Swaying Tree

Earlier today, I sat on a bench outside the church in the town where I work. It’s the same church where my uncle and auntie married back in the ‘80s. I was a page boy. I was naughty and misbehaved, pulling faces in all the photographs like a right little shit. It’s the same church where my mother had her handbag pinched one evening at some kind of kiddy event aimed at recruiting children into organized religion. I remember thinking at the time, where was God? Why didn’t God stop my mum’s handbag from being pinched? In the here and now, I sat on the bench smoking my cigarette, waiting for the Uber I’d ordered. I usually take the bus, but in a store opposite where I work, an explosion caused the police to cordon off the roads, meaning the buses weren’t running. No one died, just a bunch of blown-out windows and general confusion. Something to do with a gas canister. Or spontaneous combustion. Fuck knows. The police presence brought a crowd of gawpers hoping to see something terrible, but they were thoroughly disappointed. From the bench, I could hear the sirens, wailing like a screaming kid screaming for no reason. Opposite me, the doctors’ surgery loomed, and not far from that, the French restaurant I last visited some several years before on a date. It was hiding behind a swaying tree. The leaves falling from its branches came and danced around my feet reminding me of the romance of that time and how somewhere in my heart, the moment has never ended but instead keeps playing on repeat.

X and I: A Novel and A Journal for Damned Lovers on Amazon UK

X and I: A Novel and A Journal for Damned Lovers on Amazon US

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