All entries for May 2009

May 09, 2009

The Online Photo Album

A couple of days to go, 1000 words to write, I pen this poem in a panic. Feedback please? It's a first draft, and I know it's well far from perfect.

It seems that someone’s put up some childhood photos,

And as I flick through, looking at the fancy dress parties,

I know, to remember who we were, they are our sole momentos.

The tragedy is not the growing up, for time cannot freeze.

It’s the often inexplicable change that I’m not ready for.

That little boy, dressed as Batman, playing among the trees?

His number is now one that many store.

He pushes weed mainly, due to the high demand

Among those young and old, but for a fair amount more,

Heroin, ecstasy, coke and the like can be on hand.

The girl in the princess costume, with tiara and pink dress

Is his willing slave, his heroin addict workhand.

I saw her last week, she was in pieces, a mess.

She didn’t know who I was. She ran off.

Another girl’s a Prozac dropout, due to university stress.

The sweet baby-faced boy is now a write-off

Who sits in his room, stoned, and waiting for… something.

His family have apparently chosen the approach of ‘hands-off’.

And that girl, the quiet one, is now in the process of finding

Herself, by surrounding herself with a veil of promiscuity.

There, she’s dressed as a gypsy, and is in the corner, reading.

It’s me; you know a lot changes at university?

May 06, 2009

Stories (I)

Feedback appreciated!

Every morning, I walk past an old hobo in fatigues who sits outside my apartment block. I usually try to find some change for him, even though I know we’re not supposed to. You know sometimes you can’t help but wonder where they’re from? Who they is? But I gotta be honest, I don’t think about it too long. Seriously though. If I weren’t in a rush, and I sat down next to him and asked him what he’s doing on the streets, what would he say?

I don’t think I was too upset when my number came up. We all knew about those Commies in Asia who were plotting with the Soviets to turn the whole world communist, and destroy our way of life. Course I was sad to leave my mom and pop but they were proud of me. I was going to go defend the great United States of America. I would come back a hero.

Of course it didn’t work that way.

I can’t defend stuff I did but… It was frustrating, you know? While it all started out fun, me and the boys all joking around in camp, it became pretty bad. We’d sit there, in the middle of a forest we didn’t know, surrounded by gooks who knew everything. They knew where they were, they could get us so much easier. Those booby traps for example. I’ll always be haunted by the image of one of my buddies impaled suddenly by a spear that just emerged from the earth. Try living with that. It’s not something you forget easy.

There was also a real build up for so long. We were just sat on our asses in camp, doing nothing. Waiting to be allowed to do something. And I guess we were also waiting for a chance to prove ourselves. So when the chance came, we tried to do just that. But we got carried away. No, more than carried away. It wasn’t right. I look back to that day, and I’m scared of myself. Of my buddies. Because we all just went beserk. I don’t wanna remember any of it, and helpfully, thanks to the booze, it’s a bit of a blur. But some things stand out. Like the old man who stepped up to me and greeted me. And I shot him. Point blank. The woman with the baby, who tried to run, but couldn’t outrun bullets. The kid, who tried to hide from me, behind a tree. Their faces, no matter how much of the Jack’s I get down me, are always there.

We all said we were following orders. I told them I thought the old guy had a gun. I still can’t believe we were let off! And we were proud of ourselves. We congratulated each other, remembered the best shots. We laughed at the three fags who’d tried to stop us. I can’t really remember when it hit us that we’d done something wrong. I pray to God that it was before we got home. When we got off the plane, all these hippies started yelling at us. I couldn’t believe it at first! We were defending America! We were defending the way of life they enjoyed! But then I saw the pictures they were holding up. I felt sick. You see, they look different when you’ve been chasing them. When you see a picture like that, it cuts you deep. Particularly when you know it’s your own handiwork.

There were investigations and stuff, and I just kept saying I was just following orders, and besides, I were pretty sure they had guns, grenades, that sorta shit. They coulda brought me down easy if they’d wanted to though. I don’t think they wanted a fuss made.

This stuff sticks though. You get back from fighting guerrillas somewhere, but all anyone can think of are the pictures in the lefty news. People don’t wanna employ you. Your old buddies make excuses. And so there was nothing to take my mind off the memories. My parents couldn’t seem to look at me. I couldn’t get a job. Even if I could, they usually said that my behaviour was ‘odd’. They all wanted me to get some help.

So here I am. On the streets. And no, I really don’t wanna talk anymore. Can I have a buck? Haven’t eaten for a while.

May 05, 2009

So I have been meaning to ask…

To those who are concerned, I promise it's not autobiographical.  

So I have been meaning to ask. Are you well? How have you been doing? Get up to much lately? Did you ever get that promotion? You were anticipating it for so long, I swear it came into every conversation we had that fortnight. Well, certainly most. I don’t think you did. I know you’re good at what you do, you told me often enough, but I was never really sure that you were great. All mouth.

And did you redo the kitchen? You always wanted to. I preferred it yellow like that personally. Nice and sunny. Why you wanted orange was beyond me! But it’s your kitchen now. For you to do with as you please.

And did you really get with that girl in the end? Was she everything you wanted? Did she offer you the support you needed in your difficult time? Does she love you? And do you love her? Or is it that she does all the right things? You know what I mean. When she lies under you, on her back, does she make the right noises? You know. And does she grip you and pull the right faces? You know. Smiles, not the ‘aroused despair’ you used to see in my face. Does she rub you up the right way, so to speak? Is it all glorious? Did she go down on you better than me? Did she swallow, when I wouldn’t? Does she ever lie on her front, when I didn’t want to, because it hurt? Does she jump to attention and bring you a beer as soon as you walk in the door? Does she rub your feet when you watch TV? Does she cook all your favourite dishes, just perfectly? I’m so sorry, but I prefer my steak not sitting in a puddle of its own blood. Does she look in the mirror and agree to lose weight just because you say so? Because you’d prefer less to love?

Or is she like me? Does she listen to you, but has things to talk about as well? Does she try to have a say in what you subject her too? Does she try to stand up to you? Expect a ‘please’ before getting you a beer? Request to go on top sometimes? Contribute to the general bedroom experience? I mean, I was quite happy to do what you want but I’d really have appreciated you to return the favour at times. And does she cook what she wants, how she wants? Because if you want it done another way, you should learn to cook. Does she expect you to do some of the housework as well?

If she is, she needs to get out. Like I did. Because otherwise you will break her. Like you very nearly broke me. And you know that’s wrong. Or you don’t. Which is worse.

And I have been meaning to ask another thing. Did you ever get the brakes fixed on your sports car? Did I ever even tell you to?

May 2009

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