Failed resolutions

All that remains of last night’s promises is the smell of ammonia, broken bottles and dead stars. My resolution has waned. Panting I stop.

The waistband of my tights keep slipping, and my jacket is cold from perspiration. My heartbeats syncopates throbs of the iron-band around my head.

I puke.

“Oysters and wine”, she’s smiling, stars in her eyes, as my hand snakes under her blouse. “No”, she cries.
I laugh and I laugh.
I feel her nails in my face as I take what’s been paid for.

I puke again.

Weight-loss can wait, someone has scars that need mending.

This week I tried to do a little bit of flashback, and writing from a rapist’s mind is not easy. This was partly inspired by the events in Cologne and other places. I believe the actual events is not so much about immigration but with shitty attitude and high tolerance for male culture. My apologies on behalf of men who cares.

Friday Fictioneers is a blogging community attracting some of the best fiction writers online. Our dear godmother Rochelle Wisoff-Fields steer and guide us every week and selects a picture where to find a story of 100 words (I like to meet the limit exactly)



January 13, 2015

70 responses to “Failed resolutions

  1. You’ve done it a few times now Bjorn, speaking out where other men (and women) prefer not to, probably due to the extremity of the subject matter. Thank you. You described a date rape. The entitlement most men feel when they’ve bought a woman dinner, or even just a drink.

  2. Um, excuse me?! This is fantastic! It never crossed my mind that this might be about rape or force. Just roughness. I read it as a weaving of resolutions. All the puking makes me think the speaker is bulimic; I love that he’s a man because it’s usually seen as a “woman’s disease.” That probably makes men who do struggle with eating disorders feel all the more ashamed and alone.

    Then I think he was trying to give up this woman, but that’s failing quickly, as he’s grabbing her or “going after her.” And connected to that, I think (and shouldn’t say, but will anyway) that he was giving up … um, “hand sports”? “Ping-Pong”? “Denim net volleyball”? Yes. I’m an idiot. I know he’s wearing one of those slicky wind suits for running. But I think the part about the waistband means that he’s trying not to “do that” anymore because it always ends up being about her.

    Oh well. He failed that too.

    I love the iron band. It makes me think of music and extreme strength. Also meat/anemia/etc. Without taking what he needs (for his head[s]), he’s deficient and can’t function in peak form. He’s lethargic and nearly useless. Sooooo, he’s taking the “iron.”

    That is a KILLER opening line. I can’t believe it didn’t make me think of murder, but it really didn’t. Just some romantic let-downs … and a lot of cleaning and breaking things. I think this relationship has done a number on him. Ha ha. “done a number on him” … I love the bizarre ways in which I picture words coming to life. It is a blast to live in my brain. 🙂

    Other than the opening line, these are my faves:

    “Oysters and wine”

    “I feel her nails in my face as I take what’s been paid for.”

    “someone has scars that need mending” *** You sandwiched this poem in two really badass pieces of “bread.” Bravo, man.

  3. Savagely and beautifully done. Like you, I read about the events in Cologne, Sweden and now Denmark with horror. Unlike you, I do think it’s about immigration – about a clash of cultures and colossal arrogance. Well done for going there, Bjorn.

    • Thank you… I think it’s about immigration partly, but also about a male culture that have always existed… believe me, I was also young and drunk. I remember friends speaking… Then add to that middle east views on how women should behave that we can never accept… not muslim actually… Christians from that region are not better…

  4. Very wild and striking, I must say I was extra shaken after reading your description, because the words and experiences got a lot heavier. It reminded me how we can easily not grasp the full force of the written word, so I am thankful you shared the additional info.

  5. “All that remains of last night’s promises is the smell of ammonia, broken bottles and dead stars.” Sets a disturbing scene right off the bat! And then — to take “what’s been paid for…” unfortunately and despicably, it is somehow and too often the twisted thought of a rapist…his due.
    Then ending has me intrigued — trying to stay separated from my emotional horrifying response to the event your words describe. “Weight-loss can wait, someone has scars that need mending.”
    I think of her No….the words “wait” and “weight”…..and the scars. In reality, they both have scars……hers inflicted by him. But we can only imagine the scars that he carries to have been driven to become this evil.
    Chilling indeed.

  6. Thank you for acknowledging male culture i.e male privilege and not being one of ‘them’.

    The story is bold and writing from a rapist’s point of view is not easy. You show him both as a human and a monster and that takes skill.

    Well done.

  7. it’s amazing when someone feels sorry for something he did after the fact. could it be what’s referred to as the jekyll and hyde syndrome?

  8. Bjorn,
    I’ll click “like” because it’s very well written, although quite creepy. I like your use of stars, as in “dead stars” and “stars in her eyes”. That’s a subtle detail that works very powerfully. Well done.
    -David

    • Thank you, that is really a high praise, 100 words is a great concept… to write it, I try to keep every single word in my head… constantly checking and working them back and forth… it’s like writing a sonnet.

  9. Very powerful writing. I sat down yesterday and started writing a comment, and wrote, and wrote… and you don’t want a long rant like that in your comment section. 🙂 I totally agree with you, it’s a combination of culture, education and also man culture. Events like that happen(ed) outside of the refugee content all the time, just not to that extent. Maybe now, at least, people and police have it on the radar and stop with victim shaming. I didn’t get the impression the rapist would mend the woman’s scars…

  10. I hope her nails left scars. It could be a warning to other women. Find him in a gutter – leave him there.

    You did a great job of depicting the mind of a rapist.

  11. I thought you handled it well.
    As for unacceptable male culture, take a whole bunch of underemployed, single and women-starved, and socially outcast men and you’ll find Cologne station. Just look at sports teams away from home. Doesn’t help the victims, though.

  12. You’ve done a convincing job of speaking the thoughts of a vicious and self-absorbed criminal – no easy task. A chilling story, and a reminder that everyday concerns sit side by side with horror in the life of such people.

  13. You took me right in with this, Bjorn. It’s such a horrible thing that happened in Cologne. I haven’t been able to listen to the details about it. Well executed story.

  14. Bold and visceral! I like how you’ve ventured into this dark place and pulled out real observations and emotions. Powerful! I believe that if we look away, it just keep happening. So, I appreciate your effort to really put this story out there, in an unflinchingly real way. Well done, Björn!

  15. You are so good, Björn. You’ve brought us all to a place in so few words. And a place you (thankfully) know nothing about!

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