The Water Seer by HMC

WSCover_Final_eBookChapter One

Saturdays in Burleigh: fresh coffee brewing on James Street, blue skies and golden sand, sand so hot you danced on it, Sadie calling out orders for fish and chips – yes this early in the morning, too – and the sea-salty air obliterating any aggravation from the work week.

Those were my favourite mornings, a time where I could forget death and just surf instead. Surfing was my temporary distraction, a way to calm my mind. It was my creative outlet. An artist painted, a writer wrote, and a surfer surfed. There’s the thrill of waiting for the lump, gauging the size and direction of the wave, readying my body – apprehension and adrenaline combined – and the wave lifting my feet. I block out the world. It’s just me and the wave. The board catches, the world falls away, and I stand. Gravity takes me. The wave knows what to do. It has a mighty energy of its own. For a moment, we dance. I don’t thrash and slash the water, I move with it. It’s the purest form of surfing, soul surfing, riding the rail with my longboard. It’s important to treat the wave with respect.

The other surfers stick their middle finger up if you drop in, but for some reason, I cop it more than most. I don’t know if it’s because I’m a girl, because I ride a long board, or both. Maybe it’s because I surf better than they do. But no one owns the waves. They own you. Continue reading

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GLB46 by HMC

 

hmc glb46 I knew the GLB46 Program was wrong. But I had a choice, be wrong, or lose my mind.

 

Nessy dragged me to the car. I couldn’t quite remember why I was angry at her, so I pulled in the opposite direction toward our waterside mansion where I’d rather be in front of my big-screen TV. Almost bowled her backward at one stage. Poor old girl. I was stubborn as an old nail, and I wasn’t coming out for her. Not today. My shows were on. She was making me miss my shows. San Tracey Murdock was about to shoot the bad guy, and he’d been aiming all season. Damned if I’d miss it. Damned woman!

‘Get in the car, you buggar!’ She pulled my arm. Strong grasp this one. I taught her that. Was all right to be a strong girl. Nothin’ wrong with being able to beat up the fellas. She pushed me toward the silver Mercedes. My fault she could handle me like Raggedy Andy. Some strange guy came over to us and helped Nessy put me into the passenger seat.

‘Who are you?’ I demanded.

‘I’m your driver. Harry. Harry Carmichael.’ He had a familiar face.

‘Harry’s been driving us for five years, Bill,’ said Nessy as she climbed in the other passenger-side door.

‘Where the hell’s Reggie?’ I demanded.

‘Shush! Have some respect,’ Nessy whispered harshly. ‘He died. And Harry’s his son, so be quiet and have some compassion.’

‘Oh,’ I said. Shame that was, Reggie being dead. Good guy he was. That’s why Harry was so familiar – looked like his dad. Didn’t matter he’d been driving me for five years. Some days I didn’t even recognise my own face, let alone my bloody driver.

Nessy strapped herself in. ‘Now, Bill, you need to be on your best behaviour. Do you hear me?’

‘Stop treating me like I’m seven, Nessy! I’m bloody-well 66 years old. You treat me with some respect, woman!’

‘You’re 74, Bill Bins. Keep your voice down.’ She was calmer than usual, believe you me. Nessy wasn’t called Nessy for nothin’. It came from her name Vanessa, but it also came from her brothers when she was knee-high, and she stomped around like the Lochness Monster.

‘What’s going on?’ I studied her close. ‘You takin’ me to a doctor?’

‘I’ve already told you, and if you can’t remember, then shuddupaya face and read the paper.’ She threw the Sydney Herald at me, and glanced out the window, as we pulled out the front gates. The paper said April 8th, 2015. Geez, time flies. Continue reading

Something’s in my Head by HMC

Public domain image, royalty free stock photo from www.public-domain-image.com

Running – something I can’t see,

I feel it chase, envelope me.

Falling now, then I’m down,

 it comes back.

Back around.

Fill it with something or other,

Shove it down like bread and butter,

Chase the pain with a shot of Vodka,

It comes back round, and so why bother?

Bottle up, shut it up, push it down, hide away.

Cut it out, butt it out, smoke it up, buy today.

Hoard it quick, take a sip, roll around in someone’s bed.

Anything, anything, do anything – escape your head.

I run around this mouse contraption, relying on this mad distraction.

A song and dance it doesn’t cease, so I can pretend that I’m at peace. Continue reading

Tech Death 2040

candle-in-the-dark

BILLIE GAZED AT THE STUMP where her hand used to be. It was an old wound, yet it still ached when it caught her eye. Her memories tended to blur together, but not this one. The horror story behind the loss made it seem fresh and painful, a trauma that refused to heal, even with therapy sessions and several daily shots of Jonny, of which Billie was sitting at her table slamming back now … with her left hand. The warm liquid was giving her a nice little buzz.

Missing a hand was like missing an old friend, one that left long ago, and would drift in and out of memory forevermore. Maybe it was the difficulty in the everyday task of kneading dough the way she once did, with two strong hands, taking for granted the punching and pushing, the simple strength of forcing something soft to soften even further under pressure. She made bread with one hand now, like many others went about their day attempting to complete tasks to the same degree at which they used to, and never quite getting there. The postman and taxi drivers who learned to drive, teachers and students learning to type one-handed like they did in primary school, lawyers, stockbrokers, supermarket check-out-chicks, all a little more encumbered and heavy with the burden of life. Then there were those who had dared to purchase tech to replace their hands. Craziness. Continue reading

Ring around the Rosie by H.M.C

Hayley MerelleRIPPLES OF WIND STREAKED the long grass, and tall pines stretched into an orange and purple sky. Rosie shivered and the wind chased her as her small bare feet beat upon the earth past old fence posts and tangled barbed wire. Her back yard was the Australian bushland.

Black smoke from her farmhouse chimney billowed into the coming night.

‘Rosie!’ Mama called.

‘Coming!’ She ran full pelt through the grass and hoped no unseen sharp thing got her. A stick once wedged itself so deep into her foot that the doctor had to be called to remove it.

The house glowed from the fire in the hearth and Rosie’s mother hurried around the kitchen preparing the evening meal. It smelt delicious. ‘Set the table, will you, darling?’ Rosie took out four plates, four sets of knives and forks, and salt and pepper. She placed each item in the exact spot she did every night – carefully spacing the distances between objects. Continue reading

Catalina

walking_away___last_deviation_by_seryia_uchina

Catalina by H.M.C

I’d climb in her window at night. Sounds boomed through the house and we’d listen. Sometimes it was her mum yelling at some poor shmuck she’d brought home to soothe the loneliness. Some feral from the pub down the road who had it comin’. I’d hold Cat tighter on those nights and I could feel the pain resounding through her body. She’d stiffen, but act like it didn’t affect her. Maybe it was more embarrassment than anything else.

Cat’s dad was long gone – another bruise in the long-line of life beatings she took. It was just another thing that should’ve turned her into an ungrateful punk of a teenager, but it never did. She should’ve been a right bitch, really. Most chicks our age were.

We used to think that no one could understand how deep our love was for one and other – like we were the only ones in the Universe. Her face lit up like no one else’s. That’s the beauty of first love, there’s a passion and yearning so new and vulnerable, falling from grace feels like death.  It’s laughable to think back now at how dramatic we were. At the time, we were always right.

Other girls would talk to me. Cat hated that. She was jealous. Imagine a beautiful girl thinking I’d leave her. I told her every day she was perfect– remind her she was all I’d ever want. Sometimes I got sick of it.

Continue reading