That Morning, Ingrid, SST11, 1st draft

9 Jun

That morning: the girl

 

“I will kill, I will kill…”

I looked outside and saw the frog from the pond next door whispering these words

So I shut the window because it was kind of creeping me out.

I went to get breakfast,

greeted my mother who looked like a ripe peach that morning

Then got into my car to drive to town

I ran some errands

When I returned, I went through the gate to the back garden

Then I saw her there, my mother, lying faced down

In a red Atlantic on the grass.

How unusual,

no one could have looked through their windows yet.

 

That morning: the toad

 

The girl didn’t acknowledge me.

She should have. Her expression was so nonchalant

She has no idea of her guilt

and this weaved me into my torment,

made us one being.

She drove over my love’s body,

No one should ever have to see a loved one like that.

She will atone.

 

That morning: the child

 

In the mornings, I play with the toad in the garden

I haven’t seen his friend in a while

They seemed to be good friends

I think he loves her

More than my parents seem to love each other.

This morning I had to call him

but after a while, he came under the fence

and hopped towards me.

I sat crossed legged on the floor

and cupped my hands in front of me for him to climb up.

He hopped into my hands

 

It felt like we’d been sat there for a long time

This isn’t how we usually play

While he was in my hands

I saw nothing but kaleidoscope colours.

Then he decided to go about his day

Leaving some old seeds behind in my hands.

 

I got up walked into next door’s garden

went through the back door

Climbed on a chair

And dropped the seeds into the granola.

Then I went back through to my garden

ran my fingers through the pond water

And went to play in the sand.

 

That morning: the mother

 

I have a lot to do this morning

I looked out the window

Saw the sky looked like a pink and blue tiger

I quickly got dressed so I could get outside

Start work on the car while in the midst

of something spectacular.

The tiger disappeared, the air started to open my pores

I know my daughter will be awake soon.

I went back inside to wash my hands and

at the same time she came down the stairs,

mumbled something and left.

This was typical for her, she’ll be back soon.

I went upstairs to have a shower

Then dressed in a brick red t-shirt and

some baggy jeans before tying my hair up.

I went downstairs and poured out some granola

with soya milk and relaxed into a chair.

 

After a few spoonfuls, I started to feel nauseous

So I got up to check the date on the milk.

Mistake. Everything around me started to warp and spin.

Water. I grasped onto the kitchen counter

a desperate attempt to stay upright

then dragged myself

threw myself

over the sink

turned on the water,

then it started happening.

For some reason

I was still seeing specks of engine oil on my skin

they grew into thick blots and began boiling

and this is when I started screaming

arm in water, pain not subsiding.

I glanced out the window behind the sink

and saw my mother

who has been dead for five years

standing in the garden.

She beckoned for me to come outside

Her face more accepting than it ever was,

making me almost choke on the longing.

I stumbled along the counter to the back door

and went through to get a better look at her.

At this, her face changed and she shook her head

Before miming a finger going across her throat

I felt warmth pouring down from the new wound on my neck.

 

That morning: the girl continued

 

My gaze shifted from the windows to the floor.

In the corner near the flower bed,

I saw the toad from this morning.

Curiously I walked in its direction

It bravely sat there facing me

I stopped in front of the toad and stomped on it six times.

 

I didn’t realise that the neighbour’s child had been watching.

His little face red, his lips trembling

Every effort to barricade his tears.

I walked over to him

Crouch to his level and try to tell him it’s okay

It felt like I’d been crouched there a long time

All I saw was kaleidoscope colours

Then he turned and walked away

As if nothing happened.

 

I stood up turned around

and saw my mother on the grass in a red Atlantic.

I collapsed to my knees, felt a stone dig into my knee

Making me fall onto my side.

Everything hit me like being booted in the face with New Rocks

I remember doing this to her,

How could I have done this to her?

I love her,

I loved her.

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2 Responses to “That Morning, Ingrid, SST11, 1st draft”

  1. MouthyPoets June 9, 2016 at 11:23 pm #

    I love the details like “being kicked in the face by New Rocks” and the description of the mother looking like a ripe peach. Also the perspective of the mother, when the grandmother appears in the garden was genuinely scary, and the line “her face more accepting than it ever was” adds to this. I wouldn’t change any of that description because its great. Also when the girl, who seems very serene, being quite calm about her mother lying on the grass, suddenly stomps on the toad it seems more disturbing than anything else in the poem. The ending ties it off neatly but its unclear exactly how the girl has done this to her mother, but this can be open to speculation. My only criticism would be that the story of the frog being run over and the toad seeking revenge is a little unclear so people might not understand it when hearing the poem only once. I wasn’t sure if the girl had doomed her mother because she had run over the frog, or if there was some other reason, and I personally prefer there being some other reason that is open to interpretation for the girl to have hurt the mother, just as the mother has hurt/angered the grandmother.
    Hope this helps 🙂
    Alex

  2. MouthyPoets June 10, 2016 at 1:29 pm #

    Hi
    First off I absolutely love the story you are trying to portray like the whole narrative and theres some really beautiful descriptions in here, like the pink and blue tiger. I also loved the stanza of the mother because of how you built up the tension and the shock of seeing the engine oil.
    However, I’ve got to admit I find it a bit confusing. I lost the overall narrative from just reading it once because there are many different aspects to the story that are told in a slightly disjointed order that may be difficult to follow from just experiencing it once.
    I think hearing it in performance can make it clearer depending on staging and voices used but a suggestion for editing is to take out all the details that don’t add specifically to the story in order to simplify it for a listening audience. For example the stanza about the neighbours garden and the granola confused me because I didn’t understand its importance?
    Really looking forward to hearing this in person,
    Kat

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