Front Seat

water droplets on glass during daytime
Photo by Raimond Klavins, Unsplash.

Drizzling rain of bright silver dots
prickles our screen with fizzing spots.
A spray of leaves flashes and drops –
green wing’ed flocks, green wing’ed flocks.

Heavy, smothering – the sky hangs low.
Tedious asphalt grinds below.
A blue line snakes a mobile glow –
our journey’s flow, our journey’s flow.

Over and over the road runs,
reverberating travel strum,
like bundles of clothes being spun,
caught in a drum, caught in a drum.

Finally I have access again to a decent internet service. Yippee! A long journey home through dismal weather (whatever happened to summer?) and sitting in the front passenger seat gave me plenty of time to consider the tedium of car journeys when confined to motorways and a rainy view. I have made a couple of amendments since originally posting, as I realised I had not followed the form properly – a case of more haste less speed!

Grace at d’Verse Poets has asked us to write a Monotetra (https://dversepoets.com/2021/07/29/poetry-form-monotetra/) – so here is my offering. Take a look at the site to read an array of wonderful responses.

Blame it on St. Swithin. (dVerse Prosery)

yellow caution wet road sign on gray concrete road
Photo by Phillip Flores, Unsplash.

The news reporter gives a sharp intake of breath, clenching her teeth, before announcing the headlines. It has rained for forty days and forty nights and the land is bursting like a swollen abscess. Meteorologists are predicting more rain to fall, but the wild-haired man who hangs around the corner store says it will end today.
I’m kitted up and ready to chance it on the reef. I’ve got my thick gloves, my plastic bags, and a waxed kagoule.
My kids are appalled that I carry on regardless when the world is destroying itself. They want to know, aren’t I worried about global warming? All the environmental disasters? I learnt long ago I can’t stop the inevitable. I tell them, no, I do not weep at the world.
I am too busy sharpening my oyster knife to notice that the rain has stopped.

Lisa from Tao Talk has set the prosery challenge today. Lisa has chosen a quote from Zora Neale Hurston, ‘(b.1891-d.1960), who was a world-renowned writer and anthropologist. Hurston’s novels, short stories, and plays often depicted African American life in the South. Her work in anthropology examined black folklore. Hurston influenced many writers, forever cementing her place in history as one of the foremost female writers of the 20th century.’ The quote is:

‘No, I do not weep at the world – I am too busy sharpening my oyster knife.’

See the dVerse site for more details at:https://dversepoets.com/2021/07/19/dverse-prosery-finding-ms-zora-neale-hurston/

Erosion. (Sunday Muse # 169)

A clitter clatter of heavy rubbled thoughts
churn in my head.
All I see is colour sucked and arid, yet,
sharp edges are being
rubbed away and, given time,
perhaps a pebbled shore
and finally a sandy beach of twinkling quartz
will stretch before me.
Your memory eroded to soft footfall.

Carrie is our host at The Sunday Blogspot this weekend. (http://thesundaymuse.blogspot.com/2021/07/sunday-muse-169.html) and has provided this inspiring image. Thank you Carrie. Visit the site and read a wonderful array of responses.

Perfect Time.

clear liquid inside clear drinking glass
Photo by Dmitri Dreyer, at Unsplash

Beer mats yeasty pungent damped.
Wood top sticky glass ring stamped.
Curtains tobacco rank.

Shoes platform wide flare hid.
Jacket denim collared zipped.
Hair waved, stiff, Fawcett flicked.

Nails pearly painted shine.
Glass vodka filled and lime.
Jukebox playing – perfect time.

Brian Miller is hosting at the dVerse poets pub this week and his quadrille prompt is to use the word ‘Juke’. My husband showed me an archive photo recently of a pub we used to frequent in our youth, so my mind went back to many years ago when my tipple was a vodka and lime and all that mattered was being with friends, wearing the latest fashions and listening to our favourite bands on the juke box.

Why Fly?

I sat in the conservatory and watched a fly ping pong from one window to another …

black fly on white surface
Photo by Chris Curry on Unsplash.

The glass pane bats the fly away.
It continues punch-drunk,
heading back for more.

This is no Robert the Bruce moment.
This is not determination.
The incessant droning merely
induces irritation, not admiration.
I think, I shall not find inspiration here.

Sorry fly.
It leaves a smear on the glass
where I whacked its iridescent
blue against the window.
A squashed blob on the tiled floor.

I push open the fanlight, scooping up
the small olive of black in a shroud of paper,
and drop it on the grass,
fleetingly wondering why
only now do I provide release?

Unspoken (Flash Fiction – an experiment)

This piece was long-listed for the Farnham Flash Fiction Competition last month. It is the first piece of flash fiction I have written, and was a bit of an experiment, being based on a much longer short story I have been working on. Because of the style, it requires more than one read I believe for the gist of the story to become clearer. I would be very interested in any feedback from anyone kind enough to read it.

This story is not mine.  It’s really someone else’s.

Not told, not aired, but held tightly out of sight. 

Bound under a Marks & Spencer’s vest, squashing the heart, the lungs, the guts.

Pressing year upon unspoken year, more silent than york stone, weathered, lichened, whispering through faded lines and curves that life moves on but memory stays.

Only for some.

He is a prisoner serving two life-sentences, one in Coventry, the other self-inflicted. Until one dustbin clattering, leaves dancing, wife dream twittering, kettle boiling morning, a letter drops with a ‘thub’ onto the stiff coir mat. The paper cuts into his skin, he feels the words push under the dermis, wriggling around the crush beneath his vest. Is this innocence or insult?

Time. He needs a steady move of  hands around a familiar face. To think. The shed, the car, anywhere alone.

And back it floods.

Arms tight around him, ice polished road, night air slicing his ears, roar of two bikes, then the roar of one.

Starry night, shaft of yellow shining light. Nativity scene on the flip side. Not leading to miraculous birth on that December eve.

Why write to him now? Hello. Here we are the family that turned our backs, blaming you because you were there. Caught in our own misery. We had no care for yours. A son consigned to forgotten family legend, but your friend in perpetuity.

Writing becomes blurred, bubbling under salted drops. Too late to ask your questions now. Some offspring trying to join the dots, satisfy their need – for what? An anecdote to tell their friends, a sorry tale to warn the kids?

His car takes him to a familiar church, his feet to a familiar grave. His hands remove dead stems of familiar roses. And he feels an unfamiliar lightness beneath his Marks and Spencer’s vest – this penance is enough.