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The Unseen

by Deewrites 

Posted: 10 November 2017
Word Count: 587

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I see shadow puppets playing games across the ceiling:  Colourless outlines of a flat bush rocking with the breeze out there, somewhere and something darting across: perhaps a bird.  Then colour appears.    A neighbour must have a red car.  It reflects a feint glow onto the ceiling before the engine goes silent.  It seems there is little else to see; the ceiling and the very top of three walls.
I can’t move much or manage to see lower.  I can’t look through a window at life.   I am locked in the rectangle of a ceiling.
Someone else is in this room.  His voice is almost continuous; waffle, waffle, but he doesn’t seem to care when I speak.  Now he is telling me to call him, email or text but I am right here and he won’t come over.
Kids are running around upstairs, chasing each other.  There is rapid bumping and occasional thud.
Cars whoosh along a nearby road and someone is passing close to the window, laughing before booming out in a foreign tongue.  I try calling to him but my voice is weak.  His voice fades away down the street.
I am not sure why they are holding me here.  I’m bursting and will need the toilet soon.  I try to sit up again but I am restrained and drugged and tired. 
I call out to my captors; “Why have you tied me down in this bed?”
The voice in the room won’t answer.  He is on the phone to someone and does not care about me.
At last, my sister’s face appears.
“Are you still listening to the radio?”
I tell her I don’t know but she has to stop the kids charging around upstairs and I need to be untied to get to the toilet. 
 “You can’t walk, dad.”  
Now she is playing stupid.  Do I look like dad?  Now I know my sister is involved.
I warn her that I am going to tell everyone about this.
She disappears and I listen to the children playing.  I should be allowed to play.
I think I drifted off but now I smell breakfast.  It is sizzling in a pan and ready to melt the marge in someone’s sandwich.   The voice in the room has stopped, but I am not alone.
I sense that someone is in the doorway.  There is a feint noise, like clothes rubbing against each other.  Is that a thief?  I remain quiet.  Perhaps they have not seen me.
Then I hear a child say good morning to her grandfather.  He doesn’t answer, so I call her over.
“Psst!  Can you help me out of bed?”
“Don’t be silly!  You have been busy for years and years and have to rest now.  You won't be with us much longer!”
“Oh.  No worries!”
 Well I am glad this is only for a while.  They should let me out. 
I am not sure why I said those words to the girl.  I just know they were no throw-away comment.
Now something feels different.  The shadows are still.  No sounds.  No cooking smells and I can’t feel the sheets. 
Time has paused.
Then everything ever seems to come into this moment.   
Every taste, sight, smell, touch, feeling and thought come at once.  Everything that has ever happened; from my first infant scream to those last words "no worries," everything ever known is being pulled into this speck of time; gushing into a collapsing moment. 
Inside this black hole, it is extremely bright.

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Comments by other Members

NGwriter at 12:37 on 10 November 2017  Report this post
Love the last line. Really good imagery, Dee. An excellent read. Only one thing I picked up on - spelling of faint was incorrect. I really enjoyed this. 

Deewrites at 12:51 on 10 November 2017  Report this post
Thanks Natalia.  (I seem to have made the error twice).

V`yonne at 16:37 on 10 November 2017  Report this post
That held me from the first line which is a great hook. It's nicely described and it preserves the tension throughout to that lovely last image. I wish it might be so.

Cliff Hanger at 19:55 on 10 November 2017  Report this post
Really engaging. Great sense of place and drama. The style really matches the content. Thoroughly enjoyed it.


Deewrites at 17:24 on 11 November 2017  Report this post
Much appreciated.  Of course, I am guessing in the last line.

V`yonne at 11:50 on 12 November 2017  Report this post
I thinkl the last line is more of a metaphor. Death seems like a black hole to us, something nobody can escape, but nobody knows what happens to energy when it enters a black hole and it's like that for death too. So for me it was a sense of wonder at the end. I liked that.

Bazz at 16:04 on 12 November 2017  Report this post
you've captured a lot of emotion and tension here, duncan. the world just out of sight, the confusion and deterioration
of death. the rush and collapse of the end is really poetic, the mind sparking out like an almost cosmic event, ambiguous but striking. so much to ponder in so few words, well done.

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