I wrote this piece below for the a creative writing competition at my last workplace. It got a prize... not bad for a Physicist ...... With all the nonsense of Halloween coming up, I was reminded of it again and it may help explain why I'll not be getting into the party spirit for that occasion ..... just thought you might be interested......
Somewhere in England, an angel and a demon are sitting on a tree stump watching people in a park.
The demon speaks:
What is it that you see? These creatures before us. Flesh and blood
Stinky stinky flesh and blood
(ponder and pause)
I find them funny. Yes, most of the time I find them really funny.
See that tired old man. Look! Him and his dog.
He’s shuffling. Little doggie’s shuffling.
He’s got a vacant stare. Little doggie’s just the same.
Same old route every day. Same, same, same, same, same.
No curiosity, no smile, no nothing.
You have to laugh, eh?
Oh, I forgot, you don’t laugh much.
Poor old boy is so tired, tired of life,
Joyless utterly joyless.
What am I saying? Who cares?
Hmmm, anyhow this joy stuff’s your department.
I dunno what it is.
What is it? I mean if you’re so big on joy,
why don’t you just give the old boy some joy?
Puff! Sparkle! Woosh
down over him like fairy dust and smother his old bones with “joy”.
Eh, whaddya say?
Or, maybe it’s all a lie, maybe there is no “joy”,
Whatever it is.
That one thing you promise, it doesn’t exist does it?
You are a fraud. You and your like, you are simply frauds.
That is why you never speak to me. You’ve got nothing to say.
You’ve got nothing.
Say something. For crying out loud, say something. …
Huh, why do I bother?
OK, so you won’t talk about that old boy.
Yup I know we’ve tussled over him before.
I got him interested in gambling and he really took to it.
He loved talk of the bookies, his “turf accountant” and getting the Racing Post.
See, I did him a favour.
I gave him something to believe in, I gave him some pleasure.
Those gee gees really romped home sometimes ….occasionally.
And what did you do, eh?
Well, you came and fetched his wife and took her to the realm beyond.
What’s that all about?
There was me, giving him some pleasure,
and there was you, filling him with grief and regret.
What is it with you?
You take everything from these people. Everything…..
Man, you really are a joke!
OK so you won’t talk about the old boy.
How about those two on their lunchbreak on that bench?
I don’t think we’ve seen them before.
They’re tired too. (sniffs) They’re eating foreign stuff,
Bet they’re Polish or Latvian or something.
Look at how the more they eat, the more they stare into the distance.
Remembering something far from here. Some half-forgotten warmth.
Some half-forgotten tenderness. Some time when life was simpler.
Oh they’re sooo lonely….
Oh they’re sooo tired ….
Now I’m feeling sorry for them.
Yes, I’m feeling sorry for them!
Me, nasty little me, is really feeling sorry for them.
I’m going to befriend them.
I’m going to tell them to go and spend some of that money on themselves for a change and stop sending it back home.
I’ll tell them to go into town, dress up a bit, feel goooood, have some beers, find some girls, be good to themselves, really go and…..
Did I see you flinch then?
Was there a nearly imperceptible flicker of something from your angelic self.
Little angelic-eyes always fixed on heaven – goody goody- angel never says anything – rarely does anything…. nearly moved….
Yes, I nearly got a reaction out of you.
You don’t want me to go near them, do you?
Well, stop me.
Go on, stop me.
(he goes to approach the two men but stops short)
(He wails like he’s been scalded and comes back to the tree stump.)
What in the name….!
How did you do that?
I get near the one on the left
He bent over to tie his shoe and
That thing round his neck fell from his neck.
He picked it up.
Held it close.
He did that thing that I find so repugnant.
That thing I can’t talk about.
He got strength from somewhere.
Ewww, yeuch, I feel a bit creepy, bit “unclean”
… but I’ll try again later
… if I can be bothered
…. There’s probably more fun to be had elsewhere.
I’m out for fun.
Hear that word?
What you are not.
You are no fun, no fun at all.
And you just sit there.
Why do I bother?
Why do I even try to talk to you?
You disgust me.
Right here before my eyes
You disgust me.
Constantly alert, yet so very calm
So ANNOYINGLY calm,
And there’s light
Foul, terrible, incomprehensible light….
Seering pain to the heart of my being.
The lance in my side
I scream silently and eternally
But.. get this, oh angelic one!
Non, rein de rien,
Non, je ne regrette rien.
They are not interested in what you have to offer.
The world is mine.
I will open all their eyes.
I will turn them all to me.
And they will see nothing else.
They will feel pride.
They will be selfish.
They will be greedy.
They will be careless.
They will hurt.
They will feel anger.
They will hate.
They will be violent.
They aren’t capable of anything else.
That is their lot.
Miserable stinky creatures, born for misery…
Live in misery…..
And then they die…
Puff, dead... puff… puff…
Snuffed out like a candle and
Not even a wiff of that thing called “joy”.
Whatever it is.
(walks off in disgust)