Archive for March, 2013

March 26th, 2013

Excerpt From Under an Orange Ukrainian Sky

by Robert Buckie, Learner, Writing Workshops

Polina sat down at the left hand side of the table. She sat there when she wanted to discuss something serious. At the right hand side George could watch the TV and see her at the same time, but today it meant that he had to face her.
“What did doctor say to you?”
George turned down the volume on the remote. It was just the news anyway. Same old rubbish. War, disaster, pestilence, Paris Hilton. Four of them galloping away towards impending doom.
“Doctor!? What did he tell you?” she asked firmly, blocking his wandering mind.
“Yes, I was just coming to that. ‘Let me see, Mr. Haggerty. First quadrant clear. Second clear. Third clear. Fourth quadrant evidence of cancer.’ No big scene like in the movies when you are ushered into a special room and you know by the downward looks what’s coming next followed by close-ups of stunned unbelieving expressions of ‘why me?’ He just gets up, just like that. Out the door. Busy man. Got his butcher’s apron on too. Traces of blood where he’d wiped his fingers. Wonder if his wife nags him for that.”
“My big muzhy,” she said, “does that mean…?”
“Aye, my wee zheny. ‘Fraid so. Cancer. The big ‘C’.”
She put her hand over his fork hand, immobilizing both his eating action and remote-control capabilities. Her blue-gray Slavic wolf eyes boring into him became sadder.
There’s not much that can be done in a situation like this. There’s no point in continuing to drink. Once that happy state is gone, forget it. From past experience he knew he’d only drink himself sober. A paradoxical state of affairs that was a waste of time, energy, and if truth be told, money.
“I’m so sorry to hear what doctor told to you,” Polina said as she squished a few dollops of HP sauce on his baked beans oblivious to the fact that he had just done this. “What is prognosis?”
“Look, nine out of ten doctors recommend prostate cancer over any other kind. Even dentists.”

Robert’s excerpt was written for Cordelia Strube’s workshop: ‘Works in Progress: Writing Workshop’ (CWWR 514).