Monday, October 26, 2009

TFE's weekly torture

I mean of course challenge. This week? A piece of music called Threnody to the victims of Hiroshima - 10 minutes long - during which time we had to write, and now post up the cheery result.

Sharp glints - incessant cries, a thousand gulls,
a heaving trainstation left behind,
out in country villages - sirens carried on the wind

She's locked in her room, can hear the frantic panting,
pedals outside the door,
and she fights the urge to itch, till a peace descends,
gazes out the window, wasteland brown and grey

a car approaches, we see a calm determined driver,
she sees him too and sits again on the white chair,
facing into the dresser, wants to climb into the mirror world -
looks quieter, warmer, safer than her own.

His car glides into the yard but when he steps out
he finds a hundred of them watching his every move,
little mice with tiny white gloved pointing paws

she brushes her hair upstairs, her hair floats feathery
straight as blades in cool, bright light.

he doesn't move until the head mouse does, and
taking his cue proceeds through the scrambled clean path,
they mooch and move, split and reassemble,
leading him inwards, inwards, rearranging, running, pushing him, hurrying him
before it's too late,
he sees the rest of the family, all are frozen in fear of him, and what he might or mightn't say
hearts beat loud in all their chests,
the mice run on,
a clatter and she gets up,
opens her bedroom door,
starts to descend,
the kids are quiet,
mice fade into dust, figments that they are,
and he
asks
"Could I please see your television license?"

16 comments:

Wigeon said...

Hi Niamh, yet another subject for this challenge! You too have gulls as have two others that I've read so far and I'm thinking why gulls?

I do like:
her hair floats feathery
straight as blades in cool, bright light.

Titus said...

Ooh, Niamh, this was like a nightmare fairytale. The central section,

he finds a hundred of them watching his every move,
little mice with tiny white gloved pointing paws

she brushes her hair upstairs, her hair floats feathery
straight as blades in cool, bright light.

he doesn't move until the head mouse does, and
taking his cue proceeds through the scrambled clean path,

is stunning - I loved that bit!
The poem definitely took me into another world, and created such an atmosphere that I was really taken aback by the final line. Such a change in tone and expectation.

Incredible from the same piece of music I listened to!

Rachel Fox said...

I can't believe you got a joke in at the end! Veyr daring!

I like the mice...like a demented Nutcracker.

x

Rachel Fox said...

Cue crap spelling.
x

P Nolan said...

Great stuff - it's a thriller, very hitchcock (The Mice!) and has a punchline too! Feels like raw material to develop a few different things from? I particularly like the way the prompt is really used as a springboard for the imagination. Cool that!

Niamh B said...

Hi Wigeon - tks for the comment - gulls - just because they have that creepy screechy voice I guess - poor misunderstood maligned birds.
Thanks Titus, sorry if the last line jarred - TFE did say to put it all down there, unchanged - and I don't know... when the music faded away, and I realised it was all only made up... then this silly thought occured... and I just couldn't resist.
Thanks Rachel - the mice were kinda cute and helpful weren't they? I got their white gloves from the cursor in the middle of the player.
Thanks a mill P - that's the joy of these exercises isn't it? you never know where you'll end up...

willow said...

Fabulous last line.

NanU said...

Now that's what I need. A good non sequitur every single day.

Thank you!

swiss said...

i rahter like this. it's a bit bonkers but that i like along woth the weird ass dreamy/psychotic episode quality. nice one!

Jeanne Iris said...

Hi Niamh,

I love the eerie story here.

The sense of longing to be somewhere else are in my favorite lines:

"she sees him too and sits again on the white chair,
facing into the dresser, wants to climb into the mirror world -
looks quieter, warmer, safer than her own."

Totalfeckineejit said...

This is good Niamh and the seagulls (again!) and the tense hitchcockiness reled me in all the way to the side swipe at the end.Very funny!Like you say ye never know where ye are going and that's the whole point.bravo! et tankgsxz ye!

Niamh B said...

Tks Willow - glad you enjoyed it.
Yes NanU - you'll find one here most days.
Tks Swiss - glad you liked, weird assness and all.
Tks Jeanne - yeah - faraway hills are always greener aren't they?
Tks eejit - only for ya, and the wonderful democratically elected driver!

Karen said...

This music took all of us somewhere strange, didn't it? I love the mice and her detached actions while suspense builds downstairs. This is very visual. Great last line.

Niamh B said...

Tks a mill Karen - think I did find the music very visually stimulating - was watching a little film in my head as it went on.

Dominic Rivron said...

I like swiss' choice of words: a bit bonkers - but wonderfully so. Would make a good short film script (with a Penderecki soundtrack), perhaps an advert for the TV Licensing people? :)

Niamh B said...

Thanks Dominic - think to be fair - the inspiration for the last line probably came from the TV license ads in the first place, so they would of course have the right to use this... Wouldn't it be funny? No? Just me? ah well - their other ads aren't that funny anyway...