Author Topic: It was a Saturday  (Read 10407 times)

Mark Hoffmann

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It was a Saturday
« on: March 30, 2018, 01:36:33 PM »
I started this a few days ago and finished it off today. It's had 3 revisions and the ending has changed a dozen times. So, I'm at that stage where I'm a bit bored with it. I'll probably re-visit sometime over the long week-end.

In the interim all comments very welcome.


NEW VERSION

To be a Boy

The two old women sipped sherry from schooners
and gossiped.

Maude was my nan's friend. She lived in a miasma
of cigarette smoke and wore trousers. Nan wore dresses
and smelled of peppermint.

On Saturdays I usually played with Garry,
but last week, after watching a TV western,
I took a rope from Dad's shed, and lynched Garry
    on the climbing frame.

My defence
"But he was an outlaw!"
and
"I was gonna cut him loose."
held no sway with the mothers.

As his mum dragged him away,
Garry looked over his shoulder
and smiled at me.

Yet here I was,
with old women for gaolers.

It was like Colditz.
No, it was like The Great Escape.

"Aunty Maude …
can I play with Biff in the garden?"

Behind the garage, I gave Corporal Biff a dog biscuit
and briefed him on the plan. A tunnel formed
with hands and paws
we crawled under the fence to freedom.

Later, I'd be in trouble for this,
but for now
we had Nazi guards to avoid.




ORIGINAL

It was a Saturday

The two old women sipped sherry from schooners
and gossiped. I watched the wild birds through the window.

Maude was my nan's friend. She lived in a miasma
of cigarette smoke and wore trousers. Nan wore dresses
and smelled of flowers.
 
Usually, on Saturday I'd be playing with Garry.
Last week, after watching a TV western,
I took a rope from Dad's shed, and lynched Garry
    on the climbing frame.

My defence
"But he was an outlaw!"
and
"I was gonna cut him loose."
held no sway with the mothers.

As his mum dragged him away,
Garry looked over his shoulder
and smiled at me.

Yet now,
I had old women for gaolers.

"You like looking at the tits, lad?"
Maude asked with a cackle. Nan laughed.
These days I know the bird names,
the tits and finches, the siskins and wagtails

back then, I scowled
aimed an imaginary catapult
and wondered
if Garry was as bored as I was.
« Last Edit: April 05, 2018, 10:25:18 PM by Mark Hoffmann »
Writing humour is the hardest thing since sliced bread.

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indar9

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Re: It was a Saturday
« Reply #1 on: March 30, 2018, 04:25:52 PM »
Maude was my nan's friend. She lived in a miasma
of cigarette smoke and wore trousers. Nan wore dresses
and smelled of flowers.
 
Hi Mark,

I love Maude, your description of her is much more vivid than that of Nan--smelled of flowers is no match for miasma of cigarette smoke. maybe at least name the flowers?

Usually, on Saturday I'd be playing with Garry.
Last week, after watching a TV western,

why not "I played with Garry"? I'm curious--what westerns did you watch in the UK?

I took a rope from Dad's shed, and lynched Garry
    on the climbing frame.


OK, now its getting really good. I liked being left hanging for those few lines before I was assured Garry wasn't dead. Tnen being jailed (sic) by the old ladies followed well. But from Nan's question on I was taken away from the scene on a seemingly random aside re/ sexual innocence--not certain that fits as an overall innocence that explains your friend's attempted murder. The aiming of the catapult suggests the N is unrepentant---nice touch.

On the whole I like the idea, I hope you post an alternate ending.


« Last Edit: March 30, 2018, 04:31:42 PM by indar9 »

Mark Hoffmann

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Re: It was a Saturday
« Reply #2 on: March 30, 2018, 11:18:45 PM »
indar

Thanks for reading and for your input.

Re flowers. Originally I wrote lavender. I changed to the generic because the boy probably wouldn't differentiate and it was the man's recollection of the boy's thoughts. I think I'm going to change it to peppermint.

Re playing/played. Yes played is better. I've fixed in my WIP draft.

Westerns: Bonanza, The Virginian, The High Chapparal and no doubt umpteen films. I'm not sure what pre-adolescent boys play now but in my day it was cowboys and Indians, cops and robbers and war. So quite TV influenced I'd say.

I realise the end is weak. But nevermind. I've just got in from the theatre having really enjoyed a performance of The Importance of Being Ernest. Maybe Wilde will give me some inspiration.

Mark
Writing humour is the hardest thing since sliced bread.

The Severed Hands of Oliver Olivovich
UK - https://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B087SLGLSL
US - https://www.amazon.com/dp/B087ZN6L6V

FB Author Page - https://www.facebook.com/Mark-Hoffmann-Writer-102573844786590

Mark Hoffmann

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Re: It was a Saturday
« Reply #3 on: March 31, 2018, 10:06:19 AM »
New version added in the original post.

M
Writing humour is the hardest thing since sliced bread.

The Severed Hands of Oliver Olivovich
UK - https://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B087SLGLSL
US - https://www.amazon.com/dp/B087ZN6L6V

FB Author Page - https://www.facebook.com/Mark-Hoffmann-Writer-102573844786590

indar9

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Re: It was a Saturday
« Reply #4 on: March 31, 2018, 07:25:15 PM »
OMG--what a rewrite! Love it!

Mark Hoffmann

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Re: It was a Saturday
« Reply #5 on: March 31, 2018, 07:31:40 PM »
Thanks, indar. It suddenly occurred to me that for the purposes of poetry I could combine 2 events into 1.

Your input was a great help indirectly because you asked about the westerns we watched in those days and that set my mind thinking about all the stuff we watched - like Colditz - which led me on to a recollection about a time I tunnelled out of the garden. :)

Mark
Writing humour is the hardest thing since sliced bread.

The Severed Hands of Oliver Olivovich
UK - https://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B087SLGLSL
US - https://www.amazon.com/dp/B087ZN6L6V

FB Author Page - https://www.facebook.com/Mark-Hoffmann-Writer-102573844786590

Mrs N

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Re: It was a Saturday
« Reply #6 on: April 05, 2018, 08:41:17 PM »
Absolutely loved this second version. Espec. the first part. The jump into the war game threw me a bit, I think it was the 'yet now', thought you'd jumped to adulthood.

Also liked the last verse of the original, the wondering if Garry was as bored as he. All conjured up the scenes a treat. 8)

Mark Hoffmann

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Re: It was a Saturday
« Reply #7 on: April 05, 2018, 10:23:17 PM »
Thanks, Mrs N

Go point re "now."  Easy to fix too.

Yet here I was,
with old women for gaolers.

Writing humour is the hardest thing since sliced bread.

The Severed Hands of Oliver Olivovich
UK - https://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B087SLGLSL
US - https://www.amazon.com/dp/B087ZN6L6V

FB Author Page - https://www.facebook.com/Mark-Hoffmann-Writer-102573844786590

Mrs N

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Re: It was a Saturday
« Reply #8 on: April 05, 2018, 11:34:20 PM »
 8) better.

DGSquared

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Re: It was a Saturday
« Reply #9 on: December 20, 2018, 11:36:05 AM »
Wow! I can't believe I overlooked this gem.


I must admit, sheepishly, I often have to look up some of the words used by you lot in the UK.  ;D

I don't recall ever reading the word, gaolers, and my spell-check tells me I've misspelled it, as a non-word, but I was able to decipher the gist from the poem.

Have you shared the poem with Garry? I bet he'd appreciate it too.

Descriptive, concise, and I love Maude. She makes me think of one of my grandmother's friends who smoked, dipped snuff, poured salt in her Budweiser, and gossiped like nobody's business. I believe you have inspired a poem in me.


Enjoyed this, thoroughly.

~Deb
« Last Edit: December 20, 2018, 11:48:41 AM by DGSquared »
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Blondesplosion! ~Deb

Mark Hoffmann

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Re: It was a Saturday
« Reply #10 on: December 20, 2018, 02:19:40 PM »
Thanks, Deb.

I hope you won't be too shocked if I tell you I made it all up  :o
Writing humour is the hardest thing since sliced bread.

The Severed Hands of Oliver Olivovich
UK - https://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B087SLGLSL
US - https://www.amazon.com/dp/B087ZN6L6V

FB Author Page - https://www.facebook.com/Mark-Hoffmann-Writer-102573844786590

Granda

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Re: It was a Saturday
« Reply #11 on: January 05, 2019, 05:03:29 PM »
What do you mean you made it all up? This was MY childhood.  ;D

Nothing really to add to this except . . . When naming the Great Escape, or Colditz, I expected to see the other Tunneling movie The Wooden Horse. And of course, the Wooden Horse is analogous with childhood.

Just an opinion. Others are available.  ;D
My heart (and the rest of me) belongs to the Northeast of England.