Tag Archives: short

Sarah, She’s Still In the Womb: Short Story

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I dont know how long its been since I last saw vacant car lots filled up with cars. Has everybody moved away? Am I a singularity, a lone youth wolf out in the wild, separated from the pack? Will I return to school only to see the hallways and staircases emptied?

 The parks are filled only with shadows and empty benches. One little girl is playing on the swing, but I don’t see her parents. I have an urge to go up and talk to her, but something tells me she knows what to do. Her bright chestnut hair is long and plaited, with big pink bows at the ends. I thought she was smiling, but it was just my imagination. I think she wants to think to herself.

I walk to the street up ahead and buy an ice cream. I’ve taken my camera so I can go to the thrift store later and see if there’s anything pretty around to take a picture of. There is. It’s a little worn book of hymns the size of my palm. It’s brown and leather with little gold lettering. The lady at the counter says no pictures. I snap one anyway when she’s not looking. 

The next day is the first day of school. Trouble is, I’ve forgotten how to wear clothes. What looks good. What is acceptable to wear in public. I wear an old plaid dress from my uniformed schoolgirl days with a forest green cardigan on top. Something about it seems wrong, but I don’t quite know what it is. I keep it on anyway, drawing on a line of kohl pencil on my eyelids. Is that how people do it? Unsure of myself, I scarf down a bowl of cereal and grab a banana as I head out the door, kissing my mother goodbye before heading out the old worn secret path I took to school. 

Something stops me from taking a back-alley route though, and I swerve back onto the main road and bump into an old acquaintance from school. He’s supposed to be a year older than me. Black greasy hair and tall; he’s thin, with big, green-blue eyes. He looks depressed, a little sunken into his body, his frame isn’t necessarily  bony but out of shape. He manages to smile as i shyly reintroduce myself.

“Sarah” I say say, my voice soft, hardly there.
“Peter” he replies, with the same reticent tone.
I shrug it off. everybody’s anxious on the first day, right? 

Math and Biology are a bore.  All the teachers are handing out their syllabus papers in various colors: pink, yellow, blue, green, orange. I guess the school still hasn’t gotten enough money for real school office supplies. Peter is in every one of my classes. I think he was held back a grade, he’s supposed to be in college. But he hardly notices me, looking down at his feet or rolling his pencil back and forth over and over again on his desk, humming to himself, doodling, or staring blankly at the wall, the window, the blackboard. 

Time runs endlessly like this, slow and unvaried, and I find myself falling into a strange rhythmic oblivion. I should have left this town two months ago with the rest of them, I decide mournfully, my thoughts turning once again to peter. He suddenly stares back at me, his gaze intense and long, eyes like flashing rivets in his skull. I don’t know whether I ‘m dreaming or if I’m ever awake, for that matter. All I know is that I might as well disappear into the wall where he’s staring. I think peter smokes cigarettes. I think maybe nobody is going to amount to anything, especially on this town, and even me-I think I might dissipate or self-combust and it would’t make a bit of difference.

Copyright 2015 Golden Star Poetry 

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Letter to the Lost Girl

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go to the cemetary
by the privacy of which
you will find a trundle of papers
by the gravestone;
each of them
was an unsent letter
addressed to you.

You may find it strange
that I had no courage
to speak to you directly
after inking into the
endless paper void,
that i was afraid
somehow,
but
(I loved you).

please don’t forget
how i
walked
endlessly
with you
through the back
house acres
like we were
schoolchildren.

please don’t remember
the silent graveyard days
when i sat impenetrable
not speaking or sleeping.

please forgive the
sporadic bursts of
anger.

and even though
i was a terrible writer
i made you a story
even though
i was a terrible speaker
i told you i was waiting for you.

so go to the cemetary
and find the trundle of papers
by your gravestone;
each of them
was an unsent letter
addressed to you.

You may find it strange
that I had no courage
to speak to you in person
after inking into the
endless paper void,
that i was afraid
somehow,
but
I loved you,

and all i can see
are your smiling eyes
by my windowsille
when i try to look outside
to the world
that seems as dull
and senseless
as the rotting earth

Copyright 2014 Golden Star Poetry

ps. sorry if this reads more like prose than poetry!

Long Stop Though Nowhere: Chapter Two

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Chapter Two
They had found themselves in a large grassy field, which opened up along a wooded trail crowded with pines and vines and which branched out from the large road the had been on hours earier. The sun was shining brightly all around them, and they sat so they could see the view in front of them. It was a stunning dusky blue mountain range which meandered out into the abyss of the horizon and seemed to go on for miles on end.

Cornelia opened a can of sardines for the tenth time that week. It smelled putrid, but Peter loved the taste. They had been living off of canned goods for the past three weeks, and she and her brother were beginning to smell like barrels of fish. She speared it gingerly with a fork, and chewed it thoughtfully. Peter opened his cream linen satchel and snatched out four rolls of bread, which had been carefully wrapped up in a wrinkled paper towel , and grinned.

“Two for you and two for me”, he said cheerfully. “The ones I nabbed from the bakery, remember?” Cornelia nodded, her mouth watering at the sight of them. “‘Cause I didn’t need me no Victor Hugo to tell me that –stealin’ a loaf?” “THAT AIN’T NO SIN!” they cried in unison. One thing Peter was known to do was quote literature, since he was quite smart, so Cornelia had subsequently, learnt various references from all the classics; that was one of the phrases they liked to repeat the most. Peter handed his younger sister one of the white rolls. She figured the sardines didn’t taste so bad if you ate it along with the rich starchy taste of the bread.

“Man, I wish Ginger was here” sighed Peter, looking over Cornelia’s head, into the distance.
“You always wish she was here, Pete. And when she was here, I…I felt so alone.”.
They had picked her up as they were traveling, maybe two months before. She was living in this shack in the middle of a abandoned town, and her mother was giving her hell. Apparantly, they were the first signs of civilization she had seen for years, and she said she would do anything to escape, so they let her come along. Ginger was the kind of girl everyone could envy. She had this small cupid’s bow mouth and Auburn hair in loose curls, big green eyes that sparkled in the sun, and lots and lots of freckles.

Then, the second week after they had met her she saw Peter kiss her at night, his lips right up against hers, and them smiling and laughing and laughing, and when she fell asleep, all she dreamt about was her brother with that girl, intertwined on the porch of a house at dusk. All she could do was sit there and watch them, unable to stop them, feeling so helpless and empty. Like she was going to be abandoned and stripped of her heart. And she didn’t know why she remembered the dream, but whenever she closed her eyes and thought of it again, her eyes still stung with sadness.

“She was gonna take you away from me”
“Aww don’t be silly, Corny, I was just thinkin’ about her”
“No, you were going to run away and leave me here, alone! She was scary, she was bright, fine, she was…no good!”
“Don’t know what you mean Cornelia, she was a darling, she was…oh god…so perfect.” his voice quieted into a hush as if he was having a memorial service for her faint memory. “I would never leave you sister”. But he said it faintly, ever so softly, as if he was just saying thoughts out loud.
Then he pressed his lips together like he was trying to remember that kiss.
She rested her head on his shoulder, and hoped he was telling the truth.

Copyright 2014 Golden Star Poetry

Long Stop Through Nowhere

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Chapter one.

The only thing that the red truck in front of her wasn’t going to do was kill her. Maybe cars in this side of town went slow, you know, like that phrase–slower than molasses in January? Yeah, that’s the one. No, It definitely wasn’t going to kill her. But she had heard her mother say very distinctly that the world was much more stark and scary when you went out into it’s clutches, and cars were one of the things you had to look out for.

“I told you. Practically no one drives here Cornelia, it’s a dead zone. Nobody lives here.” said Peter.
“Then why’s he stoppin’?” drawled Cornelia vacantly.
“Because we were just about gettin’ ready to cross the street, that’s why. Didn’t nobody ever tell you ’bout such a thing as driving rules?”
“Uh…no” Cornelia admitted defeatedly.
“Well then, what are you waiting for? That truck ain’t gonna wait for us any longer! go on, git!”
“You sure, I?…”
“Git! go on ahead, that driver ain’t got all day!”
The brisk morning air suddenly struck the two young travelers as they flittered across the narrow dirt road. Pine trees ran along it’s whole length; an endless wood ran on either side of the mountain highway like a secret hideaway into the endless mystery of nature. But that wasn’t their focus anymore. They were almost on their way to a city, and this was just where civilization had begun to turn up.
A twisted grin began to play on peter’s sun burnt face as they continued walking along the road.
“What’s so funny?” whined Cornelia, who was just about through with her brother’s pointless games.
“You don’t know about the pedestrian’s right of way, Corny. It’s like knowin’ the world goes around the sun. Common knowlage.”
She hated it when he called her that stupid nickname. And she hated how he knew more big words than her, since he was in the tenth grade.
“What’s a ped-est-rian?” Asked the bewildered girl carefully, who was now at her wit’s end. This question only made Peter laugh harder, snorting through his nostrils and cackling like a hyena, which made Cornelia even more outraged. At least, thought Cornelia,we only have ten more miles to go. It was a comforting thought at best.

If seen from above, the whole journey would have seemed startlingly picturesque; A young girl with shockingly red hair walking down a mountain path along side a much older, very red and tan boy dripping in sweat, looking as if they were on some secret spy mission to save the world, hold up the one car traffic of a huge scarlet truck in the middle of the day.

Copyright 2014 Golden Star Poetry
I do not own this photo

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The smell of rain

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Bernard, a free spirited man in his forties is with his wife, Amy, a close- minded woman in her mid-thirties. On their balcony. It’s about to rain.

Bernard: doesn’t it feel like rain?

Amy: looks like it, yeah

B: I was just wondering, do you, maybe…like, can you SMELL it?

A: rain has a scent?

B I don’t know, it gets kind of moist…sorta invigorating, but i don’t know how to put a finger on the smell…

A: its the smell of imagination. I have no clue what you are talking about, Berny.

B: neither do you, apparently.

A: oh really?

B: Yeah, I know plenty of people who can smell rain. its like another sense, Amy. Hey, have some fun, will you? you’re so uptight all of the time. Maybe it’s limiting you’re sense of imagination. Maybe you’re forgetting what freedom’s like. Come on, it’s rain! Have some fun!

A: Bernard James Patrickson, just because you earned a degree in psychology fifteen years ago does not mean you can try to be my shrink.

B: I’m not trying to be anything, Amy,I”m trying to be alive!

A: (looking away. Long pause.) do you want to go back inside and watch tv?

B: What?

A: Never mind. Do you want some ice-cream? some toast? I have Bryers ice cream in the fridge.

B: What are you talking about? Ames. I don’t want ice cream. I want you.

A: no, bern-

B: I want you, amy, I want you.

A: Stop saying that, berny, stop saying that!

B: But ames-

A: (shouting) stop saying that, just stop! ( lowering her voice). Can you just come back into the house, bern?

B: why- why are you always changing the subject?

AMY exits stage right.

B: Ames…

BERNARD burries his face in his hands.

Copyright 2013 Golden Star Poetry