Acronym Prompt

For the ACRONYM PROMPT writing collection I’ve used an acronym as a prompt.
I’ve titled the piece and created a fictional author which reads:


If you’d like to start at the beginning click here.

Creative Offerings Void Insignificant Diary

Fear has become the ruler of the land whether it’s recognised or not. Fear is expressed in a myriad of ways but it’s most recognisable as anger. Some people are angry because their fight or flight response is fight, some respond with anger from the pressure felt because of pent up energy from confinement of their life, choices, and movement, some don’t know why they are angry, but they are and it’s explosive and it keeps seeping out with regularity.  

Anger is an emotion just like happiness, measuring one against the other as with love and hate provides some perspective. It can be helpful to ask when feeling a strong emotion – why do I feel this way? A precise answer is not the point of questioning, the point is to consider the self. No matter what or who or where we are on the journey through life these times are testing us in ways that we may not perceive. There is no measure for the external experience being thrust upon us, but we all do have an internal measure of ourselves even if it’s not a familiar tool.


Choir Of Voices In Denial

Escape from Melbourne for the new year break seemed like a good idea; escape from the pervading structures that have been cast over Melbourne to find some relief from the relentless uncertainty of surprise announcements and divisive conversations. Surely a trip away to Queensland where the beach is allowed, and freedom shaming is a headline from elsewhere was a good idea….? It seemed so in theory.

Longing for escape has become a popular past time for most these days along with seeking out destinations that provide a getaway which are in reality now no more, but exist only as reminiscent thoughts about the past. There is no place to escape from the headline mongering being pressed upon our consciousness.

Over 1000km of terrain doesn’t change the landscape of our times but does change the timeline by transporting me to a place where people only gobble up the mainstream media with a tenacity that could be better applied to an exploration of values, beliefs and the foundations of their lives. There is no motivation to question when on the surface it appears that nothing is happening, yet there’s a niggling awareness gestating in the background.


Construction of very involved distractions

The relentless construction that has carried through for the better part of the year across the street from where I live has provided a focal point for so many aspects of life.

In March, after over a year of no activity, breaking ground on the vacant city block that stretches from side street to alleyway commenced.

The site was enclosed with cyclone fencing to keep the dry brown dirt and weedy tufts of grass safe from the general public, when construction began the fencing along the street front was replaced by signs that promised a home for retirees only.  A haven was to be built in the city for those who could afford to buy into it, and to be erected blocks away from boarding houses and social housing provided for pensioners who can’t afford the luxury of choice.

Dust kicked up from the lot daily forming dirty clouds that hung over the area then trailed out to the footpath and swept away in the wind to scatter over neighbouring homes. Digging down is very important, foundations are needed and the mechanisation of construction began with diggers digging onsite.

The site was enclosed with cyclone fencing to keep the dry brown dirt and weedy tufts of grass safe from the general public, when construction began the fencing along the street front was replaced by signs that promised a home for retirees only.  A haven was to be built in the city for those who could afford to buy into it, and to be erected blocks away from boarding houses and social housing provided for pensioners who can’t afford the luxury of choice.


Choreomaniac, Or Very Into Dance

I miss dancing.

Don’t get me wrong, I still dance. I dance in the kitchen, bop around the loungeroom, bounce up the stairs to my front door keeping the beat all the way.

Sometimes it’s to tunes that I play through speakers letting the music spill out onto the street for all to enjoy, other times it’s through headphones that encase me in a private audible world, sometimes I have a tune stuck in my head that carries me along for hours at a time. Music is always there at the fringes of my mind or its centre stage taking my full attention.

The music hasn’t stopped with the rest of the world, neither has dancing but I do miss dancing to a degree even though I haven’t stopped stepping to the beat. I’ve never been much good with dance moves or steps, following or taking the lead but I never miss a beat, not any of them. I like to dance to all the beats, not all at once, I like to chose my beat of engagement with the rhythm and to switch and change as the beat grows and lessens with the journey of sound taking me from interlude to lyric then from crescendo to the drop.


Corroboree Of Value Is Documented

There’s a tree in the park down the street that grows on the edge of a main road. The road is part of a busy junction where the city and the suburbs come together then break off into every direction branching out across Melbourne. The tree is a river red gum that has stood at a crossroads for between 300 to 500 years or so it says on a plaque where it stands; a wonderful sign that doesn’t claim knowledge that can’t be proved.

A sign near the base of the Ngargee or Corroboree tree

No one really knows how old the tree is, its age is an estimation based on what is known about trees, this native is thought to live up to 1000 years or more. However old it might be it is the last river red gum standing where there were once many, and it is far older than any other living thing that I have seen in the city where I live.


Cranial Overload Via Illusions Disintegrating

All around, the world is morphing from one extreme to another and turning seasons on their head along the way.

Wind stirs up the remnants of the seasons passed by and sweeps them away on a shifting breeze. The plans that were made and never came to pass are no longer dormant but gone, lost to a time left behind. The ‘I meant to do’, ‘go to see’, ‘catch up with’, ‘must start doing’, and ‘want to learn more about’ things that once fueled the journey into the future have fallen by the wayside in the wake of a world turned on it’s head.

Awe and wonder are on the faces of those arising from the depths of hibernation as they venture out into the world to see what remains of the life they had known. Reality is a stark vision when compared to a television screen, and when no longer confined in a room at home all alone hunkered down and investigating solitude, the shape of the world can be intimidating. Those unschooled in themselves have been confronted by insights that they never sort to determine and have been left wide eyed and bemused by the sight of themselves revealed in the final days of a revelatory year. A new world is taking shape shining fresh light into eyes still blinking from the illumination that flooded the dark corners of their psyches.


Cycles Oscillate Vicariously Into Dawn

Staring at screens and working with purpose on purpose has become a restriction of the mind layered on top of the restriction of movement. For all the good intentions that I have I need more beyond me, something that is positive and natural and dependable and there it is every month, the moon.

It causes me to be present and grateful to have a regular visitor who dazzles me shining in the night and moving about unincumbered by any restriction. It peeks over the rooftops soon after dark tracking across the sky in the wake of the sun. The glow is so bright some months that light from the supporting cast of twinkling stars seems dull by comparison; the moon is the star of the show.

My full moon ritual has evolved with my confinement and is something that I have come to look forward to. It consists of looking out of my kitchen window from dusk to midnight hoping to glimpse the moon as it tracks across the sky. Beyond midnight the full moon rises into the midheavens and out of the small portion of sky framed by my window, it’s a spectacle I’ve come to enjoy every month.


Chilling Outside Versus Inherent Doom

Concerned faces on the news speak in serious tones repeating words spoken across the world. The same picture appears on different sides of the world slotted into news stories and passed off as local content which adds to confusion creating a descent into incredulity, into a lack of credibility. As hard as I try to make sense of it all I can’t.

It doesn’t make sense. The script spoken at updates morphs into white noise against the backdrop of the elderly locked up for their health and denied contact with their loved ones. No hugs, nothing familiar, no one they know and denied their regular physician for a mandated doctor unknown to them who is unconcerned with their concerns.

To be fair there was a glimmering moment when information seemed real, someone high up said not to worry or be concerned, they contradicted the businessmen with a solution for sale but then took it back. Politicians in a few places rejected their place on the payroll mocking the ruse in the news then inexplicably their country crumbled into disarray on the world stage.


Clown’s Obvious Virtue Is Detected

With not so many people on the street more people stand out. There are dramas daily on public display along with happy moments to provide contrast; a few are written here.

A clown with yellow curly hair, top hat to match, red suspenders holding up spotted pants dashed across the petrol station carpark. He skipped along in his big shoes down the street leaving in his wake a collection of sharply turned heads that had whipped around to take in the sight of him in disbelief. Did he have a mask on someone said but no one answered because everybody knows that clowns always wear a mask, it’s full face and topped off with a big red nose.


Currency Obtains Value In Debt

Teachers being called an essential worker at the onset of lock-in was a nice thing to hear about the profession but felt like a back-handed compliment. Teacher’s pay did not go up. There were no benefits provided to reflect the words being bandied about by those in power stating how grateful they were for the essential service.

Life got harder. The job went from teaching, to teaching and learning a new system, and teaching beyond the teachers’ subject of expertise to guide students to learn online, and embracing new technologies that had been mandated by institutions in response to government restrictions. Whew! Essentially it was exhausting, like running on the spot in a bad dream while chained to a desk.

People all around were being paid to stay home and do nothing but teachers were asked to stay home and do more with no extra pay.

The commute was much shorter though.


Crap Our Vote is Doomed!

Fear is everywhere. It’s on the news, in every headline and fixed into people’s expression on the street. The kind of look that once would have made me stop and ask a stranger if they were ok. Nobody is ok. The biggest trouble with the fearfulness is the snowball it’s become; people are afraid of a sickness but that’s not all it is. They are afraid of catching it, not knowing who has it, not knowing how to protect their health. At first it was just something that was happening overseas which is a long ways away from an island at the bottom of the world. Here we watch world events happen from afar.

It’d never happen here.

Looks what happening over there.

These statements were part of our national identity, we are not equipped for the tragedies of the world. It’s a cultural pass time to stand gawking from afar at the mishaps of other people’s lives, witnessing disasters mainly happens on TV as misfortune sandwiched between commercials just before a favourite sitcom. Of course, that’s not the truth of it all, Australia has real tragedy, real issues, real unrest but for the most part we live up to our brand – the lucky country. Lucky enough to be removed from global issues that spill over from one neighbouring country to another. Island life hasn’t saved us this time though.


Callous Offhand Violence Ingrains Doubt

My place in life has always been with other people, I found this out at an early age. I learn from them, I challenge them as they do me, I deflect them back upon themselves; it is not my intention it is my nature. Without people my life would be stagnant, other people make up my world.

On the days when awoken resentfully by my alarm I would lay there and reflect on who I would see that day and why, and the urge to embrace the day flooded me carrying me into that day with a wave of anticipation that came from without not within.

Navigating life is a task that I’d approached with joy and enthusiasm from a young age, people would respond well to this for the most part. I grew older and uncertain of my place in the world, the world grew around me challenging my development. Sometimes this came in the form of other people who criticised, doubted, and raged against me, some were dismissive and then one attacked.


Crossroad Oasis Visited In Droves

I live at a busy crossroads a few buildings from the corner of the main road which cuts at an angle leaning in toward my street. The main road leads past the hospital into the city and spans 6 lanes that hug tram tracks in between. The cross street is the path that the fire engines take, they’re housed not far away, I can hear them coming in the distance wailing their way through the streets with deep horn honks as they clear each intersection on their approach. Continuing over the main thoroughfare the road splinters to enter the beach suburbs where suburban tourists would flock on weekends, in the other direction the road travels back around the lake.

There’s a petrol station across the street on the corner of the crossroads that’s open 24hrs; the position is a gateway to and from the city for chaos, emergencies, and the commute. Nobody commutes anymore, everyone is locked away at home twitching their curtains to glimpse the outside world. The sirens haven’t stopped though with mainly police and ambulance sirens frequenting at all hours.


Carol Olive Victor Irene Doug

To best capture the multifaceted character of a city under arrest let’s take a look at a cross section of citizens captured on this page; all are inspired by more than one person and crafted into a single character.

Carol had her shit together more than most, yet most were oblivious to this. Some called her a friend and heckled her ideals because they had no insight into themselves so couldn’t recognise Carol’s as such. Carol was passionate and idealistic yet starkly aware of the injustices in the world. Carol was the calm in the storm and able to point out in a matter of fact way that things just weren’t right, and why. The whys that she recognised and discovered in her explorations of the truth in information presented to her didn’t resonate with most but Carol didn’t care about resonance. Carol was a truth seeker and a truth speaker, an alienating combination in a world constructed of illusions.


Can’t Obtain Validation, Internet Down

There was a lot of talk about what we could and couldn’t do. Nobody seemed to know what was going on and if they did or could show where they found information no one would believe them or want to listen; no voices could be heard over the deafening fear mongering. Fear was everywhere, its stench pervaded everything, seeping from TVs, radios, computers, phones, and fixed in wide-eyed expressions across the city.

The consensus was nobody knew anything, only to be afraid, also most accepted that questions were now unacceptable. Don’t ask, don’t try to make sense of anything and most of all don’t think about it, thinking was no longer encouraged.

Official websites appeared with pages to scroll though mandating rules of dysfunction that took hours to decipher. The finer points changed with regularity leaving readers in a state of confusion.

‘It didn’t say that yesterday’ was a common response from any who attempted to play by the rules by reading official websites. Rules were made to be broken was typically an idea embraced by rebels not those who made rule after rule after rule. The rules weren’t set in stone, they existed in flux in a sketchy arena where the goal posts moved so often that they were completely off the playing field in no time.


Consider Only Victims In Demographic

It was all over the news, over people’s faces, over the internet but we hadn’t seen any evidence of it.

I was so rattled by the fear that it made me afraid.

‘What if I kill someone?’ I thought to myself alarmed that it could happen. I could be a killer without even trying, I could take someone’s life unaware of my actions. They could walk away from me and drop dead days later. The fear grew with a sense of powerlessness weighing down on my conscious. I needed help, some sort of advice, some insight, a tactic to protect people from me and me from them. I wasn’t sick but I went to the doctor anyway.

Sitting in the waiting room was an experience, everyone was edgy with eyes searching the space for a sign of danger. Fight or flight was already present. The doctor called me in, he was wearing a mask, cotton gloves with clear plastic gloves over them and I wondered if he was being cautious because of a patient prior to me, or if I looked like I had it. Were there obvious signs? Did I have it? Could he tell?