The wave

Posted on November 3, 2009


(I’m participating in NaNoWriMo. See also my weekly blog entries at Virtual Writers, Inc. This is an excerpt of an in vitro novel “Bloody Management” only. Unfettered, unedited, but not dispirited. From chapter 4, “Home”.)

The trouble was, that book had not been written yet, and perhaps would never be written. Not because Nicholas was lazy (he wasn’t), not because he had to support a large family of five (he didn’t have to), not because he didn’t have anything to say (he did), or because he’d not be able to articulate it…but because Nicholas could not see himself sufficiently entitled to write, to live inside that writer’s mind. Though, in fact, he already possessed the right mind, and it was working, working away like a pianist’s fingers on the keyboard during a Mozart piano sonata passage in Allegro molto.

Or perhaps it wasn’t the writer’s mind that he was missing. Perhaps it was his father’s beard, his father’s face, or his mother’s hand on his face. Nicholas’ parents had disappeared during a flood. It was a memorable scene, fixed in his memory anyway: how his father, then a young strapper, passed baby Nicholas to his wife, who passed it to her sister Agatha one moment before a giant wave took the couple out to sea, never to be seen again. A painless, sightless, still parting from one’s loved ones if there was any. Nothing but this scene had ever been imparted on him by his uncle and aunt, and it weighed heavy on Nicholas’ chest like an entire ocean.

By now, he’d gotten used to both the longing to write and to the absence of it. What he called his inability to do what he most wanted to do defined his character more than anything else apart from his loneliness, which was only interrupted by weekly dinners with his surviving family. This family was as small as one could imagine, since both his uncle and aunt had no other siblings and had not had children. Nicholas often felt, under his breath, under the flap of his heart, that they were just waiting for another wave that would reunite them with those who had already gone out there, wherever.