Category Archives: WRITING CHALLENGES

a place to increase my word vocabulary and practice being a better writer. This is where I push myself out of my comfort zone

the Meowskies

She gets on with life as a wannabe music journalist,
She’s a charismatic kinda gal.
She likes chilling on Sundays,
She likes reading in the week.
She likes to contemplate owning a goat.
But when she starts to daydream,
Her mind turns straight back to her cat-Tatty Anna

Sometimes I look at her and I look into her eyes,
I notice the way she idolises about  Tatiana with a smile,
sensual lips she can’t disguise.
But she thinks it’s GOAT making her life worthwhile.
Why is it so hard for her to decide which she loves more?
Goats or…
Cats?

She likes to use words like ‘eish man
She likes to use words like ‘sorry.’
She likes to use words about GOAT finds
But when she stops her talking,
Her mind turns straight back to Tatiana having a heart attack.

She likes to hang out with Pinkie
She likes to kick back with Belle,
But when left alone,
Her mind turns  inwards  she obsesses over losing her Tats

She’s not too fond of gossip,
She really loves cheesecake & wants a goat
But she just thinks back to Tatiana
And she’s happy once again. knowing she is owned.

 

slash/virgule poem

I light this vigil/ candles given to me by an individual/ a name I cannot give thee/ heart and mind forgive me. 

and/or…

If I said his name is Slash/ he’s indecisively crass/more renowned as a light brush stroke/ his Latin name leaves a remarkable impression in repressed folk.

perhaps/ not… 

It worries me that Axl hasn’t made up his mind/ more guns than roses-sublime/ A promiscuous murmur/ hidden in visual fervour.

confess/ snitch …..

Naming something can either increase/ diminish power/ I’m thinking psycho -you know –  the scene in the shower? /If I had to reveal his true name is Virgule/ why does that visually conjure up an image in my mind of a gargoyle?

For the meaning of the word ‘Virgule’ scroll down.

This was so hard to do. I think I may have broken 100 rules and made up my own. Hey ho!   

 

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Definitions for virgule

  1. a short oblique stroke (/) between two words indicating that whichever is appropriate may be chosen to complete the sense of the text in which they occur: The defendant and his/her attorney must appear in court.

Citations for virgule

It can be used, of course to indicate the choices, one or more, that may “properly” fill the blank space that follows. But the virgule need not be strictly identified with a particular or exclusive binary. It can be argued that the virgule is the poststructuralist punctuation par excellence (although a strong case can be made for the hyphen), in that is can be deployed to suggest the endlessness of binariness, a serial proliferation of constrastives in horizontally endless adjacencies …Virgil Lokke, “The Naming of the Virgule in the Linguistic/Extralinguistic Binary,” After the Future: Postmodern Times and Places, edited by Gary Shapiro, 1990

The path was cleared for the substitution of the verbalizable ”or” by the unspeakable ”/” in the legalistic term ”and/or,” which would be hard to say as ”and or or.” Now we are afflicted by the promiscuous use of virgules.William Safire, “On Language,” New York Times, May 24, 1981

Virgule entered English from French, where it means “comma, little rod.” It ultimately derives from the Latin virgula meaning “rod.”

DICTIONARY.COM

 

The Virgule

The virgule, often called the “slant bar” by computer users, has four specific uses in punctuation.

A virgule separates parts of an extended date.

Example: The 1994/95 basketball season.

Washington was born in February 1731/32.

A virgule represents the word per in measurements:

Example: 186,000 mi./sec. (miles per second)

A virgule stands for the word or in the expression and/or. (Though not considered standard, it sometimes stands for the word or in other expressions also.)

A virgule separates lines of poetry that are quoted in run-on fashion in the text. (For readability, avoid this with more than four lines.)

Example: Ann continued,”And up and down the people go,/ Gazing where the lilies blow/ Round an island there below,/ The island of Shalott.”

ENGLISH.PLUS.COM

 

 

 

Twice bitten abecedarian poem

A twice bitten man shy tortured in an encounter with his tye.

Every seen a crystallized heart shatter?

Ricochet fresh flesh of four chambers?

 

Stained bloody by his past lover’s hand

Sodden & trodden by a call to “man up”

 

Pump up depleted testosterone to counteract the shame.

Even though a trampled heart was not his own doing.

Grievously body harm. It was a gift given

 

Not by a temptress nor a malicious entity by nature.

 

Ergo two hearts vowed to be one soul

Living as a unit. Love of life was their goal.

Loneliness to combat. Fated to be mortal.

 

Revealed their sealed vows together in front of a chosen crowd

Dramatic entrance. One heart faltered .

Death was invited to observe the day

Yesterday’s reminder of the shell of who once was.

Death reminded all that life is fleeting. Unpredictable.

 

Everyone but maybe one didn’t grasp the significance

Empty on reality. Thankful for ‘mothers little helpers’

Songs of blue accentuated the highs.

 

Hopeful for love to remain true.

Ever hope to love truly but wonder whether you do?

 

Obviously caught up in the fervour and knowing the right thing to do.

Obviously ignoring common sense. Abandoned security for a chance leap declared impulsive.

 

Ended up in heart surgery. One shattered by betrayal.

Left the other with paper scissors & words to shake a corpse into resurrection.

Note to self I’ll continue this when I feel less tired

Less restricted. I won’t be some other possession.

Day 19 prompt from napowrimo.

Today, I’d like to challenge you to write an abecedarian poem – a poem in which the word choice follows the words/order of the alphabet. You could write a very strict abecedarian poem, in which there are twenty-six words in alphabetical order, or you could write one in which each line begins with a word that follows the order of the alphabet. This is a prompt that lends itself well to a certain playfulness.

Myth in Greek & Roman world essay

This essay seeks to demonstrate how valid some form of knowledge and belief in mythology was, during the Classical era, in Athens. It remained a potent force in many different contexts, this will be evidenced by analysing four ancient primary sources.

The first is related to Performance: in ‘old comedy’. Specifically focusing on a section of Aristophanes’ ‘the Frogs’ (136-64.) work ‘, the second examines a source on ‘sacred disease’, by a possible Hippocratic doctor (I-II), The third primary source will explore the ‘Homeric hymn to Demeter’ (2) (1-495) and its relevance in classical society and finally the fourth source presented will look to the relevance and what’ mythos’ meant in terms of ‘logos’ during the Classical period by looking at one of Plato’s famous works ‘the republic’ (2.377b5-3.3.389d5). The main themes to be covered are the gods, life, ethics and the afterlife.

Myth’s continued appearance in entertainment gave playwrights a broader spectrum of themes to play out in relation to the God’s character traits, ideas of the afterlife and what was considered to be good and bad gods. Aristophanes play ‘the Frogs’ which won first place at the annual Dionysus festival is often looked at in a political context.

This essay simply seeks to look at the play from a more surface value perspective. This play proves that myth was indeed a powerful antidote to the serious more philosophical and everyday issues that Athenians were confronted with.

It depends on how informed the internal or external audience were as to how much an individual gained from the experience.
There is a scene that occurs that is completely sardonic where Xanthias expresses his discomfort of going to the underworld and a dialogue takes place between a corpse and himself whereby he is trying to barter with a corpse to go with Dionysus in place of him, “Hey you the dead one, I am talking to you, do you want to carry some luggage to Hades? “(136-64.).

This kind of baldy alternative take on Hades underworld shows how myth was still a huge inspiration for artists in Greek society in regards to the issues and questions relating to the Gods and the afterlife . Myth in this context was contorted and manipulated to tease an audience and provide entertainment.

Then contemporary audiences would have to have some familiarity with myth and Greek culture to fully appreciate the wit that Aristophanes regularly makes reference to. An example: Dionysus preparing to go to the underworld when Herakles is describing the directions to take: “Next …. Of hands”. Dionysus wants to know who these men and women are. Herakles tells him that (they are) ‘the blessed’ ‘the initiate’s’.

This reference is proof that outside of this play there is some other knowledge about the ‘Eleusinian mysteries’ –specifically the cult of Demeter. It appears that on stage nobody was safe from being mocked.

According to ‘Homeric hymn to Demeter’ (471-482) “Happy is the one of mortals of the earth. But those who are uninitiated into the holy rites and have no part are never destined to a similar joy when they are dead in the gloomy realm below”.

Cults of religious worship were colossal in Athens during the classical period even whilst supposed ‘scientific’ and philosophical debate was occurring. The exact rituals and full commentary of worship which occurred in this particular cult were kept extremely secrete. Modern excavations show that at the sanctuary there was holy place dedicated to Demeter (M&L, pg344). The cult did not discriminate class, age nor gender.

This was an annual and ritualistic event similar to the festival of Dionysus in that it attracted masses of people but for different and more serious reasons. The ‘Homeric hymn to Demeter’ contents are emotional, intimate, vengeful, god fearing and relies on the God and Goddess of fertility (which provides an under tone of birth and rebirth to the nature of worship) to carry on harvesting the crops so the mortal race could continue to survive.
The church and state stuck to a rigid programme of what was to occur on each day of this 9 day festival which took place during an important time in terms of agriculture produce is of concern.

The nine day celebrations tie in with the hymn “For nine days… her body.” (40-48). and is a particularly antagonizing quest for a mother looking for her daughter who had been abducted by Hades. It is believed a part of the myth of Persephone and Demeter was appropriated for ritualistic re-enactment. .This cult did not dissolve until it was repressed in Roman times.

This shows the unwavering worship of Gods of mythos despite other ways and methods of approaching myth during this period.

Another important area to highlight with regards to Greek mythology is the attitude towards medical treatment when it came to illness and the study of Biology.

Like in our modern day there are various methods and people to whom we can put our faith in to cure an illness.

The same can be said for the Classical period. This Hippocratic source talks about ‘the sacred disease ‘– (or Epilepsy as we know it).He states that: ‘in my opinion (it) is no more divine or more sacred than other diseases but has a natural cause.’ One could interpret this cause as not coming from a random bored God but coming from our complex brain and body which is divine because of its complexity in nature.

The source presents as wanting to reason and encourage people to look to alternative ways to curing maladies.
Instead to by following the norm by a “facile method of healing….consisting as it does of purifications and incantations” and then showing a reluctance to look at nature is pure ignorance. This source shows alternative thought that perhaps the Gods give us the internal make up to cure our own bodies. Indeed, this physician (II) has a strong opinion concerning the people who ‘christened’ epilepsy (mental illness) as a ‘sacred illness’. He terms them as ‘quacks’ and ‘charlatans’.

These supposed knowledgeable people ‘being at a loss’ in their ability to ‘cure’ or atone for an illness, have instead ‘spun’ as the Hippocratic doctor says “a plausible story and established a method a method of treatment to secure their own positions”.

He is not attacking people’s belief in the Gods. He is stating that respected people in the community had exploited ill people in their ignorance and that there is in fact a more natural way of finding a solution to the various ‘maladies’ by studying the body in its present ill state.
The majority of whom followed the Hippocratic non-traditional method of teaching did so for honourable means to genuinely find a cause and a solution to all illness even if s the prescription came in the form practical advice .Professor Helen King (Open University transcript on ‘Myth in Medicine conclusion) makes a valid point stating that ‘ Peoples beliefs about their bodies are complicated… Medicine doesn’t deal with questions like ‘Why me?’.

Treatment often went hand in hand with religious worship as one relates and attempts totreats the ill mind or body and the other relates and attemptsto treat our psyche .

Plato believed that the soul and the body were separate to one another. In his ‘the Republic’, a dialogue between Socrates and Adeimantus is essentially a discussion on ethics and morals as to what could be interpreted as the necessary elements needed to create a utopian society.

Socrates is not against the belief in the Gods –his argument is to do with content and how the ancient poets have portrayed the Gods in their epic poems; ‘the ones Hesiod and Homer .to people’ (2377. b5-6e.) He argues that these poets created ‘falsehoods’. Stories that make the Gods appear without virtues.

Socrates goes on to discourse (378.5c-e.). One critical viewpoint is that he doesn’t believe that children should be brought up on stories about Gods at war, killing their parents and stealing for example.

These kind of parables, he believes are not setting a solid foundation for people to model their own morals and code of ethics. Young people especially are impressionable .

There is further debate about what is good and bad and the two characters come to the decision that “Gods of course are really good and they must be described as such.’(379.10b.).

Socrates does state that if these stories need to be known then they should be censored to the correct and minimum of people. (378.5a.)

If one is to take on the idea that Gods are good then the idea that they are responsible for all that is not good is a contradiction. The overall summary of Socrates argument is that if people felt a personal sense of responsibility towards themselves to be good in this life then they should not have to fear the afterlife.

Furthermore there is interesting discussion concerning the Gods and their changeability (379.10d.382a). This lengthy debate about there being something more wonderful than the divine form would only make sense. If there was a virtue better than goodness. Socrates again insists that poets must present the Gods as they are: good –virtuous and not in a way that allows them to assume many disguises lowering the basic morale of a society. “Nor should Mothers… children too cowardly.” (379. 5d-e.) It would appear that these snippets of dialogue from ‘the Republic’ reveals that Plato’s’ philosophizing was on other canonised version of the Gods.

These characters had strong views about how the Gods could come across as unreliable punishing, moody, and unstable and that these qualities could not instil unification of trust, virtue and stability in a society. One can clearly see that Classical philosophy was not mainly concerned with terminating myth but it questioned the beneficial effects certain mythological representation’s had on an individual and as a common people.

To conclude we can see that in antiquity Epic myth and Tragedy, Old comedy was never meant to come across as banal. Indeed people with influencing and fantastical ideas of Gods and the afterlife and the author’s agenda and ethics were displayed and debated about. Pre Homeric and Hesiod literature mythos was mostly told orally and so there were many contradictions and versions of myths and what mythical characters did. There were many determining factors. One for example, was the strength of the story teller skills, another was more concerned with demographics. One thing is certain is that Greek mythology was the inspiration and conversation /debate starter from many areas even outside of the western world for subject matter relating specifically to ethics, the afterlife and life and creation. A person can consider this as universal evolvement of thinking and it is not assumed that Greeks were the first humans to enquire on and seek reason on our existence through debate about mythology. There is simply not enough evidence to back this up. Finally Mythos on its own acted as a sacred harbinger to bring meaning to life and issues inside and outside of it.

Random generation of Procrastination

  1. Collect your  RANDOM WORD HERE 

News

Makes this tale mangy from substance abuse.

It rips at the soul-

 Makes censorship an ideal way to protect society

from the ugly truth.

Weak humans

Covering up their tracks.

 

Idle loneliness

makes for an abode

 Senses  summoned in to serve

 body possession

resembles

a genre of  the common trap.

 

Jedi modification

trance.

silence

or

Depeche  mode

Crazy contravenes with inner child’s freshly painted creche.

 

 

Dynamo

Isn’t as mighty

 Paired up with a jogger,

 a fit bit,

and a

radiant glow.

 

Three strikes.

When did time get so slow?

this temple-

Armour of organs in free harmonic flow.

one

Sincerely thinks.

Yes.

It is wise to know.

Faithfully your

beat  sets up another trap for

The inner mouse.

 

Eventually,

it will come out.

lose control.

 

No.

Leave.

Go!

 Big Ben caught in the designated zepherous zone.

 Failed  to save uncapped pressure

 Builds up into a deafening detonation.

Unintentional.

The inner logic was damage limitation.

 

The government ordered trench coats

  In full sight.

Tainted

 unprotected,

pollution seeps out from a  piercing moan.

 

Bridal mess   Sleuths about

 in slippers.

 Track tips far too early.

Nevertheless

behind.

 

Hands cover sight.

Mind convinced its temporary.

Blindspot.

Nevertheless

It’s all right.

Habits washed in  deficient  light

 credit token-

a  gesture.

kinder

More compassionate.

Guilt?

perhaps…

 

The decision fully saddled.

Vows  riddled

Wholly broken.

The course is  hardened terrain

Rumours rustle  barren branches

 summer shamed of its remaining leaves.

 

Scarlett

Stops

Shaded

Strangers

Point fingers in one direction.

 

Signpost makes a statement!

all-inclusive meals

Beyond

The border of Insanity.

Handstand

then

 the cartwheels-the body released from  tension

 Moment  of clarity

woe, for  the gifted

gasping on

thorn scented roses

Stoney  carves out

The centurion tone.

Inflicts an incident.

 

A beat.

A blockage.

A seizure.

 

 Arithmetic arrests Maroon’s motion.

Apprehended by fear.

Not one morsel intervenes.

homebound

Iris catches sight

 A distasteful  Discovery.

Host

bloody

broody

burnt the ceremonial toast.

 

Finally

Alone

A legitimate  excuse

 eyes wide open

 shed

Timely tears.

 

 

Atrophy

My demise.

This statement I  claim as my own.

I am that walking catastrophe.

There.

I saunter

Meander

I’m in a state of atrophy.

Hear the  cackles  full of apathy.

I write no more for pleasure

I write  more for  no pleasure.

I’m wasted to academic response.

The demise of a writer in  brogues set  onto the scribes chopping board

Blocked off from all creativists.

They who live in annus miribilis  mocking bird world.

Woken by the chirp about Motivation Monday.

Todays news

The latest politician to fall into a blunder.

Cordoned off by the first sizzle of thunder.

I dissociate  from a time I could

Muster

Guster

Cluster

words from my heart and mind

Until

They over spilled

Foam  froth

Displayed into  an array of shapely snowflakes

like a Costa ‘s  coffee hallmark.

Glug down on the dawn of the  frosty festival of the dead

 Mourning

in a town close to the  Pennines-

A place I see as lost to me.

Improve to be a better person,

This is my woe.

I am ungirthed

upon a  spit  fire roasting.

A  moaning myrtle.

Toilet

vacant & blocked up with  yesterdays cum

By  Yadda Yoda .

A geek to my own fatal flaw.

I am a whore — seeking out the currency of words.

If I could scream out his name,

Would he bathe me in white milk and entice me to indulge in my  favorite parlor  game?

This is a back drop.

A mood scape.

I’m an  archetype of  a blind fate.

If my story could end,

Would I be saved by my desire to fulfill my true destiny?

Garnish my blistered thoughts in scabs of  Hope

That I may find clarity

in my infinite  notion  of self worthlessness ?

Disparaged my hypo-manic thoughts-

Goading me to sit in a contemplative state

Coloring in books

Mind

Fully

Clothed.

I’m hiding from myself.

Write to recover  or die trying to be another

A better self

One more at peace away from this tumultuous existence

These are my words.

 

atrophy

noun

at·ro·phy | \ˈa-trə-fē \
plural atrophies

Definition of atrophy 

1: decrease in size or wasting away of a body part or tissue atrophy of musclesalso : arrested development or loss of a part or organ incidental to the normal development or life of an animal or plant

2: a wasting away or progressive decline It was not a solitude of atrophy, of negation, but of perpetual flowering.— Willa Catheran atrophy of imagination. 

MERRIAM WEBSTER

*Writers block. I’ve restarted my final year of my Masters in Creative writing, I’m struggling to find my voice.

 

 

Indulgent woolgatherer

Let us sit here for a second , right here on top of this lush hill.

Pause, for a moment and think about life and what we want to do – explore how we feel.

Lie down ,sprawl out  our arms and legs like star fish and gaze up into the sky.

Cloud gazing- can you see we reflect one of those red dwarf stars, we can see at nigh?

Let’s see what we can find in our future  before the clouds pass along.

They move far too quickly, our imagination needs to be strong.

We don’t always have to live in the ghetto.

We could pack up  our bags and travel the world , live hand to mouth with a  more energetic flow.

Learn different languages, eat fine food, dive off cliffs into  the ocean – wanting to live and win.

The reason very much different to how you wanted to end it on Hollin’s lane on the island of ‘Gyve inn’.

Second by second is passing us by.

We could get a move  on – leave all this materialistic waste lying  just here.

We just take ourselves and book a flight to anywhere -all we need is our combined heart and minds to see things more clear.

Bah!

Bah!

Bah!

Bah!

Bah!

What a great game. You do an excellent impression of a sheep, mon cherie.

Okay my turn ……

Arms prop up on elbows, Blonde curls and a mouth seemingly dipped in honey,

looks at the man and those bee sting lips are guarded by  all seeing drones.

What is the matter, my little sparrow?

You look at me with such warrant arrest,like we have only just met – you look straight past me like I am not even here.  Of course we can stay in touch with our loved ones  and take our cellphones.

‘I have a game”, says she, eyes dark, exposing true twinkling  stars.

The man forgets to breathe his head fully intoxicated like he has spent the day tumbling out of various bars.

“Walk over to those sheep – there! and I will tell you then what it is you next have to do.”

Slightly fazed but not wanting to show it – he heaves himself up and approaches the sheep with a hesitant  brazenness-

“Erm well – hello to you and ewe.”

He turns around to listen to the next part of his task.

His little buttercup opens her mouth , urging him  on to stroke the sheep.

Hesitatingly, he laughs when he starts to pet one and it lets out a great bleep.

Laughter emanates from  the couple, meets in the air, merge -dancing cheek to cheek -finally a caress.

The lady starts to announce she has something she would like to address.

Obligingly, the man will hear anything she wishes to confess.

“It’s all very romantic this talk of living a better life.

‘I can see it happening  -‘

‘Yes, I can see this happening. Me standing next to you  – I would love to be your wife.”

The man continues to stroke the sheep ,looks at the tufts falling away in his hands , looks down in horror.

Lady continues –

“if you were as half as good at taking action than talking like you are the  confirmed lead in every conceived theatre production of tomorrow…

I look around and see trees but alas, no money.

It’s all very well to sit and fantasise with you, when it is bright and sunny.

Well, I see a  much truer future with you – you have such a skill,indulging on your feet.- even if you are slightly heady and staggering.

I foresee a better  future for us -one with more purpose – by all means  continue with  these notions  of yours- not in  part but as a  full time career  in wool gathering.”

*TRYING TO INCREASE MY VOCABULARY*

Definitions forwoolgathering

  1. indulgence in idle fancies and in daydreaming;absentmindedness: His woolgathering was ahandicap in school.

  2. gathering of the tufts of wool shed by sheepand caught on bushes.

DICTIONARY.COM

Societies Ills

 

Sitting with a cup in me hand,rattling my pennies. The wind cuts through my salvation army coat – I feel bare.

Half an hour until the big brother brigade does their rounds, to come  clear off the debris of me, offending society, with my appearance of failure. Glasses fixed on nose bridges to hide poverty’s despicable,  shining glare.

It wasn’t meant to get to this point. I had a home, a family. Believe me, I was a carer. That was many years ago.

I let my parents down. They was ill. They fought a lot. Dyspraxia and Alzheimers is a blinding, rallied up bull  shit way  to steer 30 years of love straight out the front door with a forceful blow.

Pa was getting violent he couldn’t help it – it was the  frustration. The illness works that way . Too much protein in the brain ,the doctor says.

I don’t care much for protein. I just wanted him to get the right meds,  to make him the  man who he used to be

I came home from school one day and the living room had been touched by pa’s hard  handed caress.

‘Put ya fecking glasses on – you thick cow. Turn them around. ‘ere give them to me I’ll show you how.’

Ma was crying. Her perception was off the wire – crazy. Dad went to put on me ma’s glasses and stopped dead in his tracks.

 He had forgotten why he was standing next to Ma- and lashed out – his moves were not shady but he  was hazy.

I couldn’t watch them do this any longer. I had to get out. I wished to start a new life. 16 – find a home I could call me own, addle, get a job and be Miss independent. carefree,sipping on splendour.

I found me a job – I was smart not like them other lasses, herded in like cattle, branded with the letter P. Marked,dotted, scarred, scared, drugged – too skinny to be called slender.

I started washing up pots,owt I could do. I needed a step to reach them. They were that big. I was that short.  The gaffer  he was a bit of twocker- A Tyke.

 He should have been wooing his guests instead of fondling me tits ,grabbing me ass and jerking off with the hand he vowed to his wife to stay faithful with.

I couldn’t take that shit no more. I was no whore. I suppose I could have called me Ma and Pa

I said No. Loud and clear.

Decibels reverberating – Tin Tin like.  I was barking mad.

 Hotel  guests, eating their warm croissants, couldn’t ignore  the tone – it was him that had set that bar.

Didn’t even get me wages. Couldn’t pay me rent. I only had a room but it was my home. A place none could bother me. I could come home kickoff me shoes and read and chill.

 Be at peace.

That were  a few years now. Things change. Time never stops. Drugs, alcohol, overdoses, hospital beds.

None of it worked. I just got older, street smart, I was now living amongst  wild, underfed , hope-starved geese.

No place to shower, they say it takes 3 seconds to make an impression on someone. No jobs – the only job I could get was the hardest graft I ever did.

 Squatting on the cobbles and begging for scraps of bread.

Bread,

dough,

blast me to oblivion ,

 fresh like a baguette- warm ,baked.

 I was safer in  the streets than I was in a seedy local pub.

The pervading scent emanating from these places was  the end of hope and that was my biggest dread. I’d rather  be underground dead.

I got in with some  Christian volunteers – at first, I was in tears. I had Hope, but I had lost faith.

 Pa, he had gone into a state care home and Ma?  well, she had a stroke and I don’t know. It just got harder to think of going back. Mind,  it was me guilt.

At first, it felt like they were recruiting me for their cult. I knew there is no God.  I had seen what mercy truly looked like. Bleak. a dying art.

 I got attacked one night,got meself in a right snicket. I know I wasn’t to blame. Wrong place, wrong time, could have happened to anyone.

 It was me.

Weeks went by , started feeling nauseous, went to A&E – they confirmed what I knew.I was up the duff.

 I knew I had to reach out – me and my child  depart ?   never crossed my mind -not even  from the start.

9 months  passed . The SS got involved – my baby was honey coloured hair and blue eyed. A prize catch ,a  tick off the adoption incentive  target list.

I didn’t stand a chance. They convinced me she’d be better off in another one’s arms.

That toppled me, I came down like a house of cards. Not original but tell it like it is, Bards.

I started living in shared accommodation.Nice people, life been shit. We all make choices – doesn’t make us bad people,right?

I lost the plot, forgot my goals- to become a suited and booted member of society. I had my mobile phone I got  given to me by the charity.

I whip it out. I got a text.

what’s app – it’s free.

Overweening  Lady, with the fine, make up on and pretty, salon styled hair and the sparkly engagement ring. Don’t look at me like that and stare.

Is it so wrong to have a phone and live on the street off and on ? I ain’t got no one to marry me.

”  What prompted this stream of consciousness is obviously the content.  One of the themes of the play is centred around  Homeless people. I saw a man – I presume was homeless the  other day begging for my some money and he was texting with his phone. My first reaction was rather judgemental -so I started asking myself questions and this is the result. The register/style  of speaking and writing  I use is inspired by how some  people in Yorkshire speak. “

The order of the black Dog

*TMA Submition for Open University- Year one MA -Creative writing- fiction genre

My family. Here we all are, sitting around the circular dining room table- flecked with bits of gold. Ma sits under a hanging portrait of this Christmas just gone. Three weeks ago. We are all smiling in it including Poppy. Poppy sits playing with her Annabelle doll, on my husband’s lap. Sat opposite from Ma, closest to the electric fire hearth is Gran. I find myself sitting across from Gran. An iciness breathes mist over us. It separates me from them, cloaks me in a fog. I try to swallow. The air is so thick it chokes me, I’m forced to put my hands to my throat. Nobody notices me.  Nobody notices me the way they used to. I tune in to the conversation-taking place.

‘Of course I’m not suggesting this is your fault.  I should have known. Done more…’ Nan bursts into tears. A cry out for:

 I need attention I’m suffering the most.

My skin bristles. Nan pulls her scarf tighter around her neck, and then throws out a familiar comment about it being draughty.

‘You know I could catch pneumonia with my Asthma.’ She coughs. Ma gets up to put on the electric fire.

‘I didn’t take her seriously. You know what Angie was like?’  Ma’s eyes are red as the rosary beads she is thumbing; she looks over to an unusually quiet Poppy.

‘Did she just do it to spite me?’ How could she just leave her own…?’

 My husband throws a warning look at Ma,

‘Marie, for Poppies sake.  Our Angie suffered more than she let on.’ Ma sits back down. ‘Let’s put on a cartoon, luv?’  Poppy shakes her head.

 She doesn’t look at us.  I look straight at her, willing her to leave this table. Leave this conversation. She lifts her head and looks me dead on in the eyes. I instinctively smile. Eddie and me always stood together when it came to Poppy. Her face is pale, her eyes sunken, her skin is drawn in so tight I can see cheek bones protrude. Beneath her eyes-, veiled shadows betray her youthful face. She clings onto Annabelle, still looking me dead on in the eyes.

‘When’s Mummy coming home?’

 Silence. Her words enmesh with the silence. Her question disarms me. Marks me. The arrow leaves its bow splintering my heart. I open my mouth to scream out as many words as I can. Condensation steams the air distilling me into silence. I reach my hand across the table to grab hers. She doesn’t see me. I glare at my family sitting at the round table. They say nothing. Smothering themselves in sorrow, they witheringly curl inwards. I urge to shake them, uproot them from winters glaze.

-Answer her! Answer my daughter.

Instead, Gran succumbs to a puddle of wrinkled tears, mechanically Ma gets off her chair, attempts to console Gran and naturally it’s  up to Eddie to mediate.  My calm, rational Eddie. His eyes read as vacant –his beard is wild and unkempt.  It’s impossible to read his face. He clears his throat,

‘We’re gonna see Mummy when we give her… say a proper goodbye.’

Gran flounders in her anglers net of remorse.  Great splotchy splashes of grief escape. She wails,

‘She’s with the angels –looking down at you, darling!’

 I roll my eyes. Of course I love her!  Lately, she grates my skin more frequently with her, melodramatics.

– Confess how you truly feel. Relieved!

I’m so fixated on evoking a response from Gran; unnoticed, a light flickers with an intensity to match my own.  Eddie carries Poppy over to the sofa, sits her down to watch a cartoon. He covers her with a blanket then kisses her forehead.

‘We’ll see mummy soon? To say goodbye?’

 Eddie nods his head, his voice cracks.

‘Aye, love.’

‘When will mummy come back from saying goodbye? In spring? My teacher says it’s winter – everything goes to sleep like her?’ Poppy points to ‘Sleeping Beauty’ on the television.

 Eddie focuses on the image. The Prince is just about to kiss Aurora on the lips. He turns his head away from the television before he can see Aurora wake up to her true loves kiss. He grinds down on his teeth. Poppy’s eyes remain transfixed on the television. Eddie gets up, crosses the dining room table; I’m compelled to follow him, I have to stop him. Tell him I’m still here. I haven’t gone anywhere. I’ve so much to tell him.

 -There is no God! We were right all along. Religion is for people who can’t think for themselves.  We were right to take the piss.  

Eddie flinches, puts his hands in his jean pockets. I follow him down Ma’s hallway and into the bathroom. He closes the door on me. It doesn’t ever close fully. I slip through the crack of the door that is always ajar.

 Head down. Still. He sits on the toilet seat.  I kneel down before him; go to lay my head on his knee. He flinches again. Hits himself in the head. Bangs his fist on the wall screams out:

‘Why? We could’ve figured it out, you fucking stubborn mare’ I bring out the best and worst in Eddie. Till death do us part. What are the chances?

He still refuses to let me go. Stubborn.

My symptoms intensify in the days leading up to the funeral. Everything‘s heightened especially emotions that seemingly walk precariously on stilts.  I can’t walk through walls or levitate. Nothing like any of the horrors Eddie and me used to watch together, on the sofa. 

Unheard, I bellow continuously,

-Just let me go!

 Every time I hear my name called reflections of nostalgia flash and beam over and around me. Prompted, I gravitate towards the source. Someone needs me.  These past three weeks, I’ve been teleported from one conversation to another. I find myself in a room; familiar or not familiar, with people I know and people I don’t know.

Today I’m summoned to the usual bickering between Ma and Gran. The familiar sound of Gran’s kettle boils in the background.

‘I want that picture of her on her graduation day and flowers- blown up .With azaleas. And roses – she loved roses- pink.’  

‘She hates that picture! And she loves- loved yellow roses…’ Ma’s wobbly voice mirrors her jelly struck legs propping her up in her work shoes. She staggers backwards. Like the black dog with a bone, Gran won’t give in,

‘No, she’s my eldest grand daughter and I know her – it is… was pink!’

 Ma sits down, doesn’t speak. I go over to her to put my arms around her then she dissolves into tears. Gran bulldozes her way over to us. Intimidated, I move out of her way. Gran holds Ma and Ma lets Gran hug her. Ma calms down, mentions something about pink and yellow roses

Vexed, I shriek

 – don’t back down Ma, I love yellow. Yellow roses. The kettle whistles for attention. My voice is lost to an object.

‘I’ll go make that cup of tea’ Nan retreats to her kitchen.

Another opportunity to get close to Ma again.   I need to hug her, give her some of my energy. As if on cue, Mum’s tear-stained face crumples just like my heart. A poking hot iron burns a hole right through it. Gran re-enters the room I scarper.

‘Here you go, love. Lost three of my own …, as you know, mind, they never got to Angie’s age. Yellow’s more of a quirky colour like our Angie… was.’     They smile at each other. I move back, the distance seems to illuminate their smiles.

Tonight, I beg for there to be a heaven. This has to be hell. The familiar, incongruous, gravitational pull lures me out of my cavernous abyss. I blink my eyes several times to focus: orientate myself. Hung up around the wall are vintage Disney posters. My eyes settle on Poppies bed. Eddie bends over Poppy and kisses her goodnight,

‘Mummy loves you just as much as I do.’ He tucks her in.

He switches off the light before walking out. I stand and watch my worn out daughter in her bed. She sings herself to sleep just as she does every night. She sings our song:  twinkle twinkle little star. With each inflection of her sweet singing voice, the words serve as a needle. Each word stipulates smelting hot ink into my flesh. My neck is ablaze.  Before closing her eyes, she whispers,

 ‘I love you mummy.’

When I reply, scorching chains wrap and lasso me around my neck. My skin swells up in blisters. The familiar sound of her breathing evaporates the pain.  I need to be close to her, I need to smell her, kiss her. Carelessly, I run over to her bed to touch her sleeping head. Startled I lunge backward as Poppy instantly wakes up screaming.

– I’m powerless

. Eddie barges into the room, throws on the light and takes Poppy into his arms. I watch her body stiffen; then relax. I watch him settle my daughter back to sleep. My hands ball into tight fists.

-She must know I’m here.

Before I can touch her face, she wakes up screaming like – like she has seen a- ghost.

-I’m that Ghost! I put my hands to my mouth in horror.

 Envy bubbles inside me as I witness Eddie consoling Poppy again. I’m half hoping he won’t succeed.

What kind of a mother am I?

I’ve been telling everyone to let me go.

Where will I go?

I can’t drive, no one can see me. There are no other lost souls wondering about telling me to join the dead community!

I won’t give up on my daughter. She needs me. I have to be here.

 The stroke of our clock announces its time; a primitive realisation slithers down my very core. Nausea spirals up into my throat. I run into our bathroom, heave over the toilet, nothing comes out. I catch sight of my reflection in the mirror; I see vicious V-shaped welts where the noose of the rope has cut into my neck. This is what Eddie came home to.

The cloying black dog of depression haunted me. Its delivered dose of pain was exquisite- nothing took it away. Not drinking, overdosing, drugging myself, talking-nothing. Eventually, I told it to sit down.  I told Eddie repeatedly,

– I just want to disappear.

– How can I help you?  His eyes pleaded for an answer.  I would always lash out,

-Unless you help me disappear, you can’t!

 I remained imprisoned in our bed and he would go back to work and look after Poppy and the house. He could walk away from me. I couldn’t. I resent him for that. I can see myself now, googling the various ways people commit suicide. One article struck my eye ‘Men are more successful at committing suicide’.

  -They don’t mess about with poisoning themselves –they resort to more violent means.

That is the moment I reached out to the wrong Alpha.

The black dog and I began sleeping together. It became my obsession. Up-close, I could analyse it, experiment with it. As a couple, it didn’t take much to find that Alpha rage. One phone call from Ma,

-Just snap out of it. If you’re going to do it, get on with it.

-Fine, I will!  I hung up on her before she could hang up on me.

My impulsiveness finds me trapped within this mirror. It’s cold. Everything I read is back to front. Everything I do is back to front.  It doesn’t reflect my true intentions. When I reach out, in fact, the more I reach out the more pain I inflict. I back away from the mirror until I’m pressed up, with my back against the bathroom wall.

 What have I done? 

 What right do I have trying to tell my family how to deal with their loss?

Eddie will never know that I was messing about; I didn’t know if I could actually go through with it. From a great height in a corner of the bathroom my body feels cut loose from itself. I can see it happen in front of my eyes. Like a rerun episode, I can’t pause. The noose around my neck, in the shower. Steam shrouds the mirror, with slippery feet, I accidently knock myself off that chair and in that moment I realise,

– I don’t want to die.

I can’t scream and tell anyone. I made the decision when I decided to sleep with my enemy. I’ve interrupted the natural course of life. A lost soul in life: a lost soul in death. There are no bright lights to come with this epiphany. I exit the bathroom, stumble down the staircase, out the front door, and walk aimlessly down the street. I sense a familiar pair of eyes examining me; I look up and see the black dog in its true form. It waits for me to catch up.  We walk side by side. I don’t look back.  I am the one preventing people from moving on. I have to let go.

Kalinda

When my Kalinda sees her reflection  she flinches over jagged, ragged parts of a body

discombobulated

Staggered &  separate. -body parts sewn together haphazardly.

The truth is stranger than fiction.

How can it be?

His soul mate doesn’t mirror the effort in his deeds.

fingernails claw

pierce fleshy skin -protruding  hanging  agape

flesh separates from the bo.ne

My Kalinda

she is more than a  blow-up doll  wearing a t-shirt that says ‘corruption feeds on  poison  egos.’

The Skullbones cross over .

Point at marks left from a  flirtation with suicide.

 

Maidenhead Hymen annuls her delusional animas.

Make her believe she breathes!

i

What is wrong with all that is her?

doesn’t my Klaineda get that life weith me can be whatever she will her self to dream .

Yes, a bargain plea?

instead of radiating from true love’s scribbled scribes in blank verse.

The stonewalled chamber gathers ipapalbe silence  born from these disjointed words

Talk. You have time to make my life right.

Perform this pantomime on Las Ramblas knowing the days will turn bright.

Perhaps I cup over & caress her excess mounds.

Compliments ‘damn you look good, healthier, you’ve  put some weight on’

Must she hear this now? Does it matter?

It’s too avant-garde even for Gaudi

Face swollen from a sting with an arbitrary drone.

Monthly luna flickers up sheds of decrepit blood

clots

compound that to a portrait that makes her face plump–fits of

disease

– please,

Hands hesitate over arms once scrawny, cheek bones sliced inwards.,

She’s rather own her shame and reach every gaze at her in a state of lean chronic thigh gap syndrome

spongy Food floats

expands

-drowns all sign of hope.

enough self loathing to remedy it with a calibre of a gun.

Date with Russian roulette –

6 chance distractions from this body, this mind , every part called forward into existence.

five rounds until she lands in the seat of a crash test dummy.

Grief , guilt ,

unpleasant to the taste.

fret bursts in beads of sweat – her few will revolt into petulant demonstrations of

why?

again?

how?

and when?

Get by on hope and luck and a fine mother hen

A good sized egg , pair of irises that delude her into feeling all her sins have been revoked.

Passed Humanities degree

Life update

I’ve finally received my results for my 1st year, doing my Masters, in Creative writing.

Drum rolls.

PASS-with merit. I officially can use more random letters after my name — ha ha!

I  am now in possession of a post-graduate certificate in the Arts and Humanities!

 

Wow! Amazing.

How’s this going to help me with what I won’t do?

I have a dream.

I do. 😀

One of my goals is to move back to France. They love people with diplomas. I hope to get a well paid job there. I need to book a trip to The French embassy later on this year. My husband has decided he is going to take on my surname and become a French national.  He’s English!

He’s not only English, he is  Northern, from  West Yorkshire.

d9ef31b42a30d50a71e1a3f446a1dfb5-yorkshire-humour

 

I need to register my Bella Bee as a French national because even though she is more English than I am. Born here.  English Dad and roots. The British government  will not give her a British  passport because I was ordered by her majesty’s court to  register her Fathers name on her birth certificate and now they won’t give her one!

Beauracratic nightmare.

I feel so uneasy about my family not having a passport. My entire life, It was drummed into me to always have my passport (in date)in case, we moved countries.

Which we did- a lot!

Moving on . ( pun unintentionally intended  :D)

What’s  happening in my life?

Loads of shit- ha ha! as usual.

I’m doing better –  I keep making a come back.  Oh, life – you little tease!

Dare me to live.

 Dare me to succeed!

Challenge accepted.

quote-you-can-t-shake-hands-with-a-closed-fist-mahatma-gandhi-83-29-01

 

Daisy’s mental health 

Yeah, it’s been.

up and down,

down ,

down ,

down –

up again ,

very up –

insanely manic,

toxic,

low,

not quite sure

,emotional ,

aargh why did that and that and that and ..

did I do that?

Those kind of moments, really.

 

Surely someone can relate?

Not happy about a medication increase in my anti depressant.

I don’t of any person who is on  (high/ highest legal doses) of

Two antidepressants

Two anti psychotics

Two anti anxiety tablets,

and sleeping medication.

I know  my health posse want the best for me.

I don’t bullshit them.

I tell if I’ve been using shit coping mechanisms, good ones. Thoughts ,feelings…

I made my psychiatrist laugh.

Go me!

giphy8
HE LOOKED EXACTLY LIKE THIS 😉

He offered me psychology therapy — again .

I was like:

‘Look Dr J, seriously every time I sign up to a pyschologist , they leave!’

 All my psychologists have left me half way through  doing whatever new pycho babble, current trend treatment , is used, to deal with folk such as myself.

One dude, fell asleep in a couple of our sessions.

So, I was like

‘ Listen, I know how to use CBT/DBT, I know how to communicate and talk. I know what keeps me well . I just want a cure’

Another laugh escapes from Dr J.

He is a legend.

A legend ? yes, but not a wizard 😦

He totally gets me and I feel I have a choice in medication changes etc..

I’ve asked to come off one of my meds because I don’t see the point of being on it. It hasn’t helped me.

These meds have affected my memory. I’m terrified of getting Dementia. I’ve been on (legal) tablets since I was 13/14 and I’ve never been off medication.

Never!

Talking about memory.

 

I’m using my creative outlets to start getting into the open mic poetry scene .

I love performing but my memory is really rubbish. I’m going to brave it by doing more live poetry next week. I’m excited. Nervous.  It’s all good.

I have my final year of my MA to keep me — super  occupied.  There is a lot of work to do. For part of my thesis ( check me out)

I’m thinking of using my blog to interview creative folk who live in my community to talk about, their work,  (durr!)  Creativity and their mental health. My photographer mate is on board to take pictures. Some people have shown interest — yeah!

My heads occupied which is good.

Fab!

Awesome!

How will doing this  help me with my thesis and final work?

Well, I am going to use this year of discovery and research on the link between mental health and creativity as an alternative form of therapy to cope with life’s unpredictable moments.

Then I  will have loads of inspiration to write a film script (120 minutes) on a character ,who , is thrown back into society after a long stint in mental /prison  institutions , and who is looking to find him/herself  and another way of being  and expressing him/herself  positively, in society.

The opening scene will kind of look like this

I have an ending – (a bit abstract at the moment) – saying there words:

‘I look around for the first time with clarity. And see I’m exactly where I need to be. Around the misfits. The beautiful misfits just like me.’

DAISY’S UN NAMED CHARACTER 

It’s all early days and I still have  4 scripts to write, a critique and a character  analysis on a famous playwright to do before the final chapter.

All in all. I’m alive, optimistic-ish, full of emotion, drive, passion , a pain in the ass but just doing my thing. 

All terribly boring really… 😀 

So, I am back!

I can’t commit daily to blogging but I have joined a group on Facebook.  

Shout out to Gary @ fiction is food  for adding me.

It’s a website for us!

BIG UP YOUR BLOG!

Bloggers.

 I’m  a newbie, its good be around other bloggers again. I’m hoping it will keep me  off Facebook and keep me connecting with people like yourself. People who use their time more productively. Doh, oh the irony.

One rant before I go :   I wish people would stop leaving public posts about my appearance on my Facebook.

If you ever happen to read this

I know you are having a shit time dealing with your own weight issues. I’m well aware of mine. Please take a look at yourself. Look after yourself first. If you don’t – FUCK OFF! 

 

That is a wrap.  I know. Hilarious! ha ha!

Thank you so much for reading

Time to step out and live real life..

Catch up soon!

giphy9

What’s everyone else doing with life?  Blogging?

I’m genuinely curious to know.