7.3.2014 Journal Prompt

Photo by Bruce Davidson
Photo by Bruce Davidson

July 3, 2014: He could swing.

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3 thoughts on “7.3.2014 Journal Prompt

  1. Lindsay

    See my da, well I fuckin hate him. Leastways, I thought I did. Everythin about him. His stiff-collared shirt and his tie knotted to his fat pink neck and his hair cut so short it sticks up like pins. And the way he wipes his nose with the sweepin back of his hand, or spits in the street. or adjusts his trousers.

    And the way mam always is with him. Kissin him when he comes home from work, and she asks him about his day and he says the same thing every time, but she goes on askin anyways. And he sits with his elbows on the table and mam don’t say him not to. And he wipes his plate clean with a bit bread, and he blows on his tea to cool it, his lips pursed in a grotesque kiss.

    Mam says I should be grateful for all he does for me. She says how he’s tired and old on account of every day doin for me and for all of us. She says he’s old before his time because he works so hard. I shrug when she says it, like I don’t really care. Then mam slips me some money, and she says I should go to the dancin that da says I’m not to, and she puts one finger across her lips so it’ll be our secret.

    There’s this boy called Jesse and he asked me, see. Da says boys are only after one thing these days and he says I have to be careful and he says he’s the one has to look out for me. And that’s why I fuckin hate him, or I did – him thinkin I’m still a child and still stupid and how I can’t take care of myself. Only it’s different now.

    Mam showed me a picture today. It was black and white and there were people dancin and some bits of the picture a little blurred with the movement. At the front of the picture is a boy and a girl and everyone is looking at them. They is both of them pretty and he’s twistin his hips and he’s got the hand of the girl and she’s almost flying, her hair thrown behind her like a flag and her dress all floatin and flung. Mam says she is the girl and the boy is my da. Seein them like that I can see myself and Jesse in the pretty that my mam and my da are, and I think we are all somethin the same then.

    Then at the dancin tonight and Jesse stepped out and I stepped out with him. It was out back of the Kitbag Club and it was dark there and it smelled of stale beer and piss and cigarettes. And Jesse started kissin, and touchin me under my dress, his hands all quick and pressin, and I wasn’t sure I liked that. And I said I wanted to dance some more, and Jesse said maybe after, but I wanted to dance before.

    Then I recalled what da had said about boys always wantin one thing these days and I remembered the picture of mam and da dancin and how you could almost hear the music in the picture. And Jesse was lickin my neck, and blowin hot on my skin, his fingers pinchin one nipple, worrying it like it was a button that wouldn’t work, and the smell of beer and piss and smoke catchin in my throat. And right then I wanted my da to step out of the dark and I wanted him to stop Jesse doin what he was doin, and music playin and my da holdin me like I was a kite in flight, and right then I didn’t hate my da no more, and I was cryin for him and cryin for me, too.

  2. Lindsay

    Sometimes the endings of these things catch me unaware too. Sometimes I write them without being fully there, so my inner editor is absent, and a darker thing is released… but always, I hope, with a quiet anger or outrage at what people can do to each other.

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