Reflections on the journey

7 02 2007

They sat on the train on a bright Saturday. Clickety-clack. The gentle rocking back and forth. The landscape travelling past the window; quickly in the foreground; slower on the horizon.

She watched the changing architecture as they left the green of the countryside. Farmhouses dotted along the way replaced by modern lego-brick blocks of housing. Tight together. Dad’s washing cars and mowing lawns.

And then the golf course. A field of lush green grass. Busy with groups of men in twos and threes. She wondered what deals were being made? What problems were they figuring out as they trudge across the artificial field, like men of old, pushing ploughs?

A deep rumble and the train clickety-clacks from tenor to bass as they go through the tunnel.

Older houses now. Red sandstone tenements streaked black with decades of stoor and traffic. Industrial units advertising new leather sofas and fitted bathrooms. The old newspaper building looming in the background. Now home to artist studios and insurance firms.

The contrast of the graffiti on the side of grey concrete walls. Vivid orange; lime green. Flourishes of hieroglyphics proclaiming to the world,

“I was here.”

“Look, I am alive.”

“I exist.”

She couldn’t help but marvel at the lengths some boys will go to to leave their mark. At what point do they grow up and decide instead they’d rather play golf?

Finally over the bridge and the pull of the train walls as they began to slow down into the station. Her new husband stirs against her shoulder.

“Are we there yet?” he says.

270 words

Jenny Love

February 2007

 

 

Written loosely on recollections of a recent train journey but also influenced by an article read in a magazine about “tag artists,” (almost entirely young men) who graffiti trains and risk their lives to sign the most dangerous walls and buildings.

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One response

9 02 2007
Queen Minx

I like this. I like the observations and the comparatives you have used.

I am no good at this sort of thing. I am better with dialogue.

‘A deep rumble and the train clickety-clacks from tenor to bass as they go through the tunnel.’

I liked this very much. Train journeys are my favourite way to travel, and you have pretty much summed up a train journey, perfectly.

xx

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