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Fractions

Fractions is a living collection of character and environmental facets; shards of places, persons, and experiences. It is a personal list of creative cues, which might form the roots of a narrative or add colour to another story altogether.

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BRAIN CANCER

You been for a walk have you? I was just telling Leanne I'm going for my operation next week.
I got the brain cancer see, and I got it in my lung too. So, I'm going in on Wednesday.
They wanted to do them both at the same time, but they couldn't. My mum lives over there.
But I'm going up to the shop before I visit her. Can't drive now. Eric says, "Why don't you drive it?" Can't can I? "Why don't you go in that blue Fiesta?" Can't can I? Some woman drove into it and did seven grand worth of damage. She weren't looking. I pulled out by the roundabout and she was coming the other way. And she'd just been parked there for two weeks while she went to America. Five tickets. Just got out and walked onto the plane. You can't leave it there two weeks. Here comes Argos look. They'll get lost round here. That road don't go anywhere.
They want to give me drugs for the operation but I don't need 'em. I can slow my heart reate right down. "Prove it" he says. So I slowed it right down to thirty, and right up again to seventy while he was listening. "How'd you do that?" he says. I was in the army weren't I.

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MAN LOOKS WEST

In the puppy park on an August evening. A man, a lad, stands in the centre of the grass.
His is blue hoodie is up and he stands very still, waiting for his dog. There is no dog. He isn't waiting for a dog. He has no shoes on.
"Good morning". I caught his eye, and it's evening not morning. He flicks a smile and looks back to the west.The sun is going down behind distant houses; pink and blue clouds. He watches it go, and a bit later, he goes too.
On a cool October afternoon, he is shoeless again, feet in the autumn grass at the edge of the football field that slopes to the west.
Our dog, Meg, wags over to him. He glances down at her and then back up to the setting sun. Meg loses interest.
In December, by a bench, by the tennis courts, arms crossed. Still no shoes, and the same dark hoodie. The day is almost done and the last dregs of light leak out of the sky.

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CHRISTOPHER AND THE BEES

Christopher listens for the thrum of the hive. It pleases him to think that they know he is coming.
Down the rutted path through the trees, in a patch of no-mans-land that might or mightn't be part of his garden.
The bees keep his claim current. As he approaches the sound lifts and fills him. Bees in his ears, in his nose, around his neck. A tickly embrace.
The smoke now. He wonders, as always, if they are drunk on the smoke or soothed? Can a bee choke, or rub its compound eyes?
He lifts the lid on the hive and the full strength of the hive rises to meet him, like a choir.

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IN THE RAFTERS OF A LIBRARY

In the top corner of the library, up a narrow stairwell:-

The building is of proud stone but this stairwell is municipal in its materials. Whitewash and office carpet, leading to a flat faced fire door. The room behind is more of a corridor, its end darkly distant.
There is the frisson of having moved outside of collective awareness. The shelves lined with hard cover journals, volume on volume. Old science and dead science, discarded and discredited. Traffic sounds bubbles beneath the mouldering quietness. I can spend an hour here and it feels as if a night must have gone past.

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WIND FARM

In the trees the Draughts are born and coralled by the wind-farmer into the valley, before they grow to be Breezes. They eddy and skip along the red earth whipping up dust in modest displays, curling and blending into each other. Some become Gusts and others become Whistlers. The wind-farmer keeps them apart from now on unless he wants Howlers that tear at the eaves and thatches of the town. Better to raise thoroughbred Gales; Storms from untainted stock. Left to their own devices, in the wilderness they'd have flocked into Hurricanes.