Rain

I love the rain. The sound of it hitting the street below and splashing as cars pass by. It’s inspirational in its own right. There’s something very calming and therapeutic about rain. Like a million tears running down windows, witnessed by many a lost soul. It changes things, the smell in the air, the mood of a teenager sat watching it pour down the windows, the excitement of a child who gets to go jump in the puddles, it sums up the feelings, when there are no words to explain them.

She walks in the rain, it pelts at her skin, blends in with her tears and soothes her. She has no knowledge of how far she has come or how long she has been gone. Head down, the streets all blend into one. Car horns sound around her and she jumps as the sound invades her mind. From the moment she turned that corner, she was alone, only aware of her thoughts. The reason for leaving has gone now, it’s back there where she left it. The path she’s taking is a familiar one, she has walked it time and again. The brain is not capable of thinking more than one thought at a time, although she does not believe the truth of that statement when the thoughts running in and out of her make no sense or reason. She never feels alone here, there are always eyes upon her. She’s aware of them, always aware but never acknowledges them. She feels content in the rain, she can feel it now, beating down on her face, cleansing away the sins of her past. She’s gone past the place of comfort, the loving arms who’ll hold her. Turning and continuing on, to the place that will haunt her. It hasn’t changed through the years, the images are all the same. This is the place, sheltered by the trees, droplets seep through the leaves. Slowly, but surely, her conscious comes back to her. She has not known how long she’s been gone, nor how far she had walked.

 

 

 

I wrote this when I was (approximately) 12 years old. I just found it by happy accident and wanted to share it. I had thought it had been forever lost to me. 

4 Years

On this day.
The clock stopped,
It read – 16.10
Such a sudden shock to the atmosphere,
It stopped time.

The day before.
A feeling,
It was 19.15
A jolt of realisation,
Calm acceptance.

The happiest of days,
All day until 18.00
A phone call,
Devastation.

Six Weeks

images(https://www.oif.ala.org/oif/?p=9937)

Week 1:

The man in his mid 20’s is presented wearing a stiff white shirt with a bright blue necktie. He sits behind an oak wood desk, the paperwork covering it seems to be placed in even piles as a laptop has been placed to one side, idle.

The sound of a clock ticking in the otherwise silent room is piercing. The two occupants sit across from each other, sizing up who might be the first to speak.

“So, tell me about yourself?”

Curious eyes dart from the window to the eyes of the man behind the desk. There is a head tilt that suggests the man is being judged. Curious, dark eyes dropping to land on the file on the desk that reads: MILLS, Alexander.

“Shouldn’t you already know?”

“I’d like to hear it from you. In your own words, Alexander.”

“Alex.” Dark eyes revert back to the window, looking out at the view of the City.

“Okay. Alex. Do you want to tell me what brings you here to my office?” The man keeps his gaze on Alex, trying to gauge the boy’s reaction.

The following silence is heavy, weighing on the man’s shoulders. He sits in thought, wishing he had forgone the necktie – if only to not feel so constrained.

A buzzer sounds to mark the end of the hour, “same time next week, Alex?” the man says with a sigh. The only response is a lift of one shoulder, as Alex stands and leaves the room without a word.

 

Week 2:

The door opens, a woman with mousey hair wearing a warm cardigan leads in a boy of 17. He towers over her as he passes by and walks through the threshold. His posture straight, eyes determined he walks straight over to the armchair in the middle of the room.

“Good afternoon, Alex.”

“Doc,” Alex replies with a slight nod of the head.

“How have you been since we spoke last week?” The man asks with bated breath.

“Yeah, good.”

“That’s good to hear… what have you been up to since we last spoke?” he prompts.

Alex maintains eye contact as he sits there silently contemplating how much of a reply he wants to give. His eyes trailing to the Doctors collar and tie – it’s a dull red colour today.

“School.” Alex responds with a casual shrug, “that’s pretty much it.”

“You like school?”

“It’s alright. Same shit, different day. The teachers don’t care, why should I, right.” No hint in his voice that his statement is a question.

“What about your friends? You don’t see them outside of school?” The question is asked in such a way, it’s as though he is unsure of how it will be received.

Alex’s gaze shifts and drops to his shoes, “Not really.”

 

Week 3:

The door flies open, banging against the wall as it swings with surprising speed. With a startled jump and a raised head, the man looks up, speechless.

Alex stands in the threshold, face like thunder. He grabs the door and forces it shut, throwing himself in the chair opposite the desk.

“Alex? Is everything alright?” The doctor asks, head tilting to one side, unsure what may have caused such a reaction.

“Why do you do that? Why does everyone do that!? The sympathetic head tilt thing like you understand my life. You don’t even see me! No one sees me. I’m just a number to you, a special case, a “looked after child” whose mother can’t put the bottle down long enough to remember she has a kid.”

“What makes you think… Has something happened to make you think that?”

Alex looks up, eyes dark as he makes shaky eye contact. His lips form a tight line, the tension in his shoulders almost painful as he sits ramrod straight in the chair. Taking a breath to try and regain some composure, Alex returns his gaze to the window. Looking out at the City skyline he speaks, “I got a detention today because I didn’t do the homework and wouldn’t tell them why I didn’t have it.” He scoffs, “Detention. I’m 17, not 7.”

“Would you like to tell me why you didn’t do it? We haven’t discussed your new placement yet, have you settled in alright?”

“It’s loud and busy. Hard to concentrate on anything other than keeping out of people’s way. It’s fine. The best thing for me, right…” Another scoff.

 

Week 4:

“Alex, I want to start straight off from where we left things last week. I’d like you to tell me more about how you’re managing to settle in, in your new placement.”

“Like what? It’s not like if I say I don’t like it, there’s anywhere else for me to go.”

The man leans forward, hands clasped together over the desk, “Are you saying you don’t like it?”

“It’s fine…”

“But…?”

Alex shrugs, “It isn’t home.” His eyes raise to meet the Doctor’s gaze before immediately dropping back down to his shoes.

“Last week, you acknowledged that where you are now is for the best. Do you believe that?”

“No. It wasn’t even that bad, we were fine. We were coping.”

“At home, you mean?”

“Yeah. We had issues but doesn’t every family?” Another shrug, “We had each other’s back. Now we’re both alone. They won’t let me see her. That isn’t the best thing for either of us.”

“Do you know why you aren’t able to see your mum, Alex?”

“She’s in rehab. Cold turkey, right. Treating us like I’m what she’s addicted to.”

“That may change, in time. Once she’s recovered. They might allow you to visit or to phone her. In time.”

 

Week 5:

“How long you been doing this, doc?”

The doctor flushes pink, clears his throat, “I graduated just over 6 months ago.”

Alex doesn’t answer, just sits contemplatively.

“How’s school been going?”

Alex shifts in the chair, “Fine.”

“Care to elaborate?”

“It’s fine. People mostly just leave me to get on with whatever. They don’t bother me.”

“Do you socialise with the other students?”

“They look at me weird. Like I’m damaged or like they might catch something just for being in the same room as me.”

“How does that make you feel?”

Alex looks up, an amused look on his face, lips curling up into a smirk, “Really? You’re going with that cliché?”

Once again, the doctors face turns pink. He laughs, embarrassed to be called up on using such a phrase.

Alex turns his head, observing the landscape. He has become drawn to the view, often getting lost in thought as he watches the clouds move.

“Alex?”

“Invisible. It makes me feel invisible.”

 

Week 6:

The room holds a young man, in his late teens. He wears faded jeans with a short-sleeved shirt, band logo prominent. He sits in the chair that he has come to think of as ‘his’, a small smile on his face. Across from him is a young man, not all that much older, a white, crisp shirt tucked under a grey waistcoat, looking much more relaxed than previous weeks.

“They said I can speak to my mum in a couple of weeks,” Alex explains, smile growing into a grin.

“That’s good news, Alex. On the phone?”

“Yeah, they said she’ll be able to make a call to the group home and then I can talk to her.”

“I can see you’re happy about that.”

“Yeah. This group home won’t be forever. I’ll be 18 in a couple months. School will be over, finally and I can get my own place and when my mum comes home, I can see her again. I can help her.”

“One step at a time, Alex. She may be doing well right now, but it can be different once people try to return to ‘real life’. It might not be as straight forward as you want it to be. What do you want to do when you leave school?”

“I just need to get a job. Like labouring or something.”

“What about college or University?”

“Doc, I grew up in the worst neighbourhood and go to the worst school in our area. Kids like me, we don’t have the same opportunities that kids like you have. I just want a job and my own place. Then everything will be fine.” His gaze once again, only on the clouds.

 

 

Authors Note:
If anything in the above causes offence or does not ring true, it was not intended. I do not know what it is like to be in any of these situations, this is fiction and something I have written to try and practice writing dialogue.
Chloe.

Yeah

Blondie’s voice rises above the nearby chatter, “Just lick it off.”

She tilts her head, smiles shyly, “I’d rather just wash my hands, thanks.”

The table of people watches her go with amused, frustrated smiles on their faces.

“Some people just don’t like it. It’s like an OCD kind of thing… Is she OCD?” Asks the brunette.

“She’s never liked it.”

Heads turn sharply to where the voice drifted over from. The woman continues on, collecting their empty glasses as she speaks, “As a kid, she couldn’t stand it. The slightest thing on her fingers and she had to be taken to wash her hands. Everything would have to stop until her hands were clean… like she couldn’t focus on anything other than that.”

The elder speaks, “I didn’t realise you’d known her that long… or that you knew her at all, really…”

A smile, small and troubled flashes briefly before she leaves with the empties, a quiet, “Yeah” can only just be heard as she turns her back.

Hands now clean, she makes her way back to her chair, noticing everyone at the table is eyeing her.

The brunette asks, “Didn’t realise you knew Caroline..?”

She looks up, making brief eye contact. Her previous smile turning sad and troubled, “Yeah.”

 

~JustMe~

 

 

Listen

“You want me to speak? You want to hear my voice? Then listen to me. I’m a subtle person, I ain’t about to start shouting just so my voice rises above yours. You want to hear what I want to say, you gotta shut up for a second and listen to me.”

-JustMe

Immense

I had thought I was a nuisance,
An oddball,
The black sheep.

It took leaving,
A shot in the dark,
The result immense.

A letter sent out,
The response, “Do your best, it is all you can do.”
I felt my heart skip.

A phone call, later,
The words, “She says she loves hearing from you.”
I cry.

The letters continue,
A feeling so immense,
I had thought I was a nuisance…

 

Reaching

You came to me as a bairn
I reared you with such joy
You forgave me my mistakes
and loved me through my journey.

By my side, you stayed,
My shadow, gracious and true.

A content gent, you grew to be
As the years came to calm me,
so they calmed you, too.

Bursting to the brim with love,
with despair
My soul carries on reaching
Constantly searching
Hoping reality was not
That you are not really gone;
Just temporarily absent.

Poetry Corner

Stop all the clocks, cut off the telephone,
Prevent the dog from barking with the juicy bone.
Silence the pianos and, with muffled drum,
Bring out the coffin. Let the mourners come.
Let aeroplanes circle the moaning overhead
Scribbling in the sky the message: “He is dead!”
Put the crepe bows around the white necks of the public doves.
Let the traffic policeman wear black cotton gloves.
He was my north, my south, my east and west,
My working week and Sunday rest,
My noon, my midnight, my talk, my song.
I thought that love would last forever; I was wrong.
The stars are not wanted now; put out every one.
Pack up the moon and dismantle the sun.
Pour away the ocean and sweep up the wood.
For nothing now can come to any good.
W.H. Auden

Sometimes I ain’t so sho who’s got ere a right to say when a man is crazy and when he ain’t. Sometimes I think it ain’t none of us pure crazy and ain’t none of us pure sane until the balance of us talks him that-a-way. It’s like it ain’t so much what a fellow does, but it’s the way the majority of folks is looking at him when he does it.
William Faulkner

Yesterday I was clever and tried to change the world. Today I am wise and try to change myself.
Rumi

Your soul is attracted to people the same way flowers are attracted to the sun, surround yourself only with those who want to see you grow.
Pavana

I hope to arrive to my death, late, in love, and a little drunk.
Atticus

I always thought the words, and then, were a prelude to something wonderful. Like seeing a ship come in or finding a note in your letterbox, when you weren’t expecting one. That swift, surprising transition from nothing to everything.
And then.
Two little words that hold a world of promise, and then, the light pierced through the dark, forbidding sky, and the rain stopped falling.
And then I met you.
Lang Leav

Keep away from the people who try to belittle your ambitions. Small people always do that, but the really great make you feel that you, too, can become great.
Mark Twain

If I can stop one heart from breaking,
I shall not live in vain;
If I can ease one life the aching,
or cool one pain,
or help one fainting robin
Unto his nest again,
I shall not live in vain.
Emily Dickinson

Oh me! Oh Life! of the questions of these recurring,
of the endless trains of the faithless,
of cities fill’d with the foolish,
Of myself forever reproaching myself, (for who more foolish than I, and who more faithless?)
Of eyes that vainly crave the light, of the objects mean, of the struggle ever renew’d,
Of the poor results of all, of the plodding and sordid crowds I see around me
Of the empty and useless years of the rest, with the rest me intertwined,
The question, O me! so sad, recurring – what good amid these, O me, O life?
Answer
That you are here – that life exists and identity
That the powerful play goes on, and you may contribute a verse.
Walt Whitman

And softness came from the starlight and filled me full to the bone
W. B. Yeats

Though nothing can bring back the hour
Of splendour in the grass, of glory in the flower;
We will grieve not, rather find
Strength in what remains behind;
In the primal sympathy
Which having been must ever be.
William Wordsworth

Unless you love someone, nothing else makes sense.
E. E. Cummings

Childlike dreams

A childlike dream of what career you want to have when you grow up. 

I have often thought of what it would be like to be a journalist. To travel and meet all kinds of different unique people. I would love to have the kind of creative and active mind that asks all of the questions that never get asked. Questions on every day small, seemingly insignificant things. The small things that make a difference in people’s lives, the people that make a difference. 

Distance

“When I lost her, I had dreams. Dozens of dreams. I was home and she was there, or she wasn’t. Sometimes it was worse when she was there because I knew that it would never be real. It would never be okay. She would take my hand, she was cautious – like she knew that I was ready to bolt at any moment.”

“Why did you feel ready to bolt?”

“…It can’t be real. If I run, I can create distance.”