She read his paper.

I kicked the sand and looked at the sky. It was blue with orange clouds striped across it. The sun was a fiery ball that played half behind the hill, and the other half shooting brilliant orange rays across the hills and clouds.

I sat under an apple tree. They were small like apricots and had a sour juicy taste. That was all it would be though. Never sweet like many of its counter parts. Some people wonder if the tree was deformed. But it is out of the yard and so no one bothers with it one way or the other. But sometimes someone will come over and eat one of its fruits. There’s another tree in the back yard with lot’s of big sweet fruit and everyone comes to that tree and grabs themselves one several times a day and eats them relishing the bites.

1 hour ago: I had just printed out my paper. And then sat at the kitchen table. I looked it over and smiled, stroking the smooth black print under my fingertips. My grandma walked up and asked me what I had. “It’s a short story I just finished. I’m going to send it in to a writing contest.”

“Bring it here.” I carried the paper to her. She took it and walked into the livingroom and sat in a padded chair that frayed on the arms. She held her glasses over her eyes, squinting as she read. Her brows tightened as her lips moved. I followed her lips reading my story.

I stood hunched with my hands on my knees. I watched for approval or disapproval on her face, but there was nothing but concentration.

She stopped reading and repeated a sentence with her lips and again, wrinkling her nose. I tightened my face and wondered. But then she shook her head, shaking the sentence from her mind and continued. She read 15 minutes total until she read the final sentence and lay the paper on her lap. My legs had gone rigid by then. And I kicked them, shaking them out, until they no longer ached.

She put down her glasses and looked up to me. Her eyes were round globes that needed to be pushed a hairlash back into their sockets. “Thank you for showing this to me. You have a good start of a story. And I hope you continue to practice.” she said.

“Thank you.” I said. The warmth of success shined on me. I felt like jumping, maybe leaving my skin behind.

“But.” she said drawing the word out. I stopped my internal joy and my eyes rolled back to her.

“You have a long ways to go and when I say long I mean a long ways to go.” she said. My heart dropped way down somewhere, not sure if I could find it if I tried. I tried to maintain my eye-contact, but my eyes kept dropping down instead and I’d bring them back up to her and they’d drop again.

“Okay.” I said. My back hunched as I took the paper. I pinched it between my fingers. The paper had become covered in a slick green poison. I set it on the table. Then I snapped away from it, so its poison couldn’t get on me.

“I look forward to seeing other work in the future.” I nod okay. “And I wish you the best.” She smiles at me, her face turned up and her teeth showing. As though all the grandma love could drown out what she had just said and kisses on elbows make cuts heal and the pain go away.

“Yes I will. Thank you.” She grabs a book from on a small coffee table next to her chair, and cracks it open to a page with a thin ribbon hanging from it and her eyes move back and forth over the page, reading.

I step out the back door.

Now:
I pick one of the small apples off the tree. I sit down looking at it. It is malformed, humped at one side and scrawny at the other. The scrawny side has a black hole in it as though some bug came in and sucked at it. Sucking all the symmetry and beauty out of it. I took a big bite of the undersized thing. A drop of juice rolled on my lip. Its sourness hits me and I want to spit it out. Its juice seems to be a misadvertisement as the liquid had a drying affect. I swallow and the liquid burns my throat. It rolls down in my stomach, the sourness seems to disturb my insides and I am having trouble keeping my stomach still.
I chuck the rest of the apple over the hill. Watch it bounce down the hill till it rests behind a rock. There it will shrivel and rot. I doubt any ants will go to it when there are better apples just a little ways further.

I stare at the last bits of light before the last ray get’s swallowed by the hill. The sky is still light, but then it will begin again its time of slow darkening. I walk back home as I know my mom doesn’t want me out after dark. And I walk into my bedroom and sit at my computer desk.

I think I ought to delete it, get it over with and never look back. My heart thuds in my eardrums. I realize at the chair I have nothing that anyone wants and I wipe away some tears and new ones come down.

But instead a wicked sour idea comes to me. I open up a new file and start typing. And I think, I may end up writing something that people want to devour on the page or something malformed and ugly that leaves people uncomfortable. I’ll write anyway. Because not everyone can be beautiful. This world is full of ugly, and so what if I’m no different.

 

 

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I wrote this to figure out how I handle others rejection.   Have you ever felt rejected for something and how did you deal with it?

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Found part 2

Aww a perfect romance. Someone who believes everything will work out.

Well okay. I guess I can try. Okay okay, come here, listen.
See that man over there. Yes him. Man is he something. She saw him a year ago, she was a hostess then. Ran about the room serving waters at a little Chinese place. Not the real Chinese food, but still delicious.
But she didn’t eat MSG then. Which was terribly sad on reflection. Okay. Okay. Getting distracted. But yes, he came in. He was in a group like he was hiding out in them. But he smiled and his blue eyes were so blue. That for the time they shared that look that was all of everything in her world. The whole world were the blue eyes, and there were endless oceans around them. Engulfing, encompassing.

And she was busy, the place was so busy. She couldn’t stop moving for a minute. She wanted to just stand there. Forever. And yeah she knew how stupid she would look but she didn’t care damnit! Because she loved him. She knew she did and that was perfect. BEing in love is perfect and people should just let love work out. Don’t make Romeo and Juliet have to die for it. Can’t you see how cruel that is??

And soon like a light, he flicked out, and was gone. His group ate and joked for a bit then paid and then with them he drifted out to the place that they had come from. And she wondered if he was gone forever. She obsessed a little wondering, but was also relieved. Because she could not handle that weight of knowing him, she knew that. But she had been affected still. The hull of the boat in her mind knew that that man was out there now. And she was going to see him again.

And next year… When she changed jobs handed in her form, came to the interview. The interview she would decline, the dull place, she was above cashiering now. She would do something worthwhile. It was starting with secretary. But that would be the beginning. And cashier is a big zero, get you no where occupation. She swam that raft way too long.

But then like no one’s business he was there. He handed the boss lady a paper, whispered in her ear. Didn’t even see me! she thought. And turned around and was gone.

He looked at her and smiled before. It was flirtatious and daring. And not just because everyone in general is nice. No that first smile was more then that.

Then she ended the interview. She would come in for training next week if she agreed to. That night she had gotten a call back from a company that wanted her as their secretary. And not just any place, but a personal business. How cool, over time she could get to learn the ins and outs of owning a business. But if she didn’t take the cashier job then she may not see him again. If she took the job she’d see him too much. Plus it was a nowhere job, and she had a chance at soemthing better now.

She took the job for cashier. Though she soon learned that man became her manager and all kinds of wrong started to go off in her head. That she was doomed.

“You Idiot!” She said to herself after she started to drive herself home. “This is not going to work. And yet what choice did I have really?” she thought. But still after she looked back on it years later, she would wish she hadn’t taken it. Somethings you should never have to experience no matter the lessons you learn from it.

exercise 14: the word is: AfterWorldly

AfterWorldly:

Dear Nina:

We are not close and you are probably wondering why I am writing to you.
I saw you laughing on the train, you had two friends with you and you seemed to be having a splendid time. Actually you do this everyday. And when you laugh you are beautiful and free like a wild pony.

And I am jealous of you. I am jealous that you can take this life and have fun with it.
But while your life is meaningful, mine is somewhat dreary. See I am an isolated type of girl. You’ve seen me pass the halls, never once looked at me. Like the cotton puff that trails off the trees comes down and you know they are floating in front of your face, but you don’t bother to look at because you are too busy playing with your Golden Retriever as she fetches a tennis ball. It hangs in her jaw and she gallops at you. You catch her in your arms. You don’t see the cotton in the air.

It’s okay. I don’t blame you or anyone else for this. There is some inoperatable law that makes our lives just so. I have come to accept this magical universal agreement, that I would not be well taken to and you would.

We share this train everyday though. And I see you. So we share this experience together. Actually if you think of it, there are many times our paths cross but not quite meet. It’s interesting to me how that works that people so different often come so close to each other’s worlds but never quite meet.

But I guess I am writing this because I don’t like fate, and the powers that be. I thought maybe for once I could mix things up, and next time I pass you down the hall, you will know it.
Jen~

 

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((((for our assignment I flipped to page 29 in the book Thus Spoke Zarathustra by Frederick Nietzsche, and found the world Afterworldly.   My writing didn’t quite go with the word.  I hope it’s close enough))))

assign 12 A dialogue between two men

I got behind and am doing yesterday’s today.  

The day was warm. But the sky was a mix of white and blue and the sun peaking from the cloud shot right into Dex’s face, causing his right temple to ache.
So where do you want you eat? says Dex.
Me? Well why don’t you choose? says Marty.
Nah, it’s your turn.
Okay…The Hungry Sombrero?
Are you serious?
Yeah. I thought so.
You know I’m watching my carbs.
You choose then.
The Pickly Shop has a great sandwich.
“Alright then I’m ready.” Dex’s right eyebrow goes up. He looks Marty up and down.
“Like that?”
“What is it?” Dex points at Marty’s shirt.
“That shirt has a big stain on it.”
“I don’t see anything.”
“There. Right there.”
“Oh. Okay fine I will go change. Anything else Dex? Want me to get you some flowers while I’m up there?”
“No just change and we’ll go.”

assignment 11, my home at 12.

We had moved a little while ago. I looked at the white walls and noticed little cracks near the point where the wall meets the ceiling. But everything here besides that was so empty and lifeless.
The home I had known my whole life was now thousands of miles away and a place I doubt I’d ever get to see again. During the entire two week drive I kept thinking what an adventure this would be, to get another chance with different people. But being here I just wanted to go home. To my garden, my room with too many creepy spiders that I wasn’t allowed to smash cause they ate the ‘bad’ bugs, the dark creaky tiles in my parents bedroom made to look like a kind of dark wood.
I know no one at this new school. Not that that was ever different. But the people think differently somehow. It feels that way anyway. And like other kids they play. But not me so much.
Not that I care that I have always been too old for my age. My unpopularity follows me soon enough, as they soon learn that the new kid is not a cool kid to incorporate. In that way the kids don’t change. I count the good things in my day and the bad on my fingers as I walk home. The trees are big and blossomy like huge leaf bouquets. Lots of oaks with the strange seed pods that spin as they hit the ground.
When I come home no one is there. My parents struggle with their business and I no longer have someone to complain to when school is not good.
I lay on my bed and stare up. The ceiling has some kind of poky texture and I think of putting my hand up there and feeling all the little pokes jabbing at my skin.

celebration

celebration:

The candles flickered and emitted a soft light on the otherwise dim room. There were six maybe seven candlesticks across the table with long white candles. Hot wax dripped down the candle leaving behind a hardening hill of wax down the sides. Liquid wax dripped on the maroon table cloth and dried into white slopes.

A large platter of turkey placed on the table. My uncle has been carving strips. Bowls of different vegetables that I had not seen together appear on the table. Peas, green beans, a large bowl of something bright and orange I would learn soon was yams coated in a caramel colored sauce. Family members started to sit in seats around the table, many I hadn’t seen for a year or more. Some were new faces, and yet in the candle light I could see the smiles etched, smiles that went deep.

Toni from the kitchen invites us to begin. Sounds of the voices talking back and forth together, excited to share some new thing. I scooped mashed potatoes, we passed the bowls down. I took the peas, the beans, I had someone help me with the turkey. I got a little of the light and some of the dark meat on my plate. There was a bowl with a jelly sliced in disks, I asked the person next to me, they said it was cranberry. I put a couple of those on my plate. Then a rich red liquid I’d come to know as wine was poured into wine glasses around the table. I got sparkling apple juice, which rolled around in the glass as it was being poured. We all raised our glass and toasted to our family.

Journal style

Fire in 2 story building, 4 apartments. Everyone made it out safely. Two are wounded and are being treated first and second degree burns at Mort’s Hospital. The fire fighters were on the scene within 10 minutes. They worked quickly on the fire and successly helped three people out who had been trapped in the building.

A boy is said to have left a candle lit and it caught the curtains on fire, which resulted in the fire. But unfortunately the firefighters could not save the building which has become a heap of rubble. There is a gathering of neighbors around it, who are wondering what has happened and what is going to happen to the people living there. One of the tenants was an elderly couple living on a limited social security check. Another is a single mom with a ten year old son and 2 month old baby, and two other families. Hopefully these people will get better soon and also to move on without too much loss after the destruction of their home.