The streamers are like sea weed washed up on the stairs, gathered in heaps. Small sticky sounds follow him, as he steps between the champagne bottles and sleeping bodies, making his way to the terrace. He has not vomited at this party, but the taste is there in his mouth along with the tart white wine which he drank, as he listened to the birds outside.

As he steps out into a light breeze however, the tart seems fresh and the vomit evaporates in the sun, and he thinks that having a half-way-to-New-Years-party was a great idea after all. Standing on the quiet terrace, he thinks that such an excellently held party should be celebrated. Preferably with champagne.

60 Rejection


Peter’s body rejects honey, chocolate and all other sweet substances. Thus, it was hardly a surprise that he should reject Maire.

Her hair was a light blond almost as white as processed sugar, and her voice was like candy floss sticking to anything which came too close. All men she had met until then had let themselves be caught and drawn into the pink depths, to drown in a scent of artificial strawberries, but it made Peter gag. After he had vomited up all her pleasantries and compliments at her feet, he pushed her away and let the repulsion fuel his speed as he fled.




He watches her bring the cup to her peach lips and wonders whether she would fold him into a crane if he were made of paper.

‘It looks like it’s wearing the sun on its head,’ she says.

‘It’ll be loud and unruly and it might live 70 years, it’s out of the question.’

She pouts and he feels a hot bubbling under his skin.

‘Stop that,’ you look like a child is what he does not say, because the bubbling is not only anger and it gets stronger the more she looks at him like that.

‘All right, all right,’ he says, ‘I’ll buy you the damned bird, but don’t come running to me when it keeps you awake all night.’

‘Oh, I might,’ she says.

36 Precious Treasure



I have a hoard of memory sticks in my room. Most of them I got for free at events, meetings and at work. It’s incredible how many they give away at work. First I filled up all my cupboards then my drawers; my clothes are now on the floor, and I have to dig through the heaps of memory sticks to get to them.

There was a period where I had difficulty reaching my bed, but now the layer of memory sticks is thick enough for me to walk on the surface all the way. Sometimes I curl around one of the larger heaps, inhale deeply and pretend to breathe fire.

And what’s on the memory sticks you ask? It’s the same on all of them.

Pictures of you.



I was hypnotised by the fire in your eyes,

But I confused a candle flame for the moon,

And now I’ll never escape your hair.

No matter how much I eat through your clothes,

I’ll never reach your heart;

Your skin is marble.

In your closet, I can dream of our love,

Writhing around the poison you’ve left especially for me.

I know I should leave,

And I would,

If actions could travel directly from my brain to my limbs.

But old delusions keep pushing action aside,

And as I stand mesmerised,

Your hair only wraps me tighter.

55 Waiting




The timetable said that the bus would be there in ten minutes. Peter shifted his briefcase to the other hand. It had gone well all in all, the job would not make him rich, but it would be possible to pay for a wedding and a mortgage when he had settled in. Laura would say yes, if he asked her.

A black cat joined him at the bus stop.

But was that really what he wanted? Was he still too young to settle completely? There was so much he had not seen and experienced yet. He constantly felt there was something he was missing.

The black cat stretched, yawned and padded away behind him where it jumped into the wall and became a graffiti drawing of a black cat. It curled up and Zs appeared on the bricks above its head.

‘All the interesting things,’ thought Peter, ‘always happen to someone else. Maybe I’m just not active enough. I should go out and see the world. I could choose not to take this bus home. Scale Mount Everest, go deep sea diving, something like that.’ Only deep down Peter knew that he did not have the physique for something like that, and he did not have the will to obtain the physique either.

A man bumped into Peter’s shoulder and Peter looked at him with a frown. The man looked apologetic, but did not say anything as he evaporated. Peter kept looking at the space where the man had stood, his frown still in place, wondering why he was mildly irritated at someone who was clearly not there.

Peter checked his watch. Maybe he was just imagining things. ‘The neighbour’s grass is always greener,’ he thought, ‘and would it really be so bad to settle into a comfortable life, have some children, pick up a hobby, things like that.’

A bus stopped in front of him. He noticed that the bus had strange squiggly lines which he could not read instead of a number.

51 Sport

(Credit: Rania Maria Rönntoft,

(Credit: Rania Maria Rönntoft,

Theo and Loren made a sport out of stalking strangers. Reporting back to each other what people did, they quickly found out that most people in their town spent their time doing quite ordinary things like buying groceries, watching television and kissing. But the stalking was still exciting and the retelling of the deeds of the stalked could be spiced up when necessary. They soon knew the names of a lot of people who did not know Theo and Loren existed.

One day, Loren was watching Susanna Brooke feeding her cat Missy from behind a tree when a stranger walked by. It was a stranger with long dark dreadlocks, baggy trousers and a purple jacket which looked new, but which had probably been out of fashion for a hundred years. Deciding that Susanna Brooke was not a spy who had trained Missy to carry secret messages, Loren stepped away from the tree and strolled along a fair distance behind the stranger.

Loren hoped the woman was on her way home or to one of her favourite haunts, so it would be easy finding her again. When she stopped in front of a sweets shop, a little voice in the back of her head begged for the woman to go inside; Loren might be able to nick a few jelly beans from their mix section. The stranger lifted one hand to the glass and Loren felt a twinge of wanting to consume more than just a few lousy jelly beans. She stopped and shook her head to get rid of the weird feeling. Then continued walking as before, concerned that the woman might have seen her acting strange. She sighed when the stranger turned away from the shop and walked on down the street.

A short while later, the woman turned down an alley, and Loren frowned since as far as she knew that alley only contained an old shed with no longer usable spare parts behind a chain-link fence and a locked chain-link gate. She crept close to the corner and carefully lent out to see where her prey had gone.

The woman was in front of the gate with one hand on the handle. There was a locked padlock on it as usual, but when she pulled, the gate swung open and behind it there were brambles with shiny berries and thorns much longer than they should be with large purple flowers sprouting among them. Loren blinked and stepped closer, forgetting that she was trying not to be seen. This had probably failed already, because the woman then stepped through the doorway and looked directly at her. Some of her dreadlocks were antlers, and as the woman smiled at her, all the muscles in Loren’s body froze and something snagged her insides and pulled some of her with it into the brambles. Then the door snapped shut and something was cut off. As the severed tendrils drifted aimlessly in front of her, Loren stared through the gate with its rusty unbroken padlock at a worn car tire on the bare earth.

Empty Spaces


There is a wall of emptiness between us.

You have tried filling it with words, and I have tried filling it with silence, and when we both tried filling it with music it distorted the tunes and made them jar in our ears.

Eating through the emptiness would starve me and scaling it would break my legs, so I am beginning to wonder whether it will at all be possible for us to return to the way it was.

Maybe we can learn to live with the emptiness, maybe we can’t. Maybe it belongs to me and you could escape it without me, but I do wish you would stay with me, because if you leave I will have two voids to fill.




Bees and butterflies and regular flies buzzing in my ears and sheep bleating all over the place. Some people might be able to ignore it, just shrug it off, but not me; my ears are too sensitive to all animal sounds. Except speech; speech I can be absolutely deaf to.

Anyway, there were all these sounds and I needed them to stop, so I cast a blessing of silence on the valley and all sounds ceased at once. It was bliss. For me and for all the predators since their prey could no longer hear them creep close. Only most of the humans in the valley were less than pleased. In fact, they were so little pleased that they decided to lynch some poor fellow. I really don’t know what he should have done wrong, so I removed the blessing and explained the people how it all fitted together.

Then they wanted to lynch me.

Since I did not wish to be lynched, I resisted. Carefully at first, but then moderately and when that did not work I exploded the heads of those who refused to let go of me. Not a noisy explosion of course, that would have driven me mad, just small plops as their brains exited their skulls in all directions. One of them was the poor sod who had almost been lynched. The others backed away after that, but they were still very uncooperative. They would not point me in the direction of the most quiet place on earth, no matter how politely I asked.




Looking at the amethysts hanging from the bows, he can already feel the juicy sweetness in his mouth and running down his chin. The emeralds flutter at him in the breeze, all so alike, but each perfectly imperfect and standing apart from its neighbours. Perfume from the flowerbeds spreads around the tree and lifts him closer.

As he notices a vine crawling up the bark, horror overtakes him; how dare this serpent even insinuate the strangling of beauty? Drawing his weapon, he steps close and after letting the sword flash in the sunlight as a warning, he falls upon his enemy, slashing this way and that, high and low until the vine is no more to be seen and the tree bleeds.

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