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Abysmal Hands of Silver (650words) (1 Viewer)


Senior Member
He sits apart from himself, beside his feelings. On the table opposite him, a swan clock carved of wood. Upon its wings, silver hands tick away the time, tick by tock of it flies further into future. He knows the world will end, but not how. He knows his life is over, but still it strives to begin again.

Memories haunt the reservoir of his thoughts. Deep within him rumbling, bursting forth like ancient geysers spewing unforgotten feelings of the past. Loves gained and lost, rejected, ambitions abandoned, doors unopened and doors locked shut, doors that hide behind them countless other people he could have been.

He wrings the color from his hands, whiteness of them glowing in the dark. Emotions overwhelm, like an element of heat coupled in with those memories that refuse to stagnate, forcing pressure. Different from the beginning, no one ever believed he could fit in with the whole of society. All were initially surprised when he started to blend in, fade. But, by the time he eventually camouflaged himself in their social structures, he had done it so well, so completely, that they forgot him entirely.

His family looked past him as though a piece to furnish the living room. At work, he cogged and geared and functioned predictably unpredictable. His innovations were so cerebral that they often went unnoticed: credited to someone else’s flashier, more prominent ideas of physical change. No one believes in marketing. They need their hands held gently to walk down brightly lit streets.

He sits, bored and imagining. His first love was a young one, they both were. He remembers long drives to nowhere, parked cars shaking back and forth in the quiet of moonlight, empty parking lots. She left him here, in this town, and moved on with her life. That pain has long since left him. He’d never had a second love. Other women came and went; probably more than he cares to admit, but none were loved, not really, not like her. Like many things, love is a drug felt strongest the first time, weaker as the tolerance for it builds.

Now he spends his money mostly in strip clubs: an easy escape from the lonely boredom of an average existence. He likes to think he’s outrageous, but for the most part, he is plain. From the way he pours the milk into his cereal, to the steps he takes down stairs, so plain. The strippers around town know him by name, recognize his face; the only friends he has are paid for.

The swan flies away from him, carrying time on its shoulders. Abysmal hands of silver represent the time he wastes, wasted. Another empty cup is full again with red wine. Every drink, toward the medicine of forgetfulness, leaves behind those memories that burn and drown him, persistent.

A monster sees itself as necessary, something created by monstrosity acted upon it. He is hardly a human, but no monster. No great crimes of nature were committed in his stead. No, just a string of subsequent failures followed one after another in rapid succession. If he could meet expectations, if he could somehow learn that skill, life could be so much more pleasant. As it stands, he is product of flawed design, a lemon of the batch.

And, as the carved wooden swan carries the silver hands across the table of his living room, he is finally finished. The glass of wine will not be followed by another, these memories that pound like waves upon the levee of his heart will return to sea, at last. An empty pill bottle tossed away, some hours ago, and he foams at the mouth, seizures.

His final thought: those numbed fingers of time no longer apply. No longer a burden on the feathered wood of that hand-carved swan; he, and it, together free to fly, at last, into eternity’s moonlight.


Senior Member
Deep KB. Real deep.

I've read your poetry and it resonates with me. This piece did not fail to do the same. It's dark and mournful and even poetic, even though it is prose.

I think it's quite good. The only thing I noticed is you used "but" a tad too often in the first paragraph for my liking, but it barely detracted from this powerful piece.

I'll eagerly await your next piece. Cheers!


Senior Member
I take it from the previous reply that you are a poet. It really shows in this piece. Your use of figurative language is exemplary. Although your subject matter is dark, this is absolutely beautiful. I'm looking forward to reading more of your work.


Through this writing, I felt emotion after emotion; like the rough waves upon a desolate desert. The beauty of this peace takes me aback through bad times and good alike.
It reaches me, like it must many others. It was both inspiring and grim at the same time. The depth's through it delved where astonishing.

The fluidity of your writing was striking to me. I'm sure there was maybe something that could've been approved upon, but pointing that out is not my place; this piece is for you
to judge and improve upon yourself.

If there was one word I would say to complement this piece it'd be, like for many others, poetic. I'm looking forward to your next writing.


Senior Member
Thanks for the great feedback on this! I am grateful for your opinions.

Poor silverback timeswan must fly alongside not a flock, but a single, lonely soul.