Tag Archives: fiction

“On a summer night during the previous week the whole club, forty-odd women, with any young men who might happen to have called that evening, had gone like swift migrants into the dark cool air of the park, crossing its wide acres as the crow flies in the direction of Buckingham Palace, there to express themselves along with the rest of London on the victory in the war with Germany. They clung to each other in twos and threes, fearful of being trampled. When separated. they clung to, and were clung to by, the nearest person. They became members of a wave of the sea, they surged and sang until, at every half-hour interval, a light flooded the tiny distant balcony of the Palace and four small straight digits appeared upon it: the King, the Queen, and the two Princesses. The royal family raised their right arms, their hands fluttered as in a slight breeze, they were three candles in uniform and one in the recognizable fur-trimmed folds of the civilian queen in war-time. The huge organic murmur of the crowd, different from anything like the voice of animate matter but rather more a cataract or a geological disturbance, spread through the parks and along the Mall. Only the St John’s Ambulance men, watchful beside their vans, had any identity left. The royal family waved, turned to go, lingered and waved again, and finally disappeared. Many strange arms were twined round strange bodies. Many liaisons, some permanent, were formed in the night, and numerous infants of experimental variety, delightful in hue of skin and racial structure, were born to the world in the due cycle of nine months after.”
— Muriel Spark – The Girls of Slender Means

“On a summer n…

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Observations of a fragmented flight

He is back again to the east of his youth.. The giant hollow metallic bird landed at the end. It crossed endless miles, nine time zones, more than three dozen countries and culture, a barrier of languages, customs and stories.

The flight, one of those saturated with babies in diapers waiting to be changed in the bathroom. One of those flights that echo with the shouts and wails of youngsters craving attention or a candy. One of those flights were alcohol is consumed in abundance by those who are said to be religious.

One of those flights were flight hostesses strut in the aisles like models carrying the latest gadgets from Tokyo, the latest perfumes from Paris and the finest cigars from Cuba. A decadent capitalist flight.

A dog eared book ; Sylvia Plath’s The Bell Jar; a sordid tale about 6 months in a twenty something girl’s life in the Big Apple .. his only companion other than the unpleasant forced company of a chatterbox that took the form of an obese sweaty man that recited 400 words a minute.. a human miracle.

The food was mediocre at best.. bland, pre-packaged .. picked up from various international markets.. bite size food.. never finger food; enough to feel that you are chewing on a piece of processed meat or proteins.

Yet, he is home. Home is where the heart is or so they say.

He was away from home for years, by choice never by force. A solitary man up in the mountain of love , peace and understanding. A world of oneness .. a facade.. an escape from the horrors of reality, war, death and the big bad wolf.

It was a life secluded and delicate like a fine bone china teacup.. eternal and fragile. Life among books, letters, music and hope made him a hopeless case of a human being.. a chaotic romantic.. a cynic and a drunkard on the nectar of life.

Yet, here he is. Among the past. His favorite card in a tarot deck is death.. the call to cut those pieces in you that hinder progress.. that call you to play in the playgrounds of the past.. among the relics and ruins of childhood. How can he restrain from running into that?

The non smoking sign is still turned on. A large red sign staring at him from the ceiling. Agitations run in him.. shivers of withdrawal.

“Welcome home.” said the mass of fat sitting next to him.

“ Thanks. Same to you”.

The passengers are in line.. prisoners awaiting the call of freedom.. the cries of children, the sweat, the smell, humidity and the heat from the rubbing of bodies on starched carpet.

The line is moving slowly toward the exit.. slowly.. each step closer to the light.. closer to the ladder… away from any snakes. Smiles being exchanged among strangers.. brethren for a few hours.. strangers for eternity.

The light is just a few steps away.. one step closer to salvation among the heathens. The last farewell from oriental hostess.. a Greek plane captain.. his Scottish co-pilot that reminded him of Moby Dick.. and finally the exit.. five steel steps.. and a flood light on those steps.

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Fragment : The Girl Of His Dreams

She walks alone
From shore to shore
Twilight to dawn

She sits at a corner by the the window..
The girl of his dreams

One day he vows to save her.

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Unfinished ocean tale

The ocean is three miles from my room. On clear days, I can see the reflections on its surface. Silver beads, going back and forth with the waves. Salty air filling the space and traveling into my nostrils. The ocean , our friend and enemy, our past and future: the source of pride of the island. Me, a little girl of 13 gazing out of the window into the endless ocean.

Last week, someone in the village died. A fisherman , Solomon was his name. He fished cod , haddock and squid. Was he old ? I don’t think so. Did he have any kids ? None that I know of, mom never mentioned them. He was not found.. the blue green boat of his returned to the harbor alone, empty, no sign of him. 

The funeral , the first I’ve been to since the death of my pops four years ago. Nothing remarkable , dirt scattered on a coffin, a sermon of God, death, peace everlasting. Half of the village went to the cemetery, some alone and some with others..hunched shadows in the light of a grey sun. Some cried, I heard his wife, now called a widow according to my dog eared dictionary, cry into the dark open pit of grave. Weeping and crying for the days to come, I suppose.

Young girls are not allowed to the funeral, our parents try to keep us from being contaminated by sadness. Pure shall we stay till someday.. or that what mom says.

After the funeral i walked to the ocean. Barefoot , in my Sunday pink dress, with buttons up to here – my neck- and a straw hat. Most of the shops were closed except Mrs Noseworthy, the grocer, I purchased some red hard candy from the glass box by the till. 2 cents worth of candy. Thanks Mrs and i ran away after throwing the two dark coins on the counter.

Do I usually walk alone, you may be asking yourself? Yes it is safe here , people do know each others. Life is simple , we have one radio machine in town and men surround it to hear about the war or a thing they call news.

So I walked, slowly on the main dirt road. No strangers was passing by, I was alone.. my dictionary with me, a book i won from Mr Johnson , the English teacher for reciting a Victorian poem called Rest by a female poet

O EARTH, lie heavily upon her eyes; Seal her sweet eyes weary of watching, Earth;
Lie close around her; leave no room for mirth With its harsh laughter, nor for sound of sighs.
She hath no questions, she hath no replies, Hush’d in and curtain’d with a blessèd dearth Of all that irk’d her from the hour of birth;
With stillness that is almost Paradise. Darkness more clear than noonday holdeth her, Silence more musical than any song;
Even her very heart has ceased to stir: Until the morning of Eternity Her rest shall not begin nor end, but be;
And when she wakes she will not think it long.

The ocean is closer, when my eyes are closed shut. The salty air guids me to the harbour, to the boats, to the gutted fish and seagulls. The sun still playing on the surface, shades and shadows drawn and erased with waves. Red and white stripped lighthouse stands on the mouth of the harbour to welcome strangers from strange lands.

Jeevis’s red and black boat is coming in, a trail of seagull flying over, I hope none would drop a gift on my hat. The boat slowly gets close, paving its way, more like carving it on the ocean.

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Fragment #8 Burnin Love

A dark bar..wooden floors..Five slot machines in a dark corner next to the ladies washroom.

A man with blue glasses, baby blue frames..baby blue aviators ..in an Air Canada pilot uniform complete with a hat, and three stars on each shoulder.

“Elvis is alive”  he proclaims..no one raises their eyes. the old man still playing the machine, a youngish bald guy sipping a bloody Mary on the counter, me nursing a beer .. and our friend the pilot in the shadow proclaiming the immortal life of the Hunk of Burnin Love.

“I have evidence .. a watch”. A huge circular Coca Cola red wall watch .. with the picture of Elvis. A profile of Elvis in a white rhinestone suit..an angelic or prophetic image..

“He is alive” some crack a laugh.. the man leaves carrying the watch ..dragging the evidence of immortality and hops to the next bar.

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