I’m Not Mad
They think I’m mad,
an aged mind that’s
simply given up.
They talk to me slowly,
check I’m not cold and
feed me like a baby.
I gurgle and dribble,
but I’m not stupid,
just confused and lonely.
Here they come again,
tucking in my blanket,
smiling but not smiling.
One day soon,
when I can remember the words,
I’ll tell them to stop.
“How exactly does it work then?”
“Easy really. As soon as we get hold of the babies me and mum freeze-dry them. This keeps them nice and safe while we travel from one market to another.”
“Doesn’t it kill them?”
“Course not. Makes them go hard and slows down all their vital organs, but they’re still alive. They stay like that until they get warmed up. Mind you does mean we have to sell them quick. Can’t afford to have them hanging around in the sun for too long. Once had one wake up midway through dad’s pitch. Didn’t half make a noise with all his crying. Scared a lot of punters away. Lost a lot of money that morning. Anyway, what have you got?”
“Twins. Only six weeks old. Mum can’t afford more kids. What’ll you give me for them?”
Originally a story for Angela Goff’s ‘VisDare’ prompt.
TIME TO BREAK FREE?
As a fledgeling teenager, I dreamt of being a rebel. But between the rigid Presbyterian church we attended every Sunday and a father not afraid to wield his thick leather belt, I learned to conform.
Now, as a law-abiding, middle-aged man I pay my taxes. I don’t drink or smoke and have never taken drugs or cheated on my wife. Rules and regulations; bylaws and petty bureaucracy were made for people like me.
Hence my present dilemma. The arrow tells me to drive one way. So I do.
And I wonder if I will ever break free of this roundabout?
100-word story for Friday Fictioneers.
Picture courtesy of C.E. Ayr
I recently read a poem by Joe Moran called ‘Job Advert’ which I found highly entertaining. So I have taken the liberty of copying the style of this poem and have written a job advert for an Assistant Headteacher. The more serious parts were taken from an actual advert.
We are seeking to appoint
an exceptional Assistant Headteacher
from the start of the academic year.
You will have a track record
of outstanding classroom practice
and the ability to lead
improvement in academic standards
and student outcomes.
As a member of the SLT
you will play an important role
in the overall leadership
and management of the school.
In addition, you will have
one or more of the following attributes:
an ability to read minds,
a skin thicker than that
of your average rhinoceros,
a lack of empathy.
You will be able to
upset the majority
and satisfy the minority,
while at the same time
taking the blame for everything.
The capacity to annoy parents
with an ill-chosen turn of phrase
or a withering look,
would be an advantage.
Being able to ingratiate yourself
with governors, Ofsted inspectors
and the Headteacher
but not essential.
The post is for life
and you will begin on a salary
far lower than that of your predecessor
and with an inflated workload
and as an employer,
we are committed to valuing diversity.