Tag Archives: stream of consciousness

From Prompt #1: Write from your rival’s/enemy’s point of you when they see you. 

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Title: “The Light, The Heat”

I had looked forward to meeting up with Elise for coffee that morning. It had been too long. What had it been? Seven years? The anger I had for her had faded though as I had seemingly racked up success after success. I had heard she had not changed much. I eagerly waited for what she had to say to me. I saw her instantly from across the café. As I navigated around the crowded tables, I watched her seemingly scrying into her cup of coffee as she stirred in her sugar. She looked so small in the light. She looked up at me.

Long lines spread out around her eyes and down her clear, downy cheeks.  The mid-morning sun made the lines harsh. Once she had seemed strong and sturdy as mountain. But now, her middle-age showed in the light. Those carved lines betrayed her and told of the millennia of sorrow.  The arbitrary winds of change had whipped around her and eroded her into a smaller version of herself.

A waiter appeared, asked if the sun disturbed her. But he did not wait for an answer.  He drew the cord and closed her off from the harshness of the light. In that instant, when the shade came down, Elise smiled up from her coffee cup.  Her face transformed into a light of its own. Those lines disappeared. She animated the peace and good cheer of this single moment as her youth came back to her face. This was the face I had known. This was the woman that I sought to destroy. And here she was, still bold— still beautiful— still bigger than life— still immortal.

And in that moment, I felt seven years was not enough.

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#8 Stephen Kings Top 20 Rules for Writers– Don’t worry about making other people happy…

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After Party

Sitting in a semi-darkened office, the smell of coffee drifted in from somewhere else. Her need for coffee, however, was not as insistent as her need of order and she dutifully sat at her desk creating folders on the hard drive—organizing and re-organizing—drag, drop, save, delete. As focused on the task as she meant to be, transient thoughts of Saturday’s misadventure wafted in and out.

She was married. She had children. She baked at the weekends and made sure the laundry was all done through the week. She hung out clothing on the line in the morning and set the washing machine on a timer so that it would start to wash just as she was able to bring the clothes in when she got home from work.

Meals were planned. Homework was charted and checked off. Her husband never had holes in his socks. She was happy going to bed before him to wake up before him and have a quiet cup of coffee—and then she would do the weekday before-work-chores. Sheets were changed on Mondays, Windows were cleaned on Tuesdays, Surfaces were polished on Wednesday, floors were swept on Thursdays and Fridays were dependant on what she and her husband had planned for the Friday night. If people were coming over, she would make sure all the good crockery was ready to set out. If they were going out, she made sure that the babysitter would have everything to hand that she could prepare for the children.

This morning, Cecilia had her cup of coffee—luxuriated in front of the mirror and applied her make up as she had when she had been at the party on Saturday night—she changed her outfit half a dozen times—she wore perfume to work. She left dishes in the sink and made the school lunches in the morning because she did not prepare anything the night before. Her morning had a chaotic feel to it that unnerved her as much as energised her. She could not remember being this distracted since the days when she was newlywed.

Saturday was very much a dream. There had been food and alcohol and people that she did not know. It was meant to be a girl’s night starting at the pub and then ending up at an Ann Summer’s party. There had been men walking in and out of her field of vision at the pub– A few ventured into close proximity. She enjoyed their conversations—she enjoyed rebuffing them as well. She waved around the gold on her finger like some kind of talisman against evil. Later, at the party, she met a circle of women that had come at the invitation of one of her best friends. They were a glamourous lot. Their hair and make-up were perfectly arranged as to give the effect that they belonged on a glossy magazine rather than in this suburban get-together.

She had struck up a conversation with Toni—ivory skin, violet eyes, auburn hair. They laughed. They talked about their children. They drank and ate and modelled the lingerie. They laughed some more. Toni rang for a taxi. She ordered it for 2pm. They stood outside waiting for it. Toni hugged Cecilia. They made plans to meet up for coffee. Cecilia promised to put in a holiday to meet her after the school run. They would go shopping, perhaps. Toni teetered on her heels as she stumbled to the taxi. Cecilia put her arm around her to help her in. Toni kissed her. Cecilia kissed her back.

“Call me,” said Toni.

“Yes,” said Cecilia.

It was Monday. The linen had not been changed. But her mind felt fresh. She texted Toni.


Speaking to Joe about a cup of Joe… from the novel…

black-coffee “Java poetic! Beans ground, plunged, steeped to perfection. Oh dear elixir of morning beautiful!” He looked longingly into the cup with a beatific smile. “I wish everything was as real as this.”


The We Don’t Need No Badges! scene in the novel…

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“Limitations? Ah, one persons limitations is another person’s folly,” she said. “This much I know. What you are allowed to do is inconsequential to me.” He stood in the doorway looking at her. She was beautiful in her rage. With a quiet resentment, he knew he could never get her out of his head. And though she was full of pain and anger, he reached out to her to try to contain the emotional conflageration in which she now was tortured.

She pushed him away again. Through tears she put on her shoes–grabbed her coat–found her keys. “How can you stand there and talk of limitations when you took what once was mine–when you just keep me around–why?–not to bounce ideas off of, no–you want to have me–fill up–then send me on my way–empty– when your ego is near to bursting. Limitations? Your ethics are anorexic but your fucking ego is obese!”


A Piece Within the Novel– Stream of Consciousness

imagesCAQ3TW8LDriving to work on a Monday morning, my body is in auto-pilot whilst my mind is meandering from room to room looking for the next big fix to get me back into the life-space of all the other souls—the ones that sit next to me at work—the ones that stand behind me in the queue at the post office—the ones that seem to be going out to the park with their kids every weekend and seem to be so jolly-happy all the time. Meandering within the catacombs, the vaults, the chambers—whatever they are—in my head to find where it all went so incredibly dark.
There was trust there, once upon a time, lying in the sun with someone who had my best interests at heart. That one-time-ago place that sends us into reverie of “whatshouldhavebeens” that keeps us from opening up to that “whatcouldbenow”. It keeps me from lying in the sun again. It keeps me from being warm again. It keeps me in that Narnia where everything looks really pretty but dormant-dead. Walking through the building from hall to hall, nodding to all the others who look as empty as I feel—“Good morning…”
Walking around the aisles at Tesco, I see my friend’s husband. We smiley-chat about spouses, kids and dogs. He recommends a beer to take home to “Him-indoors”. Smiles, tentative plans, give-my-loves and then he is gone. Meandering again, this time into old-time songs sung on a Saturday night and the fairy-lights in the garden and the smell of spilled wine—and the memory that you had my best interest at heart when you said you had to set me free.
Back home now with the kids wanting this, throwing that, being unquenchable in their need for something that I cannot give them. The failure of home-cooked dinner hangs in the air as I try to breathe. Night-time ritual and Himself sips that recommended beer. The kids go to bed. Checking Facebook, I read status after status : He’s in a relationship. They’ve been down in Cornwall. They celebrated a friend’s engagement. He’s happy with a cup of tea.
I update mine: “Ah, hubby is happy with his new beer, bless him. My ickle angels are tucked away in bed. Now for a bit of me time. Roll on the weekend!”
How chained I am to this freedom.


(CALIATH)

The poetry of ineptitude.

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