Monday, 12 August 2013


She stops dead in front of me. Her face contorts with a twist of pain as one knee begins to buckle. Reaching for mid air her right hand stretches in front of her as her shoulder dips and her chin flops onto her chest. Her body continues to crumple and folds in on itself, to meet the pavement.

Before I can reach her a young man cradles the limp weight of her small frame in his hands, as if it is no matter and as if he is well rehearsed in the art of catching, as if he’s done this a dozen times or more. His quick action prevents her from impacting the floor and as he dips his knees, and sinks his own body, he lowers hers to safety without dropping her.

I’m staring. He isn't. His face, impassive, for he shows no sign of uneasiness. He kneels beside her. She’s inactive and powerless and he talks to her moderately. ‘Hello I’m John and you are?’ his voice is calm. Soothing. He waits.

The economy of effort in each move he makes, alarms me, as he checks her pulse, raises her arm and then positions it closer to her side and attempts to comfort her. His tunnel vision concentration is unportentous, as he devotes all his energy to her recovery.

I’m struck by how graceful she looks. Her clothes show no distress, her coat undone, the over large military buttons and the ring on her finger glints, captures and reflects the light of the sharp morning sun. Her long golden hair tied back in a ponytail lies like a discarded silk scarf.

I decide not to intervene...

Writing exercise: I set myself observational writing exercises, from time to time, in an attempt to learn how to capture a moment in time. I’m not sure this works yet…

For me the detail in short story telling is important and if I can hone this skill then perhaps I can keep the creative flow, flowing!


  1. I think you captured this particular moment in time rather a eloquently as it happens.

  2. So well-written. What a great little task to set yourself.

    Sweet Apple Lifestyle