thread in the darkness.

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A thread in the darkness, silken, reflective,

Glowing in the stillness and silence of the night that had engulfed his world.

He reached out. It did not quail.

Spider silk strong, it responded to his touch as he wrapped his hand around it.

Tensile strength lifted him, souring from the darkness to a world of light and song.

He looked into eyes pure and true. Love reflected,

The tiny thread that rescued him sprang from those eyes.

He took her hand, delicate, frail, yet strong as the web she had wove round his heart.

“Don’t ever leave me,” he whispered.

Alone.

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(From September 2014)

Song Bird Songs

miner

Darkness enshrouded him. Gasping for breath he looked around seeing little in the enshrouding dust of the cave in. The glimmering light on his helmet did little to reassure, catching glimpses of crushed bodies, rock, smashed timbers, and pervading dust.
Heart pounding, he tentatively flexed each limb. Pain throbbed through one leg where a soft oozing spoke of blood, his arms ached but not past moving. He stumbled to his feet seeking a path out, his head spinning as the tiny circle of light focused again and again, scanning the rock where the tunnel had been. He was walled in!
“Don’t panic man! Don’t panic!” he told himself as his pulse raced, and mind swirled.
“There’ll be a rescue party. They’ll dig us out…” Grimly he checked the bodies, some mere hands protruding oddly from the debris, some half buried in reddened rock. He alone was spared, his “five minute…

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Frost.

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(flash fiction from August 2014

Song Bird Songs

frost 2

Frozen leaves crunched beneath her sneakers. She shifted the backpack spreading the weight. Behind the lights of “home” shone dimly through the darkness, a reminder of days, when summer dreams blossomed.
Now there was the road. She never stayed long, it always ended this way. Revving the motor gently, she steered the bike onto the road. She’d leave it in town with a note, he had the car. Bracing against the cold invading her heart she picked up speed, the wind in her hair, freedom! It was just how she was, commitment frightened her. She pictured his face when he woke to see her gone, the sleepy brown eyes and tousled hair. He’d been good to her she had no complaints… She’d just been here too long…
Rounding a corner into darkness she never saw the ice. The bike twisted careening into the ditch as she was thrown clear. Agony…

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How I was rescued.

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knight

It was an ordinary day; in fact it was raining inside and outside my beleaguered heart.

I don’t know what it was, the glowing eyes, the dazzling smile? Perhaps it had more to do with the idiocy of his giving out tracts in the centre of the crushing migration of London rush hour, but I stopped to exchange a few words.

He said he believed in Jesus; that also seemed a total contradiction, nothing staid, holy or religious about this guy, no suit, no short haircut, rather he seemed to be pulsating with life. We chatted and argued our way down the stairs wedged between unrelenting computers, through the ticket barrier (he also had a pass I noticed) and down the escalator. I was good at arguing, a cynic, agnostic, proud of my London veneer that set me above the tourists and visitors – I grew up here.

I couldn’t score over him though, he had something those other “faith peddlers” didn’t have, his faith went all the way down. My classic undefeatable questions (the kind that generally tore faith apart) were answered with childlike wisdom and sincerity – no cop outs here.

I turned to go several times, unwilling to concede an inch, but he wouldn’t give up, taking my hand upon occasion to detain me. He told me later he was arguing with God the whole time, he wanted to give up but God insisted he fight for me, that for all my “façade” I was a “sister” and in dire need of rescue (I was!). We stood upon the crowded platform, residents of a secret world all our own, as he battled against the forces of darkness that had pursued and overwhelmed me.

Then he looked right into my heart, past the masks and facades that I was so good at, and said…

“All your life you’ve been looking for perfect love and you’ve never found it – because it’s Jesus.” I was in shock, my most carefully hidden secret (of which I’d given no hint) how could he know? Not even my closest friends knew that. I had my act together. Later he said the words just pushed themselves out of his mouth and he himself was taken aback by them.

Now he really had my attention but the word “Jesus” put me off. I’d always detested Christianity with its smug hypocrisy, even as a child I’d seen through the sham of organised religion, I wanted something real, tangible, testable. It must be the guy I thought, I was drawn to him like a bird with a snake, hypnotized by those glowing eyes.

Slowly we retraced our steps seeking solitude, off the crowded station, up the escalator, back through the barrier, back into the rain. The crowds were thinning. How long had we sparred? No matter how I tried I couldn’t “box” him or outwit him, the more we talked the more I listened. Finally in a desperate attempt to control the situation I asked.

“Look who are you and what do you want of me?” (I’d already ruled out “chatting me up” and “conman”.) His answer again floored me.

“I’m a knight in shining armour come to rescue you!” He delivered it with the perfect cheeky smile and, Jesus aside, I was totally smitten.

The problem came next day when I’d arranged to meet him again, (breaking my own rule to never give my number to guys.) We met up with two of his friends. The same brilliant gleam was mirrored in their eyes, the same electric coursed through me at their touch. I began to understand, by the end of the evening I’d finally met “the love of my life” and yes, it was Jesus.

(Regards to “swamiyesudas” for encouraging me to share my story)

Finding the Way. (flash fiction)

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lost

Her calves ached from walking, perhaps this was far enough. Pleasant forest smells surrounded her. She sat silent for a moment, eyes closed, taking in sound and smell denied in her mad rush. Pain and turmoil quieted to the chorus of bird song, her burning face cooled by a gentle breeze. She’d wanted solitude and found it. Somewhere far behind a small red convertible was waiting at the side of the road. She’d trudged miles since then, blind unseeing miles.

Opening her eyes she took in the sunlight beaming through the trees, the shadows playing a pantomime of shades among the fallen leaves. She sighed wishing she never had to go back. Somewhere out there was her luxury apartment, spotlessly tidy, with all mod cons. somewhere … empty. She’d squandered her first thirty years in search of that apartment and matching red car. Now she cared for neither. The only person she’d ever really cared for was dead. She’d never taken time to form attachments in her sordid bid for success, but he’d always been there for her since her youngest memories, Uncle Tom.

Her own parents were rarely available, returning home exhausted by their constant struggle to put food on the table. It had been May, Tom’s wife who picked her up from school. Tom was a carpenter, he loved wood. She’d watch him in his workshop lovingly plaining and sanding. She stroked the rough wood of the log on which she sat as if in remembrance. He’d never been too busy to chat, to encourage, to love. Now he was gone like the drifting leaves at her feet.

He’d tried to talk with her of late but she’d been too busy to stop, to listen. Then suddenly he was gone. No texts, no messages, gone! Out here alone she could cry, among the trees, the wood…

*

The sun sloped low in the sky, she’d better head back, but there was no path! In her pain raked quest she’d taken no bearings. Quenching panic she reasoned. The sun would be her compass. She needed to head west to find the highway.                                                                          *

Shadows grew as darkness invaded her domain, without the sun she’d be lost. Like my life she thought dully Tom was my compass. She hated the idea of spending the night out here. Noises that had calmed and comforted alarmed. She glimpsed a shadow among the trees. What would someone be doing out here at night? Fear gripped, but it was too late, the shadow swung in her direction. Panic stricken she began to run.

“Stop lady!” a voice called out, “It’s just me, Pete. I’m the woodsman. Are you lost?” Heavy feet pounded towards her as she turned. The uniform was unmistakable.

“I’m sorry. I thought you were…”

“Some pervert! Yes, I know.” He pulled a torch from his belt shining it on his badge.

“So what are you doing out here on your own?”

“My uncle died. I miss him so much … I wanted to be alone … I…”

“Well you sure did that! You’re miles from the nearest road. Do you want me to help you get home?”

“Yes, I have a car on the highway, a red convertible.”

“I saw it, was wondering what it was doing there. Come on then I take you back, I have a jeep parked not too far away.”

“How did you come to become a woodsman?” she asked as they piled into the old jeep.

He laughed. “Used to work on Wall Street actually, but it got too much for me. I was turning into a nervous wreck!”

“I know what you mean exactly.” He paused turning the ignition.

“You came here to ease the pain?”

“Yes I … He was a carpenter, he loved wood.”

“So do I.”

31 day change day 4

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What are you afraid of?

Spiders . They have to top the list. I am a true arachnophobic (from birth). I’ve had to conquer my fears somewhat (especially living in the tropics for a long time) and can now shakily trap a small one between cup and paper and place it outside if no one’s nearby to rescue me, but in the case of the larger species my humanity goes out the window, emotion overcomes reason and they get totally pulverised with the nearest suitable object (usually till long after death has been achieved!)

I’ll happily play distressed maiden (not my usual role) to any guy who will rescue me from having to deal with these creatures (I even have an arrangement with my kind-hearted neighbour). Guys are great for that stuff, but they are not always around.

Spooky stuff. No horror movies for me!

Pitch black darkness especially together with confined spaces. Probably due to frequent nightmares as a kid when, being a very restless sleeper, I’d get trapped with my head at the foot of my bed under a bunch of tightly tucked blankets (no duvets back then) and panic.

Being embarrassed. Really should have gotten over this by now! I think the reason it’s persisted is because I still manage to blush beacon red in such circumstances (at least it feels that way to me probably no one else even notices).