Right to the end

I walked through a graveyard with a friend and saw a man in black standing by a gravestone. He’d move around but he was always facing the gravestone. He’d smile and cry but really his eyes looked dead.

My friend said “He waits by his grave”. I was afraid and walked faster till I saw more people standing by gravestones.

“They are standing guard” she said. I walked faster and further through the crowd, that now had all kinds of people, waiting by their deaths.

I walked till I left my friend behind at her grave and reached my own.

Born to wait

The queue seemed to stretch for miles with people moving like they had all the time in the world.

I was tired and unsure of the ground below me. I looked around and decided that the people there were a sorry lot despite being dressed up like a carnival. The ones that smiled made me uncomfortable.

Eventually I reached the gate. Some guy there showed me a video- all sped up but vaugly familiar. I said “What a sad little story, you guys should make that a movie.” 

He said “The name’s Peter. That was your life on replay.” 

Who am I?

I awoke and remembered nothing. Not even who I was. Next to me I saw an old man, grinning.

He laughed and asked what my last wish was. I moved away afraid of his cruel and menacing smile; his teeth yellow and sharp. He explained that my second wish was to forget everything I knew about myself.

Unsure of what to do but afraid of missing my chance I made my last wish. I asked to know everything about myself.

His smile growing deeper he said “Funny. That’s exactly what your first wish was.”

Death and I

Death knocked at my door and asked for my brother. I gave him my eyes so he’d go away.

He came to my door a year later so I gave him my voice.

Yesterday I heard myself at the door and heard my brother rush out to greet me.

Grounded flight

A pet store next to a wide road. It’s nearly a basement and inside are birds, fish and household pets. But mostly just birds.

The cats circle at your feet and paw at the hamster cages. Fish in segregated aquariums covered in dirt and murky water. There are baby cockatoos in an incubator.

Apart from the smell of bird droppings, the only constant in the store is the screeching of its avian residents. The noise is shrill and constant but the people at the store are used to it. Every bird they have from every continent have had their wings clipped.

They’ll go to rich houses to live in metal cages. Really a special kind of hell.

A step back

Stone steps rise from dirty lawns to reach hopelessly for nowhere.

The sceleton of a compound wall, the wet dirt under unkept bushes. An empty plot filled with the neighbour’s garbage. An electric pole wrapped with so much wire it’s like an insect caught in a cobwebs​. Eighty years ago it was farmland, then a small shack, a home, an apartment, a memory of someone who moved away.

Time passes and forgets but there are still reminders that go way back. Someone lived there. There’s no reason to care but you can see. The steps don’t go nowhere. One they used to lead to someone’s home.