The Air Ambulance

A screech of brakes and a soft thud are the only signs of the turmoil to come in the young boys life. His mother stands to one side with the policewoman’s arm around her, heads bent in together softly talking.

Men feel arms and legs and get out sharp needles calling out names long and confusing to anyone without a medical degree.

Gentle voices murmur around them discussing what they saw. Nobody looks at the driver hunched down at the side of the road, keys clutched tightly in his hand as he throws up in the gutter.

A policeman stands next to him, hand on his shoulder whilst quietly talking into the black box attached to his collar.

Under the wheels of the car is a small red bicycle. Handlebars bent and twisted and a wheel softly rolled to the kerb, wobbled a while and now lies alone and discarded.

The helicopter rises with instructions being sent on to the hospital ahead and the mother is led to a police car to begin the hospital chapter in her life.

The driver hunches down in the back of the police car, feeling sick, and headed for a year of nightmares, as the onlookers now nudge each other and point.

Only later would it emerge the child had just pedalled off the road, straight under the wheels of an innocent driver in the wrong place, at the wrong time.

Goodbye For Now

He placed another bag on top of the growing pile. He had accumulated too much over the years. Made leaving so much harder.

He could hear her crying quietly in the other room. She thought he could not hear her. He had not meant to hurt her but, when he had met Clarice he knew it was time to move on. Life here had been stifling over the past few years. He still loved her but……

Another soft wail emanated from the closed door. He sighed and took a breath. He had better say goodbye. He was not one to just text the ‘Farewell see ya later perhaps’, or the ‘It’s been good but now it’s over’

No. Even though he knew there would be tears and recriminations, he had wanted to face it. To draw the line under the past and to start again with Clarice.

His hand reached for the door and clasped the handle just as it swung wide with the small woman throwing herself through it and into his arms.

‘Please, please don’t leave me! Oh, I can’t bear this pain!’ she sobbed, big gasping breaths wracking her body. He held her close for a moment.

Sorrow and regret overtook him and he stroked her hair gently whilst imagining Clarice, smiling at him from the passenger side of his car. Oh Clarice. Was this right? Could he leave?

Gritting his teeth, primed for the inevitable, he calmly pushed her away from him and turned. Placing his coat over one arm and picking up a suitcase with the other he walked to the open front door and walked out to the driveway where Clarice stood waiting to finish packing the car.

Car packed they got in and drove off

Heart fit to burst with sadness she stood, hand half raised. She knew it was right. She had seen it coming, knew the signs. She would survive alone, she knew it deep down. He was old enough now and besides, he would be back to see his Mum soon.

Street Photography

I see you looking. Staring across the mall. Will you come over? Will you say hello to me?

People often stare at me. I am very beautiful in my way. Nothing can ever take that away from me. I was considered amazing once and was a model. Okay it was local but hey. I had my 15 minutes. Now I am here. Every day the same.

I see you looking. Oh, you pretend you are not. Embarrassed? You do not need to be. It is I who is embarrassed. It is I who have fallen. My clothes unfashionable were all the rage once. My hair…oh well, I do try and comb it but well, fingers just do not do it really.

The bruise? That is my business not yours.

I see you looking. Do you know I hate you? and I love you? I hate you because you do not come to me. I love you because it s not your fault I am here. I hate you because you will go home to your wife and kids, your dinner and your TV and I? Where I go is also none of your business. We keep it secret.

Did you know I had a job once? A husband? I drove a car and had a dog and a garden with roses. Do you even care? When you stop looking you will turn away and forget me as you never have known me.

You may remember the image of me. Only.

I was a model once. People looked at me and clapped and toasted me. Now they shoo me.

I see you looking. Through your lens. Taking a shot that you can show people so they feel pity for me and admiration for you.

I see you looking.