Rain and tea

Grace Mary Potts

Australia

My life is comprised of inconsistencies, daydreaming, procrastination techniques and occasionally, writing.

Message from Writer

I wouldn't quite call myself a novice in writing but as there is certainly room for improvement, I would very much appreciate any comment you can provide, particularly if it's the constructive kind.

Rain and tea

Grace Mary Potts (Australia) liked What was, and never will be by Roisin Dauth (Australia)

30 days ago

Rain and tea
3
2

Grace Mary Potts (Australia) published:

Afloat to Distant Shores

FREE WRITING

I climbed aboard a cargo ship,
Because I thought I saw the sun,
I let myself be pulled from the water,
Because my heart had been undone.

Forever I have been drowning,
Choking on the water in my lungs,
For an eternity I have been gasping,
Feeling so lost and young.

I see myself and recoil,
At the sight of my reflection,
Scared and cracked and flawed,
On the surface it is perfection.

I sink to the bottom of the...

Seeking Peer Reviews

about 1 month ago

Rain and tea

Grace Mary Potts (Australia) published:

Cracked Cups and Colossal Blunders

PROMPT: 0-9

9 are the number of times I noticed you sitting on the other side of the coffee shop, backpack tucked under your chair and your eyes concealed by the luminous frames that rested on your nose, lenses reflecting the glare of your laptop. 

8 is where the hour hand was always resting when you would get up to leave, gathering your backpack and abandoning your morning coffee to be collected once you were gone.  

7 is the white and black...

Seeking Peer Reviews

2 months ago

Rain and tea

Grace Mary Potts (Australia) reviewed:

Elation

PROMPT: Color Swatch

The thought of a colour encompassing all that elation is, is a glorious one. I love the idea present in this piece author, the images you have conveyed here are tangible and relatable. A great response to the Color Swatch...

3 months ago

Rain and tea
Chris

Grace Mary Potts (Australia) started following Swasti (United States)

3 months ago

Rain and tea

Grace Mary Potts (Australia) liked The Moment of Profound Love by Roisin Dauth (Australia)

4 months ago

Rain and tea

Grace Mary Potts (Australia) published:

Safe Haven

FREE WRITING

I'm twelve years old and in a room
That seems so big
The windows are open
and sunlight is filtering in.
I clutch my notebook to my chest
And hear the words of girls I haven't met.
Five years of joy and happiness
Haven't happened yet.
 
Dear safe haven,
I know you so well,
Safe haven,
We've got a lot of stories to tell,
Safe haven,
I know you'll go on
And keep them safe years after
I'm gone. ...

Seeking Peer Reviews

6 months ago

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Grace Mary Potts (Australia) liked Flash Fiction Pieces by Azur3Lum3n (United States)

6 months ago

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Grace Mary Potts (Australia) liked Star Holder by Sia (United States)

6 months ago

Rain and tea
1
1

Grace Mary Potts (Australia) published:

This is What it is

PROMPT: Why I Write

Sometimes it feels like I’m in the middle of the ocean, submerged in the deep, dark blue, and there’s a rope tied around my leg. That rope is attached to an anchor – huge, black, bigger than my whole body - and slowly, but surely, it’s pulling me down. With every passing moment I fall further below the surface of the world and the glimpse of dappled sunlight above me becomes harder to see. Eventually, I realise I’ve always been...

Seeking Peer Reviews

7 months ago

Published Work

Afloat to Distant Shores

I climbed aboard a cargo ship,
Because I thought I saw the sun,
I let myself be pulled from the water,
Because my heart had been undone.

Forever I have been drowning,
Choking on the water in my lungs,
For an eternity I have been gasping,
Feeling so lost and young.

I see myself and recoil,
At the sight of my reflection,
Scared and cracked and flawed,
On the surface it is perfection.

I sink to the bottom of the ocean,
Because I see myself and wonder,
If people saw this girl for who she was,
Could they ever love her?

I stopped seeing light long ago,
When I slipped beneath the water,
Sometimes I wonder to myself,
If I was always under.

So when I see a ripple one day,
Of the sun shining through,
I grab a hold of a sailor's hand and pray,
For freedom from the deep, dark, blue. 

I climbed aboard a cargo ship,
Because...

0-9

Cracked Cups and Colossal Blunders

9 are the number of times I noticed you sitting on the other side of the coffee shop, backpack tucked under your chair and your eyes concealed by the luminous frames that rested on your nose, lenses reflecting the glare of your laptop. 

8 is where the hour hand was always resting when you would get up to leave, gathering your backpack and abandoning your morning coffee to be collected once you were gone.  

7 is the white and black card that would wink at me when the waiter came to take your table number each day, the plastic square catching the light from the window as it was lifted away. 

6 are the agonising instances that stole the air from my lungs and pulled my stomach to the back of my throat, wherein I contemplated getting up to say hello. 

5 are the mornings, quiet and damp, when clouds drew a grey curtain across the sky and rain pounded...

Safe Haven

I'm twelve years old and in a room
That seems so big
The windows are open
and sunlight is filtering in.
I clutch my notebook to my chest
And hear the words of girls I haven't met.
Five years of joy and happiness
Haven't happened yet.
 
Dear safe haven,
I know you so well,
Safe haven,
We've got a lot of stories to tell,
Safe haven,
I know you'll go on
And keep them safe years after
I'm gone.
 
Once a year we dress up like fools
And laugh until the stars appear
Then we run all of the way up to our rooms
And think we’re happy here.
Under the moon we sit in quiet delight,
‘Cause we’ve been writing all day,
After a day of having our heads up in the clouds,
With each other we stay.
 
Dear safe haven,
I know you so well,
Safe haven,
We've got a lot of stories to tell, ...

Why I Write

This is What it is

Sometimes it feels like I’m in the middle of the ocean, submerged in the deep, dark blue, and there’s a rope tied around my leg. That rope is attached to an anchor – huge, black, bigger than my whole body - and slowly, but surely, it’s pulling me down. With every passing moment I fall further below the surface of the world and the glimpse of dappled sunlight above me becomes harder to see. Eventually, I realise I’ve always been here. I’ve always been submerged – always falling through these dark waters and I know that one day, I will reach the ocean floor and the light will be gone.

It’s always been like this.

I just never noticed before.

But then, it passes. Like a cloud crossing over the sun, the feeling passes me by and the shadow is banished by the warmth of sunlight. I feel relief because the world doesn’t seem so bleak anymore. I can smile...

1 Photo, 20 Words

So Much to See

So great and vast,
Our universe must be,
Where nebulae bloom,
Where darkness and colour collide in infinite majesty. 

Walking

Talking to Ghosts

She always makes sure there's a space next to her. A gap, just to her right. She moves like a leaf caught in a flurry; delicate spins and twirls. She drifts down every corridor with an ease that makes you think the Earth is stable when you know it's not. She never looks behind her and rarely turns at someone's call. She stares out at something far away, beyond what you can see.

But once, just once, you saw her gaze flit to the space next to her and for a brief moment she smiled a strained, tragic smile. Then it was gone and everything was normal again. 

You watch her dance vacantly through the mindless madness of the world. You watch and you try to ignore the way you grow cold when you near the space beside her.
You think about leaves and how, once they're thrown into the air, they are destined to fall. 

Coming Up the Crest

The heavy cloak that rested on her shoulders hadn’t been thrown off. She hadn’t been miraculously freed of the confines of its fabric. But here and now, with the image of the sky, the sky, vibrant with golden colour, like the gods had thrown a bucket of paint across the world, she thought she might just be able to bear the weight. 

Walking

Talking to Ghosts

She drifts like a leaf in the wind. She flutters and twirls, her feet dancing patterns into worn carpeted floors but still, she moves with the pacing and the direction of someone who knows exactly where they are going. She never bumps into anyone; she simply maneuvers her way around those coming toward her. She's always moving forward and she never looks behind her. But then, she never really looks at anything. Her eyes, glazed and latched onto something in the distance he can't see, pass over everything around her, vacant in a way that's always told him she's worlds away. If it weren't for the elegance with which she moves through the madness, he'd think she wasn't aware at all. 
   But the strangest thing, the oddest thing, is when she stops. Whether she takes a moment to stand by a window or leans against a wall or spouts nonsense to a teacher, there's always a space to the...

Walking

Talking to Ghosts

She drifts like a leaf in the wind. She flutters and twirls, her feet dancing patterns into worn carpeted floors but still, she moves with the pacing and the direction of someone who knows exactly where they are going. She never bumps into anyone; she simply maneuvers her way around those coming toward her. She's always moving forward and she never looks behind her. But then, she never really looks at anything. Her eyes, glazed and latched onto something in the distance he can't see, pass over everything around her, vacant in a way that's always told him she's worlds away. If it weren't for the elegance with which she moves through the madness, he'd think she wasn't aware at all. 
   But the strangest thing, the oddest thing, is when she stops. Whether she takes a moment to stand by a window or leans against a wall or spouts nonsense to a teacher, there's always a space to the...

​Tragically Ordinary Yet Still Strangely Wonderful

It was horribly cliché, she thought as she stepped into the office on Friday afternoon: that she appeared to have fallen in love with the colour of Michael O’Brien’s eyes.

Why was it always the eyes that one noticed, she wondered? Why not the elegant cut of the suits he wore to work? Why not the way his hair would always flop to the left side or the way the edges of his fingernails were rough, worn ragged from constant biting? Why not the olive tone of his skin, a smooth copper where her own pallor had always been blotchy and red.

Well, she considered as her cheeks burned in a deep flush, she clearly didnotice these things. But she didn’t obsess over them like she did his eyes. She could write poems about his eyes, she thought. Lyrics. Ballads. Stanza after stanza commemorating the way they glinted in the afternoon sun. She might even make a fortune off...

Scattered Peach Cans

‘I dunno mate. Seems like a waste of time to me.’
            Thirteen-year-old Jason Lovett sniffed and spared a moment to scowl at his friend before placing another golf ball on the tee and lining up his golf club. He drew the driver back before the swinging it back down like a pendulum. Thwack. The ball flew in a high arch through the air and landed at the base of a tree on the other side of the park.
            ‘Damn,’ he muttered, raising a hand to shield his eyes from the sun, ‘not quite as far as the last one.’
            There was snort. Jason turned to see Tom, who had elected to sprawl on a bench a few paces behind him for the past twenty minutes, staring at him with raised eyebrows.
            ‘You mean the one that almost went through Mrs Jones’ back window,’ he said, nudging his head in the direction of the old woman’s backyard....

Want

It is the language of want, want for love, for power, for gold; it is this thirst for the treasures of the world that drives us all, like a gun pressed to the small of our backs, pushing us forward or like a hook caught around our hearts, reeling us in.

Universal Knowledge

Love

It is the language of want, want for love, for power, for gold; it is this thirst for the treasures of the world that drives us all, like a gun pressed to the small of our backs, pushing us forward or like a hook caught around our hearts, reeling us in.

​Tragically Ordinary Yet Still Strangely Wonderful

 It was horribly cliché, she thought as she stepped into the office on Friday afternoon: that she appeared to have fallen in love with the colour of Michael O’Brien’s eyes.

Why was it always the eyes that one noticed, she wondered? Why not the elegant cut of the suits he wore to work? Why not the way his hair would always flop to the left side or the way the edges of his fingernails were rough, worn ragged from constant biting? Why not the olive tone of his skin, a smooth copper where her own parlour had always been blotchy and red.

Well, she considered as her cheeks burned in a deep flush, she clearly didnotice these things. But she didn’t obsess over them like she did his eyes. She could write poems about his eyes, she thought. Lyrics. Ballads. Stanza after stanza commemorating the way they glinted in the afternoon sun. She might even make a fortune off...

The Bared Teeth of Sharks

The ledge is slick, wet from the rain. She knows that if her toes weren't gripping the edge so tightly she'd have slipped and landed painfully on her backside shortly after she'd clambered up onto the rooftop moments before. Yellow fairy-lights flicker through the gushing wall of water from where they're strewn across the bushes in the garden below, but their beauty provides no comfort. Here she stands alone, solitary in the gathering dark of dusk. 
    She's the last one. The only one who hasn't taken the leap. Their chants fill the air like the rhythmic beat of waves slapping the base of a cliff. They're probably meant to be encouraging but they ring sharp and biting, like taunts. Jeers.
    Jump. Jump. Jump.
    Their grins, rather than giddy and joyful, appear hungry. They are the predators, lurking in the pool below like sharks circling beneath the plank of a pirate ship. Her breaths come faster and goosebumps break out across her skin. 
    It's...

History Alive

Historical Raps

Marie Antoinette:
 
Too young to rule,
She spent more than they could take,
The poor were starving,
She said ‘Let them eat cake.’
 
So the peasants revolted,
The rich were hanged in the streets,
By the guillotine she was beheaded,
The revolution was complete.
 
 
Hitler:

Germany was depressed,
His solution made him famous,
He said they would be so impressed,
When he made them glorious.
 
But then the holocaust happened,
The deaths of five million and more,
The West was enraged,
And we were waging war.
 

Letter Writing Competition

What I Hold Back

There are things I want to say to you - truths I have never said to your face. Things I want you to know but have never had the confidence to say. I want to say that it wasn't okay. I know I said it was but it wasn't. What you did was callous, cruel and so completely and utterly selfish. That's what I don't get, you see. I thought you were better than that. More mature. Now I see I was a fool to trust you where I had never trusted others before, and believe your lies of forever that slipped so enticingly from your tongue. I don't know why I believed you. I should have known better. I thought you were better. 

You should have been upfront. No matter how much you were trying to be delicate, how you wished to spare my feelings, you should have been honest with me because not knowing why it happened...

Grappling Hate

I don’t hate them as such.
more so I hate how they make me feel.
I hate the way their casual dismissal curdles like acid in my stomach
and their patronising smiles spur indignation to rise like a fire in my heart
I hate the way they talk over me
as though they have forgotten I am there
I hate how they can still laugh like we used to
even while I have been shunted to the side
I hate how one minute they accept me fully
and the next it is as though they never did
I hate this feeling of absence
of standing on the fringes with a pathetic desperation to be allowed in
I hate that they make me feel like I’m worthless
I hate the way they don’t seem to care that they do
I hate that I loved them once
I hate that I still do
I hate that tears still burn in my eyes...

Strings

You know that tug you get when you think of someone you’re close to. That swelling throb that’s almost like pain, but not?
    Like if you focus you can feel the connection that threads your heart to your Mum and your Dad, to your friends and your significant others. That fleeting pull towards the other parts of your heart. As though they’re bound to you on string. Or you’re bound to them.
    For thousands of years humanity has called this peculiarity, love. (Although the exact translation differs between languages.) A state of mind wherein the way one cares for another is not able to be expressed in words.
    But what if it was more than just a feeling? More than simply a notion, or a thought?
    Imagine for a moment, if you will, that these threads were something you could see. Spinning around you like rays of sunshine, binding you to your present and your future and your past....

Whispers

The wicked wind whispers things,
Stuttered, sacred secrets,
The wicked wind whispers things,
Tales of woe, heartache and regrets,
The wicked wind whispers things,
Things only the wind can know,
Like the hushed prayers of dying sailors, 
Or the dark places ghosts go,
The wicked wind whispers things,
Things no one had ever heard,
Until her wretched voice found me,
The small, voiceless bird. 
 

Bombs

Bombs fall from the sky,
Torrents of ashes, a loud explosion,
The ceiling shakes because foundations lie,
Nothing to protect you once the sky is broken,
Under the bed in darkness I hide,
I dare not breathe for fear of crying,
The orphanage has no shelter outside,
So we lay under covers, terrified of dying.
I wonder where my mother is now,
If among all this her heart is still beating,
If she met me would it be regrets she’d avow,
Or are thoughts of me only fleeting.
Distantly I hear cries and whimpers,
Just beyond the ringing in my ears,
It’s cold and my body is wracked with shivers,
The night the bombs fall is the coldest London’s had in years.

Mysteries Abound

Love and Loss

We don't know why love hurts, why it aches in our chest and why fear of losing it forces the air from our lungs.

We don't know how to cherish the time we have, not without wasting precious moments with war and hurt and fear.

We don't know, or we don't remember at least, that we should never walk away angry and so we're left with memories of final goodbyes tainted by anger and arguments over stupid things.

And we certainly haven't agreed on whether the good moments are worth the pain of remembering so some of us spend our lives trying to forget. 

Seventeen

It takes me a week to understand the truth of what this number means - that I'm now one year older than she'll ever be.

Friendship and Other Strange Things

She plucked a blue pen from the pile and leaned forward to draw a bird on her friend's arm.

"Must you?"

"Mhmm, hey can you stretch you arm out this way a bit for me? It's at an odd angle."

"I don't know why I put up with you."

Breaking Cloudcover (excerpts)

When I was a child I used to dream of starlight. Bright, unfathomable flames of hot and white that would pick me up and carry me away to the vast depths of a wild and sparkling universe. I would fade to a dot in the sky above and it would be an adventure. A glorious, glorious adventure. I would see planets in other solar systems and aliens of impossible shapes and colours.

I would see beauty and experience wonders.  

The problem: I’ve never seen stars. At this rate, I’m fairly sure I never will. 

One Sentence Story

Her Golden Smile

Sometimes I go months without thinking about her before I am reminded when I see her smile in someone else, her kindness in someone else, her love in someone else and then I find myself swept away in grief for a girl I wish I'd tried harder to know. 

Flash Fiction Competition

Human

She sits in silence when the cracks first appear in the wall, slivers of light peeking through. Then, without finesse, she watches it fall. Her rescuers cut the ropes from her wrists to reveal black-purple smudges that wrap around them like bracelets (but instead of shining, sparkling things there's only dull, dark pain). When they pull her from the dungeon the midday sun blinds her and she recoils, whining like she’s wounded. They move to reassure her but withdraw when she snarls.
(She thinks she was one of them once. The thought settles in her chest like a bruise.)

Flash Fiction Competition

Human

She sits in silence when the cracks first appear in the wall, slivers of light peeking through. Then, without finesse, she watches it fall. Her rescuers cut the ropes from her wrists to reveal black-purple smudges that wrap around them like bracelets (but instead of shining, sparkling things there's only dull, dark pain). When they pull her from the dungeon the midday sun is blinding. She recoils, whining like she’s wounded. They move to reassure her but withdraw when she snarls. She thinks she was one of them once. The thought settles in her chest like a bruise.

Flash Fiction Competition

Human

They come and break down the wall – cracks like spiderwebs, rocks cascading to the floor – she watches them in silence. They cut ropes from her wrists to reveal black-purple smudges that wrap around them like bracelets - shining, sparkling things where the marks on her wrists are dull, dark pain she wants to touch them but thinks better of it. They pull her from the dungeon; daylight is blinding. She recoils from it, whines like she’s wounded. She thinks she might have been one of them once. The thought aches in her chest like a bruise.

Flash Fiction Competition

Human

Ropes cut from her wrists reveal skin mottled by bruises, a chain of black-purple smudges that wrap around them like bracelets - pretty things she remembers but doesn't, shining, sparkling where the marks on her wrists are dull, dark pain. She goes to touch them but it hurts so she digs her fingernails into her palms and doesn’t do it again. People - rescuers - offer water but it stings the dry walls of her throat and she splutters and chokes. Midday sun burns her retinas when she’s pulled from the dungeon and she flinches, recoils like a cat hissing at a viper.

She thinks that she might have been human once and the thought settles in her chest like a bruise. 

Flash Fiction Competition

Human

When the ropes are cut from her wrists she finds her skin mottled by bruises, a chain of black-purple smudges that wrap around her wrists like jewellery. She goes to touch them but it hurts so she digs her fingernails into her palms so she doesn’t do it again. They offer her water -  kind faces, pitying eyes, she hates them, hates them, hates them – but it stings the dry skin of her throat and she splutters and chokes. The sun burns her retinas when she’s pulled from the basement – cool, dark, empty room that she hates but misses, why does she miss it – she flinches back, coils in on herself like a cat hissing at a viper.

She isn’t one of them anymore. The thought settles in her chest like a bruise. 

Cyclical

I think maybe, by now, I should have known better. 

Barren Arms

Without leaves the tree's branches remind her of its roots as she sees them in minds eye,
Bare and pointed like spines striking deep into cool ground,
Their spindly fingers, sharp black in dusky light, stretch out and up to the sky,
Like they might covet the water held by the clouds that float above unbound,
No movement comes though and when dawn breaks the tree remains quiet,
Stark and barren as the world wakes and ends its silence.


 

Burnished Gold

The weight of the dark settles over the day, pressing down until the trees of the forest have become little more than silhouettes against the sky, sharp and threatening. The colour of charcoal. The colour of shadows. She swirls her drink gently with a turn of her wrist and stares out across the jagged shape of the world, gaze settling on the fringes of the horizon. They're burnished with gold.

Scrutiny of Fantastical Dreams

My parents were together for twenty years before they divorced.
    It’s something I think about sometimes. On occasion. I think it might be part of why it’s so difficult for me to believe in love. Romantic love, that is. I mean, how can I? How am I supposed to believe love can last when my parents, who met when they were eighteen and stayed together for over two decades, couldn’t make it?
    It’s rather off-putting, you see.
    It makes me think that, maybe, the whole true love scenario just doesn’t exist. Outside of family, it might simply be impossible to love someone for the rest of your life. Unconditionally.
    Maybe it simply is that eventually all love fades to dust or falls victim to the pitfalls of humanity. Of us and our teaming imperfections. Everything ends and everything we’ve ever been fed by the media, by storybooks or by Hollywood and television, is a fabrication; a construct designed to...

After... After... After

Coming Home

After I almost chose the wrong platform and staggered my way down the crowded stairs, after the bus arrived suddenly, unexpectedly, and I was forced to hang up my phone, telling my mother I would call her back, after I couldn’t find a seat and instead swung in the aisle to collide with several disgruntled passengers, after I sat down, embarrassed and relieved, and watched the world blur past, anxiously awaiting a cue that I should press the red button to signal to the driver to stop, after I stumbled off of the bus and onto a familiar bus stop and shared a knowing grin with a neighbor as I raced across chaotic traffic, after I trotted down the meandering footpath, the strap of my bag digging into my shoulder with steadily increasing weight, after I came over the crest of the hill and noticed flags on a fence I’d never noticed before, after I realized I didn’t need someone...

Friendship Tweet

Friendship

Initially frightening in its fragility, ready to be blown apart in a stiff breeze. Eventually - hopefully - capable of withstanding anything. 

Roots

Her pain ran as deep as the roots of a willow tree; settled in the core of her being and cemented by its own vitality. 

Roots

Her pain ran as deep as the roots of a willow tree; settled in the core of her being and cemented by its own vitality. She was held in place by the strength of her grief, seated so deep inside her that she thought she might never move from this place that held her so mercilessly. 

0-9

Cracked Cups and Colossal Blunders

9 are the number of times I noticed you sitting on the other side of the coffee shop, backpack tucked under your chair and your eyes concealed by the luminous frames that rested on your nose, lenses reflecting the glare of your laptop. 

8 is where the hour hand was always resting when you would get up to leave, gathering your backpack and abandoning your morning coffee to be collected once you were gone.  

7 is the white and black card that would wink at me when the waiter came to take your table number each day, the plastic square catching the light from the window as it was lifted away. 

6 are the agonising instances that stole the air from my lungs and pulled my stomach to the back of my throat, wherein I contemplated getting up to say hello. 

5 are the mornings, quiet and damp, when clouds drew a grey curtain across the sky and rain pounded...

0-9

Cracked Cups and Colossal Blunders

9 are the number of times I noticed you sitting on the other side of the coffee shop, backpack tucked under your chair and your eyes concealed by the luminous frames that rested on your nose, lenses reflecting the glare of your laptop. 

8 is where the hour hand is always resting when you leave, gathering your backpack and abandoning your morning coffee to be collected once you're gone.  

7 is the white and black card that winks at me when the waiter comes to take your table number each day, the plastic square catching the light from the window as it's lifted away. 

6 are the agonising instances that stole the air from my lungs and pulled my stomach to the back of my throat, wherein I contemplated getting up to say hello. 

5 are the mornings that clouds drew a grey curtain across the sky and rain pounded the cars and the crowds that bustled on the street...

The Perpetual Boredom of Feeling Unwanted

Hard wood pressed uncomfortably against her elbows where they leaned awkwardly against the table’s surface. She considered adjusting her position, if not for the sake of comfort then simply to display better manners. Raising her eyes from where they trailed the rivets of condensation steadily dripping their away down the sides of her glass, she cast her gaze over her companions. All of whom seemed to be engrossed in differing conversations, barely sparing her a glance. Then her eyes flitted back to her elbows and she considered them for a moment. Removing them would mean she would be unable to rest her chin in her hands, unable to press her face into the damp flesh of her palms as she had been doing all night. Her salvation of sorts from the mindless chatter generated by those accompanying her. Next to her someone shifted, turning away ever so slightly, further severing her from the conversation. She flexed her arms and decided...

Friendship Tweet

Friendship

True friendship belies the discomfort of the world, bringing warm hugs and laughter to a day that was previously more grey than the rest. 

Conscience

Frost crept up the window pane like a scab would encompass on an open wound. Their breaths, quick and sharp, broke the air in clouds that grew and curled like cigarette smoke, exhaled. 

Their fingers grasped one another's. Stiff. Numb with cold. 

A tap came at the window. The shadow of a hand outlined in the frost-covered glass. There was a crack and the girl laughed, abruptly, insanely. It became a sob. The boy wanted to move. But couldn't. Wouldn't dare. 

They never thought it would end like this. 

Cracks threaded their way through the glass, like a spider's web. 

Why would they? It was only supposed to be a joke. They never thought she would take it so seriously.

Then then the glass shattered. 

They didn't think she would fall. But it was raining and the bridge was wet. 

Soulless eyes stared at them from outside the parked car. Then, slowly, a smile crept onto her face.

They were...

Breaking Cloudcover - Excerpts

"You really don't want to see the sun? The blue sky? The night sky? Aiden what happened to wanting to see the stars?" She nudged his shoulder.

Aiden gave a careless shrug, "I'll see it when I see it. Not like it's going anywhere and 'sides, I've told you before Sam, I like the clouds."

Sam shook her head incredulously, "You're crazy."

He barked a laugh and tossed the paper ball in the air.

"So I'm told."

*

If she heard the words "doesn't apply herself" one more time she was going to bloody well shoot somebody. 

*

"I'm passing Mum!" she bellowed, "Some kids can't even say that!"

"Yes well I don't care about 'some kids' do I?" she shot back, voice beginning to rise, "I care about you Samantha. Your grades! Your-" she broke off with a sigh, reaching up to wipe her fingers across her eyes. "I just," she sighed again, "I just know you could do...

Six-Word Memoir

Unending

A near constant evolution of perception. 

Six-Word Memoir

Unending

A ceaseless accumulation of new truths. 

On the Last Day of the World

That Last Day

On the last day of the world,
I would fly to the moon. 

Novel Writing Competition - Nov '16

Finding the Yellow Sky

The sun shone pale shards of light through the gap in her curtain, reflecting off of the wooden floor in a square, like a bright window carved out of darker oaken walls. A splash of alien colour in a room that seemed to be drained of it. The fan whirred above her, rotating in a slow circle that did little more than push stale air around the stifling room. God, she hated summer. A breath escaped her lips and she tilted her head back against the wall behind her, curling her fingers around a fistful of the sheets that lay, still heaped and tangled, on her bed. 

She was wearing a yellow dress. 

A yellow dress with a pleated skirt and a collar buttoned just a mite too close to her throat. It was formal but not... well, Tracy would probably say – dammit would have said – “not depressing” but saying that struck her as wrong. Wrong when the twisting...

On the Last Day of the World

That Last Day

On the day world ends, when the dawn to come will yield no further light or life from desolate planes,
I will search out the loneliest person in the world and I will hold them in my arms until the last light fades. 

Cracks

I trail the fleshy pads of my fingers over the places where curling paint juts out like the furling leaves of a flower. Except flowers tend to be alive. The wall beneath my palms is stiff, pealing and dead.

Absentmindedly I note Jane's impassioned chatter and sweeping hand gestures somewhere to my left. But there's a buzzing in my ears, and a hollow achy feel in my chest and my stomach that's creeping steadily up my lungs. I wonder if I might be sick. If I might rid my belly of this revolving churn. Hell, I might feel better if I did. 

But would it, could it, purge this cloying decay rotting my insides? Could anything fix this? This corrosive bitterness, the aimless hopelessness that sometimes slithers into my throat and leaves me suffocating.

I kneel further up the couch, eyes catching on chips in the paint; fingers dipping over fissures spreading spidery trendils along the paper-like surface.

My index...

A History of Everything, Including You

Our Beginning (The Significance of Rainy Days)

I adore rainy days. The strong scent of damp earth, the wriggling rivets running down the rain-speckled window pane, wet roads of slick asphalt, skidding shoes and jostling umbrellas and damp coats concealing warm cardigans. It all resolves itself into a rather comforting thing, for me. But, most of all, I love looking through the dotted glass to perceive the persistent presence of the grey mist that hangs in the sky, like a blanket of steel wool. Many find it odd - my adoration of a persistent cloud cover. From my perspective, however, it simply means that it makes all the more sense, that a cloud is how we ourselves began. 

For our beginning was a quiet thing, silenced by the vacuum of space; it was a fragile gathering of dust and gas in one dark corner of the galaxy, collecting to form one colossal structure.

Four and a half billion years ago, in the place of our ever-changing solar system, there...

Novel Writing Competition - Nov '16

Finding the Yellow Sky

The sun shone pale shards of light through the gap in her curtain, reflecting off of the wooden floor in a square, like a bright window carved out of darker oaken walls. A splash of alien colour in a room that seemed to be drained of it. The fan whirred above her, rotating in a slow circle that did little more than push stale air around the stifling room. God she hated summer. A breath escaped her lips and she tilted her head back against the wall behind her, curling her fingers around a fistful of the sheets that lay, still heaped and tangled, on her bed. 

She was wearing a yellow dress. 

A yellow dress with a pleated skirt and a collar that buttoned close to her throat. Formal but not… well, Tracy would probably say – dammit would have said – “not depressing” but saying that struck her as wrong. Wrong when the twisting in her heart, the heaviness...

A Swim (Nearing Midnight)

I tilted my gaze to see the sheer clouds passing overhead,
like broken smoke or a blanket made of feathers so fine, 
there were places through which you could glimpse the other side.
So the cloak of deep blue with its stars scarce and scattered
and the moon with all it's mystery and shine,
peaked through the patches where you could still see the sky.
A bat flew overhead, silent and dark as death,
and it was peculiar for me to think that for this strange creature,
tonight was day and tomorrow was night.
Around me the water grew colder and I could feel the chill creeping in,
shivered at the kiss of cold air on my skin,
and it occurred to me that I might turn in.
For the moon was climbing higher in the sky
and the hush on the trees and the bite in the breeze,
could only mean that we were nearing midnight.
It occurred to me...

Novel Writing Competition - Nov '16

Finding the Yellow Sky

The sun shone pale shards of light through the gap in her curtain, reflecting off of the wooden floor in a square, like a bright window carved out of darker oaken walls. A splash of alien colour in a room that seemed to be drained of it. The fan whirred above her, rotating in a slow circle that did little more than push stale air around the stifling room. God, she hated summer. A breath escaped her lips and she tilted her head back against the wall behind her, curling her fingers around a fistful of the sheets that lay, still heaped and tangled, on her bed. 

She was wearing a yellow dress. 

A yellow dress with a pleated skirt and a collar buttoned just a mite too close to her throat. It was formal but not... well, Tracy would probably say – dammit would have said – “not depressing” but saying that struck her as wrong. Wrong when the twisting...

That Sort of Person

She's the Sort of Person

She's the sort of person who has the hours she couldn't fall sleep expressed in dark purple bruises blooming beneath tired eyes, like a constant reminder of her inability to dream. 

Novel Writing Competition - Nov '16

Finding the Yellow Sky

The sun shone pale shards of light through the gap in her curtain, reflecting off of the wooden floor in a square. Like a bright window carved out of darker oaken walls. A splash of alien colour in a room that seemed to be drained of it. The fan whirred above her, rotating in a slow circle that did little more than push stale air around the perpetually stuffy room. A breath escaped her lips and she tilted her head back against the wall behind her, curling her fingers around a fistful of the sheets that lay, still heaped and tangled, on her bed. 

She was wearing a yellow dress. 

A yellow dress with a pleated skirt and a collar that buttoned close to her throat. Formal but not… well. Tracy would probably say – would have said dammit would have said – “not depressing” but saying that struck her as wrong. Wrong when the twisting in her heart, the heaviness...

Five Novel Titles

My Five Titles

Here I Quail
It All Started Then 
Halfway Out Of The Dark 
Finding the Second Star 
Cracked Cups and Collosal Blunders

Five Novel Titles

My Five Titles

Here I Quail
The Pink and Yellow Heart (Its Hers)  
Shatter At My Feet 
Shivering Leaves
Cracked Cups and Collosal Blunders

Obstinance and Stargazing

She hitched the dressing-gown closer to herself, revelling in the fabric’s soft folds and the warmth hugging her skin. Ugg boots met the uneven ground with minimal uncertainty and a slight breeze nipped at her cheeks as she continued on in the cold night air.

Was it strange that she did this?

This little habit of hers.

Her fingers tightened around the blanket bundled in her arms and her lips pressed together. Whatever. She trod across the grass, thin with patches like the hill was lined with mottled carpet, before she reached a spot where the light from the house no longer illuminated the ground and trees trailed out from her periphery.

She breathed, inhaling the sharp scent of eucalyptus and the fresh air, crisp and cool like biting into an apple’s skin. There was none of that… thickness you find in the air of the CBD. Only a light breeze and the sharp tang of gum leaves catching on...

New Years

My feet ached, soles sore from the long walk and toes stinging where they rubbed against the tip of my shoes. Around me the crowd thrummed with energy, noise and laughter spilling into the air unreserved, children were hopping up onto their father’s shoulders or bouncing at their parents’ feet. People were standing on grass and stone all the way along the bank of the river, as far back as the eye could see. I looked around me for a moment in contemplation before deciding to hell with it, and I kicked off my ballet flats, put them in my bag and buried my toes into the soft warm grass beneath my feet with a delighted sigh.

The Bookshelf

Together they are squashed and pressed,
To my childhood days they attest,
Creased spines and dog-eared pages.

Storm

The tension in the car seemed to fade with the quieting of the rain, and the air became breathable again. After a while my mother eased her white-knuckled grip on the steering wheel and released a quiet sigh of relief. I gently patted her leg with the hand I had placed there earlier - my poor attempt at reassurance when the wind was blowing waves of water across the asphaly-covered street and blurring the windscreen with too much rain to see past. My mum had made it no secret that she was afraid of storms, or rather, of being on the road in the middle of one and unfortunately, this was a situation that we had all too often found ourselves in. The traffic began to crawl forward again, drivers finally able to see more than two feet in front if them, but cautious of the debris scattered across the road. My mother's phone rang and she reached for her...

The Smell of Burning

It hits her like a brick wall - the smell of burning, sharp and acrid - her nose wrinkles at the strength of the scent. 

"Burn offs?" she questions.

Her mother shrugs haphazardly, distracted as she digs through her handbag for her keys.

"Smells more like a fireplace to me."

The answer catches her off guard, slightly. Really? Can a fireplace really permeate the air like this? Covering the suburb like a blanket of poisonous fog?

Small Beginnings

I don't have many memories of my childhood. But I suppose that's normal. 

The memory is faint now, for it has been nearing on nine years since. The words spoken then and the movements of those around me are vague and blurred by the breadth of years stretching between now and then. And what little I do remember bears resemblance to a series of out of focus photographs and a soundtrack of muffled sound. I cannot remember what was said, other than, perhaps, goodbye. See you soon. I love you. Too.

But regardless of what I have now ceased to recall - the sights and sounds and smells of my city's airport terminal as it was - I will never forget how I felt.

Because it was one of the first times in my life that I can remember feeling absolutely nothing. This one instance in my life when it appeared that all emotion had fled my body. Numbness has...

Ten Words to You

Clouds of Purple Flowers

Glaring sunlight gleams on trees holding clouds of purple flowers. 

Ripple Effect

In Our Wake

We let plastic bags drift by us, floating across concrete surfaces like tumbleweeds on barren ground.
We build barracades to protect the sand of our beaches, even when it destroys the dunes of those around. 
We demolish forests for oil, paper and houses, even when there are animals still inside.
We drive cars and work in factories, and barely spare a glance for the melting ice.

And maybe one day the Earth will die, because we never gave thought to the destruction we left behind. 
 

Collective Voice

Miles From Home

Our cheeks sting with the icy bite of the early morning air, the wind's touch sharp and freezing against our bare faces. For months we persevered through the summer's blistering heat and the sun's withering gaze. For months we learned how to survive in this new life, struggling to find balance as the earth moved under our feet. Months it took us to feel comfortable here. Months.

Then the season changed. 

Now, under the unforgiving gale, our flesh proves to be as solid as eggshell, splitting open with each lash against our skin. And it hurts. It hurts that our hands are stiff and numb with cold but our wrists still sweat with heat - stinging and blistering as shackles rub against our skin. It hurts that we worked so hard, digging day after day, deep into dry ground, only to have our pace become so slow. To become so weak with cold. 

It hurts because even after months...

Ten Words to You

Clouds of Purple Flowers

On green leaves sunlight gleams. Purple clouds peek over rooftops.

Broken Not To

Writing is... Definition. It enables me to illustrate how I see the world. The quiet moments, the beats between the silences - a memory of a time when the air was golden, ringing with chatter and laughter and tainted by the stark stench of cigarette smoke, curling in steady streams from the tips of cigarettes held loosely in slack fingers. It allows for those instances, those quiet perfections that are there and gone as the instant passes, to be shared. I write because I see beautiful things and feel it would be cruel not to have others see them too. I write because the beauty and power of words enraptures me. Because I have a million and one ideas filling up the space in my mind like a bowl filling with too much water - because writing is the only way to release them from their confines to receive some sort of satisfaction. I write because I need to for...

Six-Word Story

Travelling

A forgeign ground beneath my feet.

Six-Word Story

Travelling

Ground untouched; sky unseen; everything inbetween. 

Poetry

Skies of Speckled Stars

Her back bends and curves, 
Under unseen weight her spine is curled. 
Her head throbs, stomach clenching with nerves, 
It feels like the weight of the world. 

Her arms are heavy like stones, 
Weak and trailing close to the earth. 
The night's cold air seeps into weary bones 
And she wonders what one life is worth.  

And how she's supposed to accept that, 
There's one less person on this Earth.  

Clouds of mist curl from parted lips, 
Cold air stinging eyes blurred by tears. 
Her heart withers in pain's grip, 
And her stomach twists with dreads and fears. 

Her happiness was shattered by a call to her phone, 
Bad news breaking her calm like a bullet splintering glass. 
She meets the cold night alone, 
Heartbroken, as she watches clouds pass, 
Across skies speckled with stars.

Dear Tree

Dear Mr Eucalyptus Brittle Gum

Dear Mr Eucalyptus Brittle Gum ID 14411237,

What is it like to grow so tall? How it must be a wonderful feeling to stretch one's limbs so high that it is under them that other creatures seek refuge from the harsh light of the sun. Oh how I adore your shade on a summer day.

We must seem small to you, I think. Insignificant, running around in a chaotic scramble to get things done and get on with our busy lives. Passing by your thick trunk, as white and solid as bone, as though you were a mere post standing on the concrete footpath beside a quiet suburban road.

I know we don't always show much appreciation for you Mr Eucaluptus.

But I want you to know.

That while we may not show it, we really do appreciate you.

Very. Very. Much.

And I'd just like to thank you for the air we breathe and the elegence of your stoic...

The Unknown

Independence

I do not know much about independence.
Surviving on your own.
Living by your own guidance.
Making your own decisions.
The notion of it is elusive and vague but for the understanding that it is the ideal that every person in my age group strives for. Being free to do what one wishes without waiting for an adult’s consent. Catching a train to the city and spending the day alone, wandering through the clamouring crowds, the noises and busy streets, with the act bearing no significance at all. Having a job. Earning money for yourself.
I can scarcely remember a time when I was not attached to one of my parents – it occurs to me that I have always been that small child, surgically attached to her mother’s leg out of timid insecurity and fear of being abandoned. I wouldn’t say that I fear growing up. Not at all. The idea of travel and university and life outside of...

Poetry

Skies of Speckled Stars

Her back bends and curves,
Under unseen weight her spine is curled.
Her head throbs, stomach clenching with nerves,
It feels like the weight of the world.
 
It seeps into her bones,
Heavy limbs trailing the earth,
As though they are made of stones.
She asks, what was it worth?

Her question begs an answer,
Though she will recieve none,
Numb creeps over her like cancer,
Obstructing the shuddered breath in her lungs.

Loss stings at her eyes,
Her sight blurred by beginnings of tears.
Were the happy smiles lies?
Had death beckoned her for years?

Had her cries falled on deaf ears?

Clouds of mist curl from parted lips,
Closed eyes restraining pooling tears.
Her heart, pain grips,
And her stomach twists with dreads and fears.
Happiness shattered by a ringing phone,
Calm broken like a bullet splintering glass.
She stands outside, alone,
Heartbroken, she watches as clouds pass,
Across skies speckled with stars.

Why I Write

This is What it is

Writing is a peculiar means of communication. One can express emotion and meaning in as little as one word, or they can create a symphony with thousands. One may tell stories, send a message, educate, speculate, evaluate.

There are a thousand different uses in writing and regardless of which, what is formed by the individual person is unique entirely to them. No style is the same. Every writer conducts a different orchestra and composes a different song.

For me, writing is an outlet, an expression, an escape. A world to fall into when my own becomes too much to bear. A place to admit how I feel when my skin is stretched tight over my bones and my stomach clenches like a coiled spring. When I want to shout and cry and scream at the ground and the sky and the moon because why does this have to be so hard. When I can't show how I feel inside...

Open Prompt

The Test Paper

The tap of pen against desk
The constant parting of lips
As my breath meets the air
The beating of heart in chest
As the clock hand moves
And the test paper’s bare.
Sums and numbers
Glare from blank pages
What they mean, I cannot tell
Should have studied, I think
I open my mouth and let my chest swell,
To release a sigh that's deep and
Filled with regret
Pen touches paper
I consider
I have half an hour yet.

Nervous

Why do I feel this ache? This pain in my belly that churns and pulls at the muscles of my abdomen like some wretched thing. My arm is bent, clutching around my waist as though to force the discomfort away. This, and the repeated clenching of my jaw, are the only signs I permit to tell of my quiet suffering.

I breathe in deeply through my nose, air whistling quietly, and then relax my jaw, letting out a breath that shudders with its pained release. I blink slowly and breathe again, trying somewhat desperately to regain some semblance of control over my disturbed body. The ache stays, refusing to part from me as though it were a parasite sinking its teeth into my stomach wall. Of course, the way my arm is wrapped so fiercely around my middle is unlikely to be helping. So perhaps if I were to remove it I would feel better, though the thought makes me...

Open Prompt

The Test Paper

The tap of pen against desk

The constant parting of lips

As my breath meets the air

The beating of heart in chest

As the clock hand moves

And the test paper’s bare

Sums laid out before me

Might be Ancient Greek

For all I can tell

Should have studied, I think

I open my mouth and let my chess swell

To release a sigh that’s deep and

Filled with regret

Pen touches paper

I consider

I have half an hour yet.

Where It Begins

I suppose it starts like this.
On quiet days where you drown out the sounds of your teachers and classmates. Because the sun is spilling beams of gold and shine through the window. As if the sky has reached her long, long fingers to all the dark places, like shadowed and musty classrooms, and poured light in. Sweeping strokes of sunshine, full of shimmering clouds of dust, sparkling, rippling and curling where your breath parts the air.

This is where it begins.

Textbook closed and pen held loosely in slack fingers with your mind miles above you, resting on the clouds, drifting in the breeze.

Up where it’s quieter and yet so, so loud. Ideas screaming, demanding focus. Focus! And you see, somewhere in the distance, a person who looks just like you. Whose world seems glittering with a brilliance that you long for with a yearning you don’t quite know what to do with. And your heart feels so high you’re...

Fault Lines

‘It’s only for a little while sweetheart,’ she assured him, smoothing imaginary wrinkles in Timothy’s coat. ‘You’ll be home before you know it.’

The piercing hoot of the train’s whistle drew him from his thoughts, the memory shattering as he became aware of his surroundings. The floor was trembling, the seat rocking gently beneath him as the train barrelled down the tracks. The steady rumble was something he once found soothing but now it did nothing to ease the churning in Timothy’s gut.

Closing his eyes, he sucked in a deep breath and then let it go; wearily letting his flushed face fall against the cool glass of the window. Beyond the pane, hills and fields rolled in and out of sight, scattered houses and roads jutting out among the green.

The sight was so reminiscent of another scene from years ago that he thought if he closed his eyes and let the world fade out around him, he...

Never Speak a Word

She woke to shadows. Flickering shapes of light and dark smeared smudges on the back of pale hands and stretched like fingers reaching across the polished surface of a hard-wood floor. There was a fire crackling in the hearth and the light of glowing embers drew golden fringes on the edges of the rope tied around her wrists and the wooden frame of the chair to which she was bound. Dread weighed in her stomach as though she had consumed a large stone and she swallowed to wet the mouth that was suddenly as dry as sandpaper.

“Well,” an amused voice whispered into the quiet of the room, “I was wondering when you’d be waking up.”

She heard clothes rustling and then the steady sound of footsteps met her ears. A hand stretched out from the shadows and a wand was being pointed at the fire. Flames rose and flared and began to burn more fiercely than before.

Ramona stared...

Night Time Writing

Lying in bed at night, I look out the window and watch the sky. It’s almost a full moon so I can see the clouds, my eyes following them as they travel in and out of my line of sight, feeling the weight of fatigue settle on me as I do.

The ceiling fan spins above me and as I feel it beating air against my skin I find myself imagining I am aloft among the clouds, the force of the wind propelling me across the sky.

I decide this feeling’s quite nice.

*

Tonight I find myself longing for the lustrous moon and her always-moving clouds. Yet when I turn my gaze to the window, for the first time in weeks, a curtain of rain ripples through the street, glowing with the light emitted by the luminous lamps that line the now-glittering road.

It looks thin, as though the rain drops are lighter than they sometimes are, small and...

Shadows

I lay on my bed, pillow behind my head,

And I stare into the dark, eyes caught on looming shadows,

At night the world changes, warps into something of dread,

Something that moves and breathes and grows.

So I lay atop my duna, ready to run unbound,

Should one of the silhouettes reach out and pull me from the safe and sound,

Outside it’s raining, and under the streetlamp the water's spray glows gold,

I long to see the shimmering curtain pounding the roof above my head.

But I scarcely look, for fear that when I do the shadows will take me away to damp and cold

Shadows

I lay on my bed, pillow behind my head,

And I stare into the dark, eyes caught on looming shadows,

At night the world changes, warps into something of dread,

Something that moves and breaths and grows.

So I lay atop my duna, ready to run unbound,

Should one of the silhouettes reach out and pull me from the safe and sound,

Outside it’s raining, and under the streetlamp the water's spray glows gold,

I long to see the shimmering curtain pounding the roof above my head.

But I scarcely look, for fear that when I do the shadows will take me away to damp and cold

For Forever She Will Never

She’ll never grow up.

Grief is sporadic. In a way I never expected it to be. In a way that, in retrospect, I never could have fathomed; never could have grasped.

I’ve always wondered how I’d react to the death of someone I know. How it would differ now that I’m a teenager, with stronger emotions and deeper understandings, rather than when I was that child at a funeral; bemusedly surveying her grandparent’s headstone. As children do. Would I care? Would I cry? Would I react the same way I did when my dog died? Waking up in the middle of the night, choking on tears because for a moment I forgot he was gone.

She’ll never leave school.

There are moments I forget, my focus distracted, then I’ll remember. And then there’s this weight dragging in my chest, bearing down on my shoulders; pressing a curve into my back. My limbs are heavy with something I cannot see...

For Forever She Will Never

She’ll never grow up.

Grief is sporadic. In a way I never expected it to be. In a way that, in retrospect, I never could have fathomed; never could have grasped.

I’ve always wondered how I’d react to the death of someone I know. How it would differ now that I’m a teenager, with stronger emotions and deeper understandings, rather than when I was that child at a funeral; bemusedly surveying her grandparent’s headstone. As children do. Would I care? Would I cry? Would I react the same way I did when my dog died? Waking up in the middle of the night, choking on tears because for a moment I forgot he was gone.

She’ll never leave school.

There are moments I forget, my focus distracted, then I’ll remember. And then there’s this weight dragging in my chest, bearing down on my shoulders; pressing a curve into my back. My limbs are heavy with something I cannot see...

Photo Prompt

To Work in a Book Shop

Acrylic nails tapped out a rhythm in repeated clicks against the shiny surface of the checkout counter. Around her people shuffled through the shop, skimming their fingers over the spines of book after book and then occasionally pulling one off the shelf to inspect the blurb. In that way people do when they’re either having difficulty finding a novel or trying to appear sophisticated but indifferent at the same time. Idiots.

In the right corner, in the children’s section, a flaxen haired boy with dimpled cheeks clumsily thrust a picture book in his mother’s face with a hopeful yet demanding grin. She sighed a little but smiled weakly and placed it on top of the growing pile stacked in her arms. Then in the left corner a man wearing an ill fitted and not to mention god awful brown coat stroked a finger absentmindedly across the upside down cover of a book that she was pretty sure was an exposition...

Sensation and Contemplation

feel the gentle touch of the cool breeze against my warm cheek. 

I smell the heady stench of smoke rising quietly from the tips of cigarettes held slack between curled fingers. Blending subtly with the rich scent of mosquito-repellent incense from where it rests on the table's plastic-covered surface.

taste something faintly sweet on my tongue when I chew soft bread that gives easily beneath the bite of my teeth

see hues of gold and pink dusting the clouds and painting the late afternoon sky, the sun just peaking over the tops of the trees and houses that comprise suburban living.

hear the clink of glasses and the warm chatter of voices.

And I wonder about the reason for things and the complex simplicity of just being

At Sundown

At sundown white grass glows golden,

A beauty to the sun beholden;

Red ground ignites in shining colour,

The earth's awakening from her slumber;

Leaning gum bares pale skin to the light,

Dry leaves falling drift left and right,

And bark gleams a silver shimmer,

The tree sways and its branches shiver. 

No Air to Breathe

She could feel her stomach rolling as she hastily exited the restaurant, the cool air hitting her like a bucket of ice after abandoning the stifling heat of a sauna. Shaky hands reached up to pass over her face and came away damp with the perspiration that clung to her clammy skin. She felt nauseous, her mind foggy and her eyes unable to focus in that way one is only when they're on the verge of vomiting or collapsing. Really, either seemed a possibility at this point.

Swallowing painfully she plonked down on a bench sat not five feet away from the restaurant door, which would occasionally swing open and expel light, laughter and chatter into the quiet night air before closing and leaving her in the silence again.

Silence.

No talking or questioning or stilted words to enter her bubble and interrupt her thoughts.

A breeze blew into her hair, flicking strands over her face that tickled her drying skin. Her pulse was...

Something of a Love Poem

You frustrate me like nothing else,

But somehow draw a laugh,

You can make me scream like no one else,

But when you’re gone I feel like I’m missing half.

You poke fun at me all the time,

But there’s playfulness in your eyes,

You think my glasses are a crime,

But then you stay up with me to watch the starry skies.

It’s not right how you drive me up the wall,

And get a kick out of it too,

But then pick up the phone when I call,

And when I cry you ask what? Why? Who?

It’s not fair how beneath all the banter,

And aggravating ways,

You care about me like no other,

And somehow I know you’ll be there for me, always.

Because you drive me insane,

When you act so cavalier,

Then when I think there might be air in your brain,

You start acting sincere.

And the real kicker in all of this,...

Photo Prompt

To Work in a Book Shop

Acrylic nails tapped out a rhythm in repeated clicks against the shiny surface of the checkout counter. Around her people shuffled through the shop, skimming their fingers over the spines of book after book and then occasionally pulling one off the shelf to inspect the blurb. In that way people do when they’re either having difficulty finding a novel or trying to appear sophisticated but indifferent at the same time. Idiots.

In the right corner, in the children’s section, a flaxen haired boy with dimpled cheeks clumsily thrust a picture book in his mother’s face with a hopeful yet demanding grin. She sighed a little but smiled weakly and placed it on top of the growing pile stacked in her arms. Then in the left corner a man wearing an ill fitted and not to mention god awful brown coat stroked a finger absentmindedly across the upside down cover of a book that she was pretty sure was an exposition...

An Ode to the Lonely

Bare feet, no socks.

Tiled floor, cold touch.

Bright smile, sad eyes,

Memories of warm hugs and goodbyes,

Oh these lights are starting to flicker,

I’m beginning to shiver,

Toes numb, the air's feeling thicker.

I’m all alone up here.

 

Tick tock goes the clock as the sane decays,

With inner storm’s rage,

And I’m going nowhere,

Tick tock goes the clock as the way fades,

Drying tears cascade.

While I’m standing still.

 

This darkness inside,

Consuming my mind,

Can’t run, can't hide.

So I push them away,

Say Hey I’m okay,

Hey I’m okay,

When I’m not.

Because there’s this weight resting inside,

Forced down tears by pride. 

 

Tick tock goes the clock as the sane decays,

With inner storm’s rage,

And I’m going nowhere,

Tick tock goes the clock as the way fades,

Drying tears cascade.

While I’m standing still.

Drip

The faucet it leaking.

That’s the first thing I notice when I enter the kitchen on Monday morning.

Drip.

Drip.

Drip.

Well that’s just bloody well fantastic isn’t it?

I sigh, resignation resonating like a pen dropping in an empty classroom. Then I drop my school bag off of my shoulder and move to the sink, where I stop, my eyebrows pulling together in a frown. The pale light of an early day’s spilling through the window; catching on the tap. I tilt my head and watch it glint in the sunshine.

Drip.

“Oh shut up you useless – thing!” I yell, exasperation spilling into my words like – well, like water from a bloody tap.

I jimmy the knobs a few times, pulling them tight until my hands ache and cramp. I wonder if it’ll do anything if I wiggle the faucet. I shrug and give it a go.

1 second. 2 seconds…. 6 seconds.

I...

Like a Bird

Flying high I watch the world bellow me,

Crimson skies stretch out above and around me,

And to the west there doth be people sound asleep,

And from them their dreams Morpheus shall reap,

My fingers stretch out to skim the clouds,

Eyes glancing down at dispersing crowds,

Like a bird I soar above and away,

All this to leave the end of day,

The sunlight I chase, my gaze on the horizon,

Speed fails me in my longing for the world to brighten,

To the east lights flicker on as the darkness descends,

Its icy grip catches me as the last will of the sun bends,

Stars upon me, around me and speckled darkness bellow,

Sadness fills me as my pace begins to slow,

The day has escaped me, without proper farewell,

How many hours shall I wait to be recaptured by its spell?

So with desolation I anticipate the end of the night,

Hours pass but to sleep...

The Beginning of a High School story

In American High School movies, the school day always seems to end with the resounding clangs of repeated locker slams. Australia isn’t like high school movies. A screeching laugh comes from her left and she flinches back from the grating sound. Bags are dropping to the ground and locks are swinging back from grasping fingers to hit the plastic of the locker doors.

Well, she considers, at least her school isn’t.

Home before morning

Her feet are cold,

On the kitchen floor.

Why does she feel so lost?

This weight above,

This hole inside,

Is this gonna be the cost?

 

Better get home before the morning comes on,

Before the sun heralds the dawn,

Will you be waiting for me when I get home?

Please just don't leave me alone.

 

She's got shoes in her hands,

And music in her ears,

It's twelve o'clock,

She's sweating,

And there's glitter in her hair,

He says do you want another drink?

She says oh what the hell?

I'm drunk enough already,

What's the harm in one more?

 

Better get home before the morning comes on,

Before the sun heralds the dawn,

Will you be waiting for me when I get home?

Please just don't leave me alone.

 

At one thirty she's waning,

And then her phone rings,

She checks and he's calling,

Hangs up, 'cause these things?

They can wait...

The Great Big World

Stepping out onto the platform wasn't anywhere near as exhilarating as she had envisioned, in fact it lacked any of the glamour or lavish content which so often consumed her fantasies. Her nose wrinkled in distaste. The air was perfumed with a tang of what appeared to be a bizarre combination of grease from fried food, petrol fumes and BO. The tiled floor beneath her was grubby and littered with the occasional drifting piece of rubbish. The McDonalds 'M' glared a lurid yellow from where it peaked out the top of an overflowing rubbish bin, and worst of all, was an overwhelming presence of grey. The stale shade coloured the walls, the floor, ceiling and columns in gritty strokes of paint reapplied too many times.

Utterly charming.

It was as though life had been leached from the world to leave vapid surroundings masked with a failed illusion of polish and sterility. The consequential effect being something that Kris could only define...

Grace Mary Potts's 135 Likes

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