Tag Archives: Creative Writing Group

Write minute a day

13.11

 First fell a mushroom, then a cup. Moment later we heard a bang and all the silver and chandeliers rattled.

“Oh!” my grandmother cheerfully set down her plate with cake. “That’s my neighbor! He weights a ton! I think he’s had a heart attack – how lovely! Perhaps I can have the flat?”

14.11

 The UFO puffed and huffed, covered everything in coal dust before landing six feet away behind our dear dead-and-still-a-Mayor’s mausoleum. It should have exploded, now that would be a drama!

I stared after that smoking monstrosity and split my lips into thin line.

We didn’t like changes around here – I didn’t like changes! We even had only one Mayor and he was kept a mayor after his death, because no one could imagine going through that much of a mess in that short of time!

How dared those… those… whoever they were! How dared they come and destroy our perfectly preserved routine!

Others began gathering around. Yes, this was a drama, but imagine us having children – now THAT’s a drama! First you grew bigger for nine months and there was just no time to getting used to it and by the time you accepted so many changes, you got a screaming bundle of six feet that just wouldn’t stop making a mess! And that if you only had ONE kid! Imagine you got two! Then you’d have twelve feet tossing around – if they’d move any faster it would create a halo around your head!

Oh, this was indeed not a good sign!

22.11

 Martin scratched his hairline. He had just pulled his deep fridge open and was now staring at his electronic car keys frozen in a plastic box with plenty of water.

“What is my car keys doing in the fridge?” He frowned.

He remember the party had lasted till early hours and most of them were out by five, but he didn’t remember anyone doing this.

His flat mate was however remembered perfectly well and while crunching in his roast, mumbled: “You said – this’ gonna really confuse me tomorrow.” He swallowed the dry bread and took a sip of coffee. “Apparently drunk you plays pranks on hangover you.”

Martin winched, but took out his block of solid ice.

“Next time, tell my drunk me that such pranks cost too much.” After giving it some thought he tossed the brick back in the fridge.

“What happened?”

“You started keeping count of only every even numbered drink you had.” He finished his bread. “Oh, which reminds me – someone switched your cash for Monopoly money after midnight so you couldn’t get any more drinks at the bar.”

“How kind of them.”

“Don’t worry! If it was Cindy, she’ll at least give it back. If it was Mary you’ll never see it again.”

24.11

 James Madrid Francisco III was up late in the night in the dormitory in his private high school, when he noticed something odd, when returning from the wash room around midnight. It was twinkle of light, but so odd and wrongly placed, that he felt the need to go and check it over.

He didn’t bother dressing up and only pulled his rain coat over his blue striped pajamas and hid his feet in pair of shoes before sneaking out of the house and heading straight to the old chapel in the middle of the massive green lawn, the pride of the entire school.

There was someone there, lurking around and if there was anything he tolerated less, was some peasant growling in at the late hours to paint some graffiti over their property. And it was his property.

He was not prepared to find instead a young lady, dressed in jeans and light jacket, holding high dusty candleholder and sticking her nose close to one of the old murals decorating the chapel. She had climbed higher to get a closer look.

“I hope you don’t fall, milady?”

That was enough to cause her lose her footing, but she gained it fast, only loosing her candles.

“You startled me!”

“What are you looking for? Here, at such ghastly hour?”

“A painting, nothing more. This particular one here – see? It’s from sixteenth century, yet I know one with the same lady in another chapel that’s century older!”

Her enthusiasm was remarkable. So were the bright white hair that rolled around her neck, when she spoke and so unladylike tossed her hands around. She wasn’t local, definitely not from his class and what more – she wasn’t here to paint some graffiti.

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Aunt, my dearest

Sir Edward Hales sat down in the kitchen and was immediately offered coffee. It was packed in old cup cracked next to its handle. The drink looked soggy and aromas rising from the surface didn’t tempt him to try the brew.

Still, he thanked the young woman taking her seat on the white chair next to him and asked her to begin on reasons she had searched him out for.

Little thing she was, nearly invisible in the soft yellow glow the lamp bathed her in. Her long eyelashes kept her look steady on the lonely anemone  fainting in the small blue perfume bottle. She began by introducing herself as Edith Kinlan and told how she found an article about him in London News a month ago.

He nodded, remembering it well. The journalist had printed an image of one of his rarities and he hadn’t liked it. There had been an argument, which he lost. Another thing he hadn’t liked. While he listened, his eyes went traveling around the kitchen until they stopped at the counter on the most unusual grey, almost faded ambrotype of a baby. Quick math in his head dated it somewhere in 1850s.

The image was small, but each daisy and rose set around her small basket gleamed from the dark background and made them stand out. The child slept, tiny hands locked around small bunny while the rest of the body was hidden under white blanket. Everything around the child was created with care and love, echoing to this day the worst tragedy any parent would endure.

“Sir, I need you to hide something for me.”

Didn’t sound so preposterous request. He made his business hiding things.

The young woman took the image with the child and sat it face up in front of them.

“I have an artifact in my possession that no one can know about, except very few.” Edith said quietly and waited his response.

It had been long since those eyes had dreamt of green fields and grey stallions carrying her away from this world’s nightmares and thus such mistakes were easy to come.

“I need you to hide her.”

He woke from his dreamish delight. He was sure he heard her wrong.

“A dead child, miss?”

“She is not a usual child, milord. Can you see the image on your right?”

He turned slowly and glanced over his shoulder until he saw another child sleeping. She couldn’t be much older than six. This girl had shoulder length dark hair and white taffeta dress and she was laid amongst flowers, but those were dahlias and blueminks. The only thing same on both photos was the bunny.

“That’s also her.”

He felt confused running his eyes on until they sat on another photograph edged between glass and metallic frame.

“And the image on the far right is also her.”

On this one was a young lady, in black gown and asleep like the rest of them. Looking at the hues the photo was made in 70s using the latest technology. Her skin reminded him of a wasp nest from nature magazine, dry and papery.

“I’m not sure what I’m looking at,” he said, sensing how wrong this all sounded. He felt the draught coming from the closed door, but refused to show how uneasy her debut had made him.

“She died in 1864, sir. Her parents didn’t bare the idea of burying her, so they kept her in the same small coffin in the pantry.”  She brushed over the photo between them. “Two months later they realized the child hadn’t decomposed. Their church hadn’t seen the child for quite some time, so they asked to see her. When they refused, the priest came searching for it. They took the child away from the parents and had her buried by the church law . They were sentenced in jail for six months for desecrating the body.”

“When they got out, they dug the coffin out again and hid it. When they opened the coffin, they realized that tough it smelled like earth, the child hadn’t decomposed at all, but instead grown. They returned the body to their pantry and continued their lives as usual. Every holiday they would bring her out, set near the table and have dinner with her. And each time she had grown older. Soon after that they had other children and the body has been kept secret in our family since.

“It grows, sir, this body grows and no-one knows, why? Not as fast as usual child, but slowly it does. She is our great great great aunt and we care for her as if she was still alive.”

“You don’t consider it alive?”

“No. She has no soul that would open her eyes, no malevolent thoughts – nothing. She just… grows.” She put the photo back on the cupboard. “I want you to hide her! Take her away from our pantry!”

“Exactly what do you expect me to do, miss? And your family? How will they feel about it?”

“Our family is nearly dead. Me and my brother, we’re last ones around and as long as she is sleeping there, in the pantry, we can’t really let anyone in.”

“Why not simply bury her?”

“It’s like killing a child. I can’t do it, she still grows. Lifeless as she is, she still grows…” She flipped suddenly, as if she’d heard something from the front yard. She turned back to him quickly and grabbed his hand, sinking her fingernails deep in his skin. When she whispered her voice trembled. “I need you to take her away from here, please! My brother – he got engaged! This is our last chance! Please! We need to move on with our lives!”

“Alright, I’ll help you.” He said without thinking twice. His hand was immediately free and he used the moment to raise the coffee cup and took a sip from it. Moment later he winced, letting the cup fall down to its saucer. For a moment he had forgotten what the coffee had smelled like. Sewage mixed with carbonized beans.

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Filed under Aunt my deares, Short stories

Old Books

In the case of books
Shiniest of looks
Is a mark of shame.
For scruffiest and dusty
Marks love so feisty
It promises the fame.

Old books
With half their looks
Loved with light touch
That grannies remember
Children taught to hold them so tender
They are loved too much.

***

Second for Creative Writing Group. Inspiration came from The Little Bookroom by Eleanor Farjeon, a collection of very different sort of fairy tales that taught me to go walking bare feet if I can, read with passion and dream whenever the opportunity strikes. It’s the last one. I need to concentrate on continuing my Nano now.

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It was hot the other day

It was hot in Sicily
the other day.
In June 1963.
No shirt kind of day.

I washed away some dishes,
Greco’s words from radio
Echoing in head.

Praying, you’d call me.

Perhaps you thought you’re smart.
But an idiot,
as far as I was concerned.
For only fool won’t call
And let me know.

You were ok
the other day

***

Creative Writing Group home task. Based on First Sicilian Mafia War in June 1963.

I don’t usually write poems. Ever.  But it’s the home task, so one can at least give it a try, can’t we?

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