I WISH IT COULD BE SUMMER EVERY DAY

// A short poem

I wish it could be summer every day,
turn off our alarm clocks and forget
dates, statistics, quotes from books

I wish it could be summer every day,
taking long walks with flip flops on,
greeting fellow dog walkers

I wish it could be summer every day,
sunshine peeking out, warm and yellow
leaning on your shoulders

I wish it could be summer every day,
time precious and tasty in your palms
where laziness is no sin

I wish it could be summer every day.

z6.jpg

// My thoughts 24/05/16

Today I spent most of the morning reading ‘Me Before You’ in bed. Around 11, I got up and showered before posting a letter, buying some ‘Honey Beam‘ paint and spending an hour at the park with my dog.

This time last year, on my first day of ‘summer’, I did a similar thing.

I noticed that I was able to notice things today. I didn’t walk around the park preoccupied with 20th century literature, exams, and other plans. I didn’t have to think.

Although people complain at the long summers students get, I need this. For the last 9 months I’ve been so consumed by uni work. I had a weekend (literally two days) between first and second semester. That wasn’t even long enough to digest the things I learned in first semester and make room for the three new classes I had to take.

I’m not going to feel guilty about my time off this summer, even if I stay in bed until eleven reading contemporary fiction, stay up late watching movies, spending afternoons walking aimlessly around the park. I need this mind rest.

zz6.jpg

// Flash Fiction

zz8.jpg

Julia’s birthday party was in the park. They’d hired a clown, bought ice cream for all the children and made goodie bags for everyone to take home. The girls wore shiny black Mary Jane’s under their knee length Sunday dresses. The boys had on their best plimsolls and had their shirts done up to the top button. Everyone was having a great time. The clown made animal balloons, the ice cream melted onto their knuckles and they swapped plastic sunglasses and bubbles from the party bags. But Julia stood in the middle of the party, the kids barely noticing her.

“Mum,” she said, tugging on her mother’s sleeve. “I want to go home now.”

Julia’s mother was one of those mothers that had a permanent frown on their face. It had lived there so long that even when she smiled her forehead wrinkled. She looked down at little Julia and told her not to be silly.

Julia stood and watched the kids blow bubbles so big they floated into the sky until they became invisible. One of the boys had two lion shaped balloons that he was chasing a few of the girls with. Her grandparents were kneeling down in the grass taking photos of all the fun everyone was having.

Julia wondered what would happen if she just walked away. She looked from left to right to see if anyone was watching her. No one. She lifted her party dress above her knees and sprinted away from the party.

What felt like a few hours later, she went back to the place where the party was supposed to be, and all the kids had gone home. Her mother and grandparents were folding up the picnic blankets and paying the clown.

I’m back!” Julia said. There had a been a flame of fear instilled in her while she wandered through the forest pretending to be courageous.

“Oh, darling,” Julia’s mother said, pulling her arm. “Did you enjoy the party? I think everyone had a really great time.”

Julia’s little jaw dropped momentarily before she nodded and pretended that she had a wonderful time.

zz.jpg

He had a special day planned for her. She’d lost her job and he totalled the car so their bank accounts were quickly draining. They had to cancel their trip to Paris. He was going to propose to her in the ‘City of Love’. He’d bought a ring with an intricate silver diamond and a shiny band. Although they needed money and selling the ring would have covered a couple months of rent in their box apartment, he couldn’t bring himself to sell it.

He packed a picnic while she lay sleeping. He’d sourced some nice cheese, got a fresh loaf from the bakery, and bought some cheap wine from Tesco. Well, actually, his trip to Tesco turned out to be quite expensive; while he was shopping, he knocked over a fancy bottle of wine and had to pay for that as well. He was excited to tell Darla the story. He knew it would make her laugh.

When she woke up, she was in a good mood. The light was coming through the blinds in thin stripes. It was something she always liked to bask in. But he kindly asked her to get up because they had somewhere to be.

He drove as she hummed along to the radio in the seat next to him. He went slowly, secretly scared of driving since he’d crashed.

When they got to the park, Darla carried the blanket and he hauled the surprisingly heavy picnic basket to a secluded and shaded spot. The sun was rather warm today and Darla burnt easily, with her flaming ginger hair and freckles, so he hid her away from the fierce weather.

She sat, clueless, nibbling on the cheese. He had the ring in his pocket and it felt as heavy as a stone. He tried to make normal conversation but he forgot what he usually spoke about on a daily basis. Darla was eyeing him up. “Are you okay today, love?”

He nodded, sipping his wine. They were seated next to a little river that ran quietly through the forest. There was a fence on either side of it so excited dogs and children didn’t fall into it. Darla remembered Paris and pulled a padlock out from her bag.

“I thought we could use this today,” she held it in her palm. “I bought it so we could put it on the bridge on holiday but since we aren’t going anymore, I didn’t see any reason it wouldn’t mean anything here. At home.”

He couldn’t help but grin from ear to ear. “Should we sign it?”

She nodded and took a pen out of her bag, too. She was always organised but also spontaneous. She knew what she was planning but she never made it clear to anyone else therefore, he always found her wonderfully unpredictable.

They signed their initials on to the cold metal padlock and added a doodle of a love heart. Darla put it onto the fence and while she was facing away from him, he got behind her, pulled the ring from his pocket and got on one knee.

z3.jpg

Hannah found this old photo in the attic when she was packing up the house. She was moving to the city. She’d got a job in a big prestigious publishing house and although this was what she’d been working towards for seven years, she didn’t want to leave. She avoided change as much as possible since she was small. She felt comfortable living in the world that she knew. The thought of leaving her father alone and spending 8 hours a day with women in heels and men that chain drank cups of coffee frightened her. She was going to be an assistant editor and it was going to be great. But she was also going to be lonely and small and broke. She would have to get an Oyster card and make pack lunches and share a flat with four other people.

This photo triggered something in her and she tried to pocket the tears. She ran her thumb over her mother’s figure and swore at her. Her bitterness towards her mother had never extinguished. Even though she pretended.

Hannah was convinced she could remember that day in the park. It was one of the first days of warm weather and her mother had taken annual leave after much arguing with her husband. She had wanted to keep working, stay busy, get into a proper routine. She made her husband get up for the baby, stay at home and be a dad, cook meals. He said he loved it but it upset him when he couldn’t see his wife or share the excitement of having a baby with her. But then there was this day at the park and Hannah held both their hands at once and swung between them. She chased them around the grass and begged for ice cream in no more than four words because her vocabulary was still quite crippled.

When Hannah was barely starting school, her mother had packed her bags and told her daughter she was going on a long holiday. She promised to send postcards and write letters and bring back presents. Hannah sat on the windowsill every night waiting for her to return but she never did.

Hannah, now in the attic with the old sepia photo, folded it and put it in her back pocket. She didn’t know what she was going to do with it but surely, there was somewhere in London that it belonged.

//

Here are some more pictures of my small familiar adventure I went on today.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s