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Quote of the Day :
L’humanité qui devrait avoir 6000 ans d’expérience, retombe en enfance à chaque génération. Tristan Bernard (French playwright and novelist, 1866-1947)
Man who should have accumulated 6000 years of experience, falls back into childhood at every new generation.
It’s time for another Write Edit Publish Challenge of 2020, writing on a word and picture prompt with the Insecure Writers’ Support Group.
If you’d like to know more about WEP and IWSG, or join the Challenge go here and here
IWSG in the 100 best blogging sites
The WEP site
The joint WEP-IWSG Challenge 2020
A third narrative poem to complete my trilogy
His long coat swishes across the macadam.
The gaslit streetlights throw the shadow
of a Stetson onto the lovers’ bench.
They gaze up and see the deep scar;
it forms a curve, a coma, like a tear
frozen at the corner of his eye.
His iris is contracted as if from an intense
glare. She gasps in surprise.
They scuttle off towards the cover of the trees;
he swooshes on his way, disappears
round a brick corner. A cat shrieks
from a trash can in a dead end.
A whore whistles a walk down the alley
and smiles absently at the tall, bizarre hat
and cloaked passerby. She recoils
on glimpsing his face.
The man approaches the unlit bank;
he leans against the stone wall
and lights a cigar, pulling
his watch from his pocket. He waits.
When Mr Hacklebaum locks the side-door,
the mysterious stranger steps closer.
As they brush shoulders, the man
swipes a blade across the banker’s throat.
The moon grins at the scene,
casts long shadows over the pavement,
the bench, the wood. The murderer
slunks into the night, coat flapping.
FCA 185 words.
Leaves tugged on slashing branches,
flew over the stones and settled on
her lace-up boots. She bowed her head,
a tear trickled down her nose, joined
the rivulets of rain cruising the crease
between cheek and mouth.
Burnt grass from August heat was bright
green, now, in the damp, cool air.
She glanced behind her slumped
shoulder towards a crisp crackle
to her left. A long shadow blocked out the failing light.
The felt hat covered head advanced
to her father’s last resting place.
His long cloak swished, his boots
sloshed in sodden mud. His mouth
whispered in the wind
” It was a grave mistake, what your
banker father did. I was only the arm
executing.” She jerked her head,
saw the curved scar, ” Who are you ?”
The man fell silent, as though
he had never spoken; eyed
the stone. To the Memory of an Honest,
Loving father and Husband.” Honest ,
he was not; thought he could
double-cross the boss: grave mistake,
grave mistake.” She felt a pang of anger
mingle with the pain in her breast.
Her fist clenched upwards, hammered
down on his chest: ” What are you talking about ?””
The truth, Milady, the truth. No escape,no reproof.”
She screamed in his dark face,
she trampled the soil. He caught
her wrists and shushed her brow
against his heart. He was a good man,
a loving grandfather, she thought;
but where did all the money come from ?
He sat in the shiny pew
freshly waxed cedar wood;
his breast was pumping up
the courage to speak all.
His head turned left, his gaze
met the sparkling eyes
of Anna, by his side every step,
every twist, rise or fall.
Roger chirped, his stubby legs
swung in thin air. “You’re not a bird,”
stern-faced Megan shot
at her brother.
The parish church was slowly
crowding. The scarred-faced
father tensed his fists, as
Even his family knew nothing
of his double life. The encounter
at the graveyard had opened
a door to atonement.
The possibility had grown
in his thoughts, then in his guts.
Christmas Mass loomed as an ideal
venue to unmask his true self.
From the organ rose Bach;
from the aisle, the last rustle
of coats, bonnets, gloves, died.
Reverend Bates spread his palms.
Our killer dwelt on his words:
gather, forgive, sin, hope, redeem.
His wife and children performed
the Psalms, sang the carols.
He patiently awaited his cue.
Reverend Bates, forewarned,
had left a space of time
for him to come forward.
Face to face with his peers,
his family, eager
or surprised expressions
of the community, he spoke.
“My dear friends, I stand before you,
contrite and in shame for my
wrong doings. I am a hired assassin.
My clients lose their lives at my hand.”
The crowd gasped; his wife cried out,
his son wept, Megan scowled, tears
of anger firing her pupils. He recalled
the features of the Banker’s daughter.
He had done it.
He braced himself for the quake
of rebuke, scorn to come.
The assembly grew misty; he felt
a warm wetness invade the crevasse
of his scar. It rolled down and gathered
in rivulets; he tasted salt on his lip.
A faraway scent caught in his throat:
the odour of guilt, peeing his bed
at the orphanage. As a long shadow
settled across the transept,
he realised his grave mistake
at standing unmasked, bare.
A breeze carried the scent
of the Christmas tree
beyond the window,
the rooftops, to flocking swifts.
Lights winked at sparkling baubles
while the Snowman grins
at his reflection. Clouds gather,
a promise of silent flakes.
Song for a Guy tickles my tear
ducks as my hubby potters
among the kitchen cupboards,
market goods home.
May your family time
be merry and warm,
close to the crackle of fire,
the canapés spread.
And a shiny New Year
sweep under the worn
carpet, all your
troubles and woes.
Thank you for visiting.
Jingle Bell Rock