Gabriel Thomas

Hello.

Welcome to my blog. I write short stories, free verse poetry and give advice on writing. Have a nice read.

LONG STORY EXCERPT FOR FUTURE/POSSIBLE NOVEL BY GABRIEL THOMAS  

LONG STORY EXCERPT FOR FUTURE/POSSIBLE NOVEL BY GABRIEL THOMAS  

LONG STORY EXCERPT FOR FUTURE/POSSIBLE NOVEL BY GABRIEL THOMAS  

I mop floors, squeegee windows and polish crappers. I’ll give you three guesses…

I like it though. I don’t have a strong sense of smell, and the work’s at night, and I don’t have to deal with anybody. The pay is shit, but the pay will always be shit, so you kind of come to terms with it, and you keep your head down and your arms and feet moving and just take it as it comes.

A woman once asked me if I was anti-social. I told her, “No, I just don’t like people.” She looked at me as if I was as dumb as a saltine cracker. I should have explained it better. I should have said, “I don’t like the way people present themselves.” That’s more accurate.

Finding a humble soul in this world is a rare thing. Sometimes you need to know someone for a few years before you get a grip on who they actually are. I guess that’s why I got concerned when Barney told me something in the women’s shitter.

Barney’s in his late sixties. He’s my supervisor, but really, he’s my coworker. He’s a straight shooter, you know? He’ll tell you like it is, or how he thinks it is. He’s one of those rare souls. His wife died from what she’d called “DIAHBEETISS” four years ago. Her death about killed Barney too. Barney’s my friend; so when we were scrubbing down the third-floor, women’s shitters, and he said “Greg, I got cancer.”, I stopped my arms from moving, turned away from the turd bowl, lowered the seat and sat on it taking the information in.

“How Bad?” I said after awhile.

“I’m fucked.” He said right back. Barney’s a straight shooter.

  I could hear him scrubbing the toilet two away from mine, then, like a jet engine, his toilet flushed, and he moved to the stall next to me. He sat on it there and he sighed. I watched his black tennis shoe from under the alluminum, divider wall.

We talked. We talked a while there in the stalls. I won’t tell you about what. There are secrets spoken in some fashion between men moving through a darkness, and those words have a depth that is measured by the bond between those men. I won’t betray Barney and tell you the things that were going through his mind. I won’t tell you any of that… Except for one thing. He said something that got my upstairs wheels a’churning. He said something that I hadn’t thought about in all my life of keeping my head down and my arms and feet moving and just taking it as it comes. He said it like this:

“I don’t remember where it went wrong. I don’t remember when the bad started. I had innocence once.”

Well, that put my brain in another gear. Not in that moment though, but later on. Later when I reflected on it.

I was home, drinking a beer, watching the morning news. I work nights, remember? What I do at 7:00am, you norms do at 6:00pm. I was sitting there and drinking there and thinking there and just kind of drifting. The thing is, I remember when it went wrong. I remember when the bad started. I remember my innocence.

I don’t brag, and I try not to lie, and you should know this about me: I remember a lot. I’ve always remembered a lot. I have a very good memory.    

LONG STORY EXCERPT FOR FUTURE/POSSIBLE NOVEL BY GABRIEL THOMAS

For New Writing, News and The Everyday Grit of Life, follow Gabriel Thomas on Twitter.

"Agency" a poem by Gabriel Thomas

"Agency" a poem by Gabriel Thomas

"US" A Poem by Gabriel Thomas

"US" A Poem by Gabriel Thomas