Thursday September 1st, 2016

The exercise:

As always, it has been too long. Let us return to the random CD prompt. Find a song, as randomly as you wish, and borrow its first line. After that, just take your tale wherever inspiration directs you to go.

September already. Goodness me.

Work at the bakery was back to pre-summer busyness this morning. We still had croissants and cinnamon buns left when I headed for home at noon. Like, lots of them.

This afternoon we went to Rattlesnake Canyon to celebrate one of Max's friend's birthday. I took Max for his first go kart ride which he was pretty excited about. Then we hung out in the arcade for a while, mostly just pretending to play video games. Although I did actually put money into one of the racing games (I pressed the gas and helped him steer).

Fun times.

Mine:

Letting the Cables Sleep by Bush

You in the dark.

You in the pain.

That is how I remember you. I wish it were not so. I wish that other, happier memories would force their way through. But alas... alas.

The disease stole your light.

The disease destroyed your comfort.

I was powerless in the face of it all. I could only hold your hand and watch. I couldn't stop it. As desperately as I wanted to, I couldn't help you.

And, in the end, the disease took you away from me.

And now?

Now... I'm beginning to believe it has come for me.

2 Comments:

Greg said...

Given your hostility to Mr. Wriggles I'm a little surprised you went to somewhere called Rattlesnake Canyon :) The go-karting sounds like fun though, so I 'm glad that Max is still happy with his bike and isn't trying to get it traded in for a car!
I like the bleakness of your writing today: it's tight and sharp and the last line delivers a nice punch. The use of the single sentence paragraphs works particularly well, especially in conveying a sense of loneliness and isolation. Really nicely done!

The Last Royals - Crystal Vases
If I die a lonely death, I'm sure it's from the cigarettes I smoked each day after you left me standing all alone. If you were there in your apartment now you could look out of your window -- the tin-foil has been taken down, I know you can't be at home -- and see me here beneath the street-light, a thin curl of smoke circling my head like -- I'm going to say it, a wreath -- and maybe, just maybe, a hint of emotion would break through on your glassy-eyed pallid face.
Would you remember the first time you saw me? It was early February, there was still snow on the ground, knee-high where the ploughs had cleared the streets and I'd spent fifteen minutes clearing a space around the street-light to lean nonchalantly against it. I was wearing a leather jacket over a thin t-shirt, not enough to stand around in the cold but I didn't know that. Skinny jeans, because I still thought anorexia was sexy. I'd forgotten to put the plum lipstick on but that didn't matter, the cold was taking care of it for me. And I loitered, thinking about films from the forties and Marlene Dietrich and fancying myself a lost soul in a noir world.
You appeared out of nowhere wearing a smoking jacket. Burgundy. There was a thin chain hanging loosely from a breast pocket, I learned later that there was a monocle in there. I learned about the contents of the other pockets so much sooner, but right then you were like an incubus. You were still glassy-eyed -- I stole a single photograph of you, a passport photo, from your wallet one evening when you were communing with the kibbutz on Mars, the only one I've ever seen there there was life in your eyes. I look at it while I draw on these Gauloises, and wish I'd known you then.
"I've always wondered what frostbite would look like if it were a person," you said. Your words were slurred very slightly and there was a sweetness to your breath that was a bright note against the chill of the undeparted winter; it was alcohol of course but it was months before I realised that. "Can I defrost you?"
Was that romantic? Or was that just your unworldliness?
I tried to say no but the words were frozen in my throat and you mistook my attempts to speak as laughter and so you took me by the elbow -- I can feel the light touch of your fingers, the gentle pressure, the strange lack of personality just by thinking about it -- and led me to the lobby of your building where the doormen formed ranks, stood to attention and saluted, and you showed me a world so far above mine and yet as empty and lonely.
I remember the tinfoil on the windows and on the table and I shiver again and light another cigarette.

Marc said...

Greg - thanks for the kind words on mine.

This. Is. Fascinating.

I like it a lot. And would love to have another glimpse into any of the things reference here. Some really intriguing details.

You've definitely captured my imagination with this one.