The Young Professional

Cold hands warm colders cans.
Beer’s not bought for sharing here.
As the key slides the bolt back
The click echoes in my empty flat.

Pastry

Thickly layered,
Cream smeared,
Luscious, coy,
Millefeuille

Church door

Not sure about this one…

It may have had no hands, no feet, no limbs. But it have a voice, more than that it had what it needed. It existed and did so because of one man. One man, once good, now beyond repair. Like it, he could no longer move by himself.

He relied on it for everything and it relied on him – an unsteady and symbiosis had developed or was it parasitism? Both thought of it as such, one thinking he was the host and one the pathogen, but if the truth be told they needed each other and could not shake the other off without the certainly of uncertainty. Where it had come from? It, let alone anyone else, knew.

Its conscience developed slowly like the gates of a lit church opening slowly there was nothing, then a crack appeared, and then the crack widened. The light crept inextricably slowly, round, over the curved top of the door and the light spilled out and washed towards it so slowly. It flowed like thick golden butter to engulf its consciousness could feel itself and it knew that it was what it did not know was why it was p it still didn’t and maybe it never would just a being with out a purpose. It lacked romance and imagination,.

He found it humming gently behind a sofa. He picked it up, turned it , and then dropped it at the sound of a voice. Help me/ for you see it had gone mad ;; a consciousness left by itself in nothing but thick golden butter can not be expected to sustain any level of rational thought for long. You see against all its logic it had found a god.

But not some add onto life to explain what it did not know; the god was all it knew – it was itself/ it saw itself as the crtator for how else could exsistance ahbve occurred it not thorugh it for it w as the only thinkg that existed so it mauhc hav e crastedv it self.s

Fireflies

This is a passage concieved outside of sobriety. One day I’ll fit it into a story.

A thousand shards of my brain exploded. Like fireflies suddenly released, I wriggle and convulse outwards from myself and absorb the world as I pass. Knowledge is relayed back to my core. I gain control of my expanding conscience. I feel like I am growing, filling from the inside with humanity, yet I know that I am sitting in a bloody mess on the gritty floor of this flat. I can feel everything; the surface, the radio waves, the trembles of insects under ground, the cold of the wall against my cheek. The information stacks itself in me, ordered and controlled I contain it and understand it.

Questions are answered and questions arise. Extrapolating to the past I see my successor implanting a chink into the armour of a monster, I see the propagation of the chink as the monster grows into a distorted and distended mass. The mass the controls us all now. I see the lever that can finally prise open the beast and allow access to it’s weakness. Allow its destruction.

God’s Knee

The sun struck the mismatched corrugated iron roof tops splaying yellow shards of light across the horizon. The red sand of distant hills was mellowed by the afternoon dust kicked up by the endless march of bright lorries ferrying goods to and from the plains below. This was the journey he was about to make. He had been travelling for some time before settling for more than one month in the foothills of Ladakh – time had disappeared and looking back all he remembered were vivid still images and a feeling of calm that he never regained.

The last day before the journey they spent on top a high temple to the north of the city. What a strange mix of friends incongruously gathered on the steps below the domed plinth, where a seated Buddha sat staring towards some inner bliss. The sun slowly touched the hills below them. The bottom of its sphere quivered and; he felt like a little child who had been taken up to god’s knee to witness once what god sees endlessly. Removed from time for a split second he saw the world revolve a hundred million times below him – endless cycling of the seasons brushed past beneath and hills grew old. The orange-red glow of the sun changed texture and the illusion was broken. The hills were no longer clothed in warm light – night was coming. His companions were oblivious too the transformation and sat happily laughing and joking. Had they forgotten that he was leaving them, did they know that they would never see each other again? An unseen and delicate terror permeated him; never before had he had cause to fear what lay before him. Suddenly he could see ditches in what had always been the pristine prairie of his future.

He contemplated staying but realised that it was too late. Never again could he sit with these people or in this place and not yearn for that feeling of bliss. Tomorrow he would leave and nothing would remain of them but a memory. He would have to find another god who would take him on to his knee. He left them there and made his way back to the lodgings that he had called home these past weeks. Little can he remember of them now; snippets of recollection. The collection of early 80s readers digest magazines. A distinct kind of musty smell that still takes him back to the folds of those thin curtains. And other images too fleeting to be clear enough express.

Though it was weeks, maybe it was months, until he returned to England he had no idea what he did with the time. Life flowed on around him but without him. It was pleasant enough or at least he remembered nothing that was unpleasant. But within him something was morphing and changing in so subtle a way that he can only see it now – and still not clearly. It was a growing feeling of being on a steady slope, slipping backwards, inextricably, towards a precipice. Now he recalls that it grew close to panic sometimes. Sitting beside the Ganges or walking past sacred cows in the market he would have to close his eyes and calm himself, find that inner peace that was once happening and not just a memory; see the world rotate; steady himself; breath; and dive back to reality with the opening of eyes. Like a drug the memory kept him sane.

Eventually he was on the plane to his old home. As it lifted from the tarmac, his body pressed into the aeroplane seat and with that pressure knowledge was lost. Cumulative knowledge held there by a web that needed unspecified nourishment to keep it strong – the air-conditioning sapped it and it broke. Who knows what he lost as it seeped into the headrest of the chair. He slept. The landing of the plane infused him with an altogether more clear and plastic wrapped state of mind. Sanitised from contemplation he returned to the life of shiny busyness, of hustle-bustle and full-up schedules. Only now in the quietest of moments on the stillest evening can he conjure the revolving world and once again be a little child on the knee of a god.

Taxi ride

Safely secluded in six pints, the taxi

slithers down silent streets

lights splash, memories flare

and snatched at drift away

trailing gently mocking faint dispair

Did spilt soup always infuriate her?

I feel it coming. The potential of tonight was always too much. Something was bound to happen and knock a pleasant night into forgetful mediocrity, or worse memorable mediocrity. So far looks like tonight might be one that’s not easily lost amongst the cranial folds.

“Yes dear, mine’s a little cold too”, perhaps I can head off the inevitable long enough for us to be gone before…

“I really think you should say something” – too late, now we’re deep into crisis management.

Looking at her now, I can barely recall any happy times we’ve had. I know I’ve felt happiness in her company, I know I used to look into her face and do nothing but smile, but bugger me if I can remember any dates or even places – I’m sure there was blue sky.

“Well?”

Last chance to salvage my hopes of a pleasant dinner, I pretend not to hear, “Do you remember when we were sitting under the blue sky?”

“What?”

Shit, I’ve dug a hole now. “I remember,” I begin, I’m going to have to wing it, “sitting on the grass, gazing at your face”

“Even the lettuce is wilted,” she interrupts, “ they can’t even do a salad.” This sentence is followed by an invisible, “tut”. She wields it like a whip, I know my face squirms under it, I know she’s pretending not to notice my reaction, I know she’s enjoying this. How anyone enjoys complaining about salad and subjugating others at the same time is beyond me.

Still, might as well continue my efforts to save us from drudgery, “Yes, grass and sky,” I trail off as the irritating pimple of a waiter weaves towards us. I know what’s coming and I’m already ashamed, staring at the bread rolls I furiously think how to manage the forthcoming conflict. Pimple will ask, ‘Is everything OK?’, I sink further into my chair at the thought of those words, then my wife will look at me and threaten to Tut – what will I do?

All I can think about is green grass and blue sky – just two blocks of colour, one above the other. The footsteps come closer, pause, a throat is cleared. Then a ‘tut’. No, not ‘tut'; ‘tush’ and it’s coming from the waiter. Sunk in my chair hunched over the bread my neck swivels. I glimpse the underside of Pimple’s chin before he smartly turns and head towards the kitchen – saved – Sweet Jesus.

Bolstered my this surprising good fortune I extract a spoonful of watery soup, and continue headlong with my rescue efforts. “We were sitting on that old rug we kept in the car – remember” I say this last word with such intensity that my soup spoon leaps in my hand. This is unlikely to go down well, remonstration is sure to ensue. Was it always so? Had I spilt soup when we first met what would the reaction have been? A shy smile and touch of my hand. Did such gentle gestures hide her real emotions – did spilt soup always infuriate her?


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