City of Lights – a short story

Revisiting this during self-isolation…

Gabriel & Hare

Mia’s eyes were drawn to the lights on the hills around her. She found looking out in the evening both comforting and hypnotic. Her heart slowed down and she felt relaxed enough to try to sleep. She liked to watch the sunset, when the sky was clear enough. Its rays lit the windows of houses on the eastern hillside, creating an orange glow, an aurora radiating across the old valley.

She lived in a city full of life now. She loved it and was afraid too. In her corner of the mill town Mia watched the world go by every day. She felt safe because no one could see her. Her home was as high as the birds, in the tops of trees surrounding her. They flitted among the bare branches oblivious to the traffic at the busy junction below.

Sometimes owls and foxes haunted the nights, hooting, screeching and…

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Your Own True Path

It’s often said that the journey is more important than the destination, but what if there is no end goal anyway…

In very recent times the feeling has been one of not finding the place of belonging whether it be in work, in community, in place. It’s as if the end of the road here has been reached. I came, saw, and exploration is pretty much done!

The experience of having to stay in one’s own locale led to mapping out streets, ginnels and snickets  –  I’m still not sure what the difference is between the two. Getting to know trees thus far escaping  mean chainsaws. Bumping into the past to learn that some old wounds have not healed (not mine, theirs).

Almost all the paths join up, there is rarely a true dead end. This is what one finds when walking in a relatively small area. Possibly the people who created them didn’t want dead ends and were thinking of shortcuts home from work and shops. Some passages I could recall from childhood, streets because of bike rides, visiting friends. Birdsong loud and prolonged when traffic was calm. Cheeky starlings throwing impersonations into the air above houses, fooling all the birds.

There was much to memorise and record from my walks. Rather than write, I have taken to stitch – working with threads and yarns.

Strong black coffee bubbles in the pot, a courgette pita grows in the oven. None of us can be certain of what may come but we can know that the paths join up. Where there is an out, there is also an in.

In the midst of the last few weeks an article in The Paris Review resonates and I’m sure it will with many:

Fuck the Bread. The Bread Is Over.

As we now live an uncertain life and insecurity taunts us, whilst we are wholly mistrusting of our government as it lies to us blatantly every day, it’s important to remember we are the power and we make our own way.

Little Italy a short story for radio

Little Italy is now available to listen to on BBC Sounds. Link is available in this post!

Gabriel & Hare

Last week the local BBC radio station, put a call out for short stories to read on the air. It was an initiative with a local arts organisation who were looking for tales to tell during lockdown.

I sent it in, it was accepted and aired a couple of days ago.The stories are being uploaded over time on the radio’s website.

If anyone would like to listen now, the link is here:

Ed: The story has now been added to BBC Sounds:

Little Italy by Elisha Gabriel in BBC Sounds

There are other short tales there too for listening and information on how to submit your short, should you wish to.

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