Showing posts from October, 2017

Halloween (-ish) Tale 2017

No scariness in here, this story is inspired by the Samhain festival, and the time of year when one may meet with the dead. No zombies, no ghosts, not even a black cat in here! Contains melancholy only. Read without fear! Sula In The Garden When you feel the pull, you'll know. The first time she heard of this she was an eavesdropping child, not supposed to know anything, wanting to know everything, not able to sit still under the table where it was dim and cramped and toast crumbs stuck to her legs. Her aunts and her mother would hiss, 'Little ears!' A warning to each other that a child was in earshot. Sula smiles. They knew she was there, of course; she can see the memory on a wider screen now, she can stand where the women are gathered, the tea cups and toast plates dotting the tablecloth, the crumbs speckling random and correlated, like constellations. They would change topic, ask decoy questions: when shall we go to the park, sister? And she would kno

One Of Those Days And No Regrets

Here I am, a writer in civilisation, in a coffee shop of course.  Almond croissant, no regrets. A coffee shop in a shopping mall, it isn’t where I’d planned to be, it is One of Those Days. I am dressed for chainsawing, in fact, and looking as out of place as I feel.  Embracing the stares.  Observing the flash of advertising, reading the message: you should look like this, to be yourself, but you knew that because you shop here so you’re cool, we’re just telling the rest of the conformists how cool you are. We are advertising you! I don’t hate all commerce, just the soulless lies. And if you look there are people here doing real human interaction, without phones, they are talking and holding hands, and a child has a shoulder ride, stares up happy at a fake palm tree.  I like this, and there’s fun in frippery.  I like sparkle, and colours, and the feel of fabrics.  I like this, but I don’t want it in place of my wild world. Yesterday by the river I went wal

Untypical Witchery

Photo credit: Gareth Lloyd, sourced from Facebook Red dust shook up, till the sun could be stared at, flat-edge-blurred, as though it were being reforged. The storm like a bellows through fire came, twisting trees till all the deadwood fell. We watched to see if it might char. Leaves blew like sparks, carmine, citrine, circulating. A storm is not strange in October, but - warm air, no rain? A tropical tempest? What untypical witchery is afoot? Skin aglow, on a short car journey, we were laughing at how hairstyles were impossible serpents, and no clothing could be still (every passerby was a bag of snakes) and then, in a sheltered spot, how three cautious geese poked their heads from a gate before venturing the lane. What - warm air no rain witchery, and no black cat? No hare? No bat? Shuffle bottomed geese look back, lest we think to read their entrails. Photo credit: Mike Batson, Southend On Sea Facebook page

Grandchild 6, Eventually

Tuesday. A clear sky, a fine Autumnal time. Leaves that fall are all gold, on the branches green keeps hold. Mist in the morning, rolling on the river. The afternoon bright, mild, cooling. Grandchild 2 at the school door, talking-talking, she forgot her bag, she goes back for it. There's an apple sale but our freezer is full, pockets empty. Never mind, she gets hugs from her friends on the stroll to the car, talking-talking, see her reading book, it's called ‘My Mum Is Going To Explode!’ No baby news yet, for this Almost Big Sister. She is happy, staying with grandparents, staying up late, going training, and her old friend Dog to boss about. Tuesday is fine, though no Mum exploded. Modern medicine has not prevailed. Wednesday. Grandad put sugar on the last bowl of cereal. Grandchild 2 is not a sugar fan - she has a poached egg replacement. (Hopefully she didn't put the breakfast mistake in her journal.) Grandad makes his second redemption by showin