Friday, September 15, 2023

2 Minutes. Go!

He sat at the base of the tree like he was holding it up, but it was clearly the other way around. I'd been fishing all morning with enough luck not to be in any kind of hurry. It was time to stop and smoke a cigarette anyway, the cool fall air just asked for it. It was that kind of still, windless day when the smoke stays a cloud and never turns to wisps.

He was staring straight ahead, so I gawked a little more than I normally would. He was wearing camouflage pants and a jacket the color of birch bark. On his head, there was a hat that no one would ever call a hat unless they saw it on someone's head. It was a toadstool covered in moss, and it suited him. He was long-bearded. The beard was grey and slightly stained around the mouth from tobacco juice. At least that was my guess. 

I didn't realize it was blood until I was very close to him. The hair stood up on the back of my neck.

He looked up at me, finally, with eyes that carried oceans of pain. He raised the twisted roots of his hands and made a sound that I can't describe. A sound that came from him, but was inside me. I tried to turn, to run. 

And that is all I remember. The hypnotists failed. The police got nothing. But I soon found myself back in the forest, feeling my heart thump blood-smell throughout my body. 

I took my place at the tree and smiled. 


  1. Replies
    1. I was gonna say creepy too! It goes full circle and I have different ideas as to what's going on cos I'm not totally certain!

  2. Game of Tag

    We all run, and you gain the right
    to touch us, to pass it on, to mark us
    in the switch. Teacher’s out. IT follows.
    Behind the bike sheds, you chav a light.

    Wintry sun lights the sky in its unique way,
    treads an arc. It slides beneath our vision,
    spreads, a-glow, this ring upon your finger
    reflects – the one my mother watched me buy.

    1. Wow, this one kind of set me back at the end. In a good way. The last two lines are haunting and interesting. I like the whole thing, of course, but that closer, damn. JD

  3. I stopped for a cup of tea on the way home today...

    A cup of tea in M&S

    I sit at the table, pour a cup of tea
    from this plump penguin of a milk jug,

    the lip bird-shaped. It pours. It does its thing.
    I watch the rain trail its fingers, spiralling,

    patterns recreating lines, twisting, erasing,
    and we can dream. I see a young man.

    He sits with his family in a chair,
    his lifeline, his mobility, his limbs.

    But he is out, he is here, and he is not alone.
    He has company and warmth. He is cared for.

    The rain glints in the broken sunshine.
    Maybe he will smile and light up the room.

    1. I really like this one. It has the coffee shop vibe. We all get glimpses into lives like this. You locked it down really well. JD


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