Wednesday, 6 April 2011

Time to Tell inspired by Three Word Wednesday

The peculiar thing was that she was absolutely adamant that she didn't fabricate the story. She even led us out into her tiny garden, and with passion blazing in her rapidly blinking pale blue eyes, slowly and painfully got down on her hands and knees.

Such a frail figure, with her papery skin and her arthritic hands.

She pulled aside the long grass that had forgotten its lawn like roots, and she pointed. Drawing us closer to look at what she so desperately wanted us to see.

She was peering back at us over her fragile shoulder as she jabbed at the burnt marks etched into the earth, and again at the strange formations that radiated from them.

"Look, look, it was here that they landed."

My brother stifled his laughter, but I could see his shoulders shaking.

My mother fiddled in her handbag absentmindedly. She was uncomfortable. She always was with anything that wasn't neat and manicured. Anything that couldn't be filed away in the rational boxes in which she kept her thoughts.

Father of course was convinced that she was quite mad, and humoured her. Speaking to her slowly and gently as he would a small child. He leant over and took hold of her arm and tried to help her to her feet.

No one was listening to her and her faded eyes were full of fire.

She looked straight at me. "You know. You saw them too."

I felt my heart quicken and I could feel my pulse pounding in my ears as she yelled...

"Tell them, tell them the truth."

It would be so easy to shake my head and look away, to let them carry on believing that she was crazy. But the look in her eyes was too intense. It bore through my defenses and shattered the pretence that had kept me sane.

She was pleading with me and I couldn't let her down. I heard the sharp intake of breath, and felt the weight of the stares as everyone turned their attention to me.

I could feel my face burning, my hands were trembling.

I could no longer pretend it was just a dream.

I tried to find my voice and without any breath to drive it, it emerged in a soft whisper.

"Yes, I saw them too."

For Three Word Wednesday - (prompt words Adamant, Fabricate, Peculiar)

Tuesday, 5 April 2011

In Trafalger Square - for the real toads

In Trafalgar Square we sat,
young lovers on cold steps.
Pigeons swooped and swirled
and pecked around our feet.
There amidst the tourists,
the bird shit, and the
hastily scattered seed,
we only had eyes
for each other.

(a true story.)
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