Thomas’ ninth birthday

Once upon a time there was a boy named Thomas. He lived near the woods and his mum always said to him, ‘Don’t go into the woods alone, Thomas, the beast will get you!’
And until Thomas was eight he always went together with his mum.

He didn’t understand why the beast didn’t show when he was with her. And at last he just stopped believing the story. On his ninth birthday, Thomas thought himself old enough to go into the woods alone.

He just wanted to go walking, maybe find a nice bouquet of flowers for his mum, to calm his nerves about the big day. It was still a little dark when Thomas walked past the big trees and into the dark of the woods. Soon the sun would rise.

Everywhere were shadows. Animals moved in the bushes. An owl shrieked up ahead. Thomas’ heartbeat quickened. He looked about him and started walking faster. It seemed like the sounds were following him!

‘Don’t give up, Thomas,’ he said to himself. ‘You’re here now. You’re nine years old and you’ve been here many times before. Now search for those flowers, don’t chicken out!’

So Thomas kept on walking. Searching for a bouquet to take home to his, very likely, disgruntled mum. He got deeper and deeper into the woods and when he thought he really had to get back, he finally found a small clearing with flowers.

With a big smile, Thomas went to his knees and picked flowers. There were red ones, and pink and purple and yellows. But the one he thought most beautiful, was the white one in the middle of the clearing.

After he plucked his mum a lovely bouquet, he stuck out his hand and wrapped his fingers about the stem of the white flower. He pulled. When the stem came loose, there was an electric shock and Thomas cried out. He jerked upright but brave little Thomas still had the bouquet of flowers in his left hand, and the beautiful white flower in his right.

It was like the white petals glowed and Thomas’ fingers around the stem tingled. His heart bounced in his chest and with a start he pivoted and speedwalked back into the woods. Back to the cabin where his mum would likely cuff him upside the back of his head for going into the woods alone.

Although Thomas was sure the sun was up already, it was very dark. Again he heard little noises. A mouse beeped and he thought he heard some bats flap their wings. Yet the sounds that scared him most, came a little bit later. Around him was nothing but high tree-trunks and darkness, and the sounds of footsteps behind him!

Every now and then some twigs cut and some leaves ruffled. Was it a person? Was it an animal? Was it the beast? Thomas felt scared and started running. First, he only heard his heartbeat, his breathing. Then there was the sound of heavy footsteps picking up speed! The one following him was closing in and scared little Thomas tried running faster and faster.

Straight ahead he saw daylight; the end of the woods! Behind him, he felt the warmth of the creature. His breath moved the hair on top of Thomas’ head! Would he make it? Thomas hoped he would, and he promised, he would never éver go into the woods alone!

A hand dropped on his shoulder. Thomas dropped under it’s weight and started rolling. This would be the end of his life. Thomas of the woods, only nine years old. He couldn’t even give his mum the beautiful flowers he picked for her!

Thomas came to a stop and kept his eyes closed. The creature was near; he didn’t want to see. His heart was still racing and his fingers were tightly wrapped around the bouquet he still held in his hand. Then again a hand dropped on his shoulder.

And it shook him.
‘Eh boy! What’re ye doing runnin’ from yer old man, didn’t ye hear me hollo? And why did ye smother those lovely flowers, lad? C’mon now, open yer eyes.’
Thomas obeyed and saw his father. The breath he didn’t know he was holding pushed out with a sigh, and to his utter shame he started crying. ‘I thou-thought y-you were the mon-monster mum a-always told me abou-out!’ Thomas explained.

His big dad started laughing uncontrollably. After, he wiped the tears from his cheeks and then Thomas’ and said, ‘Aye lad, ye better never go alone in those woods again! Well, maybe till yer like all big and bad boy.’ His dad helped Thomas upright and hugged him. ‘Yer mum and I were worried, son. Shall we go surprise her with those beautiful flowers ye picked?’

And with that, the little hand crept into the big one and they walked together towards the sunrise and the woman they both loved. When Thomas looked over his shoulder, he was just in time to see a shadow move away from the edge of the woods.

Ter invulling van schrijfuitdaging #5, met themawoord Sprookje. (Verhaal al eerder geschreven.)


Remember when I shattered
and you watched me fall apart
I’d hoped you would catch me

But all I did
in the knowledge it would protect me if you’d not
was push you away
outside of my walls
out of my heart

And I shattered again when you let me

While I picked up my pieces
you were there
yet you were not

And all that could protect me
was you outside my walls
out of my heart
and you let me


Daniel’s heart skipped a beat when Nik regarded him with his grey eyes. The vulnerability he saw in the depths of them reflected Nik’s soul and he craved to pull him in his arms. Before Daniel could push those thoughts away Nik stepped closer to him, like he’d read his mind and wanted it too. Daniel couldn’t fathom the idea; scared of his own thoughts, the things Nik made him feel.

Images of how it would be with his best friend, scared the hell out of him. And every time he looked into Nik’s eyes, the images were there. It made him want to run for the hills, yet the pull to kiss him, hold him, was so strong. He’d never ever felt anything for a dude before, why did it have to be his best friend?

It wasn’t a fling. He thought about it for so long now. Dreamt about Nik and him. And every time he looked at Nik, the vulnerability struck him again. It wasn’t that he wasn’t strong, Nik was, but when he looked at Daniel he was just so … real. Most people would shield away what they really felt, but Nik had never done that with Daniel. By now he was pretty sure he knew what he wanted. But it made him wonder what Nik saw, when he stared at Daniel intently, like he did now.

‘Do it,’ Nik said.
‘What?’ Daniel’s heart stopped beating and a second later it thundered out of his chest.
‘You know what.’ Nik took the last step and they were practically nose to nose. ‘I know you want it,’ Nik whispered.
Daniel sucked in a breath. ‘We … I … Y-you …’
Nik looked at him fondly and maybe a little amused, but he waited patiently.
And Daniel thought, fuck it. 

He grabbed Nik’s neck and kissed him. Firm but soft lips met his. He moved his own and sucked Nik’s lower lip between his, and Nik moaned. He moaned! Daniel couldn’t believe it and yet, he felt the rumble throughout his whole body.
Daniel pulled back and opened his eyes.
Nik looked back, his lips shiny and a little red. Slowly, his lips stretched into a smile. ‘Yeah,’ he said, ‘I want it too.’

Broken fixation

The music’s already blasting when I enter de building. He doesn’t know I’m coming. That I’ll be watching him. Waiting for him.

The walls around me are old and crumbling. The smell is moist, moldy. I should get him a nicer place, where he can enjoy everything that involves his greatest passion.

When I round the corner, Angelo comes in full view. For a second I can’t do anything more than look. I think I don’t even breathe. He’s beautiful, agile. He tells a story with his body. Moving on the tunes of an old song, floating about the room. Spinning, jumping, moving his arms and legs in unity.

He creates this lovestory by movement alone. Swaying along with his desire, touching himself in eagerness with his eyes closed, imagining the hands of his lover. Telling about the fear to open up, physically pulling back. His spin narrates the turmoil, excitement, apprehension while they are together. But like so many lovestories, this one ends in heartbreak.

While Angelo leaps into the air on the last notes of the song and touches the floor in a graceful, yet broken, heap, I walk into the room. The words “I’m sorry” roll about my lips.
I’m kneeling in front of my man and I know what we have isn’t meant to end.

De originele eerste versie van deze tekst is opgenomen in de internationale bundel POETICA VOL.1 van By Me Poetry.