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  • Writer's pictureJL Nash

What happens if you cross a chalice with an apple?

I know, both have the potential to be poisonous. I wonder whether you'd have infinite wisdom and longevity? I've clearly been reading too many antiquated stories recently. I've got a challeng ahead of me. There is a masterclass I'm thinking of going to - tonight. It's a masterclass for acting. I know it's the last thing I want to do, act, but it might give me some insight into character development. It's with that guy Jay Laga'aia, from Play School and other tv things. If I'd had a week to think about it I might have said no, but I've only got a few hours and it's catching me in an usually receptive mood.

Wrote a weird flash fiction this morning about anger and shame. Not sure if it's publishable yet. I completed the Quarter Crazy Poetry Marathon on Sunday. (12 hours of one poem per hour to a prompt). I'm pleased with ten of them as first drafts. They'll change in time but it's always lovely to have good drafts, they are my road map.

Still playing Mahjong on a regular basis. Still missing Nanna, of course. I have a phone alarm set to 7am. The time to call her. I can't bring myself to remove it even though she is no longer here so it rings me everyday except Sundays reminding me of a good time to chat with her, after she usually had been drinking a large glass of something or other alcoholic. Always in a good mood and always laughing together. Nearly every chat was filled with laughter, for years. I guess it all feels so close because last Sunday I discovered a friend has started palliative care and she said goodbye. A clever, fascinating, funny, kind woman. Although I've not known her too deeply, I was moved by her acceptance of her own end of life.

I'm afraid I'm more of a 'do not go gentle into that good night' kind of lass. I hope I will still be rage-raging 'against the dying of the light,' even when I'm old. As The Incredible String Band sang in the year of my birth, 'Each moment is different, from any before it, each moment is different, it is now'. I like the idea of the next moment being different with endless possibilities. It's like when I'm stuck in a story. I ask myself what next and I think of the most bizarre or whacky consequence possible. Life is like that. It's only predictable by choice. Like tonight, going to an acting workshop. That's a completely whacky consequence of an email I received this morning, and I will be completely out of my comfort zone. I could have chosen to stay at home, resting after work. But I'm filling these moments with memories and learnings.

Do you fancy reading a couple of my first drafts? You do? AWWW, Thanks. Here are two. Enjoy.

1 Frangipani

I’m in my mind again

It’s where I like to live

And I have the choice of two

Although there’s never really a choice

Just the realisation that I’m here again

The frangipanis on the trees are not white and yellow

But herald a splash of orange and pinks

We never know which colours will rise from the stumps

You plant around the gardens

Til they are there, here in view

You see me

Detached from reality

Trying so hard to be predictable

You never know which colours

I’ll be bringing forward

You work tirelessly to plant and nurture

I feel every inch the mulch around my toes

The dog dug me up

I have broken away from the garden

I’m in my mind again.

2. Ghost

You have a ghost

She said after she had seen a bag

Fall from the highest shelf

Where it had been

Squeezed in tight

I don’t mind

I said after brief consideration

Imagining it to be a muse

A herald of good fortune

A voice in my ear

It’s trapped

She said once I had finished

Talking not taking any notice

Of her face on the screen

Over there in South Carolina

How can you tell

I said not wanting to ridicule

The possibility I did not believe

In spectres or spirits

Especially not divined long distance

I can dowse your house

She said I know where

The water comes from

I can release that entity

So they will not become unhappy

An unhappy ghost

I said thinking all ghosts

Must surely be unhappy

To be stuck on this planet

After serving their time

It will spoil your opportunities

She said seriously

I can help it move on

To a happier place

From here, over Zoom.

Not wanting to offend

I said with some reluctance

We could meet in the following week

Where I would allow her to dowse

My house from a distance.

Well, hello

I said when a photograph

Edged itself off the shelf

Noting our fleeting friendship

Was due for a happy ending

I need a spirit level

I thought to myself

To measure the angles

The slope and the

Intentions of an unhappy ghost

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