Voice 3 – Voice Week 2014

That damn girl, always makin me late. Just like her momma come afore her, can’t get her own two damn feet outta of her own way.

A bust lip come between me and my pay last week. Today its her bag. Don’t need no school phonin me again. So I jump in a taxi ta meet her bus. Crazy I am.

Still in all, the world be a lonelier place without her. Just like her momma come afore her, shes all kind and gentle like. Wouldn’t harm a thing.

Wish Niko weren’t with her. That boy is shady as a tree.

“What the? Noooooo. Oh dear, no. Maria?”

This is my third post for voice week. The object of voice week is to tell the same story each day in 100 words from the perspective of five different characters all having a different voice. If you want to participate or read any of the other participants work you can head over to voice week head quarters and find out more there.

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Voice 2 – Voice Week 2014

“You can tell couples by the way their bodies act when they are together. Those two are a couple but not the loving kind. She’s like a cat on a charged wire and he looks like a venus fly trap.”

The man next to me nods out of boredom. I don’t care. I haven’t talked to another human in two days. He made the choice to sit next to me.

“He pretends to be calm. He ain’t. He’s all pressure and she knows it.” I am not offended that my words are met with a turned shoulder.

“See that he stands, she stands,” my elbow makes contact with the man’s rib.

He turns to look just in time to see what I see, what all of us see. As a collective we stand. He pushes past me and dives at the girl.

“Oh my word, good lord above. That I did not see coming. Lord help her, she’s gonna need it,” I mutter to no one but myself.

This is my second post for voice week. The object of voice week is to tell the same story each day in 100 words from the perspective of five different characters all having a different voice. I went slightly over on the word count for this voice but the rules can be bent a little and I felt this voice was one of many words anyway. If you want to participate or read any of the other participants work you can head over to voice week head quarters and find out more there.

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Voice 1 – Voice Week 2014

Yay, voice week is back. This is my third year participating in voice week but I did not join in last year. The object of voice week is to tell the same story each day in 100 words from the perspective of five different characters all having a different voice. It is a great challenge to practice getting into a character’s head, hearing their unique voice and writing it down so that your readers can hear it clearly too. It is not an easy task but it is an enjoyable one. If you want to participate or read any of the other participants work you can head over to voice week head quarters and find out more there.

So here is my first voice for this week:

Now or never. Now or never. Now or never.

I stare at the floor. Don’t make eye contact. My leg bounces up and down. I shiver. Sweat drips down my back. Deep breath in. Slow breath out. I shift my eyes straight ahead.

Niko has his head against the wall. His eyes are closed. His headphones are in. As if sensing my stare, he glances over, winks and stands. It’s the signal I’ve been waiting for.

I gulp.

Now or never. Now or never. Now or never.

I slowly rise. My hand fumbles in my pocket. Deaf. Black. Falling.

Thank you for reading. Please leave comments below. And once again if you wish to check out the other participants you can do it here.

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Angry and Broken

Once upon a time I used to write a whole lot more than I do now and really enjoyed the challenge presented to me through other people’s writing prompts. Indigo Spider used to host Sunday Picture Press and would provide us with thought provoking and quite unique visual prompts to inspire us each Sunday to write. It has been three years since I last participated in her writing challenges or to be honest did much writing at all. I was pleased to find that she has decided to restart Sunday Picture Press just in time for me to start coming out of my shell and attempt to dabble with words again. This week’s prompt was Angry and Broken. She provided quite a few visual prompts to work with but one really reached out to me and so that is the one I worked with. I also found myself writing in a different form than I usually do but perhaps the long hiatus from writing has changed my style just as my life experiences during that time have changed me as a person. So please be kind, I am not new at this but I am in a way reborn at it.

Angry and Broken

Insulation falling away

I padded myself to protect me from you, now that I am stronger what are you going to do?

Scars and bones swapping place

From this day forward I am surrounded by virtual armour.

Bile rising to the throat

A bitter taste to drive me on.

Pressure building ready to blow

Are you ready? I am coming for you.

Muscles tight

Feeling once again alive.

Skin puckered

Anger fuels my new found pride.

Fight or flight

Nice girls don’t fight.

Fists relax

What will others think?

Head in a fog

I am not like you.

Tears fall

I cannot win.

Body collapses to the ground

I am broken once again.

crying-sad-girl-alone



 

Thank you for reading. Your comments are always welcome. And thank you to Cherie in Ink for the image of sad girl crying alone. 

 

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In the beginning there were no words

Today I sat at a cafe. My youngest daughter a mere infant waved her hand and grunted at me. I had failed to feed her the next bite of food fast enough and she was letting me know. I began thinking about the saying, “actions speak louder than words.”

Historical evidence seems to lean towards the idea that he earliest communications never included any words at all. There were gestures and sounds combined together to convey a meaning. This is how my infant daughter communicates and most of the time her gestures and sounds are understood. I am not saying that words might not have prevented frustration or helped a great deal of situations but they did not need words to survive. 

“You look pretty.”

Mere words with no meaning until spoken.

“You look pretty,” she sneered.

Words can hurt.

“You look pretty,” she said as her eyes shone with pride.

Words can help.

Without tone or body language words are just words.

This made me think of my writing. Sometimes I obsess over words. I gush out lengthy paragraphs full of them. I change them. I add more. I delete some. I am guiltiest of this when writing dialogue. Perhaps I need to stand back and simplify. I need to get more tone and gestures into my writing to make it have more meaning and realism. Ironically I need to use words to do this.

 

 

 

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When I was little…

When I was little I couldn’t wait to get big. I imagined I would live in a big house, ride in a big car, have a big family and have a big important job. I knew back then everything was better when you were big.

And now that I am big I wish I could get little again every so often. I am not just talking about my physical size although that could do with becoming littler but to experience all the simplicity an imaginative, innocent and new life can provide would be an amazing experience. I watch my infant daughter get mesmerised by her hands or squeal in delight as she makes new sounds with her tongue and wonder how exciting that must feel. I watch the thrill in my big kid’s faces as they experience new things and wish to be filled with that much joy.

Sometimes I live it through watching them. I feel a smile spread across my face and my heart warm my insides. Back when my life was a little more uncluttered I would feel a little buzz as a new story idea would pop into my head and I could obsess over it for awhile but it would always be on a much smaller scale than anything I witness coming from my children. How do we get that kind of wonder back?

I am making it a goal in April to try to do new things, to try and recapture some of that fresh new joy and to try to experience the world as if it were new. I promise to try and see what writing it inspires too.

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My friend…

It was a lovely spring day just before Palm Sunday. I had spent my first night in Paris and after eating my croissant and hot chocolate in bed I pulled on a pair of jeans and my favourite green baggy sweatshirt and headed down to the lobby to meet the others. I was one of the last ones to venture down.

Students from three American high schools had been combined to tour France together over the next couple of weeks. As I climbed on the tour bus the students I later learned were from Virginia had already occupied the seats in the front. Most of my own schoolmates had settled in the middle and there were no free seats with them. My teacher chaperone shouted that I could sit with her but I pretended not to listen and kept venturing back further in search of an empty seat next to a friendly face. I finally found one all the way at the back in what we later dubbed the first class section.

I slid in next to Markus that day not knowing that I had found someone who would become one of the best friends I would ever have. I nicknamed him Marky on our second day in first class, he called me Hill Billie because of my description of my hometown which varied so greatly from the city of Los Angeles he was so used to. Despite geography we had so much in common and became inseparable over the remainder of the trip.

On the day our visit to France ended we said goodbye at the airport and promised to keep in touch. We did. Letters flowed back and forth for a couple years after, phone bills were inflated in those times when a letter just wasn’t enough and always there was the promise we would meet in person again some day. We did.

Over the years technology changed. We no longer wrote letters but emails instead. Then there was social media. Always we stayed in touch. We watched and encouraged each other’s creative and personal growths.

I dreamt that I was sat at a bar on a pier having a drink with Markus the other night. The lush green plants behind us swished from a warm breeze blowing through them. The water lapped against the pier and created a gentle rhythm. I turned to him and asked if he was okay. He smiled and said, “I am perfect but a little tired so I am going to go home now.” He got up and embraced me and then I watched him as he walked away.

Although my regular contact with Marky diminished over the years I always found comfort knowing where he was in the world and knowing if I actually needed him he would be there. That was until now because he isn’t. Today is his going home life celebration. My friend is gone. It is hitting me hard today.

Since his death I have been okay about it. The tributes by the many people who loved him have flooded his Facebook wall. There has been such a feeling of great belonging in reading them. I did not know his friends personally. I only met a couple in person and that was over ten years ago. I do not even live in America anymore and yet the fact so many have posted photos and heartfelt messages and creative outpourings has made me feel ever more humbled and incredibly lucky to have had him as part of my life for over 20 years.

My Marky, my friend has no physical ties to this earth now but his soul walks on in the love of his friends and family. His energy still dances in the legacy of his creations. His memory lingers in everything he has touched.

My love and condolences go out to all of those who are struggling with Markus leaving this world and passing to the next. He is light now but then again if ever there were a person on this earth to have already been light in life it was him. I hope you’ve had a safe journey home Markus and that you will always be remembered by those you have touched in your time here on earth.

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