It seemed to Charlie that he sat in the centre of a cyclone.

Long slashes of brilliant colour circled and surrounded him. The air seemed almost alive, exploding and imploding in showers of sparks and white noise.

When the thought crossed his mind he almost welled into tears. Was he dead? His didn’t seem to have any control over the ruckus, it was like he was the epicentre of it all, powerless to escape it.

And this is how it continued, seemingly day after day. Colours, explosions, noise, he spent most of this time totally disorientated.

Then, thankfully there were periods of relief, the noise abated, the air cleared, the flashes of colour slowed, and all this to reveal other people. This did provide some relief but was still confusing as hell (a poor choice of words Charlie thought).

The sun now warmed his head and it struck Charlie that he was moving? A strange kind of moving, more like hovering. This proved just as confusing, he assumed dead people hovered all the time, but did they feel warmth?

People continued to move about him, and whether it was the sun or something else Charlie didn’t know but now he could make out conversation. Two ladies we’re speaking it seemed, somewhere else, behind him maybe. Even in death he found lawn bowls talk boring.

Lawn bowls? Anna?

He hadn’t though of Anna through this whole ordeal. Where was she, it was her wasn’t it? Talking about bowls? Now he began to struggle, where was his Anna, curse this fucking body, curse where-ever I am.


As he yelled this his ears rang, drowning out all other sound. And then she appeared, poking her head into his field of vision, mouthing words at him.



It seemed like she was yelling from across a field, her mouth moved in exaggerated ovals as she spoke, like she was impersonating a goldfish.

Charlie didn’t move, just sat and stared at his Anna. He was so relieved to have her with him.

Now she turned to speak, to who he didn’t know, someone out of his field of vision.

‘Odd’, she was saying. ‘I almost thought he said something’.

The person he couldn’t see must have said something to her as she now obviously replied to a question.

‘No…not since the accident’.


Michael Douglass

Alexandria, Australia

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