Writing In

25 Nov

Good writers… write, right? Right. Been doing that.

Good writers… get read, right?! Uh huh, so here it is, something I wrote recently in a writing workshop. That’s my offering, I hope we can be friends.

This is a snippet from my childhood which flashed into my mind with all the subtlety of a newspaper headline when we were asked to choose an emotion and write about it.

This is fear.

Looking up the trees, with their still leaves, I can see nothing except spots of sunlight here and there. I am wondering where they are and if they’re still floating. Do they have wings? Or do they just look like ghosts? How will I see my mum if she is shapeless? More importantly, I couldn’t talk to her if I wanted to. And I have so much to say to her. I want to hug her and bury my face in her skirt. I am mad at her and I want to yell back and cry and say it wasn’t fair to say ‘Get your homework done or else…’ or ‘Well, we’re inviting the neighbours for the party even if you and D don’t get along!’ And then I want to say sorry. But mostly, I want to cry except right in my chest, it’s too lumpy and knotty and tight for tears. Ugh.

I am ten. I am standing on the pavement on a road in Madras, with vegetable shops lining one side and little hardware shops lining the other. We were walking along and we had had a pretty peaceful afternoon. There were actually clouds to alleviate the burning heat – yay! My mum had exclaimed at the great price for cabbages somewhere and I had managed to nod knowledgeably. We were talking about stories, after that. Little Women, maybe, and how I wished my cousin hadn’t spoiled the ending for me.

And then…. gone. Just like that. I have looked in all the shops nearby and I can’t see her familiar figure or the colour of her dress. I am convinced this is it. Something’s happened. If there’d been a kidnapping, it would have been noisy. This is something weird – the end of the world. And I cannot move off the pavement. Aaaaaaaaaahhhhh.

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