I (sometimes) call myself Mr. Pondersome. I'm a rather wordy, weirdy person. I say hullo a lot. I write a lot more. While you're here, why not give some of it a read?

Sunday, 23 February 2014

SMOTHERING AND BEAR HUGGING (a.k.a. The Third and Final Entry for the Creative Writing Ink Writing Prompts Competition)

Third time's a charm, a magic number and three times a lady - http://creativewriting.ie/writing-prompts/

            The thing about sci-fi conventions is that they always expect you to wear the costume. Regardless of the heat, your mood and how far you need to walk to get back to your bloody car. This costume is surprisingly movable in the lower portions but the feathery volcano that is the head has only very thin slits to see through which can, and usually do, cause dizziness. Not to mention it's sweltering in here.
            I'm not sure how this particular monster has become iconic in the show's history, it's lumbering with limited movement and it doesn't even have any claws. I asked for claws on the first day of shooting but they told me to leave it off. Well actually, what the director said was, 'the monster is like granny's knitted jumper or a big teddy bear at first but then reveals itself to be a rather crafty predator, smothering and bear hugging. What we're wanting here is for no-one to look at anything fluffy in quite the same way again.'  'Fair enough,' I said. Work was hard to come by in those days so I left it at that.
            When would be a good time to take off this head? There seem to be fans everywhere, I can barely distinguish them from average citizens anymore. There's a short cut between those two buildings if memory serves, I'll probably do it there. Unless I'm followed. Unless one of those fan boys has a thing for fuzzy monsters. Wouldn't put it past a few of them.
            Just a couple more crossings. The eye slits seem to have shrunk, filled up perhaps. I'd be able to gouge them open again if I had claws but no. The heat's getting ridiculous now, all over. Just like grandma's knitted jumper. Only four more conventions this year, a month before the next. Sheffield, posh hotel. Should be nice.
            That car's coming up rather fast. One headlight on full blast. Ha, that rhymes. I'm a poet. I'm a teddy bear. I'm a fucking fuzzy monster.
            It's swerving. Oh shit.
            'Hey, mate.' that a man's voice? 'Hey, mate. You're from that show, aren't you?'
            Right. Off with this bloody head. 'You missed the convention, mate. Now I'm just a bloke burning up.'
            His face falls. 'Oh. Okay.'
            'See you next time.'
            I step back up onto the pavement, let him past.
            The car's not too far from a petrol station, is it? I'll change there.

Saturday, 22 February 2014

THE SHAPE AND THE SHELL (a.k.a. Another Entry for the Creative Writing Ink Writing Prompts Competition)

Here's that link again - http://creativewriting.ie/writing-prompts/
I'm posting these here because them's the rules.

            The golden shape was within reaching distance of the shell. It hadn't decided precisely what shape it wanted to be yet, but its arms certainly needed to lengthen. The sand was no ground to stand on and the waves certainly couldn't be trusted.
            The shell wasn't it's shell: the golden shape had no intention of hiding within it. In fact it wanted to break it. Somehow. It had a few ideas but was still thinking them through.
            The shell reflected only some of the golden shape's light back; it was bone dry. The shape tried to ignite it remotely but it was too far away. It would have to get closer but its limb-like rays were already boiling through the soggy sand. Giving in to temptation, the shape started to float. Not too far off the ground, barely an inch.
            The golden shape loomed over the shell. It was illuminated, no shadows, the sand baking beneath it. One of the shape's blobs sprouted into an arm which simplified into a tentacle before touching the top of the shell. Nothing more than a touch, a lick of radiation, and the shell crumbled. The golden shape dimmed. The waves hissed beneath its emanating heat.
            Sparing only a moment's pause, which sounded rather like a sigh, the golden shape ascended into the fading sky, breaking large clouds with the force of its frustration. The waves retrieved the bits of shell one at a time. 

THE GOLDEN GRASS (a.k.a. An Entry for the Creative Writing Ink Writing Prompt Competition)

If you're curious about why I've written this, where I got the picture from or just want to enter the competition yourself then just visit this link - http://creativewriting.ie/writing-prompts/

            When the grass was gone, we wept. All vegetation just shrivelled and shrank back into the earth and we spent days trying to salvage the seeds. While the botanists and scientists mulled over the logic and new rules, the rest of us eventually buckled under our insecurities and prepared ourselves for a world without green.
            Of course it was hasty. We're irrational creatures, don't you know. The botanists and scientists, having established how the process worked and figuring out the right phenomena that they needed to reverse, set about work quickly and cultivated a new portion of land that we now call the Grove. This took years but we all jumped back onto our feet and became invested again.
            In the meantime we created our own field up in the night sky. Rather than relying on gravity and water and time, we shot our seeds up into the air and watched them blossom into massive fire flowers that lived from bloom to wilt in a bright white instant. The Scarlet String Petal stretched out first and usually the farthest. The Bleeding Sun shot streams of fading violet from its side. The Welder's Blossom flashed and cast itself to the wind.
            And the grass, the Golden Grass jutted out from underneath it all and lasted till the glorious fade out. Everybody else called it the Wheat Field but I preferred the Golden Grass. To my eye, they resembled blades more than stems.

            Though our field was dead by the dawn, we never worried. Our future was in the works right behind us, underneath the reinforced glass dome where we could perceive it but never truly understand it. In the meantime we had so many seeds and a blackened but bountiful bed in which to plant them. We're irrational creatures but we understand light when we see it.   

Friday, 14 February 2014

SLATE HEART PLACE MAT (a.k.a. An Un-Love Letter)

            I suppose getting better from doing nothing for a while is still getting better. I wouldn't call this healing, that's such an extravagant word, but I suppose that shares the same properties with what's just been happening in my head.
            I saw you in a dream last night. It was a long and elaborate dream, the sort where I'm in an auditorium or lecture theatre tucked away in one of the rows near the top but somehow manning the spotlights at the same time. The dream was populated with faces that didn't become faces until I wanted them to be but you were definitely you from the start. As I remember you, that is: hair slightly shorter, voice an octave lower. You were as clear as the acts on the stage below, they buzzed and blurred past in their own excessive sweat. I was watching but you were whispering in my ear.
            I didn't hear anything until you put your hand in my trousers. There were two empty seats to either side of us but I wasn't so sure about the row behind. Of course, I didn't check. You asked me if I was in the neighbourhood again and I was tempted to ask you about that woman you were going out with last time we talked, the one who made slate heart place mats. I imagine she probably made more than that but it's what I took away from that last conversation we had, after you took what you took away from me.
            In the dream I didn't dwell on it which, quite frankly, expresses the fact that it was a dream. I just agreed in a rather tired, perhaps subdued voice. I didn't even turn to you. About a year earlier I would have turned to you, I would have kept you in sight at all times as you entered me and then maybe I entered you. But I haven't really thought about you for months now.
            You still come with the midnight urges, as a last ditch attempt at getting a calm sleep. I just don't get those urges as frequently anymore. It's been years since I saw you and I just don't know what you might look like anymore, I don't know if I would like it. You moved on a long time ago, you got those early bouts of lust out of the way by other means. You seemed settled with that stone mason girl and, as I'm sure you clearly remember, you told me to back off. So I did, I backed away so much that I eventually found myself going in another direction. It's still fairly uneventful but it's a direction and I have no hard feelings. Anyway those things probably didn't count as hard feelings, they were just ungratified youth really.
            So that's that. I'm still alone and lonely but I'm not longing for you. Even my subconscious is shifting focus. It's an affirming feeling but, of course, you'll never know.  
            I suppose I should have ended the dream with some grand symbolic act like taking a slate heart place mat - I saw some in a supermarket once, they might have been her work - and doing something dramatic with it. I didn't break anything, I didn't scrub anything clean. I just woke up and stopped feeling guilty.

CONSTANCE (a.k.a. A Hopeless Man and the Woman Inside His Head - A Love Story?)

            My ideal woman is flashing through identities. Almost every day she's changing, supplementing character traits adapted from real, flesh and blood women. Needless to say she doesn't appreciate it.
            Whenever I revisit her she tends to walk off. She can feel the initial signs of my altering her, she has said as much, and turns away which I suppose just neatens the transformation. One minute she has short blonde hair covered by a woolly hat and the next she's brunette with glasses and puffy cheeks. She has a personality, a resounding one through all the adjustments, though it doesn't seem to want to acknowledge my existence. I'm kind of into bossy women right now so I'm okay with this.
            I think the weight bothers her most. Being a man, I do make it fluctuate. I'm generally realistic when it comes to body shape but I do have moments of weakness where only a buxom figure will do. I sometimes wonder if an invisible corset just suddenly pulls tight around her waist. Of course I don't ask her such questions especially when I just want a woman who doesn't always have answers for everything.
            I see the way she looks at her reflection sometimes, admiring the pigmentation of her skin. She's so used to white that tan is refreshing and black is better. I see how she is constantly restyling her hair from time to time, she seems to always rise to the challenge.
            Sometimes she talks to me but never about us, always about what books and films are currently out and whether or not I can brush up on my philosophy and politics a bit more. I'm trying, I am honestly trying. As soon as I find anything new out, it goes straight to her. It's only fair and, besides, I get the distinct feeling she's properly digested it before even I have.
            I once asked her if she was technically my anima, we're talking Jungian archetypes here of course, and she told me to move focus away from pop psychology for a while. Sorry, I meant she encouraged me. I'm just not used to so many words coming out of her mouth all at once.
            Okay, I'll admit it: sometimes I don't really feel like talking to her either. I'd sooner skip to the sex but the entire experience would suddenly feel ethereal and I don't really fancy thrusting at intangibility. I try to be tactful, romantic even but she's just not having it either way. I suppose she knows all of my signature moves by now. Do I have signature moves? I'm seducing a figment here.
            Right now she's a six-foot tall red head in a leather jacket so I'm watching what I say. I'm trying to bring out a patient nature in her but, every time that I do, she starts to resemble my mother. She's resisting me. At what point does an epitome become a prisoner? Was it ever really a lover in between?
            I'm slowly coming to the realisation that I should probably let her out somehow. But then she'd come out as me, with my face and that's another personality that I can't handle. Or maybe she'll just seep out of my ear as a bit of blood or brain matter. I could always cull her. No. No, I haven't even broached the subject with her yet.
            Are you comfortable, Constance? I say. I call her Constance because it seems like a good sturdy temporary name. I can't remember if I've actually called her it before now. Are you content, Constance?
           And I can see her now, smoothing down the creases in her light green tank top, low-cut but I'm just about keeping at the level of her eyes. She's got black hair now, punk style and surprisingly high-maintenance. There's no loose locks, nothing for me to brush away. She tries to say something but all I can hear is breathing. None of her stock phrases apply to this situation. I can't find the words for her to say.