I am a ghost. It’s best to get that out in the open, right away, for the benefit of those persons who still support the notion that the dead cannot possibly communicate with the quick. I am neither the walking nor the talking dead; but I am of the writing dead, whom living “literary types” resent for they feel that they have enough competition in their field as it is.
While thumbing through a magazine in my doctor’s office waiting room I came across a picture of a unique contemporary structure, sitting on a hillside by the sea. It was like nothing I had ever seen before, but it sparked memories of my past. At eighty years of age, I must have many? I hope I do—I think—I’m not sure anymore.
Leila Allison has picked out a spooky tale this time for re-incarnation. She has suggested Simple Pleasures and this is what she said:
The sickness in this world continues.
Our thoughts are with all those involved with the atrocity in Sri Lanka.
“You going to the disco on Friday?”
“I dunno. The last one I went to was really bad. I ended up sitting in the toilets waiting for my mum to get me.”
“Why don’t we go? We can meet up before and go there together. It might be good, and we can leave if it’s not.”
“Eh, all right. You come over to mine, like, an hour before. Okay?”
I’m thinking about shaving my beard but leaving the mustache and listening to a break-up album in bed. My friend Glenn says I should sleep with the first five girls I see and if I still miss her after that, then maybe I’m in love and that’s not so bad. But he has a girlfriend and his dad’s a surgeon.
They started with darts because they could, because Mom and Dad were gone again, off selling clouds to mountains that didn’t need them.
‘This is Britain! My fuckin’ Britain!’ shouted Gleeman as he slammed his ham-sized fist into his wife’s stomach. ‘Things are different now! There’ll be no more of your lip and no more of your equality. We don’t do that shit in my country no more!’ He stuck out his oily hand. ‘Gi’s it!’
Nakul Pandey sat staring at the frail corpse that had been his father. A group of mourners in various shades of white sat in vigil. Suffocating floral bouquet notes arose from the garland-draped cover of the coffin cooler in which the corpse had been kept as the mourners waited for Nakul’s older brother, Vipul, to come from the UK and perform the last rites. Through the huddled fog in his head, Nakul observed the cable snaking from the cooler to the switchboard and anticipated that someone might trip over it. He tripped over it when he got up to take a call. A few hands were raised in alarm, “oh-oh” and “watch it” and “careful” were exclaimed, all garbed in the tone and pitch appropriate to mourning. You wouldn’t want to wake the dead especially if the dead was his father, Jeetendra Pandey.
Leila has dug out another super piece from the dungeons. This time it’s from way back in 2015 and it’s a dark and disturbing little story. This is what she said: