If I Were Lonely

Weekly Writing Challenge: Build Your Own

Loneliness is an interesting feeling. It can come and go, but does it truly ever leave you. It clings, wraps it’s cold arms around you and never lets go but perhaps it is wanted. Perhaps we want to feel lonely, isolated, blocked off from the world in which we inhabit.

I’m strolling through these big city streets, the tall towering buildings as they stand above me as if judging my every move. I pass through the people, stepping side to side, we’re dancing. Moving in between. How do I feel alone? How could I ever feel alone in a place surrounded by people, by life. But I do.

I pass them and they don’t notice. They don’t notice my existence, nor their own. Nobody notices each other in these big world’s yet they’re crammed with people to the very brim, squeezing everything they can in. It’s so busy, so full of life that the very life itself pushes against the walls of the towers.

I wonder what I’m doing here, much more suited to a field filled with dreams and outstretching lands but that, that only belongs in a dream where the world has no ends. I open my eyes again. No change. Here I am wandering carelessly through this jungle of people. I stop and I wonder. I wonder on what would life be like if I were lonely?

Cold Water (A Polaroid Short Story)

I’m floating. My face bobs above the threshold of the bath water. Its starting to go cold but its a place to think. I close my eyes.

I’m back in the studio, with Sarah. We’re doing a fashion shoot for a uni project of hers and as always she’s made these spectacular dresses. Blue silk which flow to the floor brushing the ground in a sway as it moves. Small emblems embroiled onto the hip area to form a beautiful gem belt. Its really something. She can make such a work of art.

I dip my head further down into the water. The sound of the TV in the other room just drowns out instantly. Now its just me and my thoughts. Me and my memories.

The sun is creeping closer to its edge. Its burning out in its orange flaming glow and casting streaks of red across the sky. I’m at my favourite place to gather my thoughts. The cliff just beside the beach were the waves would crash below my feet and the sun sets on the far outer edge of the ocean. It was so peaceful and quiet here. It got me away from everything.

I feel a chill shudder through me, then a noise from the other room. I lift my head out the water slightly but nothings there. She’s not there.

 

The above is an elaborated extract from a screenplay I wrote and recently directed. The film is currently in production and shall be released via Vimeo and the ‘Polaroid’ website (currently being made) in the coming months.

The Polaroids

Weekly Writing Challenge: Object

Kate sits on her bed. The room is small with a crack in the curtain letting a beautiful golden stream of light through. The duvet on the bed is in a mess align with clothes crumpled up on the floor, various bottles of alcohol all of which are empty and different photos documenting travels. She’s sitting there wearing a baggy jumper, jeans and a pair of worn out trainers next to her. She leans forward holding her head and rubbing her face.

A whisper, a faint eerie noise from the corridor has been heard from Kate as her head shoots up in surprise but nobodies there. She shuffles over to the bedroom door with it being half open. She sticks her head out, looking side to side, nothing.

Sitting back down Kate takes a deep breath. She reaches into her bedroom draw finding a small stack of polaroid photos. Also in the draw is a small bottle of vodka, half open and resting next to the polaroid. Kate reaches for the polaroids, pausing for a second then reaching for the bottle as well. 

She begins flicking through the photos one by one all are slightly faded. Kate smiles as she sees the pictures of London followed by pictures from Paris. The Eiffel Tower standing tall in the background followed by a mx of close up disorientated images then a beautiful picture of the water in Venice. The last few photos are of New York with a young woman, a similar age to Kate. The first is against the backdrop of Times Square with ‘Best friends’ scribbled in the bottom of the polaroid. Kate smiles but unscrews the bottle and starts drinking the vodka in sips. She flicks through more images which seem like a trail through New York through the streets to Central Park then to the Statue of Liberty and Manhattan ending in the Brooklyn Bridge. The final few polaroids are a new years party with ‘NYE 2009’ scrawled on the bottom. Kate is now taking big swigs of the vodka. She drops all the polaroid on the floor with the last one landing right in front of her. 

Kate leans forward holding her head with the bottle still in hand. She leans back then lies down on the bed drinking the vodka. She hears the whisper again from the corridor. 

 

 

The above is an elaborated extract from a screenplay I wrote and recently directed. I’m extremely excited to be working on this and might put the full script/story online at some point or more elaborated extracts. The film is currently in production and shall be released via Vimeo and the ‘Polaroid’ website (currently being made) in the coming months.

The New Year From A Balcony

Weekly Writing Challenge: Leave Your Shoes at the Door

 

Tick, tick, tick. I’m at this party, drink in hand, lean against the wall minding my own business. I don’t know you and I don’t wanna know you. I stand silently watching everyone as they stand idly chatting to one another waiting for that big zero. Yeah it’s new year and we’re all just passing the time till the countdown. That moment everyone shouts “10, 9, 8” Jesus. Give it a brake. Imagine something drastic happening at zero. Boom. A scene is caused.

People pass me by. A girl. Must be mid 20’s just looks me from the bottom to the top, not in a nice way. Yeah I’m wearing some tatty shoes I pulled from the cupboard from 4 years ago. Yes I’m wearing jeans. Yes I’m wearing double denim. Boom, boom the music plays out. The DJ scratches again. Hip-hop banging. Why’s it always hip-hop? Why do we never have some folk music playing whilst everyone does an Irish jig?

It’s an ugly apartment complex. Down 7th Avenue in West Village. New York city. It’s an alright location but just the apartment. Ugly walls, paintings and photos decorating the wall but it’s all displayed like a museum. “You can look but don’t touch” is what I imagine you could read under every image. A couple stand there staring at the artwork pretending to know what it’s all about “Yes the way the strokes of the brush are, have created an impressionists view of what the world really means” is what I imagine they’re saying. The view of the world. What does it really mean? I can never really tell what it’s all about until that final moment. That final moment of realisation.

Here comes another guy again. “Hey I was just over there and our eyes kinda caught like some….” he says but I just cut him off with a slurp of my drink “I’m waiting for a friend. SO if you don’t mind” I nudge him away. I’m not waiting for a friend. I’m not here with anyone.

There goes the host of the party, I think. Can’t be sure. All I know is she seems to have more knowledge on the ‘fine artwork’ than everybody else does that and she looks like she could stand against the apartment walls and just blend in. She’s ushering the couple onto another piece. A photograph. It’s a black and white one. Attracts the eyes with its contrast of the world. Typical New York setting. Some big buildings with the Brooklyn Bridge to the left. “So heres the typical photograph of the Brooklyn Bridge. Nothing really new here but I like the way it makes you contemplate what life is actually all about and why we’re here.” Is what I imagine her saying to the couple. It’s not. It’s a photo of a well known bridge in New York. Theres no special meaning to it.

The countdown. A firework in the distance. Explosion. A bit early I guess. NINE, they all scream. EIGHT, they get louder. I drown it out. Walking over to the balcony to get a less bland view instead of some obscure inside apartment building of what a boring persons mind must be trying to fight the interesting. I stare at the balcony then the New York skyline. FIVE, it catches my ears again. I stand on the balcony rails. FOUR, they’re building this up now. BANG, BANG the fireworks in the background. THREE. Explosions, colour in the black sky. TWO. I close my eyes now letting the breeze, cold air take me. ONE. Nearly there. They all scream at once but I can’t hear them anymore. I just take a step forward into the abyss. Open the eyes, flashes of colours, screaming.

Theres no special meaning because sometimes life just doesn’t work like that.

The Number 26

The number 26.

It’s the 26th January, a Sunday. Nothing happens on a Sunday besides, well, actually nothing happens on a Sunday. It’s a cold winter morning. The streets are layered with a thick frosting of ice and snow like a white fluffy cloud which rests quietly, peacefully almost until we, the people, come trudging through. Our feet pull through the tranquility quilt covering the pavement roughing it up.

The 26th day. It’s 2014 and I stop to think, we’re 26 days into this year already. Where does the time go? It flashes past like that moment you wait for a train and it zips past as the gust of air pushes you back ever so slightly. Those 26 days, gone, fluttered away. I’ll never get them back.

It’s 4.26pm as I’m sitting waiting for my train, it’s late of course. When has a train ever turned up on time? Always early or late. Here it is, 4.29pm as it pulls into the station with a squeal.I clamber on board as the snow weighs me down, no your not leaving, the snow clearly thinks. On the train as the doors close, myself and the snow part ways with a cold goodbye.

It’s not even busy. I look at the clock on the train, 4.26pm. Of course it is. When has a clock on the train ever been right either. Is any time in the world right? What if all the clocks where wrong and secretly it’s just a few minutes ahead or a few minutes behind? The remains of the particles of snow rest on my boots. Quickly melting into a puddle beneath me, screaming like the wicked witch of the west, I’m melting, they shout, I’m melting.

I gaze around the train, everyone’s sitting, notebooks, newspapers, books all in hand. One man next to me reading The Great Gatsby, page 26 in fact. It’s an old edition with the pages torn and curled in the corners. This books been through a history itself. I catch the faint words at the bottom of the page “I was on the two little seats facing each other that are always the last ones left on the train.” Ah I see. It’s the story of how Myrtle met Tom.

I pull my notebook out and open to the last page. Pen in hand I’m ready to write a story about the 26th January. My thoughts gather on the day as I scribble out 26th January at the top of the page.

My first line: The number 26. Then suddenly the train halts and the lights go out. Trains. Absolutely useless.

 

Daily Prompt – Your Days Are Numbered

Shiny Screens (A Short Lunch: Day 3)

Weekly Writing Challenge: Lunch Posts

 

A mid-week lunch, somewhere different. Everything is very quiet here. It’s a strange atmosphere as I sit in the empty spot besides the window to get a good view of the street ahead. The people passing by.

The atmosphere. Unusual but feels accepted by all. Everyone, shiny screens in front of them, big, small. Those black mirrors reflecting themselves. Fingers punch away at non existing buttons replying to someone on the other end, is there anyone there?

I sit gazing at them all. Families, relationships, friends, silence. All ignore each other for their little devices.

Back of The Bus

Weekly Writing Challenge: Three Ways to Go Gonzo

I’m at the back of the bus.

Everyday I’d sit. Sit at the back of the bus. I’d walk past all those kids, Marco, Sarah, Tony, even that kid who had an eye patch on all the time, nobody knew why. It didn’t matter to me but I moved past them. To the back. It was only ever me back here. The full stretch of the back seats all to myself, sounds good doesn’t it. It’s not. It’s lonely. Everyone making fun of you. Nobody wanting to speak to you. Lonely as hell. But it was my hell.

I was the quiet kid. That guy nobody wanted to speak to and nobody wanted to be friends with. That all changed when I saw you. You came on the bus that day with your smile, oh that happiness. You just filled the room with it. You had that little cassette player like it was still the 80’s when you bounced on the bus like someone from the brat pack. I liked it. I liked you. It was then. That moment. You walked down the aisle past all the other kids. Ignored them all even though there where seats free. You looked at me. I was too busy being bug eyed out the window by some crazy old guy dancing around but I eventually looked back at you. We smiled. I didn’t often smile. Family gatherings, celebrations but thats it.

Then. Then you spoke to me. “Is this seat taken?” I was dozed out in shock. My head was spinning. Nobody comes to the back of the bus? Nobody but Barry Collins sits at the back of the bus is what the other kids would tease me. You clicked. Kept clicking your fingers in front of my face. I snapped. Realised I’d drifted off. Pinch me. Am I dreaming? Someones at the back of the bus. Best call the bus police cause Barry Collins is the only one back there. I smile at you then move my books. You sit down and just stare. Why’s this pretty girl staring at me? Did I do something to her?

“Whats your name?” I remember you saying like some sweet melody. Your voice. Angelesc. “Barry Collins” Thats all I say, can say, will say. My tongues tied. I looked at my feet. Stuck to the ground by some kids 6 week old gum. Funny. You always look at your feet when in an awkward situation. “I’m new.” Theres the angels voice again. I finally turn, look you dead in the eye and open my mouth. Oh wait no words. Like I’m some broken robot which can’t speak. “You’re a funny one aren’t you.” I laugh, you laugh. I smile and the bus pulls to a stop. Everything turns in chaos. It’s world war III on the bus, everybody get off, every kid for themselves. You’ve gone now. I’m there alone on the bus, at the back as panic ensues, we’ve came to a halt everybody get off.

Next morning. Here you come. Blonde hair blowing on the bus. Wait there isn’t any wind on the bus? Oh that’s right I’m imagining that part. Wait. Whats this. Your coming to the back of the bus again? One day ok. Two days, whats going on? “It’s me again” I just look, smile, nod, the usual. “Do you have a name?” I’m looking at my feet again. I haven’t got words to use. “I’m going to call you shoes.” I just laugh. I get called a lot of names but not shoes. “It’s because you’re always staring at your shoes.” I laugh again. Whats going on? I look at you. Those bright blue eyes. “I like shoes.” What was that? Did I just speak? “Oh it can talk” you laugh, I laugh.

Three weeks. Amazing. Three weeks at the back of the bus. That Monday through Friday was a breeze. Every morning I had something to look forward to. That bus journey, at the back of the bus. We’d sit laughing, smiling the whole journey there. All the other kids would still make fun of Barry Collins at the back of the bus but it just went past me. I wish we could have been on the bus forever stuck in that moment.

Three weeks was that point. I got on. Went to the back. Smiled. It freaked the other kids out. “Look Barry Collins is smiling. What a loser.” “He’s a freak. His smile makes him look like a psychopath.” I ignored them. That was the point. You got on. Smiling and laughing as usual. Wait something’s not right. Something’s wrong with this picture. You’re with two girls. Betty Patternson who pushed me in the grass that one time and everyone laughed. Who’s the other? Oh thats right. Julie something. Italian heritage so her names weird. Never really spoke to her. Can’t understand what she’s saying. All the other boys like her though. Why’s she with them? I ignore it. Bus ride alone today. Maybe she just forgot but she’ll remember tomorrow.

Tomorrow. It happens again. You’re laughing while I’m way back here alone. It never bothered me before until you came along. The weeks pass by. Slowly and nothings changed. I’m still alone. Back here. It’s years later and we never spoke again. Now I’m still lonely and always remember that moment. The moment we met. That first time. You’d think I’d of grown up, made something of myself, changed my life. Heck you’d think. Nah. I’m still that little kid inside trapped on the back seats of that bus.