Tag Archives: literature

120 minutes

She was always told to never run away from problems, that brave hearts are never afraid of the challenges life randomly presents.

But not right now.

Her heart was not a courageous shield today. It had started running long before her limbs. Beating at an inconsistent rate, increasing its drumming with every passing second. A panic attack was starting to creep, making it difficult to swallow. The tremble running through her fingers was getting harder to control so she did exactly what her heart did, she ran.

The cry from her muscles being waken up from disuse was completely ignored as she pushed forward, trying her hardest to not bump into rigid shoulders. The last thing she wanted today was people giving her angry glances, generously throwing curse words at her.

She ran till she was out of breath. She ran because she needed some air. She ran till she could not recall why she was doing so and was one breathe away from falling over as her mind starts to cloud over. That was when she stopped and dropped herself on the vivid green expanse of the park, completely ignoring how the fresh dew is making her skin shiver, goosebumps starting to cover her tan body.

She shut her eyes for a long time, at least that was what she thought. She could not care less if it was a couple of seconds or if it had been hours. She had no space whatsoever in her mind to think about time.

The chirping of birds, casually resting on the crooked branch calmed her down. The music a pleasurable distraction and she opened her eyes to a couple of grey sparrows. If the sparrows could sense feelings, they would probably fly away as far as they could. Nothing that resonated from her presence was pleasant. Her aura emanated extreme fear, sparks of confusion and even the silent pain of not knowing how to feel. The ends of the grass were starting to make her ankle itch and the hem of trousers are slightly mudied as she continued to stare at the birds.

‘How.’ she whispered to herself. Should she see a doctor and seek help? Could she possibly be experiencing a mental disorder? Who could possibly help her now? How could she make sense of all of this?

Maybe it was just a one time thing. Maybe it will not happen again. Maybe there was just no explanation for it just like most things in this world. Like how babies knew that they had to breathe as soon as they were delivered or how the planets’ orbits are circular and not angular.

She played with her hands just so that she had something to do.

‘How’

Her skin feels rough and she skims over the small scar she had on the side of her right pinkie from when she was 10 and adventurous.

‘How’

With her eyes still closed, she thought of the classes she missed today. Maths.

‘How’

She thought about her flat at the corner of the main street. How the shower would never work seamlessly and the old washing machine placed at a very odd place in the kitchen. Pictures upon pictures of her dearest ones all over her wall in her room and the thought of that brought a smile as she slowly tried to compose herself and continue her day like it was just any other day of the semester.

‘Hey?’

A voice panted from a close range on her left. It was not a familiar voice, so she passed it off as a stranger passing by and continued thinking of her warm duvet and how it would feel good to get back home and be in her teal covered sheets.

‘Hey.’

The male came closer, a step away from invading her personal space and she was getting a little scared and annoyed at the same time. Involuntarily she furrowed her brows and stopped playing with her fingers.

‘You there’ he pants. ‘Lying on the ground’ he had to stop to take a breath and she guessed that he must have been running.

Her eyes opened abruptly and she sat up as swift as she could, turning to the source of the disturbance, giving him a not-so-friendly glare.

‘You should be less careless next time’ he pointed with one hand as the other one rested on his knees. His head slung down, a black cap covering his face.

‘What?’

‘Try not to leave things behind’ he raised his head up and she recalled the face she was looking -now staring- at. Same bronze skin with eyes that crinkled at the sides, she recognised the barista from previously.

He pulls out a dark blue purse from his pocket and hands it over. ‘Especially not something as important as this at least’

He chuckled while looking down at his jet black trainers. His fingers were still curled around the purse, hand stretching out but she was not showing any signs that she was going to take the purse from him.

‘How did you…’

‘You took off all of a sudden like you just saw a ghost or you were possessed and I saw you sprinting towards the park…’

He should probably stop and notice the half annoyed, half confused look plastered on her face while she attempted to cover her expressions hoping she would not come off as rude.

‘But obviously not being a mind reader, it took me quite a while to locate where exactly you are in this massive area. God knows what my manager would say now when I get back.’ He continued to ramble, arms resting on his hips, purse still in hand. Beads of sweat were starting to form on his forehead but he did not bother wiping them away, the sight of a little boy chasing his golden retriever as if he would lose him otherwise kept him distracted.

‘I mean, it’s not as if we’re all that busy. We have new workers coming in recently and they have been keeping up quite well to my surprise.’

She wondered for a second if she had even asked anything related to his job but she had not and so her mind took her back trying to remember what exactly she had said to cause this peculiar stranger to start telling her things she could not care to know.

‘I could not just leave your stuff in the cafe and wait for you to come back. Honestly, it seemed as if you weren’t going to come back and if you really didn’t, I’d have to send this off to the police station and make a report which isn’t necessarily what I would like to use my time out of work for. All those forms and having to talk to people in uniforms’

‘You are in one.’ She interrupted, out of a sudden.

‘In what?’

‘A uniform.’ She pointed at the dark green apron he was wearing, that covered his entire front with an intricate logo in white. He looked good in it, well as good as anyone could ever be in an apron that is.

‘You know it’s different.’

She did not bother to answer.

‘You can take your purse anytime now’ Hand outstretched, waiting for her to take the goddamn purse from him.

‘Thanks, you didn’t have to.’ She took it from him and started to
pick on the lose thread along the zipper. ‘It’s not like it’s important when I can’t even remember my days anymore.’ She mumbled under her breath, looking away.

‘I’m sorry, what?’

‘I didn’t say anything.’ She lied just so that he would go away. ‘I said thanks. That’s all I said.’

‘Yeah, don’t worry about it. I guess i’ll head back now and and hope I don’t get my pay cut from being out too long.’

She had stopped paying attention to him by now. Buds are starting to grow from the bald trees around her. It is already spring based on the calendar but this year, the trees are taking their own sweet time to adjust and transform the the town into a romantic shade of pink.

‘See you next time you drop by then. Maybe I could give you free coffee if I’m around and yeah, just say hi.’

The boy from earlier have caught up to his dog and is currently hugging him with all his might to stop the dog from running away again. His parents a distance away, laughing at his futile efforts.

She could not exactly remember the moment he left or when she started being alone again but it made no difference. She was doomed anyways.

She fell back, hitting her head hard on the ground and closed her eyes. She grunted at the pain and wished everything would just disappear and this day would just end and her mind would just start working again and her memories would come back to her. And everything, everything will be okay again.

The cold wind blew her hair away, strands covering her face leaving her looking almost ethereal.

The same gush took her consciousness away.

Her time was up.

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It’s been a while

I think, I think too much
And that’s another thing to think of
Besides the subject that is you
Running laps continuously around my mind
While I am always known as a slow walker
And I cannot keep up

My friends tell me they never know what I want
And I have never minded just settling with ignorance
But when every mention of you is accompanied
With multiples ‘i don’t know’
This once, I really care to know if I care for you

I seek left and right for some sort of advice
And there is one straight ahead who could help me
But how could I possibly ask you about you?
Even if your insights would be the most insightful

Timing is everything, I agree
So tell me if I should reopen this after a year
Or should I just let it go like I did three years ago?
You are 7 hours away but it does not matter
Because what are years and hours and memories?
They only make this sound more tragic than it is
When the only tragic thing is us stuck in GMT-friend

I’ll be honest, I am nervous
And if I’m lying I’d say I’ll talk to you today
All this time knowing today will never happen
Shall we trade experiences once this is over?
Today I wish for you to read this
Today I hope you could magically read my mind
Today I will stop being complicated and mess things up
All this time knowing today will never happen

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Drowning in the dark

Fingers splay on the side of her neck, tips pressing down with slight pressure as they move in minuscule circles just enough to wake the nerves. The massage is almost a movement of plea for it to stop being so sore. Her personality is sore enough -at least to everyone else- and there really is no room for her body to add up to it.

…..

She has no rights to nag her own body, it was she who decided it was easier to let her head hung low. Not for a day or two but as long as she could remember, ever since her insecurities became visible to her. Her movements too harsh, her voice too much of a screech, her smile too crooked. It was obvious to her how people reacted when she was herself around them. The slight shift of the body, the millisecond frown of judgement, they were all tell-tale signs screaming at her although they do not deafen her, they still shut her from the rest of the world. In a way, her eyes are too observant. Paying attention to things she could live without knowing. Another flaw carves on a section of her brain that is taking up more space than it should.

…..

A sigh releases from her heavy lungs, not from the damp, salty air but the constant burden she carries for being herself. Her existence is more of an imposed duty. Days do not pass, they drag. At the pace of a Giant Galapagos tortoise. In the middle of a stone quarry. Under the burning Sun of the Iranian dessert. Every breath accompanied with a burn in her heart. It is a wonder how her heart is not the darkest shade of black on the html colour code. Wait, it is the second darkest, almost an achievement.

…..

One leg hovers above the covers with the other underneath, she blinks in the dark but it makes no difference. Nothing does anymore. Her friends are a constant blur of waves and unimportant chatter. A pleasant distraction on good days, a mass of wasted cells and organs on certain days of the month (seven straight days every month to be more precise). They are not stupid, her friends I mean, if we do not take into consideration their school grades. They know. She thinks she has an eye for details but she has forgotten that others could have the same qualities as well. She thinks that that made her special, if that is the case then she really isn’t. They know from her over calculated smile and the way she taps her fingers to the rhythm of when-will-you-shut-up. They discovered it for quite a while now but they are staying right where they are. It is always on the back pages of those glossy magazines, mostly life advices recycled from last decade’s edition: ‘…do not push them away’, ‘stability is important…support them’, ’10 ways to…’.

…..

Humid air makes her nerves tingle with excitement, a vast contrast from the dry air conditioned building she just exited. She looks up to the sky, questioning why she is wasting money on people who asks the same questions and tells her the same things. She begs for something different with hands clasps tight, eyes doing the same as she chants ‘different’ repeatedly in as many languages she remembers hoping that one of it is understood by whoever it is who decides her destiny. The trick -or spell? or mantra?- works. ‘Different’ greets her in the form of a lanky boy crouching against the wall with a smirk stretching across the side of his face that is not visible from where she is standing. The wind sends her an omen through the shivers travelling across her spine but she shakes it off, rapid blinking the only movement she makes for a while. The same wind pushes the light strands of his dark hair as his fingers try to tame it down. The same gush causes the crumpled piece of paper she has been holding onto to slip and float a couple of seconds before it lands in a puddle of muddy water. The already unreadable writing smears leaving a large blotch of blue under the bold, printed word: Prescription.

…..

Fall has always been her favourite season, the warm hues of orange and brown versus the slightly chilly air carrying the sweet scent of cinnamon and pumpkin. That year, autumn never came but she is not one bit sad. Spring took up all four quarters of her life, and it shows from the radiant bloom of her cheeks and the smell of blossoms in her hair. Her odd year consisted of wasting an extra 5 minutes everyday due to waiting and the consistent phone beeps every few minutes filling her phone memory with ‘what are you doing?’ and heart emoticons. Although she felt a certain kind happiness she has never felt before, her unfamiliar body cannot help but cringe at the constant show of affection but accompanying those cringes are no longer scrunched up noses but achingly wide smiles.

…..

He is an enigma, a rubix cube of mood swings and soft touches with far more baggage than the usually capped flight allowance. But she has her own too and although they try and try to pretend that they are better for the sake of the other, at the end rules are still rules and the fine has to be paid. She has always adored puzzles, envying the life of the man whose slender fingers have memorised the deep lines of her palm. She endures the pain her scalp makes whenever she tugs her hair out of frustration as the door closes slowly, broad shoulders fading away. The house feels too big for her and her soul that is shrinking with each minute she spends without the presence of a certain hot headed, cold hearted man who only knows how to do things in extremes. Like spending the night leaning opposite her front door with his head on his knees gently rocking to the tempo of regret, a thousand thoughts on ways to apologise but none that could wash away the guilt that stains him.

…..

She wears a white dress today, the one that makes her look like those characters in children books who always gets the prince. The hem floats around her ankles as she sits on a chair in the middle of the room, her breathing is even, even as her heart beats so loud that it echos in her ears almost making her cover them with her hands to make it stop. A lone tear slides down from her left eye breaking a promise she made to herself earlier this morning, her eyes suddenly find the ceiling peculiarly interesting and continues to stare from a corner to the next for the next couple of seconds. This is it. The day she has imagined multiple times growing up. Today, when the rays of sun woke her up from her slumber, eyes fluttering open while she clears up the haze of a groggy mind, she knew she could never be more than ready for today. With a determined breath, she stood up. Legs a little shaky as she gets in position. 1, 2, 3. She smiles as she took her final step forward, eyes close shut as she begins to feel the pull from her legs as it travels up her body. In the state that she’s in, she has lost sense of everything. She tries her hardest to control her body hoping it will not trash around like a fish out of water. The needle of the clock continues to move even after she has stopped, hands limp by her side while her neck looks slightly crooked. She is still beautiful even after everything that used to define her beauty left her, her personality, her smile, her kindness. Even with the pattern of a braided rope engraved around her neck.

She did not get the prince.

…..


I did it! Writing more than 300 words was always a challenge but I did it! Took me two nights and morning to complete this and I (really) hope it’s not too bad. 

And yes, she died.

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There isn’t a title to this.

Disclaimer: To those uninterested in spending your time reading my attempt at ‘proper’ writing, please proceed to the end of this entry where I happily provide you with a direct summary of what this post should be about.

I’m forcing myself to write. Every word that comes out is deliberately squeezed out of my unwilling brain, fingers involuntarily pressing each key with much more force than necessary. A sudden pause. A rebellion of the mind as vocabularies are stopped from entering my consciousness leaving the tips of my calloused fingers hanging approximately an inch from the keys. I need to do this, I coax myself. Like the common phrase ‘there are things you don’t like that are good for you but you do not know’, this is one of them. But this time I know, I know that this is necessary, pivotal even for me to not have any regrets.

You see for once, I know what I want to do. Whether I can, whether it is even in my reach, we shall leave that to the higher hand to decide. But this desire to paint a picture without paint, to draw vivid imageries with only the monochromatic shades of white and black -although paper is now ‘buff’, not white and the black hue of ink is always debatable- is so potent in me it is beyond the angry, aggresive shade of red. It is the deepest, calmest shade of blue that should not be overlooked. It holds authority and is unambiguous. Never once does it flicker, remaining constant almost knowing that it will never be forgotten even if it’s ignored.

And I am not even close to revealing what it actually is but my heart has calmed in gratitude, a sigh of relief in between the never ending beats of life it drums every second. This is it, a story without a plot, just words thrown here and there with the aim to sound pretty in the heads of those who reads it -or to the ears if one prefers to read out loud-. This is what I’m good at, never finishing a well thought project, or rather focusing too much on the unnecessary that the centre which it’s supposed to be revolved around is lost. Please, view me as one who is intuitive rather than the true unorganised person that I constantly am.

An expected blankness blinds my usually adept thought process. It is often this way whenever I try to write conclusions because the only thing that truly matters from you reading this is not the temporal joy -or misery- this short entry brings but the message that I would like you to ponder on after the wasteful minutes you carelessly spend on me. If the writing does not last beyond the pages it lays stoically, the writer is not doing it right. And that is the thing about literature, it is the art of those who finds bliss in the darkness of their closed eye lids with letters and words -even non words sometimes- as their palette as they dance to the rhythm of their own voice silently echoing from the corners of the almost spherical mind. There is never really a right or wrong in literature but one.

It’s 1.30am and i’m sleepy but I pushed myself to write this post because I’ve been dreading to write something. I think after trying many things, I have decided that writing is what I’d like to do for a living (most probably as a side income because writing alone is not sufficient to sustain my material wants). And I didnt really get to explain that I just need to channel all my thoughts onto something. About the ending, well, I really did have nothing to say to sum up the whole post. Basically, this post is just fragments of thoughts that I pulled out from the train rounding my head. 

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