Tuesday, 24 January 2012

The Hole

Unfortunately I was unable to attend my final creative writing session last week and consequently I did not 'read out' my homework. The brief was: a hole appears in your living room wall. I have decided to share my efforts below...I would love to know what you think.

To begin with there was only a mark, a small insignificant smudge that my mother blamed me for. She scrubbed and rubbed at the freshly applied ‘mostly mocha’ emulsion and cursed under her breath. She lustily administered a plethora of cleaning fluid cocktails but nothing could shift it. Eventually she hung a mirror over it in disgust and forgot about it.
But I didn’t forget. Every few days, when she was either down the shops or playing bingo, I would take the mirror down and examine the mark. Very gradually, almost imperceptibly it grew, stretched and eventually gaped.
The resultant hole measured approximately fifty by fifty centimetres and offered an uninterrupted view into our neighbour’s front room. Initially I panicked, thought it was a structural fault and feared the wall would collapse. I shouted through the hole to warn them but no-one responded. I watched on in amazement as they went about their business in complete oblivion of the screaming boy from next door.
I scratched my head, clapped my hands and thanked my lucky stars. Fate had offered me this window into the world next door and I had no intention of wasting it. You see, we didn’t just have any old neighbour. Oh no! We had my recently divorced demonic headmaster living next to us. The mileage I was going to get out of this was, well, immeasurable.
I greedily imagined my elevated status as my classmates would crowd around the hole and watch old potty Potter picking his nose, scratching his bollocks and farting; completely unaware that his most hated subjects were laughing at him only inches from where he sat.
But, in the end, it didn’t work out like that. Old potty Potter didn’t pick his nose or scratch anything. Night after night he came home late and alone, microwaved his dinner, sighed and sat himself in front of the television. Sometimes he looked at photographs of his children and his wife and cried.
I felt my hatred of him steadily turn to pity and I knew I could not betray him. Amazingly I found myself thinking that perhaps it wouldn’t be so difficult to be kinder to him and do what he asked rather than swear, abuse or ignore. I hung the mirror back on the wall and like my mother, tried to forget about the hole.


  1. I really enjoyed it! Did you have a word limit? It works perfectly as a piece of flash fiction - pretty much an entire story in very words. Told very vividly, well done!

  2. Ooo! Thank you! So pleased you enjoyed it. No, there was no word limit but I wanted to keep it as succinct as possible. It was a challenging but enjoyable brief. Surprisingly (according to a friend who was able to attend the session),only one person went off on a flight of a fancy Lewis Carroll style, everyone else was peering into their neighbour's lives!

  3. Ha ha, typical writers - we're a nosy breed!