Friday, May 8, 2009

An Abandoned Mansion.

Abandoned Mansion. (2006/7)

A draught howls through the cracks of the broken windows. Its hinges cried out in pain, on the verge of breaking loose. The crumbly walls moaned and grumbled bitterly as the morning train rumbled pass, shrieking like a hyena. Pieces of ceiling crashed onto the ground, breaking into tiny bits. Mice feeding nearby scampered quickly, frighten out of their lives.

An abandoned playpen covered with flakes of dust, had turned into a nest for a bitch’s litter. The puppies whimpered in fear of the strange sounds. Termites ran all over the wooden furniture, chewing away at an old armchair with delight. An empty box of cigarettes lies on the floor suggestively; tiny specks of ashes hidden away like a secret. A clockwork clown with its head broken off still smiled away with irony.

Dawn slipped away, leaving no trace of its existence. A parched puppy finds its way to a broken pipe. The scorching sun burns down mercilessly on the yard of overflowing weeds. Its glare pierced through every crack and cranny. Critters and vermin alike hid beneath the manors shadow; slept soundly, shield from its cruel rays. Bells shrilling loudly as chattering primary kids tumbled out of the gates in a flood. Haunted; whispered naughty children, nudging each other as they skipped pass in a devil may care manner.

Suddenly, the sky cracked its whip and droplets pattered down on the roof shingles hesitantly, as if fearing that it would break. There was another thunderous roar and the rain pours down with gusto. Surrounding weeds drinks up the moisture like thirsty drunkards. Water dripped from the leaky roof. Bits and pieces of broken toys floated by, bobbing around cheerily. The bitch scampered onto higher grounds, gently cradling its youngest in its jaws, as the rest scampered and stumbled along trying not to get soaked by the incoming flood.

Finally the rain stopped. Sharp rays peeked through from the horizon, draping a soft sheen on the wet tiles. A nearby mosque began to chant its prayers in a singsong fashion, a longing in its hollow hymn, as the sun sinks until it completely disappears. Crickets join along by playing their own melody, caroling away into the starless night. The birds retreat into a warm nest they had made in a hole at the ceiling. A small breeze whispered sweet nothings as the menacing house and its furry comrades slipped into a carefree slumber.


A short descriptive essay dedicated to my nostalgic childhood memory of an old old house in Ipoh that once held eleven kids and two dogs..

I could still hear the sound of that mosque going at five to six... and the train rumbling past at dawn.

And the constant chill of that grey marble floor...

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