You walk out the door closing it respectfully behind you but you’ve forgotten – my body thinks it’s yours.
First my intestine loops out of my stomach and I give a last sigh as my lungs follow, falling to the floor and disappearing under the door. My liver and kidneys go next, trailing strings of veins and arteries and muscle and tongue and teeth until I’m a slumped shell of skin and bones, a smile and two hungry eyes left to stare the door down.
I can’t think – my mind’s gone.
BIO: “I’m Nat Parsons and although I’m a short story writer primarily, poetry is special. I graduated last year with a degree in creative writing, and currently I’m working on getting into the publishing industry. Somehow.”
2nd Place ‘Thoughts a Rye’ by Kenneth Yeates
Can I have a whisky please?
Says to the barman.
A horse walks into a bar.
Why the long pause?
A bear walks up to the bar.
It’s not funny when you can’t get your thoughts in order.
And the bar man says.
A pint …………………of lager please.
We don’t serve spirits.
Why the long face?
A ghost goes up to the bar.
BIO:“I am a teacher who first set foot in a classroom in 1971. I now teach in south Essex and enjoy the classroom more than ever before. My family is essential for me. They keep me anchored and away from the feelings expressed in some of my poems. I began to write in an effort to clear out negativity. I recommend this to anyone feeling down; it worked for me.”
1st Place ‘My Unforgettable Fire’ by Neil Slevin
“Have you ever tried to remember something that you’ve never remembered before?”
his face asked curling into a mischievous grin, like a magician’s goatee laughing at its master’s double chin.
Incredulous I thought he was joking, but soon realised he was not; he wanted me to summon something I couldn’t remember – something that I’d a long time ago forgot’…
So with my mind unleashed (like the good Catholic boy that I am), I looked away from him into the distance, in hot pursuit of the bait thrown from his hand;
I wandered off, all alone in my dark, scratching at the lower backdoors of unvisited memoirs, resisting the soul-consuming urge to bark.
Before pawing at the contents of my mind’s toilet-bowl mixture, as around they swirled, all refusing to unfurl;
resorted to gnawing at my still-beating heart.
Up all night I played with the frayed edges of images long before torn apart, chasing the cars speeding away from me with far too much of a head start.
All this before, finally, I stopped, exhausted, and slowly made my way home:
no longer was I a foolish dog of the night, seeking the bitter reward of a juicy bone.
Memory-chasing I remembered that I accept what I can remember; that I want to forget what I’ve come to regret;
that my memory is a fire full of burning embers, some aflame, some smoking, some dying:
it’s one I can’t relight or re-set…
So after a long pause I met his unsmiling eye, his star-twinkle now buried deep and within, “No”, I said, forgetting myself – wishing I could forget him.
BIO: “Neil is an M.A. in Writing student at the National University of Ireland, Galway, who writes for The Sin (N.U.I.G’s student newspaper), and reports for ILAS (a campus centre providing community-based initiatives for the local area). He is sixwordmemoir.com’s Memoirist of the Month for October 2015.”