Thursday, 29 December 2011


Came up with a rough draft in a back room of my Gran's house during a family Christmas party (sad, I know), and refined it steadily and irregularly over the next couple of days:

Listen for echoes of sombre occasions;

Gasping and sobbing,

Denying their lot.

Folding prevented, your hand has been dealt.

You’ll play it and take it,

Denying your lot.

There I was standing. Bleary unseeing,

Drone of the single then masses, ear-splitting;

Lead and responses then led to responding,

Low marble was full and above was expanding,

Creaking from coldness compared to within.

At my sight’s guilt edge despite my gaze above,

At the bequest of the ones who knew better:

(And everyone always does think they know better,)

Motionless heads remain rigid

Upon motionless necks,

And most likely motionless eyes

Kept certainty of their convictions outside.

I thought to myself: “Is it small wonder

That those who are happy are joyous no longer

Than needs be: when they have their power in numbers?”

And answered.

Eyes cast downward:

Both tiredness and thoughts that propel it.

Clasped on other sights

A contrast. Let us see -

Motion. Heads excitedly turning

Over one end of chin-height-and-darkening wood -

Perhaps it sat slightly closer than it should

To its twin right in front, and one in behind -

Those heads that were turning

Oblivious to drones

Were bright and were cheery and smiling all round.

The small ones were wailing through instinct behind,

But they tolerate wailing from those of their kind.

Monday, 13 June 2011


In a morbid mood at the moment, bear with me...

Death, and the time spent leading up to it, is just another stage of life.

It is the final portion of your existence in which each breath's value increases a hundredfold. A concept outwith your grasp until you too are implored to experience it. The enhanced sense of duty and community; the tightening of the family knot as the end draws near... It seems to be almost compensation in light of the simple - and crushing - fact that no man, woman, or child crosses their final hurdle accompanied. As Chuck Palahniuk rightly observed in Fight Club, we are not unique and beautiful snowflakes. Neither are we unique and beautiful drops of water when we melt on life's tongue.

Perhaps the most difficult aspect of death to comprehend is the loss of control that the "victim" must endure as their curtain is drawn. Though a cliché, the comparison made between life and battle most certainly holds true. It is a battle that, although impossible to emerge victor, you are compelled to fight to your utmost capacity. Handicaps are in place. A fair fight it is not. The moment that Life claims its inevitable victory over you and is about to strike its final blow, you are given salt to rub into your wounds by admitting that, from the beginning, you never had much control anyway. The odds were not stacked against you - there were no odds given. For there to be odds, there must exist a chance of success.

Friday, 6 May 2011

"Fantasy" Storyline Pt. 2

Here goes nothing...

Frigid air once again whipped its way around every inch of her body. Although Atka and her people were accustomed to the ever-increasing harshness of the winters they had to endure, it did not make them any warmer. Only years of discipline kept her teeth from chattering. After one final check to ensure that all of her equipment - her bow, knife and pack, that is - was present and in good working condition, she set off. She knew the journey she was to make well. Off the beaten path, through various deserted caverns and caves, to emerge at the eastern edge of the Modabe desert within three moons, according to her people's most respected cartographers and one gibbering, incoherent soul who somehow achieved success in his attempt to pass through.

Although the bitter cold had driven the majority of the range's open-air inhabitants to warmer lands, the same would not hold true for various cave-dwelling beasts that made their home in the Glades' caves. Beasts that only a few of her tribe had seen in a number of expeditions. Not all of them returned, and none of them had achieved a kill; not even the most skilled. She must be cautious, and remember her mission. With this in mind, she went on her way; using the sloping path that led to the lowest points of the range.

Atka travelled for what seemed like an eternity through the misty valleys of the mountains, with nothing but birdsong and the constant hum of a tracker's thoughts to accompany her. Finally reaching the first cave she was to pass through in order to take the shortest route to the Modabe, she noticed that nightfall was steadily approaching. Quickly weighing up the risks involved in travelling through an already dark cave with no beacon to guide her back to the exit, she decided to set up camp in foliage roughly one hundred yards from the mouth of the cave. Expertly crafting a bed of leaves in the maw of an overhang to shield from the wind and the majority - but not all - of the cold, she managed to kindle a fire. As she warmed her hands and ate a little of her ration for the night, she could have sworn that she had heard something from deep within the cave.

After the night had passed, it was time for her to enter the cavern. She checked her knife and bow again, more out of habit than anything else when about to enter a dangerous situation such as this, and treaded into the darkness.

The cave seemed to feast upon whatever light ventured into it. She could clearly see an outline of where brightness could not pass, and this disconcerted her. It was almost as though whatever was in the cave did not want to be found, or at least wanted her to believe that it didn’t. Relax, she thought, you're here for a reason. Don't get caught up in fear, especially fear of something that you haven't even seen yet. Rule number 1. Fear control.
Deeper and deeper she journeyed into the blackness, relying on her unnaturally keen eyesight - though not keen enough to penetrate this gloom - and her instincts to guide her.

The slightest noise seems to be twice as loud in here, she mused, irritated by the deafening drops of "mildew" as they struck the stalagmites, causing a chime-like ring throughout the cave. This place could drive you insane.