The Mermaid Who Was Between Colours

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The moments when Nooka slipped through the grasp of the darkwater were becoming the most exhilarating, and terrifying, of her life.  Just like every journey before, she could feel the insistent press of the water against her skin and scales fade as she coiled closer to the surface, the powerful muscles in her tail able to now propel her at speeds that shifted the blur of her world into something intoxicating.  Nooka felt so powerful in that moment, it was as if she had become the strongest mermaid in all of the Blueshade.

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Poem: Inventory

We hollow out the attic; become a pair of sparrows

chasing a summer that pricks our tongues. Above, the

rain sells our secrets in whispers.

You move as though your ears can’t close.

 

Neat lines of cardboard meddahs spill tales from

folded tongues.  Exposed to time again their children tremble –

our fingers reach out, but it’s under your nails they hide.

Touching what you touch.

 

When the sun has moved beyond our estimations,

we eat sandwiches from the supermarket;

something not offered by your parents –

that feels important today.

 

The final bag is scrapbooks. You speak of

grass harbours, where you’d run until

your stomach ached and the air grew quiet.

Then you grow quiet,

As if that, too, is being reassessed.

 

We are given the spare room, where the sheets already

carry an imprint. I listen to your breathing, how it sounds

like those boxes and bags are too full.

Above my head the wallpaper is peeling. My fingers

feel false as I push the years

back into place.

 

I can’t do it like you can.

Poem: Sandpit

summer scratched knees,

grit and glass; stars press on green,

and raindrops of sweat in the sand.

a crater. a shallow hole.

with no ripple to its name

to slow nor speed up time,

if the desire were there.

 

the girl arranges quartz-crusted slugs

in size order, then

by personality.

the bully goes first – a plastic shovel

smears it across the wooden frame,

and the smell of cat shit fills the air.

harpy

Pamela wouldn’t call it love—not yet.  She had embraced that word too fast with Josh, and it had opened the door to complications, forcing her from all she had known.  No, this time she would find a better name for it.

She studied Tom’s form as he leaned against the stall’s counter, the gun awkward in his hands.  He squinted, adjusted his posture before firing—a routine intended to deceive but which was only fooling Tom.  The tracksuit swaddled his fey frame; his was a body that could never hope to protect a woman, but Pamela reasoned that she had been protected too much already.

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Intuition

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She steps into the sun-baked garden of the pub with hesitant feet.  A toss of her head pushes away the scent of stale beer and allows pricklish anger to reclaim her skin.

Only three tables are occupied, so it takes seconds for her to notice the old man.  As she watches him hunched over a pint, she wishes again that it had taken a few more.  He’s like a vulture in the last days of his life, swooping down and snatching away every rehearsed line and gesture.

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We Go Again!

Cripes, it certainly has been a while since I last posted… well, anything on here really.  But fret not (you can lie all you want, but I just know it’s been keeping you up at night!) for change is afoot.  I had a lot going on at the tail end of last year – buying a house and the expected unexpected return of a savage period of depression being the main constraints on my time and motivation – but 2019 has pretty much seen everything start to get back into a relaxed and rosy routine.  It wasn’t therefore too much of a surprise when a hesitant tap on my front door signalled the return of a sheepish-looking muse.  After some stern words about the acceptable way in which one should take a holiday, and some stern words back around providing a conducive working environment I let her back into the house for coffee and biscuits.  And then writing stuff happened.  Yay.

I’ll be getting the ball rolling on a few writing projects moving forward, and a new story will be uploaded here this afternoon.  There will be some other bits of fiction and poetry emerging on a much more regular basis after that, as well as some more interesting asides in video game narratives (it’ll be fun, I promise) and other new additions to the site.  So yeah, to coin a cliché, big things are on the way.

Or, at least, bigger things.

 

Modern Witches

Arietta sat with folded legs on the living room floor, her face matching the discarded balls of wrapping paper beside her scrunch for scrunch.  The young goat being cradled in her lap looked up and started to nibble at the untidy ends of Areitta’s flaxen hair.  She shoved its head away and went back to sulking.

It wasn’t fair.

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