as nails driven hard,
the eyes are gouged out
yet images remain,
limp eyelids blink
on hollow sockets,
blood trickles down.
in the raw flesh.
I should have known
that haunting images
shall one day return
and go deeper inside,
as you hammer them
Last week, I gave myself a writing prompt of 5 words: abandoned, nurture, trimming, silently, cupboards, and clocked ten minutes on the countdown timer on my cellphone. Now that I go back to it after a few days, I don’t hate it so much, so I thought I will post it here:
They have grown silently around the abandoned house, those creepers, those creatures of nature and of stealth. They have piled in through the broken basement windows, they have grown over the cracks on the steps, they have climbed the steps to the forgotten bedrooms. They will not leave the house well enough alone because man makes homes, but Nature nurtures graves.
The house has stood here silently on the mound under the dripping rain, the blazing sun, and you have seen it change its face. It has grown old with you, like you: you, whose nails need trimming, whose clothes need mending, whose table needs cleaning, whose utensils need washing. And so is the house with its wild lawns, its rusty banisters, cobwebbed chandeliers, broken gates, and nesting sparrows.
You and the house have grown old together, silently and alone, like old friends. Those who left you in hate, left the house at the same time, but you do not wait for them, and the house does not, either. You await death and the house waits for demolition, and meanwhile it is a rambling old place where a boy or two can find adventure, where a homeless man can find shelter from the rain.
But you do not welcome the boy or the homeless man, you wander like a ghost in the house, and keep out the real ghosts who do not want to step into this wanton seclusion, this morbid togetherness. The shadows of the house cling to you when you take out your aged car, it waits patiently for you to return, because it knows you will.
It is alive, dying, and pulling you in with it all the time into its corridors of no sunlight and stale air, into its musty cupboards with doors thrown ajar, its old kitchen with the burst oven, its leaky roof, its dark cellars and its noisy chimney on stormy nights. Even the fireplace throws out more shadows than light.
The house has its eyes, it has its nose and teeth, and all work together to keep you in and others out. Don’t you see its arms holding you back, pulling you inexorably in, in, in, in, always in—no light for you, no life, and that is the way the house wants it. I know you want it the same way too, but today I stand here, calling to you. Won’t you listen, just this once? Or will you pick up my call, fold it over and toss into the bin across your bed?
You have to decide, because this will be the only call that will ever come, the call from me to you.
I have been writing a lot last week, only not at this blog or any of the others. A lot of that writing has been utter crap, but at a bare minimum I am showing up at the page every day and worrying less about the money I am making. In my book (pun not intended), that is progress already.
I am discovering the various joys of speed-writing, and at the very least it has been fun.
Writing is my second profession, I started off with literature, veered off madly, and came right back to writing.
I wish I had some of the verve of this rocking Italian Cappuchin monk though:).
Changing what you do every few years is guaranteed to keep you young, energetic, and full of life. I don’t think I will ever completely give up writing, but a few interesting career options come to mind.
Would you change what you do today if could? Want to talk about it?
I wrote a lot today, and finished a short story to boot.
Though I am feeling lousy (which I wont rant about here cos I have my separate rant blog now) otherwise, it is nice to go to bed with the thought that I at least got a lot of writing done.
Writing is always such a tricky thing to do. The minute you decide you want to write “about” something, in a “particular way”, you feel strained. I have often found that it is easier to permit myself to write rubbish, to accept that one cannot produce works of true genius all the time, and in the cases of some writers, maybe never at all.
It is the same with all art I suppose. You are trying so hard to create a masterpiece that you forget to relax and let things come to you. At the end of the day, it is important that you listen to what comes to you and take it down, instead of trying to “make” something.
I wish I could treat writing like I treat my reading. I read, and read too much for my own good, but not so I can sit for an exam, or gain something material. I do not have to be good at reading, and I can read anything, from manuals to menus, completely uncaring of what “quality” I read. I have read Harlequin romances and Goethe on the same day and enjoyed both. They were both worth my time, and I am not ashamed to say it.
Maybe I am not destined to become a great writer, I just don’t have it in me. But that’s alright. As long as I am enjoying what I am doing, or following a compelling need within, I should not complain.
Here is hoping that I get the “I” out of my system in this and my other blogs, and when I write otherwise, am able to forget that an “I” exists. A giant pen with ears— that is who I am, simply taking dictation from somewhere up above, or deep within.
I am not a writer, but a secretary to Someone Who Knows, taking dictation.
Now I have to make sure I write that down on my writing-desk!