Coffee With One Sugar (Short Story)

Jack liked his coffee strong and sweet. Just as much as he had a fondness for scratch cards , whisky , rock music and roll ups. It was late at night and the cafe was ghostly empty. He fidgeted with the small cup it was greasy and the coffee had too much milk in it leaving a sour aftertaste in his mouth. He thought by the age of thirty nine he would know life. Like he knew death. Death was like a shadow  always there but something we choose to ignore lurking away at the corner of your eye , getting under your skin. And life was cruel and full of despair. He had a hamster once and his father had chucked it in the bin so the cats wouldn’t dig it up. He supposed that’s what happens to us in the end , a whole life dumped in the ground or cremated. Then forgotten forever.

He turned the page of the newspaper he was reading , the black ink sticking to his fingers. It was the same old crap , politics ,murder victims , football scores , advertisements for window cleaners.

“Excuse me sir” someone said over his shoulder. He turned round to face a thin looking waitress with bags under her eyes and acne covered skin looked at him. She was probably in her late teens or early twenties. “Your going to have to leave we’re closing up” she instructed him “Aw right” he grumbled getting up from the chair, putting his crumpled newspaper under his arm.

Jack walked out the warmly lit café Into the dark bitter January night. The damp pavements glittered under the moonlight , and the street was deadly silent.  He pulled his coat further around him the cold nipping at his skin. Suddenly someone struck him hard behind his head he fell to the floor in agony. The man was on top of him now their grimy hands around his neck strangling him. The face of the man was chubby his teeth rotten. He was so close Jack could smell his stinking breath “Where’s the money”  The man spat. “I haven’t got it” Jack chocked struggling in vain against the man. Jacks legs and arms moving frantically desperate for the man to release him.

The man hit his head against the concrete but Jack barely felt it he was so desperate for air his vision turning black. Suddenly the mans hands were off him , he coughed and gasped filling his lungs savoring the oxygen the way you would savor a steak or a bar of chocolate. The man loomed over him. “Where is it “ he hissed “you spent it all on woman a guy like you always has dirty pleasures you give the faced of an educated man when deep down”… he paused and leaned forward and whispered into Jacks ear “Your dirt” He gave jack a hard blow in the ribs with his leather shoe. “He wants the money by the end of the week or else “ , the man gave Jack a sickly smug smile before getting into his jeep and skidding off.

Jack sat up feeling the back of his head his fingers coated with sticky blood. He felt woozy like he’d had too much the pain was everywhere his head his chest he rolled over in agony. “urg” he spat some blood out of his mouth it tasted metallic.  

My Favourite Poems – No.1 (The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock)

I’ve reviewed a lot of films and books on here but I wanted to start a series annotating my favourite poems and had to start with T.S Eliot. Hope you enjoy and don’t forget to like and follow 🙂

The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock

I am no prophet — and here’s no great matter;

I have seen the moment of my greatness flicker,

And I have seen the eternal Footman hold my coat, and snicker,

And in short, I was afraid.

I love this poem. A lot. It had some beautiful imagery in it that just captures you as a reader. The Poem is full of questions and indeed there will be time to wonder “do I dare disturb the universe”

At the start of the poem, we can really picture the streets he is telling us about

 Let us go, through certain half-deserted streets,

The muttering retreats

We wonder who he is going with if there is some romantic partner he is talking about or if it just the reader. The writer uses the word choice of “certain” which is obscure as for most of the poem he is doubtful.

The yellow fog that rubs its back upon the window-panes,

The yellow smoke that rubs its muzzle on the window-panes,

Licked its tongue into the corners of the evening,

The writer uses personification effectively here “licked its tongue into the corners of the evening” this gives the night a mysterious feel.

There will be time, there will be time

To prepare a face to meet the faces that you meet;

There will be time to murder and create,

The writer uses the repetition “there will be time , there will be time” he is almost reassuring himself and is aware of his mortality.

For I have known them all already, known them all:

Have known the evenings, mornings, afternoons,

I have measured out my life with coffee spoons;

Again the writer uses the repetition in the first line. He is almost looking back on his life and the monotony of it , he is apathetic and sees his actions as meaningless.   

And would it have been worth it, after all,

After the cups, the marmalade, the tea,

Among the porcelain, among some talk of you and me,

He is questioning the reader and the quality of his life. He questions the daily activities he undertakes and if they have any point.

  Should say: “That is not what I meant at all;

               That is not it, at all.”

I love this line in the poem. The writer is timid , perhaps In  his life and work he has been seen as arrogant or pretentious and this line shows that he has been misunderstood.

Full of high sentence, but a bit obtuse;

At times, indeed, almost ridiculous—

Almost, at times, the Fool.

This supports this point the author is devaluing himself and his life and work by calling himself ridiculous and almost at times “The fool”

Till human voices wake us, and we drown

The last line of the poem is so emotional it is not happy or positive , it makes life and the end of life seem bitter and helpless. It seems like the author is so caught up in his fantasies , setting and daily activities at the end he romanticizes walking along a beach and eating a peach  and in the last line he almost wakes up to cold reality and drowns in it.

Part 1

He splashed his face with cold water. The heat was unbearable. Even without his full kit on and the cover of the tent his brown t shirt stuck to his back his cargo trousers heavy and beads of sweat rolled down his forehead.

“Alright private” he heard someone say behind him. He swiveled round to find a robust looking chap who chucked him a can of cold coke. “Thanks “ he said giving him a smile and nod of approval. “I’m John” the other man said holding out his hand for him to shake “Roy” he answered. He clicked open the can taking a swig the liquid fizzy and sweet in his mouth enough to pick him up a bit. Roy wiped away another bead of sweat that had escaped from his forehead. “ You’ll get used to it” said John. Roy wondered how anyone could get used to this heat. You better get your stuff on quick if the Sargent catches you like that he’ll make you run around the camp for an hour in full kit. The thought made Roy quite terrified.

They were fighting in Iraq a pointless war his father had said but Roy loved being in the army. Loved the routine , Loved the thrill of holding a gun , loved wearing his uniform for all to see. Before he joined he was on the dole for a year after he left school. It was humiliating having nothing just hanging about smoking pot and staying in bed all day. so he relished every experience now , even the heat and that was saying something.

Why I write ?

Why I write?

40,848 Pen And Ink Illustrations & Clip Art - iStock

I’m not sure exactly why I Write , I suppose before you write stories you read them. As a child I devoured books I would literally start reading as soon as I opened my eyes in the morning. I enjoyed it so much. I wanted to put my mark on the world and like the amazing authors I read , I wanted readers not just be entertained but to see something through the eyes of the writer. Me. I owe a lot of my talent (if I can call it that without sounding too arrogant) To my grandparents my gran would read the wishing chair to me as a child and it would take me off to another world. I think there’s something different about reading and writing as a child. My talent wasn’t really discovered until secondary school after it had been nurtured for eleven years or so through the education system. I also liked to write my own stories in my spare time , I remember as an early teen I got more into young adult fiction and liked thrillers. I would write stories about kidnappings and bizarre things like that.

 I left school prematurely and grew very depressed this is when I started writing poetry. I remember finding a thin paper back book of T.S Eliot poems in my family’s loft and running through to my mum to tell her how amazing they were. Poetry I found a lot easier to read and write. My first poem was called Lang Town which is near where I live. I started to write about things around me which at that point and I suppose still is poverty. I would write about bus stations and dreary things like that. The characters I suppose had my voice but lucky for me I don’t live in a damp run down flat like the protagonist in my story.

Writing is a very personal act you are basically turning out your soul for others to read and scrutinize. I suppose we all want to live forever and a good poem or book is the closest thing we have to it. We don’t know what it was like to live one hundred years ago but through some of the great writers we can have some understanding of how they lived. I write to change people’s perspectives and make my mark on the world. That is why I write.

Daz For Zoe Review

Daz 4 Zoe: Amazon.co.uk: Swindells, Robert: 9780140372649: Books

It is unusual that I polish off a book from cover to cover but this novel I devoured in two sittings.

The story follows the life of both Daz and Zoe who live in different communities in a future Dystopian Britain. The chippies live in the poor zone and the subbies live in a rich part next to them. The subbies have a high quality of living with large houses , good schools good future prospects. On the other hand you have the Chippies named after their staple diet of chips they live in derelict ghettos. They fear the police. The Chippies cannot enter the subbie neighborhood without paperwork. The class divide which is still very relevant today it is a major theme in the book but other themes also pop up like love and friendship.

The book starts with Zoe and her friends sneaking into a night club in the chippy part of town. This is where she meets Daz they lock eyes across the bar and instantly know they like each other.

They end up meeting in secret as her family and society are strongly against the chippy. Zoe’s grandmother though has a more humane approach and Zoe confides in her about her love for Daz.

Zoe expresses some of her views about the chippies at school and gets the label of “chippy lover” Zoe’s ideas create interest from the Domestic security and she is interrogated. luckily she does not give up her relationship with Daz she is given warning of the problems that might come her way because of her ideas.

In the end zoe runs away with daz she manages to climb under a dust bin lorry into the Chippys neighborhood , there Daz hides her in his apartment. Daz worries about what Zoe thinks of his run down flat and his mother who wears old clothes , more than he does getting in trouble from the police for harboring her.

Zoe gives up everything to be with Daz her comfortable way of living and her family. In the end she finds out her grandmother was part of an illegal organization called FAIR which fought for a better life for the chippys. Zoes friends family are a member and get kicked out , they go to live in the countryside and at the end of the book Zoe and Daz leave the city to join them and make a life for themselves.

What I Hate About Scotland !

I’ve done a post on what I love about Scotland blog post but never one about what I hate. So here is a list of what I Hate about Scotland

Hate – This might shock some but I hate traditional Scottish literature Robert Louise Stevenson and Walter Scott I find their books dry and not to my cup of tea.

Hate – The way we treat people – It might be worse in England but Scottish people like to label people junkies a lot.

Hate – Shortbread its just not a good biscuit

Hate – Nationalism. I’m just sick of our country saying they want to stay in the EU it might be alright for skilled workers to sit back in their chairs and call us racists but we have family’s to feed , houses to heat we need jobs and there all being taken by immigrants. I wouldn’t go as far to say I’m a unionist but I hate how the younger generation all want independence and that its stupid not to want it when most of them are students and are not actually full time workers or on benefits and think its easy to get a Job I can tell you now. Its not. The rich look after themselves it wouldn’t matter if we were independent or not.

Hate – Our stereotypes. I think people think that us Scottish people are a lovely friendly folk when in reality most strangers look like they want to spit on you for saying hi.

Please leave a comment on this blog post and share your thoughts.

Autumn Lows

Before I start this post, I just want to put a disclaimer that I’m trying to reach 1000 followers by the new year so please follow and like thank you!

Edinburgh With Calton Hill Against Autumn Leaves In Scotland Stock Photo -  Download Image Now - iStock

Although I like to talk about films and poetry and other random stuff on here, I also feel really depressed at this time of year. Whilst others have been out working and having fun as the seasons change and the colours of the leaves turn I feel especially low. All year I’ve been depressed snoozing through the day and going to bed early to avoid panic attacks. I barely leave the house except to go shopping or go to college and do a course im really struggling with. Its true when they say it goes in one ear and out the other. I thought going to college would help boost my mood but all its done is make me feel inferior when other people in the class aren’t struggling.

It’s a known fact that life is unfair but in the past year I’ve realized how stuck I am in poverty.  nothing excites me and around me the area is very bleak. I cant drive and I am getting in a way that im to lazy to take the bus. I used to like getting on the bus and having a look round the shops but now I feel too dependent on my parents, still needing my mum and dad close by.

Its very frustrating for me like a fly entrapped in a spiders web I am desperate for my own independence and freedom. But there’s meds to remember , washing and cooking to do and at the moment I even struggle to clean my own bedroom.

 I definitely think I have PTSD from my time(s) I’ve been in hospital which now effects my life. When I was 17 I went through a horrific time looking back now it was completely out of order to treat a teenager like that.

I think writing this blog helps to get it out on paper so to speak. Doing this is a great distraction. I almost feel selfish for feeling this way as there’s people who have probably gone through a lot more than me. Its not like I went through any major trauma growing up apart from my mum having epilepsy but that never stopped her looking after us yet I feel like I’ve let my family down by dropping out of school and like my blog says I feel lazy as my depression makes me feel like i am just sitting around leaching off the state.

I saw a blogs bio which says their a writer of professionally unemployed so maybe I could come under that bracket even though I don’t make any money (yet) My goal is to have enough money to live comfortably maybe have a bigger house that I’ve grown up in however at the moment it feels like that dream is way off.

Anyway, If you feel the same way as me at this time of year just know you’re not alone. Amen x  

Epistle To Hugh Parker Analysis

Hey Guys So I’m on the road to 500 followers so if your new It would mean a lot of you hit the follow button thanks.

Robert Burns - Wikipedia
 
IN this strange land, this uncouth clime,
A land unknown to prose or rhyme;
Where words ne’er cross’t the Muse’s heckles,
Nor limpit in poetic shackles:
A land that Prose did never view it,        5
Except when drunk he stacher’t thro’ it;
Here, ambush’d by the chimla cheek,
Hid in an atmosphere of reek,
I hear a wheel thrum i’ the neuk,
I hear it—for in vain I leuk.        10
The red peat gleams, a fiery kernel,
Enhuskèd by a fog infernal:
Here, for my wonted rhyming raptures,
I sit and count my sins by chapters;
For life and spunk like ither Christians,        15
I’m dwindled down to mere existence,
Wi’ nae converse but Gallowa’ bodies,
Wi’ nae kenn’d face but Jenny Geddes,
Jenny, my Pegasean pride!
Dowie she saunters down Nithside,        20
And aye a westlin leuk she throws,
While tears hap o’er her auld brown nose!
Was it for this, wi’ cannie care,
Thou bure the Bard through many a shire?
At howes, or hillocks never stumbled,        25
And late or early never grumbled?—
O had I power like inclination,
I’d heeze thee up a constellation,
To canter with the Sagitarre,
Or loup the ecliptic like a bar;        30
Or turn the pole like any arrow;
Or, when auld Phoebus bids good-morrow,
Down the zodiac urge the race,
And cast dirt on his godship’s face;
For I could lay my bread and kail        35
He’d ne’er cast saut upo’ thy tail.—
Wi’ a’ this care and a’ this grief,
And sma’, sma’ prospect of relief,
And nought but peat reek i’ my head,
How can I write what ye can read?—        40
Tarbolton, twenty-fourth o’ June,
Ye’ll find me in a better tune;
But till we meet and weet our whistle,
Tak this excuse for nae epistle.

Analysis : Part 1

IN this strange land, this uncouth clime,
A land unknown to prose or rhyme;
Where words ne’er cross’t the Muse’s heckles,
Nor limpit in poetic shackles:   I love the opening to this poem it’s so poignant and

Captivating. I think the first line expresses confusion with the words in this strange land. A land unkown to prose or rhyme. I think this is symbolic of the isolation burn feels as a poor writer not many can relate to him. Also perhaps its symbolic of society’s ignorance whither its to do with illiteracy at the time or poverty that blights Scotland. “Where words no’er cross’t the muses heckles Nor limpit in poetic shackles.” This shows that burns feels trapped perhaps by his situation and lack of money but also by his gift for the written word.

A land that Prose did never view it,
Except when drunk he stacher’t thro’ it;
Here, ambush’d by the chimla cheek,
Hid in an atmosphere of reek,

“A land that Prose did never view it.” I think this expresses burns frustration that although he is one of the most gifted writers in history he still cant capture all that he wants to. Except when drunk he stachert thro it. This reveals what burns sees the drunks of the streets and perhaps his own battle with drink. Here ambush’d by the chimla cheek. Hid in an atmosphere of reek. This shows what the city was dirty at the time and covered in reek.

I hear a wheel thrum i’ the neuk,
I hear it—for in vain I leuk.
The red peat gleams, a fiery kernel,
Enhuskèd by a fog infernal:
Here, for my wonted rhyming raptures,
I sit and count my sins by chapters;     In this stanza what stands out to me is the line “k
For in vain I leuk. This suggests that Burns perhaps feels guilty about his

 Fame and talent.

“The red peat gleams, a fiery kernel Enhusked by a fog infernal. These lines are symbolic of heat and perhaps the devil or anger, burns maybe feels like the Devil. “Here , for my wonted rhyming raptures I sit and count my sins by chapters.” He feels guilty about his gift perhaps because of his position in society and the fame and talent he has.

For life and spunk like ither Christians,
I’m dwindled down to mere existence,
Wi’ nae converse but Gallowa’ bodies,
Wi’ nae kenn’d face but Jenny Geddes,
Jenny, my Pegasean pride!

In this stanza he is in conflict with himself and his religion , he admits he’s not a very good Christian maybe because his love of drink or sex. “Im dwindled down to mere existence “here he feels that society does not value his talent and he is merely living a pointless life that wont amount to much.

No One Owns Art !!

PIC: A new Banksy has popped up on the French Embassy in London | JOE.co.uk

(Before I start.I would really like it if you commented and put forward your opinions on this topic)

I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again. No one owns art. I feel like the only accessible art form in 2020 is music and film. To most the books are left to collect dust on a high shelf’s out of reach to many and great paintings are ruined by the coffee stains of the class divide. Literature like classical music and fox hunting seems to be a possession of the higher classes. Believe it or not I don’t hate the church. The elite built me aside from school and my parents I was raised by the church. The psalms of the bible and the verses of the hymns helped me create poetry and write prose. The summer clubs helped tutor and nurture me. However I wasn’t on the same level as them. My mother dusted the pews and scrubbed the toilets whist the conservative Christians preached the pure word of God towering above us on their high podium.

At school I was always degraded siting in a third set English class I was bitter , but I made friends I will never forget despite walking along the narrow tightrope that was the poverty line. Clutching a pen for balance , one slip and I would of tumbled to my doom. Perhaps I already have. in fact I know I have. What I write is in vain , they will spit on my grave.

Survival of the fittest is interwoven into our society despite anyone taking into account the middle classes head start at the game. Yet to say this puts a black mark against your name. Artwork is too expensive to buy for many , words to extravagant to understand. , and if your a woman who tires to challenge this you may as well thump your fists against a brick wall until they are bloody and bruised , but perhaps I’m biased. No one owns art. That’s all their is to say.

Then I Grew

I wake screaming in the night

God’s grip around me hard and tight.

As blackie watches from the windowsill

Oh I wish, I pray I could see him still.

But I am blind and I am bitter

I sit and wait for the harsh winter.

 

If only he could see me now

His frown a downturned smile

of victory

oh not oh not for me

 

For here I sit and slowly decay.

I cough and splutter in the rain

grow restless at the passing days.

 

As a child, I thought you were the only one.

Oh pretty blackbird

but as I grew

I looked and knew that there were many of you.

 

Yet still I glance through the windowpane

Stained with dirt and grit and fingerprints of many.

I think of you

oh pretty blackbird

The true love I only knew

but then I grew.