The Remnants of what was.

Photo by Elina Krima on Pexels.com

He knots his fingers and flexes his hands jerkily, leaves clean stripes on his arm and neck when he rubs hard. My lip twitches with sadness at his grimy hand trembling. Eyes down, glued to his boots, they’re good boots. He startles onlookers with his strange muttering. I’m only a step away or at least a short distance from him. My gaze wanders across his prematurely lined features and the weathered cloth of his twine tied coat. I catch the eye of my passing waitress, who nods knowingly. I wave my fingers, more chewed than she would have seen before, so quickly fist them away, out of sight. She returns with a bag for takeout. I keep watch as I settle the bill. Coffee spilt due to its weight on the wobbly-legged table. Her eyes pool as she apologises while wiping it up. She rips the cover from her note pad expertly folds it then squats to push it under the leg. I think ‘If only it could be that easy to fix everything. Her smile is kind. Blinks away the telltale tears undercover of the table. Nods once looking back towards the road. Her shoulders slump, and with a sigh, she continues to clear tables. My explanation spilt out six months ago when I first found him. Now it sits like secrets between spies ‘A nods as good as a tapped nose.’ Dad used to say when we were kids. We loved telling him it was wrong. “No, it’s a nod is as good as a wink,” We would taunt. He doesn’t joke much anymore; not one of us does.

I wipe my eyes with a paper napkin that I am twisting thoughtlessly in my fists. I hold my breath as I watch. Martin takes too much time manoeuvring unseen enemies and mined traps. I am counting his steps, speaking out loud. I am startled to silence by a mumbled word (Crackpot) coming from a suited man brushing past me. Four minutes it took for him to walk six feet of the busy pavement. The lunchbreak office staff, bankers, business people and shoppers moan and gripe as he blocks their path and swallows a moment of the hour of freedom they have. A pensioner’s rheumy eyes spot him. He nods knowingly, pats his arm and dodders on.

Martin is opposite me, with only one road to cross. But I am hopeful today, whisper > today I will be successful <. He stoops, scans the tarmac, takes an audible breath and runs as if his life depends on it weaving towards me. I stand, my face pulls the biggest of grins I feel my arms start to lift. Then a horn blasts, I see him freeze, a voice shouts obscenities at him. And just like that, he is gone. There is no point in chasing him. I learned the hard way how that goes. No, I will try again tomorrow and all the other tomorrows that no doubt there will be. With sisterly love and a heavy heart, I tip the server, straighten my back and fasten my coat. Before I leave, I pause to pass a raggedy bundle in a shop doorway the bag of food that Martin did not get. For we never know their story, we only see the remnants of what was.

Too many of our ex military, police, medics Firemen and others are left broken by the trauma they see and clear up every day. This flash fiction is a glimpse at that, a speck of what we know is on our streets, in our towns and villages. Broken discarded people #MentalHealth. Please comment leave me your thoughts below.

An otherwise ordinary day at the library.

Ilminster Library.

In a small market town in Somerset where most buildings are made from Jurassic Hamstone. The public library being one such building sits solid in the ground. Drawn as I was to it, not just because I am to anywhere that books live, the building looked as old as a gnarly tree (Ancient buildings often do) it caught my attention. I was welcomed by a sign outside saying ‘libraries love readers, step inside and read.’ So I did.

This sign I took literally, so with a huge smile, for such a miserable day … I marched right in. Reading stories and making them up has always been my thing. I have been spilling tales from my mouth uncontrollably since I could speak . I have been known (since this day) to fold myself into the children’s corner like a master of yoga and read aloud. Like a character from a Grimm’s fairy-tale or a strong magnet, people would be drawn to me … mostly small ones.

This specific day I did just that. Once I crossed my legs, I pushed my sit bones in to a cushion and began. Parents and children sat and stood around me, eyes wide, mouths open, as they sat in silence. This silence made the voices I gave the characters more pronounced and my face more animated as I read. I elaborated, asked for their input, both big and little people joined in, calling out questions and might have beens. I warmed to the twinkles in their eyes and dimpled smiles, they were the best moments. At the end I was clapped, which pinked my cheeks. I recall a moment of surprise washed over me; chased by a hot shade of embarrassment.

At that very moment a bespectacled gentleman of the Library; the custodian I believe he called himself, shushed me forcibly. So forcibly in fact I would swear his teeth rattled as If they would be blown clean from his mouth. A kind librarian stopped to ask If I would like a regular spot. We all I suspect had a lovely interlude, to an otherwise ordinary day.

Photo by cottonbro on Pexels.com

What tale do you find your mind wanders to if a child asks you to tell them a story? Do you fabricate one, or prefer to read from a book? Do let me know in the comments.

A little piece of sustenance, Chocolate for in case.


I take no credit for this tiny film, I couldn’t leave it where I found it please read and let me know how it made you feel. Thank you.
And most of all thank you Francine.

▶ 4:56

I pressed Facebook,  I heard a ping,
I came across an extraordinary thing.
It wasn’t a cat or pointless meme
It was the love of humanity.

To celebrate March the 8th’s international women’s day, I have resurected a post that surely celebrates a woman who stands head and shoulders above most.

Please do not pass by without thought

Or smile and say nought.

Take four minutes of your time,

To meet a true hero of mine.

Then let me know if your time was well spent, I hope you do not walk on by, leave my a comment let me know if you think she deserves a spot on international womens day. Thank you for your time.

A Short Stream Of Consciousness.

Linda Hills stream of conciousness prompt please press 🔜 here 🔚  to read and join,  it Is fun #SOCS  No editing just pouring onto the page.


My Dad used to say “Nice things come in small parcels” he said it mostly to cheer me up…  Mum said “so does poison”  If as she often pointed out every family has their cross to bear, then it is possible I was it.

I am one of four girls who were all… a slighter build than me, they had dainty feet and were bor… fortunate with prettier eyes and full lashes and without double chins. All three had wavy or curling hair, they were popular, and taller than me, all three were in the top choice when teams were picked, and all three had tone, rythm and speed.

wpid-cymera_20141201_190627.jpg

Where,  I never grew into my large clumsy feet or had the ability to beautifully sing and dance. My bum was always big in this … whatever this happened to be. My singing voice… well least said and all that.  I swear someone put my eyes on upside down and stole my midriff… seriously, how is it that I have a standard leg length, a six foot arm span *holds head* “really” and am four foot eleven and a half. I was the girl that the netball captain dreaded having to take, the sister that the vicar told “god had better things than the choir on his mind when he made me” ! Promptly giving the collection plate over ( my then new job). And just in case you think like a butterfly I morphed into my wonderful self… No!

Singing is my passion and I could still win X factor the voice and be a singing sensation, but no one other than me hears the way my ears do… I still have straight as a poker hair, bigger feet,  shorter body, upside down eyes,  two chins, weigh more than them, I hide from the ball, miss with a bat and in comparison my bum is still big in that.

In case you think I feel sorry for myself NO! You see I am unique, I am an anomaly. I can laugh at myself, make others happy, I am kind and generous.  If I don’t compare myself to my sisters, I am average weight and fitness with a standard sized foot. My siblings are smaller (not shorter) and lighter than the norm. They are…  they, and I am me, a friendly, happy, quirky woman who writes. My husband, who by the way insists my differences drew him to me, loves this bonkers loon and wouldn’t alter a bit of me.. except maybe my  penchant for singing and being bouncy as I wake.

 

There I kept it short and shared pieces of me.

Do you fit neatly into your family have you grown into your space? I am dying to hear.

Watching Dad.

His arms were strong and he seemed so tall when we were his little girls. His eyes crinkled at the sides when he smiled, he nipped and tickled and made us squeal. Invincible he was way back when … when we were small. He brushed my hair and shared a joke. He made me feel loved. Each one of us thought we were his favourite, when really we were equal; in his eyes. He taught me how to polish boots so I could see my face and made me giggle more than once when I was saying grace. I remember him showing us, how he won a race, with his arm up in the air, flicking his fingers until they clicked re-living the moment, the winning post. That time; it was just for us, a private demonstration to entertain, a reconstruction riding the finish with commentary to boot.

He chastised me, taught me right from wrong. Sometimes he stood in my corner like a giant … a giant of a man but small. I learned some cheeky rhymes from him some I never understood. But he could make me laugh when I was feeling sad. Dad was the quintessential cheeky chappie, with a twinkle of a smile in his eye and a joke on his tongue. He’d give a flick with a towel to make us run. He would squeeze our hands until we made a squeal especially if solemnity was expected. His face would crinkle and his shoulders shake; in silent laughter.

Dad sat me on my first big horse and taught me how to make a warm mash. Horse husbandry he taught me, the hoof pick, the curry comb and how to groom. We would brush until the horse’s coat would gleam and persperation ran down my cheeks. He showed me how to plait my hair he taught me to ride a bike. I could see a lot in him that I would grow to like.

Now as a woman I watched a shadow of my Dad. Hanging on to the remnants of this cruel life. Those rheumy eyes searching our mothers face for what? … Looking hard into her, he was making sure she was still there. Clinging tightly on, a silent pact, a sliver of hope shoots back and forth between them. A look full of love that spans a lifetime of memories; both good and bad. Times spent in passion, lust and humour, love and anger all that was in between. The life he had before us and the sorries that went unheard; or unseen. Things he can never put right. Lying there, in his bed, there are things he will never be able to change, you cannot turn back time. “I can’t change the past,” he said.

Cruelly, slowly, painfully we watched life dragging him piece by piece, gouging away until he had no tomorrow’s. Years of life as a husband, a father, brother, uncle and a Gramps, it was all about to alter; and it did. Nothing will ever be the same, there is now a gap, a space, a gaping hole that no one outside sees. A chasm so huge it pulls us to our knees.

Written with love and the fondest of memories. The world lost our Dad on October fifth 2014.

Don’t be sad for we had him, be sad for those who never knew him and were missing his fun.

Is there a person who has gone but still brings a smile and a fond recall to your mind? Leave me a comment and I will answer soonest 👋👋👋😘💕

I Want To Turn The Clock Back.

image

I want to turn the clock back … to before you went away,

To get the chance to tell you, and beg of you to stay.

I want to turn the clock, to face against the wall

To hope that the sickle, this time, fails to fall.

 

I would cradle your tiny body and together we would sleep,

Beneath a comfy blanket with booties on your feet.

You would recognise me by the noises that I make,

The songs I’d be singing while I baked for you a cake.

 

The house would fill with laughter as I introduced to you,

A sister and two brothers, who would be in love with you.

They’d fight to let me hold you, and smother you in love,

You would have fitted in this family, like a hand into a glove.

 

But clocks don’t go backwards, time refuses to stand still,

Mothers can’t make it happen, we haven’t got free will.

If we did, we would have held you and never let you go,

But you got taken to a corner, of time we’ve yet to know.

 

The sun keeps on shining, as does the falling rain,

The sunflowers still blossom, though it’s not the same.

Growing up a family, with your missing name,

Is like gazing at a sunflower … through a broken pane.

 

Today, a long past memory was jogged, a never forgotten moment recalled and tears were shed; but all is just as it should be.

Only you take the blame.

image

Walk in the shoes of no man,
Wear no ones hat but your own.
Live inside your own daydream,
For this life is your only home.

life is to do what you want with,
It was given out pure and clean.
If then you sully and stain it
Its no good making a scene.

When time comes to be counted,
each problem you faced lay bare.
There will be no more excuses
It will be only you standing there.

Photo meme found on Facebook origin unfound as yet

Words from a woman who writes

FB_IMG_1445012744754

I am she the woman who writes.

I begin about six and end around ten thirty. Sorry that was a lie, it isn’t about it is at.

Unless of course we are away and other things get a look in. Things like babies to hold, people asleep, conversations to make or reminiscing to take part in.

Even then I am watching, trying to change it around. I am not writing at these times but researching. I am collecting mannerisms, tones of voice, dialect, a laugh or the tilt of a head, maybe a funny walk.

Recently we had a weekend away and my husband was asked if I was unwell. I had been nipping in and out of the bathroom to scribble. Having a pen or pencil concealed about my person for use at all times is  law.

I often have a character or two with my mother’s words, my father’s hat and yesterday my character had my doctor’s gait. I write storylines with my neighbour’s hen house. I will also include her cackling laugh so what I am saying is,I am writing.

To relax I read, but do I? Reading is for me how other people eat, reading is sustenance, fuel or a thing that I do; so I can write. There you go! I am writing again. I read everything, I read novels, science fiction, comedy, horror and dystopian thrillers. I devour books of all kinds, romantic comedy, chic lit, true life, biographies and fantasy, ancient books, historical drama, I even read birthday greetings and cereal packs. I think I don’t read Genre`s, I read words, stories, adventures but mostly I read because I can.

Now, when I read I am seeing how the author altered the flow, how did he make me know she was scared, loved or sick? With a slight change I was led to feel the way that character felt. “You know what?” I am still writing.

image

(Picture belongs to My Elephant – http://wp.me/p4NJtM-iY and I thank themomfred for the loan.)

When all at once, someone, somewhere asks, “The” question, yes that old chestnut, the elephant that enters the room. The question that once answered makes the poser of such a question, leave the room. The answer makes seemingly interested parties friends and family, oh yes even family, skedaddle, Vamoose or Huff and grunt.
Seemingly polite individuals suddenly lose their manners. Question “Are you published?” Answer I’ve had a short story a piece of flash fiction published but not a book no “Not yet”. Now I am no more than a mad deranged woman who lives in cloud cuckoo land, I am now someone not worth listening to.
But I do, I write, I was told it wasn’t enough, I needed twitter and a blog, a platform to promote my book, the one that isn’t yet finished.  I then began learning, posting, and making connections. I have asked myself “isn’t writing hard enough?” Now over the last few months I have created this Blog, of course if you are reading this you already know. For me this meant wrestling daily with an alien species. You may realise I am not so… technical or computer skilled as many are. Did I struggle? I didn’t have a clue. There are urls, dms, tweets and re tweets, pingbacks, re-blogs and what the… now I have to learn a new language. It has stretched me this blog, taken up precious time and challenged my [very flimsy] sanity. I have struggled and fought and  Percy weered, as my dear departed mother in law once said.

Even the day I finished this piece, in a technical fart! It was gone, I lost it, vamoose! I do not have a clue, the lot gone before my very eyes and never to be seen again. But I plod on, learn from mistakes, I ask others for advice and in this blogging place there are experts, friendly helpful ones.

Today I continue to post, while holding my one day book close like a suckling child, trying not to use the blog and twitter as my procrastinators.

Ellen is now Blogging snippets of stuff, as often as she can.
Not knowing if I am doing the right thing or not. I wait and watch send and lose, yes I still lose about forty percent of all my posts. Who knows it maybe a divine intervention, making me do it over once more, to make it worthy.

A naysayer I am not but neither am I a technophobe. I haven’t yet found the word for tablets and computers hate me, when I do I will let you know. I have it on hopefully good authority that a blog I must have.

But according to most, I am just a loon, an unpublished loon with desires of grandeur. Six hundred words down yesterday, my re read today demolished most of it. I use this as another positive lesson a learning tool.

Crap happens and if I can save one paragraph, one piece to plop expectantly in to my book then it is ok by me.

My Dad said “you need the crap, so you can recognise the good stuff.”
Sometimes I feel I am helping my characters come alive, and other times they dictate what is written. I have disobedient characters that wander far from my now defunct storyline, with minds of their own.
Other times the words just flow and work, they fall from my head like hair from a dog with alopecia. This twitter and blog a ma gig, has made me richer rounder and confident enough to try.
And yes! I am writing, because I am a woman who writes.


This has been re-posted because as a new blogger I knew nothing of tags or categories and had four followers, so today I hope it has a place and is relevant enough to warrant being reblogged. “How do you feel about the elephant in the room? ” Do you as I do still dread the question? I would love to hear your view.