On Line Writing Group

On line writing group, Clallam County, WA, including Port Angeles, Forks and Sequim

Swallow

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Swallow
by Angie Huckstep

For our third anniversary
my husband fed me
tidbits,
words,
bite-sized morsels hand-picked for me –
fat
inadequate
slut
worthless
useless
whore.

For dessert he’d saved a sentence
for me to savor.
Short, but succinct.
I’ve never loved you.
I washed these down with
a glass brim-full of pain.
It filled me,
heavy in my stomach,
weighing me down,
like rocks in my pockets.

On the day he pushed me, pinned me,
paralyzed me against the doorframe,
his eyes grew wild
and then went black.
His voice echoed hollow,
as if from the grave.
Open up, he said.
Fear did not go down easily.
It clawed at my throat,
grabbed at my chest,
threatening
to squeeze the life from me.

But nothing was as hard to stomach as shame.
Served nightly on my dinner plate,
shame stared,
daring me to acknowledge it.
He sat across from me,
daring me to defy him.
So with eyes squeezed shut
I swallowed shame whole.
It fought back,
knowing at me from the inside
with its knowledge
of pale green bruises
excuses made
blind eyes turned.
It gurgled and bubbled,
keeping me from sleeping.

The conspired, those three –
pain, fear, and shame –
meeting in the dark, plotting.

They gathered together and became anger,
self-righteous and indignant.
They rattled my ribcage,
raging for release,
draining me of energy to resist,
leaving me without spirit to fight.
They raged night and day
until finally I screamed,
“Stop!
It is enough!”

On the day I left him,
pain, shame, and fear travelled with me.
I carried overstuffed baggage
onto a plane bound for unknown tomorrows.

As the plane took off,
pain curled up very small
and rolled off the tip of my nose.
it landed on the head of the baby
held close to my chest.
As I watched, it sparkled, turned to sunlight,
and became strength.

Pudgy innocent fingers of a two-year old
reached up and wiped fear
from my cheek,
leaving in its place the warm reassurance of comfort.

And as shame escaped,
it rolled down my face,
gaining momentum
until it fell,
and morphing midair,
transformed into a translucent swallow,
took wing,
and flew.

All anger left my body.
In its hollow, empty absence,
I breathed in my children,
and I swallowed their love.

Written by onlinewritinggroup

May 4, 2011 at 4:53 pm

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Quotation

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The role of a writer is not to say what we all can say, but what we are unable to say.
~Anaïs Nin

Written by onlinewritinggroup

May 3, 2011 at 7:46 am

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Flash Fiction. “Miss Posey”

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Miss Posey

Tiffany Posey was angry. She didn’t like all the negras she had to be around when she shopped at the Winn-Dixie in Limestone. She kept thinking how they were all over her little town nowadays. She and her church friends always talked about them, accusing them of breaking the window on her car, and stealing tomatoes out of her garden. She hated them, and made a contorted face if one of them was walking or shopping near her and her friends.

Tiffany had heard the tornado warnings earlier that night, so she rushed out to get a few supplies and some cat food.

The sound of a speeding freight train coming down the main street rattled all the windows in the store. The handful of customers dashed for cover. Tiffany was standing by the meat counter, and just as the front of the store was blown in taking the counters and heavy cash registers and magazine stands with it, the lights went out, and a big hand grabbed her shoulder and pulled her backward into the cooler. She said “Oh, my God”, but there was no other sound, other than the crashing and ripping of the wind outside the heavy door of the cooler.

She could hear someone or something moving near her, but no words were spoken. She asked, who are you?” “You pulled me into the cooler, and the ceiling came down, just as the door closed. You saved my life. Praise God. Thank you. Thank you.”

Thomas Williams, the newest black man to join the Winn-Dixie staff, was working as an apprentice meat cutter and wrapper. He had just been carrying a tray of wrapped steaks to the cooler, when the tornado came crashing down the street. He grabbed the shoulder of the woman in front of him, and pulled her into the cooler.

4-30-2011

310 words

Written by onlinewritinggroup

April 30, 2011 at 2:06 pm

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Test post of image in email body

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Writing Group

Written by onlinewritinggroup

April 28, 2011 at 12:43 am

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Posting by email

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Site participants can post by email, just as I am doing now with the special email address. tp.

Written by onlinewritinggroup

April 28, 2011 at 12:40 am

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