Saturday, August 18, 2007

~A Question of Shadow by Ann Walters~


This is not even a question of light or dark, of shadow or unshadow. This is not air on skin. An open window through which the trees can be felt breathing. This is not a wall, solid against the back, or a pillow tossed aside, useless for comfort, pointlessly malleable. This is no palm to the forehead, no taut muscle at the base of the jaw. This is not the moment when the phone call comes and every fear is met. It is the moment after, when the phone falls and the breath taken in has not yet been let out.

***Lovely and mysterious. Thanks Sharon! Choosing is always difficult. Thanks for all your hard work, writers. Beautiful.***

5 comments:

FranIAm said...

The heat was insane. The humidity left me feeling like a sponge that someone neglected to wring out. I could not sleep.

Insomnia was like a buzz, very low but constant, rumbling from within.

This is why the tropics are dangerous. Forget the bugs, forget the animals. It is the fucking heat. Just the heat? No. It is what and who this place attracts.

If you do not come from here, you have no business being here. Yet here I am - awash in not only heat, but in feelings I can't even begin to process.

Derek left earlier. Will he be back? Do I want him to return? Of course I do, that is my sickness. It is a malaria of the soul, it is killing me.

Sitting here, wracked with heat and sweat and an emotional wound that simply can not heal. It is like I have been cut with a very dull, serrated knife. This being the tropics, thd knife may be a little rusty and as a result, far more dangerous.

He was bad from the start, but I have a craving for that sort of thing. He is reckless, cruel. He is very stupid. And I can't stop longing for him.

Its me I know. I want them that way to hurt me over and over and over again. Forget the blows, that I can take. It is his clumsy language and mean edge.

Just the thought of which starts the aching, hot longing again...

Where is that fucking knife?

Dragon said...

She awakens from a dream of bars, something holding her back like a pattern in yellow wallpaper, invisibly burning. In the dream, she is trapped, imprisoned by the light. The shock of freedom throws her back against the wall. She gasps in liberty.

"I can move," she whispers. "I can go anywhere I like."

She lies back down. Within moments, she is asleep again.

Sharon Hurlbut said...

A Question of Shadow

This is not even a question of light or dark, of shadow or unshadow. This is not air on skin. An open window through which the trees can be felt breathing. This is not a wall, solid against the back, or a pillow tossed aside, useless for comfort, pointlessly malleable. This is no palm to the forehead, no taut muscle at the base of the jaw. This is not the moment when the phone call comes and every fear is met. It is the moment after, when the phone falls and the breath taken in has not yet been let out.

Rion said...

She cooed, "Remember I am wiser than you. Now bring me a mojito, love, while I think a bit."

The baby swam in her womb like a miniature Galileo, climbing with some magical dexterity into her overheated brain, tripping through the down on her arms like a sprite. The baby had some kind of voodoo.

And though she did not know she knew. And though she did not know she felt, that the seed of this man child had gotten her pregnant.

And what a man cat, this little beast, cappucino skin all taut. Ass meaty, arms long long to wrap around. And a sweet low voice. Leave it to the gods to bring such a tempting meal, a treat to tempt the faith.

Yet here he comes now, the boy, little does he know what is in store for him, new father of a priestess's child.

Cynthia said...

I don't want to go on a vacation with my husband. My kids, okay. My husband, no.

During the car ride, we, as his captive audience, will have to listen to his tirades and rantings. Everything from other drivers, to how the kids and I are ungrateful, to how miserable he is because of us, to the state of the world. And, of course, he has answers for everything.

Anything and everything can get him going. For the sake of my children and my tenuous sanity, I try to smooth out the roughest spots. I try to make small talk. But with him, there is no conversation, only his endless harangue. He pontificates, and we are expected to listen, agree and bow at his feet. If we don't, we're wrong.

My children are bright, and they know how it works. Yet they blame me. "Mom, if you did this..." "Mom, if you did that..."

They're young. They shouldn't have to think of these things. No one should.

When we arrive at our vacation spot, it will be easier. We/I can walk on the beach, the boardwalk. We/I can take a few minutes for ourselves/myself and just breathe.

But then it will be time to pack up the minivan and return home. Another long ride in an enclosed, moving trap with no escape.

The cleansing breath will be sucked away.

I do this for my children because they deserve a vacation from the every day bullshit, and I want to give them good memories. And, all kids return to school and compare summer vacation. Do you think mine will make up their own memories?

I try.

(Please note: Today I'm going on a family vacation and will not have computer access. Will return at the end of the week. I'll miss raincoatflashers during this time!)