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Monday, March 30, 2009

Gargoyle

Photo by C. John Edwards his blogs are -http://scriptorsenex.blogspot.com/
Suggested prompt...
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He has seen quite a bit up there... tell me one of his stories.



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“You know, everybody thinks there's lots of exciting things to see up on a building, but really there's not. I mean, people walk by, sure, but after the first week or so, maybe the first year, you've really seen it all. Everything after that is just variations on the same behavior. People really aren't that interesting. But they're better than the pigeons.” He paused to take a swallow of beer.

The bartender nodded sympathetically as he polished a glass. “Tell me about it, brother.”

“Well, I will tell you about it. The pigeons just eat and sleep, and when they're not doing that, they're making droppings on my head. At least people don't do that.” He paused again. The bartender bent down for another glass. “But there was this one time.”

This time, the pause was expectant. The bartender looked up. This was different. The gargoyle came in about once a week, when the bar was empty, always moaning about the boring life up on the corner of the church. Not once had he ever hinted at something odd he had seen. Maybe it was the extra beer he had had tonight. The gargoyle seemed satisfied with the bartender's response, and continued.

“Yeah, one night I was sitting up there, and all of a sudden the manhole cover in the middle of the street started clanking and then it lifted up. I could see hands holding it up, and a man's head appeared underneath. I heard, 'Ah, no, man, this ain't the bank.' The head disappeared, and the cover clanked down, and in the morning the bank was all in an uproar. All the money had been stolen from the vault in the night, and there was no trace of the theives. I've never seen anything like it before or since.” He lifted his mug and drained the beer. He stood up. “I better get back before morning. Thanks, pal.” He turned to the door of the bar.

“Wait!” The bartender had never stopped the gargoyle before, but he had to know.

The gargoyle turned back in the doorway. “Yes?” Somehow it had an ominous sound, and the bartender wondered if this was such a good idea. He asked his question anyway.

“Why didn't you report what you'd seen?”

The gargoyle laughed. “Me? Report it? Who would listen? No one thinks I'm alive besides you. You're the only one in the whole town, and I'm lucky you take payment for beer in dead pigeons. Me? Report it?” He went out the door, chuckling.

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morganna

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9 comments:

SSQuo said...

It is sometimes sunny
At this edge where I squat
Most times it’s rain, yet
Glimpses of history-making events, I’ve caught

‘Twas the day Lady Di
Didn’t come up walking
She lay motionless in her spot
‘Shh’ they said ‘she’s sleeping’

Followed by the elite
Supporting the royal family
It was a sight to see
Me and my pals discussed over tea

One Mr. John
Used a candle as a metaphor
And ran over the keys
Leaving people wanting more

You should where I am
By now if you don’t
You’re living someplace hidden
‘Where, where’ or is it plain ignorance?

North side, third column
Glowing in the sun
Look up.
There sits me, yes, I’m the handsome one!

morganna said...

“You know, everybody thinks there's lots of exciting things to see up on a building, but really there's not. I mean, people walk by, sure, but after the first week or so, maybe the first year, you've really seen it all. Everything after that is just variations on the same behavior. People really aren't that interesting. But they're better than the pigeons.” He paused to take a swallow of beer.

The bartender nodded sympathetically as he polished a glass. “Tell me about it, brother.”

“Well, I will tell you about it. The pigeons just eat and sleep, and when they're not doing that, they're making droppings on my head. At least people don't do that.” He paused again. The bartender bent down for another glass. “But there was this one time.”

This time, the pause was expectant. The bartender looked up. This was different. The gargoyle came in about once a week, when the bar was empty, always moaning about the boring life up on the corner of the church. Not once had he ever hinted at something odd he had seen. Maybe it was the extra beer he had had tonight. The gargoyle seemed satisfied with the bartender's response, and continued.

“Yeah, one night I was sitting up there, and all of a sudden the manhole cover in the middle of the street started clanking and then it lifted up. I could see hands holding it up, and a man's head appeared underneath. I heard, 'Ah, no, man, this ain't the bank.' The head disappeared, and the cover clanked down, and in the morning the bank was all in an uproar. All the money had been stolen from the vault in the night, and there was no trace of the theives. I've never seen anything like it before or since.” He lifted his mug and drained the beer. He stood up. “I better get back before morning. Thanks, pal.” He turned to the door of the bar.

“Wait!” The bartender had never stopped the gargoyle before, but he had to know.

The gargoyle turned back in the doorway. “Yes?” Somehow it had an ominous sound, and the bartender wondered if this was such a good idea. He asked his question anyway.

“Why didn't you report what you'd seen?”

The gargoyle laughed. “Me? Report it? Who would listen? No one thinks I'm alive besides you. You're the only one in the whole town, and I'm lucky you take payment for beer in dead pigeons. Me? Report it?” He went out the door, chuckling.

Sarah said...

I am glad for the rain. It feels like tears on my stone cheeks. Inside, I am always crying for you.
The people below.

The mother screaming for her lost child, looking searching and I unable to shift my head, I scream with her. She finds him, but I am not placated. What if he runs off again?

The man on the steps holding his head in his hands and sobbing, sobbing and shaking over an empty briefcase. He does not even reach for an umbrella, not that he could afford one, but he likes the rain like I like the rain. We stone faces which cannot cry without it.

I see the trees, full and green then nested, then gold, then old, then gone. They all pass before me in flashes. Time has no meaning, no passage to me. I see everything at once.

I know you cannot see the way I do. The mother reunited with her child. The man who finds hope in a rainbow. That is why you smile.

How I envy those mutable faces.

cagrowngirl said...

I sit amongst them
staring down
watching their every move

Do they even consider that I can hear them
Their devious plans

They look and see just an ornament from a time before
A time before where I was revered

Now I look about and all I see
is this bunch of hooligans on the lawn
Drinking, drinking, drink some more
There plans are all spilling out with one drink more

I sit here and watch in dismay

Dani said...

I look down on the world
The glory of the sun
The deepness in the shadows
And I see what the world is
What the world once was
And what it could be

I remember a time
When this building
I sit upon
Was the only large building around

The world around me was green
The people around me took care of it
The trees breathed life into everything else
And the sky seemed brighter then.
The sun warmed my skin all day long
I miss that warmth

Then all the green
Was torn down around me
More brick and mortar
And wooden arches rose up
The sun was blocked from my gaze
Now only warming my skin for a few short hours at a time
I don't ever feel as warm

The world around me is mostly gray now
The people around me seem to ignore it
Going about, paying no mind
Just going someplace or another
Never stopping
This is how the world is

I dream of the world becoming more
I see between the gray to an open sunrise in the morning.
The beauty in the distance...
Oh I wish these wings could fly
How I long to be a part of the world green again...
Where the people looked at each other
Where they saw more than just the next task
Where they enjoyed the process as much as the success.

I.N.Kwell said...

A:"You said this is where they came?"
B:"That red brick house, yeah."
A:"Well this gargoyle must've seen it all. We'll put the camera in his mouth."
B:"But how're you gonna get down there?"
A:"Hold on to my belt. And don't try anything!"
Gargoyle:"HEY! Don't put that thing in my mouth!!"
A&B:"Holy ****!!!"

Hedgie said...

"Blech!!! Ick!!! Yuckyuckyuck!!! I innocently open my mouth to yawn, and a cottonpickin' pigeon cuts loose right onto my tongue!!! Yeccccccccch!!!"

e said...

Haha, funny, morganna! And, sad but nicely written, sarah.

My story:

The myth about "turning to stone in the sun" started around the same time the "make that face and your face will freeze like that" myth. Anyone would get sick of being called a gargoyle--a reference to the sound they couldn't help but make--and no one ever asked the correct term, how the knobby knee'd, beclawed creatures referred to themselves. Instead, humans just screamed at the sight the winged terrors, and in self-defense, they took to perching. Above the average human's line of vision, high enough to avoid being defiled and with the bonus feature of being able to watch the behavior of people when they are not screaming or fighting for dear life. But the occasional mistreatment of the creatures continued somewhat, and so they began to make gruesome faces to amuse the children and get the adult humans to leave them alone.

Faith said...

His story is our story. Always present, never seen. Eyes always open, never seeing. We rush through our lives and miss the great moments. He sits still and doesn't experience anything. He is made of stone, and so many of us have hearts made of stone. He has witnessed generations of people who were unafraid to live, unafraid to love. Generations of people who took advantage of the few opportunities available to them. We, we have endless opportunities. And we sit idly by, our generation's gargoyles, unable to live, unable to love.