Thursday, April 26, 2007

"Creating A Sculpture": A ShortShort Story.

Win lives in a terrace by an alley.
It’s noisy; dogs, the couple opposite, that fat guy revving his Harley while his mates smoke joints in an Escort, roar their heads off to “ Black Sabbath”.
“ I see it all” Win tells her daughter in Deal “ Life in the raw”.
Today’s Easter Sunday; there are daffodils on her windowsill.

Win doesn’t give details.
Once, a guy slumped against her door and snuffed it.
Once, a druggie screamed under her window all night for someone who never came.
Once, she parted her curtains, saw two kids doing it against a wall; it was Saturday and late and the clubs had emptied and in the dark, caught in moonlight, the girl’s back had arched like a bow and the sight made Win breathless. She didn’t disapprove; the arched back was beautiful, like sculpture, and the boy had danced into the girl with some crazy animal rhythm, which Win, embarrassed, realised she half remembered.
She’d closed the curtains, turned back into the warmth. And sipping tea, she’d imagined Jim’s lips on hers, remembered his need of her, his urgency and she’d blushed as images crowded and Jim’s voice, here again, had coaxed and cajoled and most of all loved her.

He’d died months before in the hospital.
A nurse called Betty hugged her, said: “He’ll never leave” .
Win took his watch, Fishermen’s Friends, snaps of herself on a donkey.
And Betty was right: When Win licked candyfloss at the Fair, Jim was there, staring at the Big Wheel, ooohing as he’d always done.
And on Christmas Eve, Win carolled in the Cathedral; in the cloisters, Jim appeared and they’d wished strangers All The Best, watched midnight antics of youths at the Town Hall.

So Win, in white Easter cardigan, dozes in her chair.
She’s tired, she’s sleepy, the Harley’s revving, the dogs yelping but Jim’s here, suddenly he’s here, and he’s whispering, he’s coaxing, he’s urging and the dogs bark and the woman opposite shrieks and Win, breathless, arches her back like that bow in that beautiful sculpture.


Anonymous Clare said...

Very sensuous, Jan. Love the description of the girl's back. Works well.

7:42 pm  
Blogger Jan said...

Thanks, Dr D.
I had an image a street nr the Little Theatre....old lady parting her curtains, shuffling back into the warmth of her livingroom..

8:08 pm  
Blogger Jackie Luben said...

Another lovely little gem, Jan.


11:27 pm  
Blogger Lucy said...

I don't find anything like this anywhere else, Jan.

8:05 pm  
Blogger herhimnbryn said...

Oh! Such words, like dark pearls, glistening.

Here from Lucy's blog.

12:42 pm  
Blogger I Beatrice said...

Brave, brave and bold Jan! And very well done. I could never hope to be as brave (or as succinct) as that.

No chance of a fellow Jamesian in you though, I fear....?

Your comment on mine much appreciated nonetheless. I too will be back.

3:03 pm  
Blogger Lizzie said...

Jan, I thought your story quite marvelous. Have you had stuff published?

I look forward to more in the future.

9:55 am  
Blogger Jan said...


Not sure how I should take that!!
( but seriously, thankyou Lucy)

Thanks for calling.
Sorry I haven't any wonderful Lucy type photos here...they're superb, aren't they?

I love the paring down, the chance to find the bones of the story, I suppose!

Some stuff, yes, but Im not very good at sending it off...shall have to get my act together one of these days..
Thankyou Lizzie for calling.

9:45 pm  
Blogger chiefbiscuit said...

This is great! Such a well put together, non-judgmental, non-moralistic story; so satisfying to read.

7:19 pm  

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