Jan. 15th, 2009

I ran across a writing prompt on an old forum I don't read much anymore, and I could not resist. I need to get back to writing regularly, I think.

Anyways, the prompt was, basically, write an interview with a character (of yours.) I decided to mix it up a bit.

(I was going to lj-cut it then I remember I think lj-cuts are crap. Apologies if it lengthens your friends page.)


D: Hello? Who is this?

F: Yes let's start with the basics, that always impressed me about you. A foundation.

D: What? Is that...

F: ...

D: Look it's the middle of the night, you could at least --

F: Your attention to detail.

D: -- say something.

F: Time and place. Circumstances are important. It would be the middle of the night, wouldn't it?

F: Otherwise you'd never answer the phone just let it ring somebody else would get it how many times I had to call you have no idea how many times waiting in silence the wrong voice on the other end might as well have been a telemarketer all that time wasted sometimes I wonder why I keep trying phones are expensive here you know very expensive.

D: ...

F: But here we are after all that a little thinner maybe a little worse for wear but after all.

D: I guess. I mean, yes... here we are.

D: Did you want -- was there something you wanted. Wanted to tell me?

F: So it's the middle of the night.

F: Are you in bed then is it dark in your room I imagine the whites of your eyes practically phosphorescent looking this way and that it's good to hear you're sleeping that was always a problem for you wasn't it? But so convenient too for the rest of us you know much more convenient.

D: I'm sorry, I don't--

F: Yes well we're all sorry for something.

D: I don't kn--... I am. Sleeping, I mean. Better, at least.

F: ...

D: But it was more convenient, you know. Things are different at night. You can get different things done. Is that what you mean? Is that -- is that why you're calling?

F: ...

D: I used to go for walks you know, when that happened. I liked how empty the streets were, how unobserved. Like all the trees were so unconcerned, you know? Because nobody was looking at them, they didn't have to worry they didn't have to be so tree-like exactly. During the day everyone's expecting that, they look they're like 'a tree' it's an assumption they barely even notice but the tree notices. The tree has to straighten up, get its branches all sorted out, you know -- but at night it just gets to be like 'whatever'. Let it go, all that tension all that expectation. You know?

F: Yes. Yes yes exactly. And what was it you used to say, something about hinges something about fastenings

D: Well, I guess it was... look, who is this, really?

F: Everything unhinged you used to say everything "floating up" the day bolts it down the day puts it in its place but then oh the night a long breath out, and everything not quite in the same place yes yes exactly it was so beautiful how you used to speak how you spoke for us

D: How I used to... ?

F: How to explain it every day waking up knowing what to wear

F: How to explain it always the right suit the navy blue with the faint pinstripe the shoes where to go what to say every bumbling gesture you made me feed the pigeons every day it was so easy I just stepped up just stepped up to the mark read the lines and every day unfolding without hesitation and the words always the words pouring out the sweetest words like honey in my mouth like ambrosia my god

D: ...

F: ...

D: ... hello? Are you... is it still you?

D: Look I'm sorry whatever I did to you whatever you're talking about, I'm sorry it wasn't...

F: Then one day nothing. No suit, no marks, no lines. No pigeons, nothing to feed them with no days to feed them in. Nothing to say. Not even stupid things, not even the stupidest I would have settled for that just a few crumbs for the birds at least.

D: ... it wasn't on purpose.

F: Yes well we're all sorry for something.

D: But it wasn't -- how could I have known?

F: ...

D: How was I supposed to know?

F: ...

D: Look I'm sorry there's no manual you know I didn't get instructions I didn't realize

F: ...

D: No listen I didn't realize but what was I supposed to do exactly? What am I supposed to say, I'm sorry? I'm sorry I didn't stay up nights listening to sad music I'm sorry I started going to classes talking to people getting out of bed

F: That's not, no -- I just

D: I'm sorry that sometimes I got to sleep before the sun came up that sometimes I got on the bus in the morning that I knew what day of the week it was I mean what do you want exactly what do you expect of me calling me up like this telling me these stories like you think I forgot like you think I'm some child like I can't feel your hands shaking even now pulling nervously on your tie with the silver clip your eyes watering glistening like onions like I don't know you

F: ...

D: Like I don't wish that I could go out walking with you on one of those formless misty nights, plant you in the earth, and call you by your name.

F: ...

D: ...

F: Well. Like I said, the phones here. They're quite -- quite costly. I'm glad to hear you're sleeping well.

D: ...

F: It was nice to hear your voice.

I love the smell of laundry exhaust on a cold evening. Warm and a little sour, soapy I guess.



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