Thursday, May 31, 2012

Fragments of War

The Western Front
Note: A Word Scrimmage is an event in which participants write or type as fast as they can for a set time limit with the aim of  increasing their writing pace. The text below is the result of a Word Scrimmage exercise and only typos have been edited.

In war and peace, they said and they lied. Alone he struggled to stay alive. His mind wondered off in many lost directions. And he tried hard, he tried hard to remember. She was all he could think of amid the noise, the blasts, the screams of pain, the blood. Her smile was an oasis. He remembered her so well, as if she were there beside him. When they held hands and walked down the apple tree lane at her parents’ villa and kissed by the balcony. And the screams kept interrupting his thoughts, and he ducked and stayed low for a minute while his commander yelled for them to step forward and run and kill. Lost in his thoughts he ignored the order, but someone kicked him on the ribs, and a shout of pain cut the air. She was his; he would never give her up. And they made plans to marry and have children and build a house with an apple tree lane in the garden where cats would roam the shadows. He remembered her smile, her blue eyes and the blood; the screams started getting mixed in the middle of his thoughts. He could not stay focused. He tried to run. His legs gave in every time he stood up, and more kicks to the ribs. He would kill that commander, one day. That commander was stealing her away from him. And the planes flew over their heads. Was he still alive? Were his comrades still alive? Was there any sense in all this? All he wanted was to see her… but his mind was getting confused. The screams, the screams killed her face more and more. He couldn’t remember well. She was starting to be a blur… He panicked. Not her, no, not her. He refused to lose her. Her eyes were grey and he could reach out and would not hold her hand. He reached for an apple and there would be none. The darned boot kicked him one last time on the ribs, but he didn’t move. He is dead, the commander said, dead as he can be. In his hand, he was clutching her photo, her smile and her blue eyes, alive.

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