Beach night

The beach stones are thousand-year smooth, grey light grey when the clouds clear the moon, black as the night when the misting returns. The sky-black sea crashes foam white at its border. If there are voices, they are distant, both in place and time.

against the flow

the only person on the riverbank walking away from town
the only person with no dog or a rugby scarf
he holds his shopping bag tight and swinging slightly
See? I have a right to exist. I have every right to be here.

She was just back home

She was just back, just back home. After years away the world she had known looked different, and people looked at her differently. She had changed too, of course, you could see that in her eyes if she ever allowed you to look into them.

She was asleep and flinching in dreams when the window broke. The half brick hit the cot and glass showered across the room. She screamed and screamed as she picked glass from her baby’s face. Her father ran into the room, face pale, eyes wild. He saw blood on his grandson’s head.

She went to the funeral, of course she did. He was her father, her son’s grandfather. Dressed in black she stood next to her mother in the grey mist and rain. Together they raised their eyes to the sky and the rain mixed with their silent tears. Tomorrow they would move away, the woman, the girl and her boy, move far away from their home, move to a place where their past was not known, where the past did not shadow their lives.

First published on https://www.christopherfielden.com/writing-challenges/news-challenge.php 01 March 2019

rye bread, mint tea

Come, I will offer you crumbs of sour bread.
Hold them
on your tongue;
your mouth fills.

How different the emptiness that fills your belly,
the emptiness in my heart
when you are not here.

After, we will drink mint together
or boiled water on ginger,
for heat
for spice
for the sweetest spark in your eye.