Thanks to the reaction to A Jane Austen Daydream, GreenSpotBlue.com, has chosen to publish a collection of my short stories entitled Upon The Ground.
Each Tuesday, for the next fourteen weeks, a new story will appear on their site which I will link to in a post (like this) and on a new page I will be creating for the book.
This collection contains some of my best writing, including today’s first entry, which I think is one of the best things I have every done, and may ever do. It is called “The Playground.” The story begins with a very flattering preface to the collection by Henry Williams, Executive Editor of GreenSpotBlue.com. After the jump is the first few paragraphs of “The Playground.”
This is what haunts me.
I remember clearly the playground outside my childhood home. It was on the other side of a two-lane street, which my mother would only allow me to cross with a guardian.
I remember in the early days of my twos and threes how I would look at that playground as the greatest gift in the world. A playground all to my own. Anytime I wanted, I could cross that street and play without having to worry about anyone bothering me. My parents or a babysitter would sit on the park bench and watch, not thinking about this or that only when that dumb kid would finish.
I remember playing all day, every day.
I remember going to bed each night and catching one last glimpse of my playground before the darkness set in…. I always had a fear of the dark.
It was a game for me in the early days to get to sleep before the dark came for me. Most of the time because of sure strong will, I succeeded, but then there were always those few night when I was fighting a losing battle. I would lie there angrily cursing myself. Get to sleep! Get to sleep! You don’t want to die do you!?! You don’t want to die do you!?! Like…
I remember the graveyard.
It was on the other side of a hill, separating it from the playground. One of my first memories is being on the seesaw and going just high enough to see the tombstones in the distance.
You can read the entire story, as well as the preface from Henry, here.