One Reply to “7.14.2014 Journal Prompt”

  1. Daylight comes softly into the room, but not so soft that it don’t hurt my head as hard as a beaten tin drum. And there’s a small pained noise beside me, so I reckon her head maybe hurts also. I ain’t surprised to be sleepin next to somebody, even though I don’t know her name and I don’t see hardly anythin in her face that I recognize. ‘Sbeen like that a lot recently. My mom’d say I was just fucked up and my dad’d say I was pissin my life away, and there’d be a bit of right in both my mom and my dad.

    I breathe deep and hold that breath a little, somewhere inside, and like that it’s quiet in the room, so quiet I can hear her breathin beside me. I shift a little towards her and together we pool our warmth and she smells of sweat and whisky and cigarettes – and somethin else, thinner than the rest, but somethin with flowers in it, and cucumbers and green tea.

    She’s pretty when she’s sleepin. Maybe she’s pretty when she’s awake, too, but I don’t know that. I put my arm about her, like it’s somethin we are, and I pull her a little to me, without wakin her. She makes a noise again, this time so small it can only be heard by me and only because I am so close to her we’re sharin the one breath. It’s a noise that’s caught somewhere between a moan of pain and of pleasure – small as a kitten-cry and just as cute.

    We lie like that for maybe an hour, maybe less – truth is I can’t tell how long. I drop in and out of sleep and when I wake she’s still there and I’m still there, and we’re lyin curled into each other like lovers on the mattress on the floor. Then she opens her eyes and she looks into mine and into me. And she smiles and you could miss it if you weren’t sas close as I am to her.

    ‘Penny,’ she says, and I don’t know if she’s introducin herself or askin after what I’m thinkin, like ‘a penny for your thoughts’.

    ‘Penny,’ I say back to her and I say it all thoughtful, like I am contemplatin sayin somethin more, which I ain’t. Then I close my eyes, and maybe I drift again, and time shifts and the light in the room brightens and when next I wake she’s singin to herself, real quiet. And she’s got her back to me and she’s gettin dressed and I can see her shoulders and the line of her backbone and it’s the most beautiful thing, and not havin her in my arms and her singin so quiet it’s like she’s far away, well, I sort of miss her then.

    I watch her, seein her steppin into her skirt and pullin it up to her waist and it’s like dancin to no music the way her hips move and the sound of the cloth against her is like sighin. I want to tell her somethin of this, but the words sound shit in my head, so I say nothin.

    She turns and smiles again and she says she should be goin, and I want her to stay but she doesn’t get that from my silence. She kisses me, so quick I don’t really get the taste of her. Then she skips away and all I have is ‘Penny’.

    Later, when I’m tryin to reassure my folks, I tell them there’s a girl and she’s called Penny and she’s pretty and she smells of cucumber and green tea and flowers. I tell them she’s a secretary for a big company in the centre and she’s got a flat up on Newbridge, the good side, and a car and a dog. Sure, I can bring her round sometime, when it feels right, we’ll see. Some of what I tell them is true and some of it not, but I catch them noddin to each other, as if they think maybe I’ve turned a corner or something, which of course I haven’t.

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