Last week/weekend, I wrote a couple of short stories, something I do to while the time between the poetry inventions. The first short story is “Few expectations”, from a Free Write Friday prompt of Kellie Elmore’s and the second, “Mistakes in the backwater” from a Seven Day Short Story Challenge, from We Drink because we’re Poets. The first dealt with loss of a loved one through natural disaster, and a moment in time where the character reflects briefly on early years, time passing, present, and future. The second deals with abrupt loss of a character through nature and its unpredictability in terms of encounters
Much of the story is a metaphor for the early imperial colonial law, it’s brutal aspect to life in the wild, and the fringes of society, the law is running to its own tune, which often lead to loss of life by the gun, though such happening were avoided in this story. Guns are something I don’t like, I’ve never owned one, and never will. But the death of the character comes about through fear. Fear that takes a roller-coaster ride from the first character losing his life to a snake, which then lead to an escalation of different fears among the characters.
Snakes are a creature I come across on a regular basis with the day job doing survey work out in the bush of Aus, or on the urban fringes. So far I’ve never been bitten (most are poisonous to some extent) , but have been struck at by a few. I’ve had them come striking from out of trees, on isolated sections of grass in flood country, from wrapped around gates in paddocks in the middle of nowhere. Every time without further conflict, we’ve gone out separate ways, and with both of us surviving. So the death of the first character plays a little into these personal experiences, and the tinges of fear it sometime brings.
I’ve inflicted more damage to myself over the years than any animal has in the wilds of the bush, or in the tame urban, apart from a couple of dog bites, it’s been cricket wickets, garden tools, sledgehammers, axes, and chainsaws, and if your reading, Kim, the “well” doesn’t count, It was just waiting in the long grass, I didn’t use it, it just found me.
Going back to the first short story, loss of life to natural disasters are hard to fathom, for these are events we’ve no control over, but we have family, friends, community, and more. The character in the story had problems dealing with it all, so he went in search for answers, and has shared his life with many others, but that’s a story still to explore in a more in-depth way.
There’s the end of the ramble, just felt like writing a little of something, it was a long day of work in the port city of Gladstone (four hours of it travel), and so happy to be back home