Sunday, January 11, 2009

Entry #52

Vertigo
by Sara Nash


“If you leave, don’t come back.” That’s what she said.

The lone musician on the concourse plays Auld Lang Syne. Shifting my cello case in my hand, I nod to him as I step on the escalator. Up I go.

At the top, a decision. Past or future? Left or right? Safety or freedom? Past perfect or future indefinite? Which way is destiny, fate? Which way is love, happiness? Are they the same? To be or not to be? I have much less time to decide than Hamlet. Halfway there.

“If you leave, don’t come back.” The memory of the words gives me vertigo, forcing me to steady myself with the rubber rail. The first time she said it, she raged, throwing the ring back at me. The second time she said it, she wept.

My fingers brush the ring in my pocket, reassured that it’s still there, an expensive tether to reality. It’s a reminder that this nightmare is not a dream.

Eenie meenie miney moe. Catch a tiger by the toe… One potato, two potato, three potato, four… Desperation tempts me to let a playground rhyme decide. Maybe a coin toss. I’m not strong enough. I’m not brave enough. I’m not good enough. I’m running out of time.

I step off the escalator. Car horns and firecrackers drown the usual city sounds. My watch says midnight. A new year. Time to choose. This time, I make the bold choice.

19 comments:

Geraldine said...

Excellent! I really enjoyed reading this take on the prompt.

laughingwolf said...

perfect tale, sara :D

Lena said...

thats a great one,Sara! I really loved how you showed what is going on in his mind. So real. Great job!

JR's Thumbprints said...

"...an expensive tether to reality"

Nice way of saying "thee old ball and chain." But then again, it'd be pretty difficult getting on the escalator with that.

*~*{Sameera}*~* said...

That was beautiful!I liked his choice :)

harshad said...

great story...and the way uve shown his dilemma...really nice.

Leatherdykeuk said...

excellent :)

Sarah Hina said...

Fantastic writing, Sara!! Really loved this one.

You have a simple style, but that just makes your words more forceful. Intelligent portrayal of emotional vertigo. So happy to see him achieve some balance at the end with decisiveness.

Very well done! :)

K.Lawson Gilbert said...

skillfully written ;)

BrownPhantom said...

Good take on the choices . Well done Sarah !

Meghan said...

Eenie meenie miney moe. Catch a tiger by the toe… One potato, two potato, three potato, four… Desperation tempts me to let a playground rhyme decide.

LOL. I can relate to leaving decisions like that up to rhymes. Great job!

Catvibe said...

A really hard choice, one of the hardest. Excellent writing. I like the details, such as nodding to the musician playing Auld Lang Syne (of all things, metaphorical in itself aside from placing us on New Years Eve). Your nod to Shakesphere... I wish this character luck in his bold choice.

abouttothunder said...

Thank you everyone! You comments were a boost to my confidence when I really needed it. The photo was a great inspiration. I wish writing always came so easy.

Terry said...

Sarah, what a wonderfully crafted story! There are many precious jewels here. Each paragraph holds something special. I like this character, and want to follow him throughout the rest of the evening. Great job!

Aniket Thakkar said...

Excellent piece of writing, Sara! You seem to be just one "h" away in grabbing your book deal! :-D

Margaret said...

Excellent writing Sara.

Had me gripped all the way, didn't want it to end..

Ÿ∂ Μ Î ŋÎ said...

Everytime i have to take a decision i toss a coin, but i end up taking the bold ones eventually, because they make me feel powerful. I could relate with the story. Well written... :) :)

abouttothunder said...

Thanks again, everyone for the kindness of your comments and for taking the time to make them.

jason evans said...

Great job with pacing, entertainment value, technical skill, storytelling, and voice! And welcome to the Forties Club!!

Thanks for being a wonderful part of the contest.