Tethered Triumphs – Dead Deer

Today I wrote from 10:14 to 10:24. I was prompted by ideas here. My other writings here. All my prompted writing here, and my tweets here

Within the cellar of the old house there sat old Tom. He was slumped rather than sat. Slowly he brought his hands up to his face and then his arms round and over his head. He was in a ball gently rocking, gently sobbing. Old Tom himself had no idea how long he remained in this foetal position, or even why he was in it.

Some hours passed. Tom unwound himself and saw the broom leaning against the wall, accusingly. His mind left itself and faded slowly back into the cellar. He recalled why he was there. The cellar needed sweeping; that was all. It wouldn’t even take an hour, yet much more time has been lost whilst Tom despaired.

As soon as he had walked down the steps, flicking the light switch on his way, it hit him. He instinctively went towards the broom, in its usual place, and there and then he suddenly sunk inside. The whole of his being; his physical being: his conscious being: his unconscious being: even his soul, should one believe in such things. It all collapsed, like a vacuum replacing what was Tom from the inside out. Tom himself did not really believe in ‘souls’ and such things. Except now. In these moments. The feeling of being emptied out, swiftly deflating fully, there wasn’t enough of him to explain the depths of this draining away. So there must be something more. His despair, in these moments, was greater than he, greater than the sum of his parts. So maybe there is a soul. Existing solely to torture us more.

Now, however, he stood shakily, he shook his head, took a deep breath and reached out for the broom. It hit him again. The deep deep existential sadness, deeper than the Mariana Trench; hell, the diagrams of that always looked laughably shallow next to the depths of this inexplicable sadness he was prone to.

But this time, he did it. He shook his head, forced his body to move, and slowly, haltingly, swept the cellar floor, the task punctuated with the several moments of crying; tears flowing down his bleak face. Finally it was done. A minor triumph when you find yourself tethered to this haunted head. But it had taken him all day to achieve this simple task; there was no satisfaction in a job done, merely grim regret and self-loathing.

Petals and Parasols – Dead Deer

Petals and Parasols

Oblivion. We came from it, we head toward it, this brief moment spent in Larkin’s blooming million-petalled flower. Who knew that could be more bleak than the oblivion we seek, and from whence we come.

So during this short interval, this grim slog of never-ending functions (they do end, mercifully) we must make the most of the sunny days, they say. Look out, look up, the sky is blue, the sun is shining! So? So what? We are still marching onward ever back to oblivion. Even as we ‘move forward’ or ‘look to the future’ that we are encouraged to by all around, we are blocking out that inevitability, just as a parasol blocks out the oh-so-inspiring sun – a useful guard against the good days.

“Stops Sun” is the translation, and of the bad days we use a device that “Stops Waters”, the “paraguas”; or in English the “umbrella”. Now where the fuck did a word like that come from? Seriously, what’s the point in that? In anything?

Well, both these infernal contraptions, equal in all but name, function and material, are forgotten in the restful bliss of oblivion. Or are they? Yes, Mr. Larkin; we will find out.

Today I wrote from 14:10 to 14:20

November Writing Prompts – Read more from the Dead Deer and follow it.


A Day of Denial – Dead Deer

A Day of Denial

Wake up. Let it in. It comes in whether requested or not. Chew it over. Rolling around the head as a piece of grit may roll around an oyster shell. This is not a piece of grit, however, it is a large heavy uneven stone clanking about hurting as it bangs its way around, and around and around.

Nor will it produce a beautiful small bean, with that subtle lustre. No, all it produces is blackness, ever growing; in size as well as hue; ever darker, blacker than black.

Stop it. Stop the weighty ball of uncomfortable thought. Is it too late? It is there, it is too big, it doesn’t even fit in the head any longer. How to stop it? Think other thoughts, better yet; think no thoughts. Is that possible? Push it out, slowly slowly, close the boxes. The tentacles thrash out of the lids, try harder. The lids are closed, the wriggling appendages are captured for now, pull the duvet up over the haunted head.

Now. How to get out of bed?

Days such as these, every day, are days without end. Willing the time to pass quicker; yet willing the days to not still come. On days like this shut out the reality, ignore the world around you, build moment by moment a bubble around you, a bubble of now. It is not happening. On days like this the only hope is to maintain a full day of denial.

Today I wrote from 08:30 to 08:40

November Writing Prompts – Read more from the Dead Deer and follow it.

The Haunting of Harold Hemmings

To write for exactly, and only, ten minutes every day, as exercise. Helped by daily prompts by “M“. Today I wrote from 14:02 to 14:12 with the prompt …..

The Haunting of Harold Hemmings

Waking up again. Another morning, another day. The initial trained burst of optimism, “Today will be good; I will have a good day” is soon gone; evaporated quicker than the purest alcohol, the alcohol Harold has eschewed now for so many years.

Thoughts. The thoughts come.

He lets one or two in, I can handle these, I can think about this, surely? After all this time. And briefly he feels he can. By the time his feet are on the floor, however, he is licking over these painful thoughts as one might flick one’s tongue against a rotten tooth; yes the pain is still there.

In the shower it is all he can think of. “Why? Why? Why?” a million times the same questions, the same hard rock of the same answers, the same circle.

Harold Hemmings cannot recall the taste of morning tea without fresh tears in it. By the time he leaves the house he is on the floor. His head is stretching to hold all these circular never-ending miseries in them. Time will help, yet his haunted head continues to ache and burst at the seams as he never can seem to lay these things to rest. He never can exorcise the disappointments, the humiliations, the pain and the despair.

Finally at the end of the day – a good day, his brain was only on fire for most of it – he takes his pills and he can sleep. The haunting nightmares will not begin again until morning.

My other writings are on Dead Deer Blog.