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Life seen and Imagined- ‘story one’.

November 23, 2011
To explain what the below is- I carry round with me a small, black moleskin notebook and have started to really notice people, passer-bys, a few seconds glance at the odd stranger who seems interesting for whatever reason and I’ve noted down some of these people, just some scribbled sentences describing them. From there, I’ve imagined them as if they were characters in a story and thought about what kind of person they could be and placed them into a fictional context, writing just the start of their story.
The lady below is created from me waiting for a train on Saturday 12th November 2011. In my notebook, I have put..
‘Rushed air,
You can feel the collective human energy throbbing in the air, bated and ready for something.
The thunderous trains vibrate beneath my feet.
Everybody here has a purpose, intent, a will to get somewhere and that creates a certain kind of atmosphere.
-Lady character, pleated white silk dress just below the knees, respectable and classy, pale luminous skin, bobbed wavy hair, glittering green diamond pattern on top of dress. Straight ahead selecting a drink in the shop as I sip my hot chocolate and wait for the train to arrive at platform one. Gone from sight then there is a bit of a commotion on one of the platforms, the lady is running with a guy in a suit, laughing and shrieking as they jump onto the train just as the doors shut. In the curved porthole of the train door window they are gathered in a group with another couple, their own world of four, talking and giggling amongst the hushed tones of the packed train, the prospect of a fun night ahead making them glow, marking them out from the grey tones of the carriage.’

I watched the white silk plunge and then nestle itself against my translucent skin, blending material and flesh into one pale hue. I loved the feel of this dress, it’s delicacy creating a fragile web of stitches and thread that covered and melted into me like a shadow. It was almost there but not quite, whimsical and romantic, it demanded to be looked at a second time so that it could be appreciated and admired as it was created to be. Oh the lines of similarity between me and this dress, I was this dress and this dress was me.

Recently a friend had gushed that I was a modern day ‘Daisy Buchanan’, graceful, charming, sought after but I knew the hidden reason for her comparison was that most people thought I was shallow and careless, absorbed in myself, hemmed in by my own self-centered perception of the world. I recognised this but didn’t know it enough to want to change. I can only be me.

I glanced the ghostly image of my face in the cold refracted light of the store’s refrigerator
 pane and admired the sharp cut of my cheekbones and the blood red of my made up lips. I had worn the same shade of deep rouge on my lips  since I was fifteen and now they were permanently stained, the natural colouring lost forever beneath the waxy veneer of years of pretending to be something, anything other than my real self.

My hand reached and grasped the cool glass of a bottle of mineral water,
“Hurry up Flick, the train will be here in a minute”
” I know, I know I just need to pay”

Ahead of me was a queue of two, the lady being served was fumbling in her purse for the right change, getting more flustered she dropped some coins on the floor. She seemed nervous but she was going to make me miss the train, I quietly cursed her under my breath and willed her to get a move on.


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