- Gift openers · Bite-sized

Hvor er byen (ni)

Carl var rastløs.
Han var ikke rastløs længe,

For på den niende dag fandt han et vidunderligt modeltog.
Toget tog ham rundt i tågede og tårnhøje bakker i skøn natur, grønt og frugtbart og alt muligt andet, som Carl ikke kunne se ud af sit vindue
Carl bor midt i byen, men tit er den ikke til at se for bar beton, synes han

Men i modellen er der fart og fuld skrue, åbne vidder og brede bjerge
Midt i hans stue
Den var dyr, men sådan er priser for modeller, lidt forskruet og lidt for
Friskende

Carl var i proces. Han var ikke i enden og ikke i midten og ikke i starten, og slet ikke på sporet. Han var faktisk afsporet fra de ting, han engang fandt vigtige at få gjort, omend han havde glemt dem. Han kunne ikke finde byen.

 

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- Gift openers · Bite-sized

Snow white paper (7)

She stared at the paper for another five minuttes, its blank whiteness hurting his eyes.
She just wished it to be gone, or filled out, black and filled up to the brim with long, complicated words, moving and turning and twisting into sensual sentences.

The paper moved nowhere, because there was no paper at all, only a dimmed screen with the slightest smudge at the bottom, probably from whatever she ate earlier, still smelling in the bright, clean room. Her mother had told her to clean it for weeks, and it took her days and days to clean out the stuff, leaving only emptiness.

Very little space, she thought. Very little space to do things. It wasn’t true, of course, as the white walls unfolded around her computer, with the seven-pointed star atop the window. There was plenty of space, especially upwards.

It didn’t feel that way. She closed her computer, walked around in a small circle, feet tipping back and forth like an entrapped dog, and soon the computer ensnared her back to her chair in front of the white walls and the window. It was snowing outside.

The paper was blank. So full of space and nothingness, a white mess, a filled-up-joyful peace of virtual joy, living life to its fullest and going nowhere. She knew she needed to fill it out. Fill out that space, she thought. Do it. Now.

Sooner and later, stars shined in her eyes as the idea formed in her head, and she wrote. Black letters twisted and turned down the paper, spelling and speaking and screaming with joy as they slowly gave form to the paper, which, in a final release, gave up and conformed to their wishes. It was a great day, and snowing outside from above.

 

- Gift openers · Bite-sized

Roadside friend (Six)

There’s this saying I heard from this guy. I think he was in his mid-twenties. Something like that. He had the wispiest ‘stache. It was hilarious. He wore it with confidence, though. But it was almost see trough. Felt kinda bad for him. You gotta. Facial hair like that won’t get you far. And it was like he didn’t even know. He strutted along happily enough. Not a spot of shame. And he talked funny as well. Had this lisp. Like all his s’es were just a little off. Like he bit hiz tongue when he zpoke. Real nice guy too.

He told me a lot of things that day.

And he just came up to me. In the middle of the street. I was waiting to cross the road. And he just thought I might have been in the mood for some on the go philosophy. I mean he was right, but still. Who does that? We talked for a bit after. Seemed like he didn’t really have much to do. Just waiting around to hit up strangers for a bit of chitchat like that. Some people would probably just walk away. But I didn’t. I mean he was being so polite. Maybe he just got out of some mental hospital. Now that I think about it, his clothes were a bit dodgy looking.

Anyways. That saying…

I’ve straight forgotten it. Damn. It was really something magical too. He was such a strange guy. I wish there were more of his kind. I think he changed my life man. I mean not that I think he was that smart. Kind of a slow looking guy to be honest.

It’s like they say. “The world is only as you see it.” So I think that’s what really matters. You gotta make a world that you want to be in. Not literally make one of course, no. I mean like figuratively. I don’t remember who told me that, come to think of it. It’s kind of a game changer. When you start perceiving the world the way you want it, you can conjure up new friends anywhere. Even like now, when you’re just waiting to cross the street. Well… I better get going. I’ve got somewhere to be. It was nice talking to you. See ya, stranger.

- Gift openers · Bite-sized

Red wine (4)

The lights are dimmed and the room full of various ornaments and ointments is bathing in a soft red glow. A wicker candle is flickering by the old dusty hearth. Two children are staring deep into the flames inside.

In the other end of the room, a wine is opened, marked by the sighing *pop* of the cork coming out. She smiles and goes from chair to chair, pouring for the guests and correcting her hair. A wrinkly old man sits in silence at the end of the long table as he waits for his turn. The young girl approaches him and receives a nod of approval from the elder. She pours. She pauses. She awaits approval. The elderly man tries to lure the bottle in again with a waving gesture of his cup. The girl pours some more.

That’s a bit much. But oh well, the customer is always right.

The old man waves again. “More,” the cup is demanding. She hesitates. She pours. The cup is filled to the brim. The man drinks deeply into the cup. He looks at the girl. He nods for more. The girl takes a step towards the next guest.

That is too much.

The wrinkly man grabs her by the arm. “MORE!” the cup is screaming. It opens its jaws wide and bites off the neck of the bottle. Blood flows everywhere. A constant stream of dark red liquid. She surrenders the bottle to the old man. But the cup drinks it all in two big gulps and it starts to screech. MOOOOREEEEE!!!

She can’t take this. Not for 11.50 an hour before taxes. She runs towards the restroom. The cup is right behind her, thrashing the stools and tables and devouring any bottles it meets in its rampant path. She slams the door and dumps down on her ass in front of it. The cup is wailing outside and she can hear customers sighing, complaining, getting their coats, and leaving. She tears off her name plate and throws it at the mirror in the far end of the restroom.

I’m quitting.

The cup calms down 15 minutes later. She walks back out. And she pours a new bottle.

Bite-sized

Bus stop

He is standing at the bus stop. Watching the rain fall and never land. Cars are passing by. The street lights are distorted by sprinkles of rain. A flickering image of interference. They woosh to the left and hurl right. Then straight down and soon almost horizontally.

He pulls back his hood. Soft raindrops slowly prickle his skin. His lips are cold and broken and his fingers are brittle to the bone. He opens his eyes and tries his best not to flinch at the sprays of water hitting his face. A man on a bike passes by. He is singing along to a song played through his earbuds. His lips are moving but no sound escapes them.

He takes a step back. Head turning slowly to follow the man on the bike’s path down the road. His hair is getting wet and slick. A quick peek at his wrist tells him that his bus is late… Again. The rain has muffled this otherwise so busy street. It’s like the whole town has been sealed in silence and everyone is afraid of the cold. The big jackets are out. The kind that’s lined with fur in every end and feels more like a blanket with a zipper than a piece of clothing. The people are shrouded in the night. Hiding their faces from late autumn’s biting breezes.

There are other people at the bus stop. Some are sitting, watching carefully over the hands in their laps. Some are standing, subtly rocking back and forth. Some seem to think that this will make the wait shorter. That their dance will make time go faster. But the rain keeps falling and the bus isn’t coming.

The cars are moving soundlessly through the night. Their headlights seem so dim, like fireflies protruding over a sea of asphalt. He looks back over his shoulder. His gaze is met by a lady looking back at him expressionlessly. Shivers run down his spine and through his arms. For just a second he wonders if she’s dead or alive, because she is as unmoving as a marble bust. But then suddenly the bust cracks and comes to live. She coughs dryly, wipes her mouth and stands upright, frozen still again.

They seem to have aged a hundred years with the setting of the sun. He unzips and lets his jacket drop to the ground. A sight that disturbs the others at the bus stop. Maybe the winter wear was what really was keeping them cold. Though they stare at him, he doesn’t look back as he turns around and walks into the dark. The rain keeps falling and never landing.

And their bus is late.