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Survival of the Weeds (1 Viewer)

maddiemae

Senior Member
Please forgive language, it is germane to the essence of the message.

Survival of the Weeds




I'm not speaking for myself, I'm speaking for my children...

I'm speaking for them. They enter my dreams.
In the night I see them grow older. So, I get the word out...
A Black Mother

It was a mostly dirt yard, scraggly patches of weeds growing in just a few places; one patch under the old rusty slide, one next to the leaky spigot at the side of the house, another next to the rickety back porch steps, and the last spraying out from the base of the huge, thick trunk of an ancient maple. The youngest of the four, a little girl, wearing only a pair of grimy underwear, grins a gritty grin up at her spindly legged brother who swings from limb to limb while singing an earthy rendition of 'Old McDonald' ("a shit shit here, a shit shit there, here a shit, there a shit, everywhere a shit shit...") Fat ass, one year his senior, grimaces, spattering him with a verbal shower of warnings regarding the 'licken he's gonna git' if he keeps 'talkin dirty'. The oldest, a girl with legs like a newborn colt and a face far too wise for her age, attempts to brush off draggles of goop that have taken up residence in her second hand gown. Her gaze shifts to the side yard where a man's feet protrude from underneath a dark blue, 1948 Dodge pickup. Two clunks and a rattle precede a string of raunchy expletives, "Cock suckin', mother fuckin', god damn, mickey mouse piece of shit! Boy! Get me the 5/8 ratchet with the elbow attachment. Now!" Without taking an audible breath he yells "...and hey fat ass! Get me another beer!"

Meanwhile, the woman sits in her chair inside the house, reading about Rachel and Lord Gaven Hawk who hate each other one moment and kiss passionately the next. Occasionally she lowers her eyes long enough to pick a bite-size Baby Ruth out of a container and slowly chews one edge at a time while she walks through the garden with Lord Hawk.

In the kitchen, fat ass reaches into the fridge past the woman's six pack of Pepsi and grabs a beer for the man. Oh, how she wishes she could have a bite of that Hostess Cupcake. She's so tired of mayo sandwiches and green Kool-aid. Her stomach growls.

Outside the man continues to errupt, "...god damn it! Can't you do anything right? I said 5/8's with an elbow!" He screams, "Don't you know what that is you stupid little si wash? Get your fuckin' fairy ass back downstairs and get that wrench!" The boy turns slowly, mumbling something to himself, but the man reads his mind. "What did you say, boy? What! Did I hear profanity coming out of your mother fuckin' little mouth? Who do you think you are?" The boy is violently wrenched into the air by his shirt collar and forced to look the man in the eye, forced to feel the piercing darts of pure hate being painfully jabbed and twisted into his brain and heart. Next the boy feels the motion of sudden flight, followed immediately by violent, sickening pain brought about through collision of skull and concrete. He then stumbles to the box and searches frantically for the illusive wrench, grabs three of them and turns back to walk slowly up the stairs he had just skimmed on his way down. Someday, maybe they could live in a house without a basement.
 
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mammamaia

Senior Member
a sickeningly realistic bit of life as endured by all too many in this inhumane, human-fashioned world... it's pretty well written... aside from confusion over whether 'fat ass' is the romance-reading/fantasizing 'woman' or someone else, i would only suggest you format the piece properly, so it can be read more easily and qualify for submission to publishing venues...

i sure hope this wasn't written from first-hand experience!

love and hugs, maia
 

maddiemae

Senior Member
Thank you so much for your comments! What do you mean by formatting it correctly? And yes, this was a few minutes in the life of my brother, my two sisters and I. Fat ass was one of the sisters. I'll take a look at that and clarify.

Thanks again for your help! I need all I can get.

Kathryne
 

gohn67

Senior Member
Hey MaddieMae,
I'm glad I read this, I enjoyed it. Also I wouldn't worry about the profanity, it doesn't seem to bother anyone these days, plus it's how he talked and if you had him say "freakin" or some other poor subsitute for fuck it wouldn't work as well as it did. Very realisitic portrayal.

You were able to make me dislike, even to the point of hating the father.

The descriptions really painted a vivid picture.

Also they helped show the living conditions.
For example the girl wearing grimy underwear really stands out, shows us that she's not being treated to well.

So the weeds are metaphorical to the family?

Anyways I enjoyed it, sorry I couldn't be of much help.
 

maddiemae

Senior Member
Thanks so much for you comments and for taking time to read. This is my first attempt at sharing my writing publicly, except for a reading I did in my little town at our college. They were very quiet.....
 

mammamaia

Senior Member
i'm sure the audience didn't know how to respond, none of them having had to live through such stuff... or, having done, but not wanting anyone to know it!

as for the formatting, you need to separate the dialog from narrative properly and indent all paragraphs... in posting, indents don't work, so you need to use a line space wherever an indent would go, in the ms...

while i'm sorry to hear this was from your own life, i'm glad to see you seem to have overcome it and can write about it, so those who'd rather look the other way can't ignore what goes on in our society daily, all over the country... i hope all of your siblings have gone on to have safe and worthwhile lives...

keep up the good work!

love and hugs, maia
 
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maddiemae

Senior Member
There will be more short stories regarding this family. Some funny, many tragic. But all worth reading! Thanks!!
 

Kimberly Bird

Senior Member
Hi Maddiemae, how are you. If you don't mind I will get to the sentence structure part of it first.

"It was a mostly dirt yard, scraggly patches of weeds growing in just a few places;"

It feels choppy to me; it needs to flow like a fountain pen. Why not something along the lines of, "It was a dirt yard with a few patches of weeds growing in odd but familiar places..." Then go from there. To me the slide for example is familiar. We all, as kids, can remember those things.

You mention that there are four kids in all, but I think it should be mentioned right at the beginning, instead of introducing the bunch further down the line. Ex: A little girl, the youngest of four siblings,.... I find it saves time as well if you do it this way.

Aside from small sentence structure, I enjoyed the intro into the story. It is real and griity and true in some family situations. Many people are afraid to write in this form, afraid of what they will feel when the deamons come out of hiding. I thought you did a great job of the telling.

I wish you the best of luck in this, and I will be looking for your other pieces as they continue.

Kimberly
 

maddiemae

Senior Member
Hey Kimberly! Thanks a bunch for looking over my story! I will definitely take your advice into consideration. I did a little changing today. Now I have to let it sit and look again. Bless you!

Mm
 

mammamaia

Senior Member
maddie... your natural writing voice is rough and tough... just like the life you write about... i wouldn't advise changing it to smooth and flowing, since that would wipe out the gritty feel to your work, that's needed, to tell such 'stories' believably and to drag the reader right in there with you and your sibs...

there are small things needing fixing that i'll be glad to point out, if you want... but basically, it's what it should be, imo... keep on telling it like it is... there are so many 'weeds' out there... they need someone to speak for them!

love and hugs, maia
 

maddiemae

Senior Member
Ma

What are those little things you would change? I would really appreciate your criticism. Thanks for replying.

Mm
 

mammamaia

Senior Member
you can send it to me as an ms word document attachment, and i'll be happy to highlight them, add notes and suggestions for 'fixing' if you want... it's much easier for me to do that way, than in a post...

hugs, maia
[email protected]
 

maddiemae

Senior Member
Thanks, I will do that. Right now I am watching a Seahawks game, my son-in-law is the fullback for them, Mack Strong. They've been doing good this year so I try to watch. Never was a football fan before this year.

So later this after noon. Thanks so much!

Mm
 
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