here with a job that can’t afford to pay me. Made into a handbag against your will or chasing down an overdue library book because you’ve got nothing better to do…I’d say there’s a kinship there, wouldn’t you?”

Graham gazed at his shoes as he spoke; Allison felt like she out to do something to lighten the mood, which the weather had already rendered depressing enough. “Being a handbag isn’t the worst thing in the world,” she said. “I know a few alligators that are dying to be just that.”

“Ostriches too,” Graham said, smiling a little. “And I could teach them a thing or two about putting your head in the sand.”

Check out this month’s other bloggers, all of whom have posted or will post an entry of their own about a colors as metaphors for aspects of writing:

AheΓ―la (direct link to the relevant post)
Ralph_Pines (direct link to the relevant post)
AuburnAssassin (direct link to the relevant post)
semmie (direct link to the relevant post)
Anarchicq (direct link to the relevant post)
CScottMorris (direct link to the relevant post)
PASeasholtz (direct link to the relevant post)
LadyMage (direct link to the relevant post)
DavidZahir (direct link to the relevant post)
aimeelaine (direct link to the relevant post)
FreshHell (direct link to the relevant post)
sbclark (direct link to the relevant post)
Bettedra (direct link to the relevant post)
Guardian (direct link to the relevant post)
M.R.J. Le Blanc (direct link to the relevant post)
laffarsmith (direct link to the relevant post)