Friday, 12 May 2017

A Poem a Day (58): Casting Colours

Written for Dan Mader's 2minutesgo writing exercise. 

Casting colours

It starts…
The beginning casts colours in the light
Sacred thoughts transcend the real
Aglow in the dry heat of summer,
A kaleidoscope of raw emotion
Spun tightly, wrapped in the soundless
Instinct killing itself nightly,
Caught in a web it seeks to unravel.
Locking the heart within a keyless box
It feels like time has no end.
Choices lost in a cloud of nothing,
This trivial heart knows no distancing,
Seeking self-destruction in a second
Of perfection it can never hope to find.

It ends…
The falling triggers memories of dark
Where the spider creeps in strewn dust
Waiting for the silent stuttered scream –
These things born of bloody nightmare.
Screwing the twisted seeping heart,
Shadows awake from the silent walls
Where hands seek to drag and play.
He builds a fortress across these skies
Inside the beat of a solitary star
Sent adrift where the dreaming lies,
Echoing the curved moon’s absent lover
Here to stay til the dawn tide roars –
A subtle kiss is the only thing he knows.

copyright Vickie Johnstone, May 12, 2015

Flash fiction 19: Bitter guest

This one was written for Dan Mader's 2minutesgo writing exercise – the only thing managing to kick my butt into writing lately. 

Bitter guest

It’s only words. Letters conjured up. The he said, she said. Cast adrift, spiralling like smoke twisting from a cigar. Set adrift upon the breath, usurping the light. The story took on a life of its own until it walked and talked, ate, drank and laughed its way inside, taking root in the recesses of the mind. Never questioned. Never asked. It stayed for years. A willing guest, received with a warm welcome by those who hungered for it. It never wondered why. The story stayed, grew and rested, spilling its scented anger and bitter streak wherever it drifted. An invisible guest always chattering, nothing sensible escaped it. Only bile. But no one thought not to believe it as the smoke choked. 

copyright Vickie Johnstone, May 12, 2017

Friday, 30 December 2016

A Poem a Day (57): Hope

This one was written for JD Mader's '2 minutes go' challenge on his Unemployed Imagination blog. Head over and write whatever you like. This one took about 5 minutes, not 2.


I see the summit
For the earth never did shine
For me,
Living in the leaves
Shaking life’s waters,

I see the lines
For the circles never thrilled me,
Here waiting,
Sitting in the shadows,
Always on the brink
Of something

I see the colours
For the grey always stifled me,
Stealing breath
And the art of being
Something other, bigger
Than this

I see the day
For the night always feared me,
Just me,
Walking into soft light
Without the weight
Of expectation.

copyright Vickie Johnstone, December 30, 2016

Friday, 14 October 2016

Flash fiction 18: By the sea

This one was written for JD Mader's '2 minutes go' challenge on his Unemployed Imagination blog. Head over and write whatever you like. And, yep, writer's block is still an issue!!

By the sea

So here we are in this faint escape of light, where the skies promise to evolve into sparkling shimmers of incandescent waves, hurtling life across the oceans of the world. While we can only watch, enrapt, us mere mortals, wondering how the immensity of this darkening force came to be born. Toes building walls in the wet sand, damp hair scraping my cheek. This air tastes of salt, smells of the seaweed churning on the arms of the sea. I can spy it if I stare deeply enough. Licking my lips, I turn away as the wind tickles my face, eyes squinting, the rhythm laughing. She knows me, what I’m thinking, and she grins, uneven teeth showing. Wiping a stray hair to flick behind my ears, she kisses me lightly on the forehead, making me smile shyly back. Huddled together, we take in the ending of the day while we still can, the stars whistling upon its memory.

Copyright Vickie Johnstone, October 14, 2016

Friday, 26 August 2016

Flash fiction 17: Toes

This one was written for JD Mader's '2 minutes go' challenge on his Unemployed Imagination blog. Head over and write whatever you like. 

You can probably tell, from my lack of writing this year and, let's be honest, the last too, that I've got a writing block. I did a 6-week course recently to try to break it and began writing fiction again, but I've been lacking the dedication, inspiration and drive to keep going. I need a serious kick up the arse! I don't know if anyone reading this has experienced the same thing, but it's really not good. I've been starting to feel the writing itch lately and hope to get back into it - hoping the itch will stay a while. I know a block is all in the mind and you have to make time for writing. But anyway, here's hoping to get over writer's block... 

So, here's a little short something for JD's blog as it's one of the few things to give me an ass kick! :)


It doesn’t have to be this way. She said. To the lights dimmed to destruction. Graffiti thrown like a grenade to the wall. It’s the way. I know it. This year the summer never raised its eyes. Winter always. A cloud of grey, ashen hope. A dark reflection.

I cry in the same way as ever. This lie reverts in twists and scales, like a snake, a rebirth in the slant of the ache that wrestles me. My toes hover restless on this earth, the dirt seeming to melt beneath my gaze. It shifts, caressing my pale skin, spiky grass tickling. They seem out of whack, toes. Sticking out too far. My mother always says it doesn’t have to be, but they are. I can see them.

As I walk, the ocean grows. Salt bristles on my lips. I relish the sting of it, the knowing that I am and can always be, here, walking, beside myself, lingering to check my toes. Still there. A hair slashes my cheek and I giggle. The sound cuts the silence, yet the white birds cut it already, I know, soaring as they are, seeking to reach the cotton wool puffs of cloud, always slightly too far. Always out of reach.

I catch another hair, feel its texture between my fingers, let it slide away, and the summer I can reinvent in my head. Play with the idea until it’s here, as I do with everything I want, while my toes sting, almost turning blue in the cold. A seagull swoops, cries and soars, and I giggle, squinting at the dripping yolk of sun. 

copyright Vickie Johnstone, August 26, 2016

Saturday, 16 July 2016

Flash fiction 16: Finesse

Another one for JD Mader's #2minutesgo Friday challenge. Cheers.

There was day and there was night, and he preferred the in between, wandering unseen beneath the stars of his own making. These dreams we take as days to leave behind in suitcases stacked against the wall, treasured lest we forget the hours, the minutes, the seconds; the wealth of ages collapsing like dominoes at our backs, while the future beckons us forward with delightful whisperings. Among the leaves of time he finds himself laughing at life shimmering beneath the waves.

copyright Vickie Johnstone