4 Replies to “7.22.2014 Journal Prompt”

  1. ‘Make love, not war,’ my daddy said. Alla time he said it. Like when we was watchin tv and the news showed bombs hittin houses in far away places and you could see the crossed hairs of the fighter plane’s sights and then the target was a cloud of dust like in them roadrunner cartoons, and my daddy would say then to anyone as would listen, ‘Make love, not war.’

    ‘Course, my daddy was made imperfect, like most daddys is, and he’d say one thing and plum do another. ‘Cept this one time I reckon he done both. My mama heard as how he was makin love with Julie-two-cents down the road, every Friday night after work. They calls her ‘two cents’ cos she ain’t got a full brain and my daddy was takin advantage, my mama said. Mama spittin wasps by then and lookin for a war, and my daddy gave as good as he got when they was fightin.

    Then me and Kev was playin one day. I remember it though it was way back. My daddy said I was knee high to a grasshopper in them days and he called me lil’ britches, like that bear done with that kid in the jungle film. And me and Kev, we had these plastic guns and green plastic helmets, like we was soldiers in a battle. And right in the middle I remembers what my daddy was allus sayin and I stopped firin and I stood close to Kev and closer. And I kissed him like he was a girl.

    That started a whole lot of other fightin, ‘tween Kev’s daddy and my daddy, and I was not to play with Kev after that. We got past it eventually and high school overtook us and we didn’t mention that kiss to no one, not ever. And Kev was with a girl called May and I was with a girl called Freda, only my daddy kept calling her ‘freedom’, which pissed me off and pissed Freda off, too. And the years just got up and ran away from us.

    Then I heard as how Kev had signed up, you know, and I felt kinda sad. I took him out for a drink one night, when he’d got a letter to say where and when he was to be deployed. We swore a lot and he kept punchin my arm and spittin in the street and sayin ‘fuck’ like he couldn’t believe it, any of it. And it was at the dark end of the night, and we was walkin home and walkin the long way cos we wasn’t walkin straight, and we was maybe a lil’ drunk or a lot drunk, and I said to Kev how I remembered that kiss when we was boys.

    He laughed and he said he remembered the war afterwards, his daddy and my daddy givin it big talk. Then we was all quiet and a little awkward and I put my hands in my pockets to stop myself reachin out for him, reachin out for Kev who was goin off to be a real fuckin soldier in two days. And Kev, I noticed, did the same with his hands and his pockets, and like that we left it.

    Kev’s mama reads his letters out to the whole street when they come. All the kids and the women. I stand as close as I dare and I listen to see how he is and to see if he mentions me in his letters, but mostly to see how he is.

  2. Just to say that this flash piece has just been printed in an anthology titled ‘FOR THE CHILDREN OF GAZA’ by Onlsaught Press (and probably available through Amazon in about a week). It is not a charity publication, but is intended to be a voice to add to all the other voices condemning the killing going on in Gaza – so that a universal shout against what is happening might be heard.

    A free PDF copy of the book is already circulating in Gaza.

  3. Thanks, Patty. You see, this is the ripple effect of what you do here in posting up these prompts… spreading outwards further than you know or predict.

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