Tuesday, 23 October 2012


              Hey, everyone. I say everyone, I doubt anyone would wait this long for a new blog post. Let me apologise, first of all, for my absence. I've juggling the start of my 2nd year at university, as well as my birthday, and various other things. I also lost my USB stick, which had everything on it, so it's lucky I took a back up. 
              Without further ado, this was a piece  I wrote in my first year of Uni. I think the assignment that week was to write specifically about a colour. So I chose red, because of its many and varied connotations. (Anger, love, passion, aggression, prosperity (in India), power, etc.) 


Red; The colour of love, anger or passion. I would say that when I think of my mummy, I see red. Red because she loved me, red because she was a vibrant, confident and happy woman and red because it was the last colour I ever saw surrounding her; on the floor, ceiling, and everything in between. It drenched her clothes, caked her beautiful, pale, clear skin, when I found her it was mostly dry and her skin was already a greyish colour. The coroner said she’d been dead for at least 8 hours.
I was eight when I found my mummy lying dead in our kitchen. I’d been at a sleepover, wearing red pyjamas, and I got a lift home from one of the other boys’ mothers. She drove a red car. I should have known something terrible was going to happen that day, because of all the red, almost like every time the boy in ‘The Sixth Sense’ sees a dead person, there’s something red in the picture.
I let myself in, mummy keeps a key under the flower pot. I was wearing my denim dungarees and my favourite red T-shirt, the house was submerged in an eerie silence. Nothing has ever been as quiet to me as my childhood home when there was no sound of my mother singing in the kitchen.
‘Mummy?’ I waited for a reply. Perhaps she was in the garden. I dropped my red and black back pack at the foot of the stairs and kicked off my shoes. My feet made no sound as I moved forwards towards the living room, adding still to the deafening silence which should have been serene, but terrified me intensely.
I don’t remember our house having any colour inside it. In my head, it’s like a drawing somebody has done but not coloured in, the walls are white, the floor is white, the furniture and the ornaments are white. Perhaps because the red was so vivid that all other colours faded into oblivion.
It wasn’t the red I noticed first, though it should have been, it was the way her hair had fallen. It was as if she’d placed it herself, flowing around her shoulders and across the white floor tiles, slightly curled at the end, the way it always was. She didn’t have to ever do much to make herself look pretty, her lips were a beautiful colour, somewhere between rose and coral, and her cheeks were naturally dusted with the same shades. I remember people saying she was ‘a real English rose’.
I knelt down beside her, not knowing what to do. I did all the things she’d do for me when I was sick, so I put a damp flannel on her forehead and held her hand as I read her a story about ‘Whinnie the Pooh’ after a while, I thought that perhaps I should go and tell my neighbour that mummy wasn’t very well, and see if she could do something. I went and knocked at Mrs Hodge’s house, she lived next door and she and mummy used to drink cups of tea and laugh together.
I don’t really remember what Mrs Hodge looked like, except that she was shorter and tubbier than mummy. She had rosy cheeks all the time too, as if she’d been running up and down the stairs. And I remember her smiling. But she didn’t smile on that day, she screamed. Her scream scared me, but it alerted me to the fact that something was really, really wrong, and mummy probably wasn’t going to wake up and cuddle me anymore.
Mrs Hodge made a phone call, she sounded frantic, but at the same time she was trying to stay calm so that the person on the other end could understand what she was saying. The time between her hanging up the phone and there being a knock on the door seemed like hours; neither of us said anything, Mrs Hodge stared at the floor in what I think might have been disbelief, and I looked at her, wondering why she thought making a phone call was a good idea when the kitchen and mummy were all messy.
Eventually lots of people knocked on the door and all came in at once. Some of them went into the kitchen; two of them sat Mrs Hodge down and spoke to her quietly, offering her tissues. One of them came over to me.
‘Hey, champ, my name is Robert, can you tell me your name?’ Robert had squatted in front of me so that I didn’t have to look up at him. He had a kind face; dark hair, dark eyes, smooth looking skin. He smelt like coffee.
‘James’ I replied, meekly. Robert smiled, still looking concerned.
‘So, James, why don’t you tell me all about your day today?’ he crossed his legs and sat in front of me, and listened to everything I had to say. He wrote some of it down so that he could use it later on, he said.
It was dark by the time all the people left, they cleaned the kitchen after they’d taken lots of pictures of everything. They put mummy into a black bag on a table with wheels and put her into the back of one of the vans that they’d come to my house in. I was about to go back inside, because I thought it was probably nearly my bed time, but one of the policemen took me by the hand and said i couldn’t stay in the house by myself.
I don’t know where it was they took me that night; I never saw the outside of it. But it was cold, and everything seemed hard. I had to sit in a huge chair while the policeman told the lady behind the desk what had happened. After a while, another lady and a man in a white coat came out of a room, and invited me inside. They also talked to me for a long time and asked lots of questions; they weren’t nice like Robert.
I’m still not sure what this place is, but I’ve been here for twenty years. I wonder when they’ll let me go home…

 So, bit morbid. But the week before I wrote a comedic sci-fi piece, hence the polar difference. I'll put that one on soon! 

Thanks for reading! Laura 

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