Category Archives: Novel

Apartment 45 a short extract: the Death Metal paragraph

The Death Metal paragraph

A racket is grating from behind the mould ridden door of one of the apartments, a din only a drug induced frenzy could produce, it screeches through the hallway. Beneath the plucked whines of the steel strings is the pulsating beat of a drummer who has lost the plot in a utopia of mind altering pleasure. The voice is demented, the vocal utterances reminiscent of someone been lowered slowly into a pit of sabre toothed, well fed but hungry boars. Jesus has long flowing hair apart from one side which he meticulously maintains shaved to an evening shadow consistency. His parents came from Africa where they had loved God enough to call their first born son after their saviour. I imagine the second went by the handle of Moses or Abraham. Jesus had inherited his mother’s propensity for excessive fat accumulation and his father’s poor taste in music. The cross upon which we were nailed grew in torture on a regular basis as the African prophet of Death Metal music practiced his self-composed creations with his fellow musically challenged buddies of Brad and Lucinda. Lucinda from the Bronx had a chewing gum addiction and drove men both married and single to distraction with her choice of minimal material based clothing. Brad was sired from the loins of a man who held greed as the central theme of his life’s philosophy. One day Brad would be saved from a detox centre by his Bentley driving daddy and taken to a better place. A world he should never have tried to reject where the girls all have perfect complexions and the staff enter by the back entrance hidden from view by an artistically designed hydrangea.

(c) Francie McGivney 26.01.16

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Novel Extract Chapter 19

Chapter 19 Hospital days.

Then the night came when the ward was silent, apart from the background hum of various life monitoring or body function sustaining machines, the nurses in their station had their heads submerged in the reams of paperwork which accumulated during their daily shifts, the fellow residents either slept freely or in their coma’s and I silently put my foot on the ground beside the adjustable bed and the other one followed and combined they tentatively discovered they had regained the strength to support the rest of me. I stood up straight, and my eyes wandered around the ward and took in the view from this new higher perspective where the ancient cracks were subtly hidden behind the building’s sterile yellow paint, the oxygen bearing tubes stood out from their rotating connections, the sacred heart looked down upon the broken and battered, the injured and sick, the virtuous and the sinner. I breathed deeply, slowly testing the first step, feeling it give but not fully, then the next gave as well but didn’t disappoint. I looked back to the distance of a foot I had travelled and knew the road lay ahead of me once more. I took one sloping step after another until I found myself circumventing the separating curtain between my isolation and that of the man with the loud snores and pungent flatulence, who I had only saw in my imagination on account of his determination to grasp the final strand of his privacy via a blue and white striped retractable screen. I was aiming for the toilet, a noble destination for my first excursion unaided. The blood drifted from my brain as I rounded the bed of my hidden companion who looked at me with concern and a worrying curiosity as I leant against his mobile food table for support, trying to reconcile the withered specimen in front of me with the rotund grease-ball image I had imbedded in my visual cortex.

“Are you alright there buddy?” the old timer’s accent revealed a long forgotten hint of the old country behind his strong New York tones. It was always the Irish condition to retain deep inside of one’s soul the country’s accent for the benefit of fellow citizens of the land of leprechauns, irrespective of the length of time since its rhythms had dominated the person’s linguistic charms. It was a powerful sort of secret code capable of resurfacing the deepest held fears and feelings of inadequacy from years of religious based sexual and moral repression, in the most successful and confident of emigrants. Its malignant purpose was to restore the natural order of the Irish way, where no one was ever allowed to indulge in the audacity of stepping above their predefined station in life. A station based on parental roots, primary school inadequacies and level of skill with a hurley or football held in the hands of red faced youths who were expected to retain the national drive for homogenise behaviour and to avoid stepping beyond the safety of the proverbial rails.

“Yeah not a bother, just a bit of a head rush” I said looking down at his prone body sensing the danger in the way his eyes fixed upon me and in the look he had about him of a man who retained an interest in the goings on of the land in which he was born and raised, despite having lived longer away from its green fields than in them.

(c) Francie McGivney

Writing 

she didn’t look the maywest. Her nose was pointing in two directions which made the path of her tears meander in a most preciliar fashion. She was screaming and moaning and mumbling to herself. The neighbours stood at their doors with ears stretched to avoid missing the scandal.

“Bit of a domestic mr shanks” the auld bitch in 12a asked. Her look of concern failing miserably to hide her delight. I heard a thump from one of the floors beneath, where I stood thinking I should have pegged her out the window. It’s not like I didn’t appreciate short hair on a woman but I only put up with this one because of her Long blonde locks which now lay butchered on some gobshite hairdressers floor. I hoped the nutter in 3a wasn’t going to come up to see what was happening. He had just been released and looked like a man who wouldn’t mind spending another spell inside for the pleasure of beating lumps out of a woman beater. 
Francie McGivney on the iPhone with a version of an extract from the novel I working on. Just rewrote it on the phone just for fun

a paragraph from the second chapter of Francie’s Chronicles

All of a sudden I heard behind me the sound of the master standing straight up, making a terrible screeching sound, as the pew he was sharing with the Principal was driven back a few inches into the knees of Tom Connolly’s mother, who leaped straight up and hit him an unmerciful clatter with her bag across the back of the head, by way of pure instinct at having her ankles nearly cut from her. She was a feisty woman was Ms Connolly and a fine looking one at that. I was sure there was more than just my class in the church that night who thought it was about time someone hit a belt to that auld master after all the beatings he had dished out to us and the generations of our brothers before us. I was hoping the whole gallery would erupt into a round of applause but instead the big lump started to shake and tears flowed down his cheeks in torrents. His tears didn’t empty the room in my head that I had locked away until the day I could get my own revenge on the pitiful excuse for a man. He made a run for the back of the church with Ms Connolly and the rest of the adults looking at him and me eyeing in a most peculiar fashion Ms Connolly who had a lovely way about her altogether, I was sat there in a bewilderment within myself about whether I had another sin to confess.