Saturday, 1 December 2012

The Berrys of Winter

The Berrys of Winter were a strange family however in many ways they were decidedly average in fact husband and wife and two point four children a wee dog and a budgerigar but their strangeness always shone through for instance they were involuntarily forced into eschewing the now commonplace roentgen light for candles in the night candles they made themselves from the grease of their kills those unfortunate victims of the incessant need for subsistence but good old pigs will keep on breeding and so they had plenty of source material for their candles and of course a variety of meats from which to consider for their family eating variety is the spice in any kitchen she used to say did the mother from bacon and eggs in the morning to ham and eggs at lunchtime to gammon and chips for their tea or dinner or evening meal depending on your culture and upbringing with roast port on Sundays and on special occasions like the holidays the government insisted they celebrate even though they couldn't really take a holiday for there were always the sillygoats to milk and the chickhens to feed and the shees and cowps and of course the pigs all inherited from old Macdonald Berry the legendary progenitor of the oldest family in the little hamlet of Winter in the Federal Republic of Northern Universal Christian States where religion held sway in the last outpost of theology in the post third world war landscape of the green planet where the sad demise of the first world caused an implosion in the second tier and led to the emergence of the Little States and the sequence of battles that culminated in the so-called Christmas Truce and the dismantling of all armed forces as a last desperate means of ensuring the survival of enough humanity to retain a viable population to husband the fruits of the earth but not before the post nuclear blizzard destroyed the reindeer herds that used to roam freely over what used to be the Arctic Continent and heralded a ten-year snowstorm that to some large extent restored the whiteness that was lost when the glaciers and icebergs melted that time in eighty-three and flooded most of the northern European landscape leaving only the mock chocolate Republic of Toblerone formerly Schweizerland with its now temperate climate and frothy hot chocolate-like landlocked lake and its capital city of igloo dwellings freshly erected by hitherto unemployed out of work construction engineers with their funny looking boots and indistinctive peppermint coloured scarves and gloves with no fingers that looked like shovels their hands were so big who fed on snow flakes for breakfast and took ice crystals in their tea instead of sugar and built mock fireplaces with grandiose chimneys and marble-effect granite surrounds on which they placed their family vignettes and keepsakes in memory of times gone by when the abundance of coal or gas or electricity meant that such things were taken for granted and two point four children was a statistic and not a grotesque reality.

Have you heard about Kellie Elmore's Free Write Friday? Check it out here.


  1. I am always amazed at what comes spilling from your pen for my free writes. I am in awe of your talent... to be able to write such poignant, in depth pieces without editing, just the raw flow of stream of thought is awesome! Another great work! Thank you!

    1. Thank you, Kellie! I guess I'm kinda addicted to your free writes; they give me a great deal of freedom (sic). Attempting this kind of prose is a wonderful thing for a practitioner of the more traditional verse forms. Roll on Friday!


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