Friday, 31 January 2014

Unto the Seventh Generation

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The cry of the Hawk, the spring hatchling now flown meant soon his world would be mere sound.  For a man, now dust in the wind, had made bones of a country and punishment for his kin. 

As Joash screamed for his son, he hoped, as had his father, that he would be the last.

Tuesday, 28 January 2014

For you have set before you life and death, blessing and curse; therefore choose life.

For a mere 1000 credits a month, we guarantee death, isn't fast forward but a slow fade. Each sense closes down so if you're a screaming, you're a dreaming.

Feel pain, we don't gain.

Try Back-up in a dash with the optional 15-minute wipe for a month and see why it's the quadrant's best seller. 

When you can buy, why die!

Friday, 24 January 2014

And he stepped out into the world.

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The third son now went travelling to make his fortune. Tom being more street wise was kind to old hags, trapped dragons and trees. At the castle of the dark Lord, the killer of worlds, he called on them for help. 

He won?

Get real, he died drowned in blood, life ain't a fairy tale.

Thursday, 23 January 2014

Whose time has gone

Mark often looked up to the window hoping to catch his Brother smiling, and wondering why Ross wouldn’t come out when he waved. 

Ross avoided the window if he could but sometimes lost in thought he would find himself looking down, remembering the good times with Mark before the accident

Friday, 17 January 2014

Dads and Sons

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'You look like a girl, get your hair
cut. And turn that row down.'

'But dad, it’s Fairport Convention.'

Brian swore he would chill with his kids

And the years did past


'You look like a toilet brush with that haircut. And turn that
bloody row off.'

'But dad you have to play Dubstep loud.'

Thursday, 16 January 2014

When a Banshee sings, a prince finds peace, when she screams the devil licks his lips

It was dark, the blackness of a closed coffin, eyes struggling to see.  Outside of the farm cottage walls he heard horses clipping over cobbles, bridles jangling and wheels creaking as a wild wind rustled leaves like a dress pulled off by a lover.  Suddenly he could see, through a window, clouds scurried from the moon like mice away from a cat.  And he was standing trying to open the kitchen door. The black cast iron bolts were too high for his stretched out fingers and the hooves drummed ever louder and shook the ground making him fall down, ever down into the silvery light.

Cormac jolted awake, the dustmen were making their usual Tuesday morning racket with bottles and cans being sorted and thrown into the hatches of the revving recycling van. He could see his breath misting in the cold of the room, it was that bloody dream again. He shouted out to the pokey dirty-grey room, with its thick green curtains hanging up with string and cobwebs,

‘Not yet, I’ve still breath.’

Sighing, he reluctantly threw aside the three duvets, the old dog blankets and the odd curtain and before putting on his woollen hat - heating cost money, more bedclothes didn’t.  Bending down carefully, he pulled on furry slippers over thick purple artic frost-frighteners, and threw on a wool blanket with a hole cut through for his head before tying bale string around his barrel stomach and layers of long johns and vests. To his mirrored reflection he said, 

‘I might look like a sack of spuds but I'm as warm as a bag of chips.’ 

Once out of the bedroom, he shuffled carefully down the bare wooden stairs and corridors – the carpet along with most of the future had gone to pay her bills as the loan shark banks were too impatient to wait for his death.  

Opening the larder door and sniffing the milk, he suddenly caught the scent of heather on a warm autumn day and heard horses pull a carriage to a door, the wheels creaking but no neighs or the shouting of whoa as the slap of leather reins pulled in silence. Then the rumble of traffic burst back in. He shook his head, he wasn’t ready. 

Walking over to the greasy, rusty stove, he picked up the dented kettle and went to the only working tap to drum in water. Back at the stove he battled with matches and banged hobs to get the gas hissing into two horned misshapen flames.  He shook out the mug’s dregs and then popped in yesterday’s tea bags, dried and ready to be pressed into service. Pouring in the water, and cursing from the sting of the hot handle, he left them to brew, as he switched on the radio that burst into the room with chants like sunbeams that after cold winter rain summoned rainbows. He shouted, 


and the news of floods and indiscretion in high places shouted back.

Grabbing his mug, he stumped upstairs, got back into bed and pulled the bedclothes around him shouting,

‘This wasn’t the dream; this isn’t the life I danced every night for.’

Knocking the tea back, he sat up and threw the mug over to the dusty shelf of leaden cups and medals, knocking over fading pictures of ball-room dancers, the men like splendid waiters and the women in swirly lace and thick make-up.  Looking up and around the room, he raised his arm and wagged his finger saying,

‘I was the all-county champion once, and Sean’s friend’s sister had sworn I was made for a TV programme they planning. But she never came back to me.  They did for her of course, she got on. Always was the better dancer and only left me for the all -England champion because it got her on TV. I’ve still got the VHS Tapes even if the video went wonky.’

He fall back in to the bed before whispering,

‘She loved me enough to leave the house for her debts.’ 

Perhaps, he fall asleep, this time the door was open and he looked out to see a black carriage, and four headless horses stamping their feet.  From the carriage’s open door hundreds of white hands fluttered out like summer cabbage butterflies all clapping. Then a woman of sunlight curves and moon beam eyes stepped out with a diamond-glass bowl of warm blood and floated over to him singing of Princes who stole the land of gods so people could dance with fairies. The bowl rose from her hands and rose higher and nearer his head as he said,

‘So this dance is over.’

Soon he would be anointed and his fathers arise to greet him. He turned to a window that looked out into a summer morning of the old country, the boys running naked to the wooded pond, diving and throwing water at each other from a broken metal pail, each screaming and giving as good as they got - a time when dreams were fun.

Friday, 10 January 2014

A family reunited...

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Early morning chat was shattered with, ‘You're eatin my babies.’ 

McChickadees went very quiet, a six-foot talking Rhode Island Red kinda makes you slow-witted. But Tom was a rookie prankster. He forgot the CCTV and that truck drivers with hangovers and no coffee ain't messed with. 

What they did next with the eggs went viral.

Thursday, 9 January 2014

Medical Advice we gluttons have ignored over the ages

Dr Edwin leaned on the table, forcing it to bend and his voice not to before saying, 'Sire, I must advise you against breaking your morning fast so early. You are of a melancholy humour so early eating weighs you down.' 

Sir Roger of Battly, rubbed at his paunch and rolled his eyes and said, 'But it is nothing but mere morsels such as a loaf of Kings bread, a flagon of ale and boiled beef barely covering a fist. And on fish days-' 

Dr Edwin raised his hand to interrupt,'I implore you Sire, for your health follow John of Milan’s advice to rise at 5, dine at 9, sup at 5, retire at 9, for a long life.

Wednesday, 8 January 2014

The clock never ticks fast enough

A Christmas past, I slipped through the bony black alders of the river, up to the mountain pines covered in snow, willing to fight for what I loved, not for what the politicians shouted for. It was soon clear to me that killing kills you as well, only slower, and perhaps with more pain. You shoot and a distant scarecrow falls and then you reload and move on pretending to be a movie action hero.  Yet movies don't show what burning houses, ones the scarecrows had built brick by brick, really means. Once a fire gets hold, and the screams start you get the smell of beef in a frying pan, and fatty pork on the grill. When the screams stop being human you get the coppery, metallic odour of blood boiling. When it goes silent, except for crackling flames and falling walls, you get a musky, sweet perfume wafting over in the smoke from the burning brain and spine juices.

You can laugh and kill again, or cry and run. I ran.

My parents knew. It showed in the stiff face and lack of questions as my mother stood to shake her black dress smooth before going into the kitchen to cook a lamb burek. My father, in his faded jeans and shirts from America, just kissed my forehead, and put his finger to my lips shaking his head. Of course they hid me in the attic. It's not just a dump for forgotten keepsakes. We had put up tourists, gangly men with haversacks or girls in pairs wearing trousers and head-scarves, when times were good. So I had a shelf for a kettle and stove but the bed at night smelt like a refugee's suitcase.

We are at the end of the village, 20 houses, many of them farmhouses like our. Besides the houses and barns, the village only offered two more buildings: a small school that also acted as a courthouse, and a mosque. Behind our house are vegetable gardens and pools for fish. At the end by a stone wall gleamed from the fields, there is a dirt path that I watch for hours, staring past sheep and cemeteries down to broken houses that once were neighbours you talked with about the weather, and sons disappointing in distant places when daughters gave you grandchildren. I could even see the witch hat shingled roof of Divac's place. As a boy I had watched his brown and black Barak dog, that was often more asleep then waking, no longer pulling on his chain - too old to hunt, too friendly to guard. As a man I had watched Divac shot.

No questions were asked in what remained of the village. I was the brave hero-son...resting to return. Only if I could. Sleep is flames and sweet smoke. Each dawn, brought the sounds of distant gun shots. And I shake under pillows and blankets, fearing they were the real heroes, the ones who hadn't ran,

This morning as the sun rose, I looked up into a blue cloudless  sky through the broken glass. My father was already up walking down to check on the sheep, he goes via the yellow field and  the deeply-saturated sweet, green floral scent of crushed everlasting comes in on a breeze. Then as an engine coughs and rattles below in the centre of the village , I hear my mother call up to stay quiet and then she rushes out to my father. They can hide by 'working ' in the fields. Men I had played football with, men who had mended my car  had come for the young women and shot any one stupid enough to protest. It's why we went to war, why men fought.

Once, on Market day, I had pointed out to everyone the woman I would marry. Lajla was short with dark eyes that made you alive. She had laughed and threw her flowers at me. The first time they came, they killed any man under 30 and took any woman they could find. Her last act of love was not to call through the small windows of the old German grey, square boxed  livestock truck as it pulled away. It's why I had killed and burned. As the truck spluttered away again, I crept out by the back door, I knew where they had to stop to cross the river and real death was better then this lifeless existence.

They had stopped at the river, having a smoke and a laugh. I knew the driver. We had played in the street as kids. The other two were from local villages, I had seen them on market days. From the cover of the pine, I raised my hunting rifle and became a hero. A spray of bullets killed them and me. It was just a zombie that let the women out, who cried and hugged first themselves and then me before running to hide.

Now sitting here in the woods, looking at the gun, I have to decide which killer has the next bullet.

Friday, 3 January 2014

I simply want to live; to cause no evil to anyone but myself

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The silence was the first lie and then Jo said,

'What you doing in the Holosuite later?

'Oh, I'll race my Hog across the desert under the moon.'

'What about you?', asked Ken.

'I’ll  watch children play on a beach.'

They fell silent, too ashamed to see each other’s tears. Far below, the dead Earth still burned.