Thursday, 27 October 2011

...Joe - Chapter 5

This is a short chapter - not sure if Chapter 4 and 5 should be merged together to make one chapter? Thoughts please and remember it's only a second draft!

Chapter 5

I wake up thirsty and grope for my beer. I sit up and try to adjust my eyes to the light. It’s still so hot. I need to take this t-shirt off, I can’t breathe. I pull it off and flop back down on the grass. The sun feels so good on my skin; I just wanna roll in it. I look over at Jonie and she’s completely engrossed in a magazine. I don’t know which one but they’re all the same essentially.
“Hey Jonie”
“Afternoon sleepyhead, enjoy your sleep did you?”
I stretch out, letting the backs of my arms graze along the grass.
“You got my sunglasses?”
“Yeah hold on Joe, they’re in the bag somewhere”

With that she throws me the bag and I dig around, unearthing colonies of forgotten biscuits along the way. Finally my hand gropes the cold plastic of my sunglasses and I pull them out, shaking off the crumbs at the same time. I put them on and I feel invisible, I love how sunglasses can do that. I feel as if I could go sulking through the trees, a hunter looking for fit young women to take home and conquer and no one would think it weird because no one could see me. My name is Joe, hunter of the young and sexy. I’ve definitely been in the sun too long. I need some water.
“So what are we doing tonight?”
“I dunno Joe what do you feel like doing?”
“Mass orgy?”
“Shame. I was saving my best moves”
“Guess it’ll have to wait till the next full moon Joe”

Through this exchange Jonie hasn’t looked up from her magazine, not once. I find that irritating. She should look at me when we’re talking. Otherwise how am I supposed to know she’s listening to me? Not necessarily all the time, but a bit of eye contact every now and then. Throw a dog a bone for fucks sake. 

Jonie turns towards me suddenly. Shit, has she learnt how to read my thoughts. I knew it.
“Do we know her Joe?” she says, thrusting a finger at the picture of tall, dark skinned women in a yellow bikini, with amazingly short hair and even better breasts.
“Err” I pull myself onto my elbows and stare at the picture.
“Yeah we do Joe, she went to Kingsdale remember”

Oh shit Kingsdale, an expensive private school in the heart of Dulwich. Dad wanted a boarding school, to build a "strong educational background" but mum wanted a public school, to build a "strong personal background". They compromised and picked one in the middle. The only thing they ever compromised on and it had to be my education.
“Are you sure she went to Kingsdale? I think I would remember a pair of legs like that, if you know what I mean”
Oh God, I sound like a pervy old man.
“Seriously Joe, you take a horny pill this morning or something?”
“What? No, I’m just saying she’s fit. You remember the fit people from school don’t you?”
“Yeah, Lilly Jane Blightly. Fuck me she was gorgeous. But this girl wasn’t one of the fitties Joe”
“Think about it Joe. Think hard.”
My minds still foggy from my mid afternoon nap and I’m not quite catching on quick enough.
“Think about it – she used to have her hair in extensions – messy extensions and people would hide shit in it, well you know not actual shit and they would take bets on how long it would take her to find it, do you remember?”
“Come on Joe! She would always tell you what the alternative word to the word you were using was”
“Brain Pain!”
“Shit that’s Brain Pain? She looks fucking fantastic. What’s her real name again?”
“Err, Kimberly – Kimberly Miller”

I flop back down and my minds racing. If Brain Pain could go from an absolute (misunderstood) nightmare to rock hard in your pants gorgeous, then where’s everybody else? If someone saw me right now what would they think? I haven’t done anything in particular with my life. After uni I just coasted, you know, did some travelling to “put things in perspective” and I live off the little money my photography earns me, oh and the monthly “maintenance” my father so kindly provides me with. But I haven’t achieved anything. I’m a waster.
“Apparently she’s a model”

Oh no, Jonie has that face on. She’s gearing up for something juicy, something outrageously mischievous and I’m in. Whatever it is I’m up for it. Let’s do this shit.
“How about we throw a party? We could invite everyone we knew from Kingsdale and some more and then hopefully sexy here will turn up. What do you think?”
“You’d really think she’d turn up?”
“Come on Joe – Facebook! There must be an old Kingsdale group floating about on there. Started probably by some sad, lonely person who thought Kingsdale was the best days of their sorry little lives.”
“That’s a bit deep Jo, but yeah facebook, that’s a good idea, we’ll get on it when we get back yeah?”
“Ah! I’m so excited! This is going to be the best party ever. We should get Nick to DJ.”
“Is he back from Japan?”
“Should be, I’m gonna make a list”
Jonie pulls a notepad and a pen out of the Mary Poppins back pack and starts scribbling. I grab the bag and pull out another beer and a packet of biscuits, I’m so hungry. 

I think about Nick. The last time I saw him he was fucked up on coke, spinning an insane set at the Lazy Bear in Islington. After that he burnt out and moved to Japan. If he is back I wouldn’t know about it, Anna made me cut everyone out – well apart from Jonie and it wasn’t done subconsciously. It was slow and deliberate, she picked everyone off one by one, starting with the weak and ending with me.

Before I know it I’ve eaten half the packet of biscuits, which are sub par bourbons. How can you screw up a bourbon? Its chocolate fondant sandwiched in between chocolate biscuits – it’s not fucking rocket science and now my mouth tastes like I’ve made out with a dog. I grab my beer and wash the nasty taste out and throw the bourbons back in the bag – I’ll deal with them later. I look over at Jonie whose hunched over her notebook like a possessive mother cradling her newborn and I make out a ridiculously long list of names, most of which I don’t recognize.
“They all went to Kingsdale?”
“Some. The rest are just people we know.”
“Wow, didn’t know we knew so many people.”
“People like you Joe, even if you don’t like yourself.”
“Oh don’t bum yourself out. Eat your biscuits and stop being such a pansy.”

I obey. Jonie is in a fantastical mood and I can never reason with her when she’s like this, I just have to play along. Like when we were 12 and she convinced me to dye my hair bright green – along with my eyebrows. It went horrifyingly wrong and my eyebrows fell out. My mum went suicidal on me and I was teased for a month at school. To this day I don’t think they look the same. I self consciously stroke the right one and then the left and I can feel the little patches where the hair refused to grow back.
“How many people do you think you can fit in your house? And leave your eyebrows alone, they look fine.”

I quickly put my hands back in my lap and do some mental maths. If I move everything of value into one of the top bedrooms and obviously lock said bedroom and push all the furniture to the walls, I guess a hundred.
“Err I dunno, a hundred? Not including the garden.”

Jonie’s manically scribbling away in that damn notebook and I have an urge to grab it, throw it in the lake, set it on fire, feed it page by page to a magpie so it can make it’s nest, anything just to stop her from writing, planning, whittling away my life, moment by moment. 

I have a vision of this party going horribly wrong; everyone turns up and expects exciting and witty conversation from me. They think I’m fantastic, that my house is amazing, girls wanna fuck me and boys wanna be me. Then I open my mouth and all I have to say is shit. I spew shit, philosophical, egotistical, melodramatic bullshit and they walk away. They know I’m a fraud and the parties over. I’m nothing, I’m no one, I’m fucked and their laughter leaves a sting in my ears which I will hear for the rest of my life. I can’t breathe. My chest is getting tight and I’m so fucking hot that the air can’t reach my lungs on time, it’s burning on impact and I can smell toast. Shit, that means you’re having a heart attack right? Fuck I’m having a heart attack, I can’t breathe, I can’t breathe, I CAN’T FUCKING BREATHE. Jonie! My tongues heavy with the weight of my fear and I can’t get it to work and I need her to know that I’m not ok. I try to grab for her but my bodies not cooperating. My arms are a separate being to my body and I...I...I... everything goes dark and the only thing I hear is their laughter.

Monday, 24 October 2011

...Lost - A Lipogram

This is a lipogram, which according to wikipedia is a type of constrained writing, where a certain vowel is left out. I have left out the letter "E". This is brought to you courtesy of the wonderful Leanne Moden (again), who prompted me to give this type of writing a go. So glad I did. Thanks Leanne!


Jack knocks on my door
Strain of our trial taints his air.
Jack says
“I found Sarah”

Lungs stop working
Air won’t go down
Body turns cold.
I cry
“I thought Sarah...”
Cannot finish thought
Imagination ran away with fancy
With Sarah.

It was a Monday
Toast for Sarah, for Jack
I want oats.

I wait in my car in front of Sarah’s school
3.30 pm
Kids flow out
But not Sarah.
3.45 pm
No Sarah
4.00 pm
No Sarah.
Call Jack,
Jack calls cops,
No word.
Foot patrol around town
No word.
6 months waiting
No word.
Dull pain.


I look at Jack
Jack ploughs on
Facts must unfold
Push air down
“Sarah’s living with a man”
Cannot think
Nothing is right
Words don’t link with thought
“16. Sarah’s 16!”
Jack nods
I sob
Months of sorrow.

Jack’s hands in my hands
Thumbs our rings
“I’ll bring Sarah back”

Jack turns.
Door shuts.

Push air down.

Sunday, 23 October 2011

...A Univocalism

I got the idea to write a univocalism from the very talented Leanne Moden. Like Leanne I've gone with the letter "E" as my only vowel. With the help of my dear friend Scharlie Robinson, we came up with this. It's not very long and it's a first attempt! Bare in mind there were a few cocktails consumed prior to said construction. Enjoy!

He sees her empty eyes.
He feels he's seen the sky.
When she entered,
He knew.
He met her steps,
Gently sketched her eyes
She knew then,
When he held her
They were centered.

Friday, 14 October 2011


I wrote this poem a while ago for my sisters friend who was having a shitty day. It made her smile, I hope it does the same for you.

Curse You Damn Bees.

I go to the park and hug all the trees
Along with the bees,
Who start to sting me
I fall to my knees,
Oh God my allergies!

Oh bees
How dare you make me sneeze,
And choke on my throat that is closing, so please,
Bring me a doctor who can help me recover from these
Horrific injuries.

I curse all you bees
And all you damn trees,
Never again will I hug your sweet bark
I will burn down the park.

Wednesday, 5 October 2011

...I Can't Think

I can’t think.

My mind is a swamp
a haven for creatures of the night to burrow in
and make their homes.

I can’t think.

My heart beats so loud
that the neighbours next door
are dancing to it.

I can’t think.

This repetition gets me down
every cloud has a frown
I can wallow in.

I can’t think.

This freckle on my hand
Is a government plan
I’m not in on.

I can’t think.

I can read different thoughts
But I can’t find my own
to begin with.

I can’t think

I shout and I sway
I try to find my way
but at the end of the day
rhyming couplets is all I come up with.

I can’t think.