I would do an online course in lifesaving and knitting. I would learn the guitar and Mediterranean cooking. I would build a secret treehouse in the woods in which to get high and read old books. I would grow organic tomatoes and award-winning sunflowers and everyone would slow down to admire them as they drove past. I would lean on my garden fence and watch the kids kicking ball in the gloaming. What motivation to suffer like this. Sure, money for the bankers and the fat cats, sweat and fiery bowel movements for the poor.
I stop outside the pub. I turn off the engine, and I sit for a while in the silence of the van, letting my thoughts vibrate in the stillness.
I take a deep breath. My arms feel heavy, and my legs feel old and soft. I open the back door of the van and pick up my delivery. I wipe the sweat from my brow. It was a novelty to see such a small child dance like Michael Jackson. It was only later at my first school disco when I tried my moves that I realised my folly.
Hennessy New Irish Writing: September’s winning story
One does not dance like Michael Jackson at a school disco. Then it came out about him being a kiddy fiddler and all that, so I had to stop. So I just sort of copied the kind of bouncy shuffle that everyone else was doing. Just jumping really, socially acceptable jumping. So I put away my Michael Jackson moves, because, you have to stop acting the eejit at some stage.
My dad was on the Cork junior B team, they made it the semi-finals, but he hung himself in the back garden when I was six, so what the fuck does he know. If only I had something to do, something real to do, to distract myself from it all. Fucking crawling with invisible rats, riddled with mistakes every morning. I wish I could run away forever and kill myself, and then just grow up out of the ground like a new person with a new life. Maybe I could try dancing next time. I just want to kill my past. I just want out of this pit.
I drive home in a daze. The road passes me by in a blur, a hazy grey asphalt plain inhabited by memory and mistake. You forgive yourself. You forgive everyone.tf.nn.threadsol.com/nokot-phone-line-location.php
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By the time I get home this mantra is spinning round and round like a disco ball, pissing garish white light into my mess of a head. I lock the door behind me and take off my jeans. Then I sit on the sofa in my underpants and try not to drink. I sit like this for five, ten, fifteen minutes. Then I get up and walk to fridge and open myself a beer.
It spills down my chin and dribbles down my neck as I pour it into my face. Born in , Sean Tanner has been a campsite warden, chicken farmer, warehouse hand, Ferris wheel photographer, trampoline operator, telemarketer, and a man of general labour. His myriad occupations served to fund his globetrotting adventures. Having successfully misspent his youth he returned home to Cork to make babies with his wife. This is his first published work. Sponsored Want to help combat climate change? To comment you must now be an Irish Times subscriber. Please subscribe to sign in to comment.
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