2 Replies to “7.10.2015 Journal Prompt”

  1. I lie awake some nights. Not able to sleep. Just turning and turning in my bed and my head full of shit or full of something. My mom says I’m a worrier and she says I overthink things. She says I should be more laid back like my dad. He don’t give a rats ass ‘bout nothing – leastways, that’s what he’d have you believe. Mom says my dad can sleep on the sharp edge of a knife, or through the world ending or through a brass band parading through his bedroom.

    It aint true, what mom says. My dad sleeps a lot less than she thinks he does. He just keeps out of the way of my mom. He just pretends like he’s sleeping and his eyes closed and his hand down the front of his pants and like that maybe mom don’t ever know.

    And he aint so laid back neither. Oh, ‘bout some things he is. ‘Bout turning up for work on time, and ‘bout where we should go for our holidays this year, and ‘bout what he wants for his dinner tonight. He’s laid back ‘bout those things. He says he’s easy if mom asks him anything that needs a decision. But he aint so laid back in other departments.

    My dad worries about the sun coming up. He says that to me sometimes, when we’re just sitting and talking out front and he’s got a drink in him so his tongue’s a little looser. And he worries that he’s getting older with every day. And he aint got so much hair as before. And he’s got aches and pains where there weren’t no aches and pains a year ago.

    It’s the way of things, he says, and it’s only nat’ral. He gets that. But there’s things he’s still got to do and he worries that he just won’t get around to everything. There’s places still to see. Like he aint never been to Paris, France – ‘And it’s the city of lights and the city of lovers, too,’ he says. And he aint ever kissed under the moon or swam naked in the sea or tasted caviar or drank champagne out of the slipper of a pretty girl.

    Sometimes he’s just messing and being silly, but there’s stuff in what he says. An ache of some sort. And he don’t ever say he wants to be in the city of lovers with mom, or that she’s the person he wants to kiss under the moon or swim naked with in the sea. And since mom is past being a girl and past being pretty, he don’t say it is her slipper he would drink champagne out of. And I reckon he’s talking ‘bout Katie Walkingshaw then and she’s the pretty and the naked and the lover in his wishes.

    I see the way he looks at her sometimes and she looks at him something the same. And he’s all smiling and singing when she’s around and he asks her if she needs anything fixing and he gets right to it if she does. And I know it aint fixing that is going on in her trailer. Maybe everybody knows. And that’s a worry to me.

    If it comes down to it, well, I reckon as it’s mom as is the laid back one in our house. Maybe she’s the only one who don’t know what dad is ‘bout with Katie Walkingshaw, or if she does, well, she don’t seem to mind. She just goes ‘bout her business and she holds everything together. And I catch her some early mornings, just staring out through the window, and the rooster in the yard calling up the day, and I worry ‘bout what’s ‘neath that seeming calm. And I wait – counting the time – and it’s like counting the seconds that stretches between the flash of lightning and the roll of thunder and if the storm is near then the time counted is short and shorter – only, I been counting days and weeks and months now, maybe years, and I’m still waiting for that storm to break. And mom says I’m a worrier and I reckon as maybe she’s right, but I aint the only one worrying.

  2. Pretty he is, my mammie says. Almost as pretty as a girl, and he moves real easy, like a cat. And cock o’ the walk, my mammie calls him. Says if he was chocolate he’d eat hissel and he cain’t love hissel more than he does. She says I wanna be real careful there. Boys like that, well they is only trouble with a capital ‘T’ and all the other letters capitals also, and she says she worries ‘bout my young heart.

    ‘Hearts break and they mend,’ I says to her, which is something she once told me.

    His name’s Cord. And the thing is I get it. I knows what he is and I knows I aint the only girl Cord’s got dancing for him, and more than dancing, too, for sure. And I should just tell him to go take a flying leap, or a flying fuck if my mammie wasn’t listening, or at least call him to heel like calling a good dog to order, and I should ask him to be faithful to me sometimes. But the thing is, I’m a little scared to do that. I’m scared ‘bout what would happen if I did.

    Cord don’t need me, see. He don’t need nobody. And he’d likely just shrug and walk away if I said something. Plenty other fish in the sea, my mammie is allus saying, and I reckon as how that goes for Cord, as much as it goes for me, and Cord’s fishing with some real tasty bait.

    My mammie says he needs me more than he knows he does, and she lists all my qualities that any boy’d be lucky to have in a girl, but that don’t count for nothing. And, well, I need him. We been goin out together for maybe three months and I’m somebody now. And other girls stop and give me the time of day and they ask me to go shopping with them or we sit in one another’s houses drinking vodka cocktails and just listening to the latest music. And they ask me what I think and they really want to know.

    And there’s this one girl in partic’lar and she’s called Fen and she never did speak to me before Cord. And now she’s got all the time in the world for me. And we get so drunk sometimes that we don’t know right from wrong. And the music playing so loud her mammie shouts up the stairs to turn it down and we don’t do nothing but laugh. And we’re laughing and dancing and holding each other closer than close. And it’s ‘bout the best thing when Fen’s holding me – maybe better than Cord holding me.

    So when my mammie says Cord is just so much the centre of his own world and there ain’t room for no-one else at that centre, well I get it and it don’t fret me none, cos now I’m the centre of Fen’s world and all on account of Cord and me being something together. And maybe he is cock o’ the walk and fucking Tracey last Saturday when he was supposed to be with me, like everyone says – but I can live with that, see, cos I was with Fen last Saturday and that was just sweet as syrup that is scooped from the tin with two fingers and all sticky and running all places and me and Fen licking and kissing and dripping – but I can’t tell my mammie none of that so I just tell her how hearts break and how hearts mend and she aint got no answer to that.

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