Thanks to Jane Heinrichs (janeheinrichs.blogspot.co.uk) for inspiring me to think about this and for having the idea for a 'one picture, three stories' link up on her blog (see her blogpost about it here and take a look around the rest of her site, I guarantee you that you'll find something to encourage/dazzle/motivate/inspire you).
Here is my picture, and the three stories that it sparks off:
1) Childhood - that time of long hot summers, wonder, exploration and adventure, when everything is new and exciting. This is my niece. I don't see her as much as I would like as we live in Dorset and she lives in Oxfordshire so every moment I have with her is magic. This was taken last year when she and her dad (my brother) came to stay for a few days. She is standing on the walls of our town surveying the world below her and engaging in some impromptu ballet! If any child captures the sense of joy and excitement of being a child throwing herself at the world in joyful and trusting abandonment, it is my niece. She fills my heart with joy and also a wistful longing to remember the experiences and feelings of being that young, that small and that sure of yourself.
2) Hope - The pure joy and hope of being alive is, for me, captured here. The sunny day, the warm breeze, the beauty of life and the promise of a future yet to unfold. A grown up shadow falls across her, every so slightly touching her - the reassurance of security, the suggestion of the life she will lead and the woman she will grow into.
3)The Circle of Life - my niece looks extraordinarily like I did when I was her age. She brings back vivid memories of when I was her age exploring the countryside around our home. She reminds me what it is to explore as a child - something so necessary for someone who writes for children. Sweet, vulnerable, stubborn, strong, excited and overwhelmed, I can see the influences of my brother, of me, of my mother, of our family shining out of her, even (maybe mostly) when she's sulking, having a tantrum and trying to make sense of this sometimes unfathomable world she's learning to navigate. She seems to be a part of me, and I a part of her.
I highly recommend that you browse through your pictures and see which ones prompt three stories from you, and then link it back to Jane's blog and explore what other people have posted. Candy Gourlay's post is fascinating!
happy story making!