The Poem.

The Poem.via Daily Prompt: Recite

The teacher made his rounds of the classroom as the boys studied and attended to the exercise he had given them. His anger and temper to the fore, as per usual. His sometimes formally normal thinking transformed into anger, paranoia, and victim thinking.  Looking for any, or just one of the boys to step out of line. Silently willing them to break his self imposed rules. Feeling quiet unwell, as a result of the nightly bottle of red wine, which many times had turned into two bottles. Looking forward to the mid morning break, for some badly needed hydration, and rest.

The alcohol helped him ignore, or in his mind deal with his failing marriage,and impending divorce. Life didn’t seem soo bad. Life didn’t seem that serious through the bottom of a wine glass. His throbbing head. Mouth as dry as could be. A sick, queasy feeling in his stomach. He was well used to such physical effects of his increasing alcohol consumption. Never welcomed, but the expected side effect of his over indulgence.

If he was not the coward that he was, he would have challenged a man of his own size and age to a physical altercation. But he was brooding for a row, and the children in his care would suffice. At the very least they would offer little opposition. Just the way he liked it. He walked around the classroom, with his hands behind his back. Peering over the shoulders of the boys as they attend to the exercise he had given them. Peering, but really looking and praying to find some boy stepping out of line. Looking for an adversary, a victim. Someone to unleash his anger on. Someone to castigate, embarrass and shame. Why not. If it would made him feel better as a man. Some small victory in life. In a life where he didn’t feel such a failure.
Much to his satisfaction, it did not take long, He knew from experience there was always one. There would always be one, among the class. The dreamer. The softly spoken. That gentle, innocent child.
He stopped behind the desk of the young blond boy. Whom he had immediately taken a strong dislike to, when he initially saw him in the class at the beginning of term. The boy he had singled out for special , non too pleasant treatment. The soft, innocent and attractive features, and a permanent slight anxiety and fear, evident his features. The perfect victim.
‘What’, he thundered, ‘is this ? ‘, as he held aloft the few lines of poetry the boy had written. His face red with anger, and delight.
‘What nonsense is this you have written, eh boy ?’
The young boy squirmed in his seat. Not wanting to be the centre of attention, as the whole class turned their attention to him.
The boy shock with fear. His face reddened. His breathing quickened. His legs shock. That sickly feeling arose in his stomach, and how he wished he was anywhere but here. In this place, at this time.

‘What are you ? Who are you ?’, the teacher said mockingly. ‘The next Keats or Shelly ?’
‘You think you can write poetry’, he roared. ‘Here ‘ he said, as he hurriedly scribbled some words on a blank sheet of paper. He handed the paper to the boy, and instructed him to stand at the top of the class and recite what was written on the paper.
The young blond haired boy, read the words at his desk, silently, and at the aggressive insistence of the teacher stood at the the front of the class, and began to read from the scribbled paper.

‘I am an idiot and a fool. Most of the times I actually drool
I have the talent of a newt
I am ugly and thick, to boot
I deserve to die, I tell no lie
I am sorry, for actually being alive
Will you forgive me, for being what I am
I am not, and can never be a proper man.

As he read out the words before him, standing in front of the class. The others boys listened, and then the laughter began. The boys laughed. The teacher laughed, as he insisted that the poem be recited over, and over. Having had enough, the young boy ran from the class. Tears streaming down his checks. But as he ran, the image, and words of his Grandfather, from beyond the grave, stood strong in his mind.
‘Do not allow people to make a fool of you. Be strong. Be kind, but take your revenge if necessary’. He ran past the school car park, and slowed down, as his tears subsided. The silent words and images of his Grandfather encouraging his strength and resolve. With the area near enough deserted, he reached into his pocket and retrieved the penknife his Grandfather had given him before he had passed away. The wooden carved handle, and the sharpened blade. Which he regularly sharpened , and kept pristine and clean. Looking about him, he slipped under the teachers white jeep. Easily recognizable. He began to cut the plastic, mastic covered tubes, and hose’s underneath the engine. Not knowing really what he was cutting. But the act of cutting and hopefully causing some damage to the car and teacher, more than satisfying. He began to snigger softly, underneath the engine. Then he began to laugh aloud. Picturing his Grandpa encouraging and praising his bravery and actions. Feeling and hearing his words and spirit.

Satisfied that he had done enough, He slid out from underneath the jeep, and moved to the edge of the car park. He watched from beneath the tree’s in the late afternoon sunshine as the arrogant teacher sat into the white jeep, started the engine and slowly drove away. He noted the trail of dripping liquid following the jeep, as it exited the school and onto the highway, and he smiled.

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Symphony.

via Daily Prompt: Symphony

Dressed in the long black dress he had bought her. Her make up, perfect. A sight to behold. She sat in the wooden built orchestra pit, in the semi darkness. Built of light coloured plywood, to produce the best acoustic sounds. Tuning up her instrument like the other musicians around her. She plucked at the strings in a brutal, rough manner. One did not have to be a psychiatrist, a therapist to see her anger. Her frustration.
The audience began to take their seats in the large concert hall, under the bright lights, chatting among themselves. Among the favoured, special guests. The executives, and producers from the record companies, took their seats high up in the ‘Gods’, as befitting their position. She looked around the orchestra pit at her fellow musicians. The men dressed in their black tuxedos. Women dressed in all the finery. Some relaxed and laughed as they chatted. Others staring silently, and intently into space. Their eyes focused and unblinking. Their features, serious. Concentrating deeply on the forthcoming concert, and their part in the proceedings.
Well aware of the importance of the performance. Of the introduction of the new composition. So many wished him well, and all the success in the world. He was well liked by the members of the orchestra. With his easy going manner, and a quick smile. With a tendency to look on the brighter side of life. The audience and orchestra members awaited his entrance.
She did not even try to hide her anger and distress. Her glaring, reddened eyes. Her glowering, contorted features. Enough to discourage the other musicians from catching her gaze. He entered the auditorium and near enough sprinted to the podium. Such was his nervous energy, and adrenaline. His small wiry frame, topped by a mop of brown curly hair. Light perspiration forming on his forehead. His heart beating fast, and his legs shaking slightly. As ever his face brightened by that glittering smile. The audience applauded. The orchestra members smiled and tapped their instruments, in an acknowledgement of, and admiration for his prowess as an orchestra leader, a conductor. He stepped to the conductor’s podium, turned to face the audience, smiled and bowed. The audience applauded and cheered. Everyone knew the importance of this evening’s performance. Then he turned to face the orchestra members, and in a sweeping hand gesture acknowledged their enormous talent as musicians.

She watched him intently from behind her cello. Hoping to see some sign of guilt. Some admission of wrong doing. But nothing. He resolutely refused to catch her eye. No  sign of remorse, nor sorrow. Just that wide, bright smile. After all those times they had spent together in each other’s arms. The promises he made. The plans they had made together for the future. If only the others knew what he was truly like. Did he really think he could use her, and then just drop her like that ?

She had to replay the conversation one more time, while it was still so fresh in her mind.
‘To be blunt Emily, I’ve had enough, and just fancy a change. I wish to move on ‘, said in such a calm, matter of fact manner.
‘What am I, a damn product, that you can pick up when you fancy, and drop when it suits you ? ‘ she screamed at him.
‘No, it’s not like that’, he lied. ‘It’s just time for a change’. Hoping she’d remain reasonably calm, and not create a scene. ‘We’ve had our fun, our good times, and now it’s over. Why can’t you take this like the mature woman I know you are, and just accept it ? ‘

Did she mean so little to him ? Did their relationship, mean so little to him ?  She who had opened her heart to him. She who had shared her vulnerabilities with. She who had allowed him into her life, her soul. She who had fallen so in love with him.

‘I have this performance this evening,’ he continued, ‘ and you know how it important it is. How much depends on it. Can’t we just part as friends, and leave it at that ‘. With that he walked away from her dressing room, and out of her life.

She sat slumped in her dressing room chair, facing the large mirror. Physically unable to move. Her heart, physically feeling heavy. Her body weak. Feeling like she had being kicked hard in the chest, by the hind legs of a strong, wild, bucking horse. She sat like this alone for quiet some time. Wanting to shed some tears, but unable to do so. Wanting to scream, but embarrassed to do so. Wanting to smash the mirror that reflected back to her, the misery and unhappiness that now plagued her soul. But she could not summon the strength, to do so. Slowly , but surely, after quiet some time, she could feel her anger,and indignation rising within her. She was worth more than this. Deserved better than this. Her breathing becoming rapid. Her jaw beginning to jut, just that little bit. Her arms becoming tense. Her hands forming into tightly held fists. The butterflies stirring in her stomach. She imagined his body burning, engulfed by the red, yellow and blue raging flames. She could clearly see the fear, and terror in his eyes, and so enjoyed listening to his screams of agony, and his pleading for help. Which she joyfully ignored, before his body succumbed to the intense heat.

Feeling slightly better, and mentally stronger after her brief, violent daydream. She searched within her overcrowded handbag, until she found the small plastic package. Revenge was going to taste so sweet, she assured herself. She knew he always had that large class of cold milk, just before any performance, to calm his nerves, and encourage his confidence. A strange, bizarre ritual. But he was after all, a strange,……. She did not need to even finish the sentence. She left her dressing room, after drying her tears, and reapplying her make up. Upon entering the green room, where the artists relaxed, before appearing on stage. She saw him in the corner of the room , holding court. Entertaining members of the orchestra, and some young girls from the public relations company, that he had recently engaged, to work on his behalf. Laughing and joking as if he had never uttered those, cruel devastating, uncaring words he had said to her.
She had used the inviting white powder herself, from time to time. when tiredness had overcome her. When her concentration was lacking. When she demanded  energy of herself. She maneuvered herself closer to the assembled crowd, who surrounded and were enthralled by him. When he attention was drawn by some other pretty young girl, among the group. She took her chance and scattered a small amount into his milk, and thinking back to his earlier words, she put in a touch more, and to finish, just a little more. She quickly stirred it with her finger, while everyone’s attention was else where. Then she moved away to the corner of the room, where she still had a view of the now ‘special’ drink.
She watched and waited, spurning the attention of the tall Italian man with his dark, handsome features, and silver tongue. She had other matters in mind. On the other side of the room, he still held court, with his adoring fans. Those who hung on his every word and utterance. She checked the watch on her tanned bare arm, willing him to drink the doctored liquid. She needed to see him ingest it, before she could feel some satisfaction. Minutes ticked by, towards the performance. Yet that special drink remained untouched on the table. His arrogant, overbearing laughter and voice filling the room, and turning her stomach at the same time.

‘Go on, you bastard, drink it, damn you’, she muttered under her breath.
‘Go on’, she whispered,’ drink it.
‘Drink it’, she said aloud. The nearby waiter, turned towards her, glaring for a moment.

But his attitude soon softened, and he smiled, when he saw her flawless skin. Her clean brown mousey hair, that tumbled over her shoulders. Her clear grey eyes, still showing a little of that sparkle that usually filled them.

‘Certainly Madam, I’ll see to you in just one moment’.

At the other side of the room, at last he picked up the glass. Again, urgently she silently ordered him to finish the damn drink. He looked at his watch, took a deep intake of breath, and swallowed the liquid in one fell swoop. He briefly winced at the unusually bitter taste, and stared at the glass he held in in his. The assistant called him, to make his way towards the stage. He replaced the glass on the table , and looked back at it, one more time. Dabbed his face with his handkerchief, and headed towards the auditorium. She followed shortly after, and took her place in the orchestra pit.
She watched as he joined the rest of the orchestra on stage. Glorifying in the adulation he received. Ignoring her, of course. She waited and watched. Willing the white power to take effect. Why was it taking so long ? Was it not pure enough ? Was it cut too much ? Finally a reaction, just a slight one. A brief uncharactistic shake of the leg. Barely visible, except to those attuned to it.
The applause died down, and silence descended on the hall. The house lights were lowered. The audience waited, the orchestra waited. Everyone waited . He waited, staring into space. The orchestra had practised well and knew the composition inside out. He waved his hand out to the left, and the strings began. He waved the baton to the right, and the trumpets, oboes and tubas began playing slowly and gently. The orchestra leader, smiled and nodded to him. He in return, faced away from the orchestra, and faced the audience. The orchestra leader, cleared his throat loudly to catch his attention. No luck, so he repeated it. Again no reaction. In her seat, playing the cello softly, Emily began to giggle to herself, quietly. The conductor swivelled round at speed, nearly falling over, and had to grab the rostrum to prevent himself from falling head first into the orchestera pit. Some in the audience stifled their own laughter. He briefly laughed aloud, at his own clumsiness. The orchestra leader glared at him, his eyes aflame with anger and bewilderment. The composition was being played at a slow, gentle pace, as befitted the required tempo.
The conductor began to move his arms more erratically, and at an increased speed and the orchestra followed his movements. The cacophony of sound and discordant notes emerging from the orchestra pit, were anything but the peaceful and melodious composition everyone was expecting. The orchestra leader, again cleared his throat loudly, and tapped his musical stand rapidily with his violin bow, but to no avail. The conductor was no longer of normal sound mind, as the illicit white powder began to take full effect on his body and mind.
Then when all seemed lost, he seemed to have regained his composure and skills as a conductor, and led the orchestra through the more complex stanzas. With that completed, his movements again became fast and erratic. The orchestra  followed his leadership, producing discordant, tuneless sounds. In her seat, Emily followed along, her face now brightening into a wide smile, as were her eyes. Her laughter barely contained within her shaking shoulders. So it continued, the unexpected acceleration of the composition, the sudden slowing down. The discordant notes, strange melodies not of this world. The conductors wide eyed staring engagement with the audience, followed by his dismissive attitude, and then a warm loving attitude toward members of the orchestra. His running around the orchestra pit, screaming. Then shouting. Then laughing, loudly. Tearing at his tuxedo. Catcalls and laughter began to emerge from the stalls, as this farce unfolded onstage. Some left the theatre in frustration. Emily glanced high up into the theatre, where the executives, and producers from the record company were seen leaving their private box early, shaking their heads in bewilderment, and laughter.
Quite soon after, stage management wary of their good reputation, brought the curtain down, and as the house emptied, led the frazzled, bewildered and out of control conductor off stage.
Revenge was indeed sweet.

 

Tea.

via Daily Prompt: Tea

‘You’ll have had your tea’ ,  her broad strong Scottish accent breaking the silence. She sat
opposite him. His smile visible the other side of the large candelabra that stood on the centre of the large table.
She reached over and placed the cooked dinner before him. It was of course a waste of time. She began to eat her own dinner, savouring its taste, while continuing the conversation. Whatever she said, his expression never changed from that smile. The effects of the concoction she had laced his earlier meal now fully enshrined within his body. His features, his muscles frozen, and paralyzed. Only his eyes, breathing and hearing were now functioning.

‘Would you like some desert ? ‘, ‘What’s that you say’, taking his part of the conversation, ‘Ok then dear, nothing it is’. The dinner plate in front of him remained untouched.
His eyes searched hers for something, anything. Some reason, any reason. some explanation for this cruel imprisonment of his mind and soul within a immovable physical body.
She stopped eating for a brief moment and saw the questioning, and pleading in his eyes.
‘I can see you have questions, dear’, studying his eyes, which were wild, angry and fearful all at once.
‘A little explanation, no doubt is what you’d like’. His grotesque, continual smiling face, absurd in the obscene, and quiet comical at the same time, bearing in mind his predicament. She stifled a smile of her own, at the vision that sat before her.

‘Well if you must know, dear. Its men like you who use women like me, to satisfy there own selfish desires, with scant regard for their wives, or long term loving partners. It’s men like you who sicken me to the core, and the truth be told dear, I’ve had enough of it. I’ve had enough of the lot of you. The men who lie, deceive, cheat on their wives and love partners. I’m sick of the dirty, sleezy men I’ve had to deal with over the years, pretending like I am actually enjoy the physical act. Pretending that I enjoy their company. Nothing could be further from the truth. I’m finished with the game, I’m getting out,’ she continued. ‘This will be my my final swan song’. With that she treated herself to another morsel of food, followed by a well deserved sip of red wine.
She reached into her handbag, that lay by her feet, and retrieved a small silver antique bottle, and placed it on the table a few centimetres from his hand.
‘In this bottle, is the antidote, that will unlock your body. All you have to do, is reach forward and drink it, and all will be well. She smiled as she looked into his fearful eyes.
‘From when I leave this table you will have twenty minutes before the leaking gas will be ignited, and then, well……’ With that she got up from the table, and left the room, stopping at the door, to glance one more time, at his fearful, pleading eyes, and listen to his increasingly frantic breathing. She noted the beads of perspiration of his forehead.

She moved upstairs to another of her gentleman callers, who she last left lying on the large double bed, under the silk eiderdown. His face contorted in anger. Again she explained the situation, as she had to her gentleman caller in the dining area. She reached into her handbag a second time, and retrieved another small silver antique bottle, explaining it was the antidote that would unfreeze his body, and placed tantalizingly well within his reach. She further explained the impending explosion and fireball possibly likely to follow within the next twenty minutes. Again, his expression remained unchanged. She paused just briefly at the door, to glance at his angry, hate filled eyes.
Finally she returned to the basement dungeon. It’s dark, wet red and black walls, and red candles contributing to a very foreboding atmosphere. The various implements that lined the cold brick walls, the tools of her trade. She approached him, where he hung on the cross. His face, his eyes, expressionless. No pleading, no fear, no anger. Just nothing. Rather a submissive acceptance of his fate. Again she explained, reached into her handbag and placed another silver antique  bottle containing the antidote, just within reach of his hand. She stopped at the arched doorway of the cellar, and took one last glance at him, and looked to the bench where he undressed, and had laid his black suit and clerical collar, and rosary beads.
Her work concluded, she left the house for the final time and drove into the windswept, wet night and to freedom.

The Watcher….

Coffe shop

He watched them through the coffee shop window. Envy and anger carousing through his veins. Not even trying to hide his anger. It was more than evident through his piercing hate filled eyes,the tightly held hands. Perhaps he should not have followed,but he had to know. For his own satisfaction.
                          The passing traffic all a blur,as he watched them intently. The more they laughed together the more the chemical concoction in his stomach began to engage. The butterflies released,the rapid,gruff shallow breathing. The heartbeat growing quicker,harder,louder in his chest. The more they moved physically closer together,the more he wanted to run from his viewing position,and attack them violently. His jaw beginning to clench tightly. The waitress behind the counter eyed him with fear,from her position. She knew from experience when to steer clear of customers and when to approach. She decided to wait until he was gone,to clear tables in that area of the shop.

                           He glanced down at the most recent tattoo on his forearm,what a waste was his conclusion. ’Together Forever’,there two names enshrined inside a heart,shot through with an arrow. I don’t think so.Perhaps another tattoo may appear soon,how about ,’Dead Soon’,or ‘Betrayed and Devastated’,and an open coffin,and a knife dripping with blood. Yeah,that would seem so much more suitable,and honest. The piped music of the coffee shop,barely breaking his consciousness today. The banging and clanking of other customers cups,and plates,there inane chatter,hardly irritating him today,as they usually would have done. His mind was in a calculating revengeful mode. Inflicting human pain on another was where his mind was at. Psychological,physical pain. The desire to scar,to burn,to injure another. The way he was burning,and scared,wounded from the betrayal,and treachery unfolding before him.

                         Loyalty,honesty,being open. How they had spoken,and agreed of the importance of these characteristics in a lover. He was so happy to have found another who shared his beliefs and values. This was his first time being with another man. He had tried long and hard to hide  his true sexuality from himself,with alcohol,illicit drugs,one night stands with willing,drunken loose women. But they meant little to him,although he had become fond of some of these women,but deep down,he knew what he was.
               He had given his heart,his soul,and it was taken greedily by that older and much more experienced man,he of the religious order. The man he had turned to for spiritual guidance to sooth his troubled mind. Trying to understand his thoughts,feelings,the strange sexual desires he had fantasied about,in the privacy of his own mind. In the darkness of the night,which had at times sickened and disgusted him. He had turned to the Church,where else would a good Catholic boy turn to. Suicide was off the agenda. He wanted revenge,to hurt,to destroy another. He briefly considered embarking on an affair of his own,but concluded that his partner,now soon to be ex partner,seemed too hardened and callous to be affected to much degree by such an action.

                                                           He considered reporting the priest to the religious hierarchy,or to the Police. He was,after all still considered a child in the eyes of the law. Or to the newspapers. But events such as these were no longer the scandalous incidents they once were. He was aware at times how dismissive,and disbelieving the Police were of such events. How uncaring,and disinterested that God’s,so called representatives on earth could be.
      He reached into his pocket searching for them. Relieved to find he still had them,he rubbed the plastic packet containing the small white tablets between his fingers. So glad now he had not disposed of them. At least they would not be wasted. He would watch with pleasure and interest as they took effect on his partner later that evening. That non smoking,teetotaler,that fitness freak.
                       When his mind and body had being overtaken by the effects of the illicit tablets,well he was  anybody’s really.  To do with as they wished……….

 

Written in response to a photo prompt seen here : http://creativewriting.ie/writing-prompts/