By the Pool

His finger traces the length of my spine before his shadow lengthens, falls on one side of the towel. The voice is overhead, far away.

I’m going to swim

I go on lying flat, face buried in his shirt, listening to bare feet receding on the tile. A faint slicking noise of water; a heavy scent of oil and flowers.

I get hotter.

Tightness on my naked shoulders. I should be careful of burning. But I can’t  move. It’s like the sun is absorbing all my energy and then distributing it to others.. Leaving me in the dark. Cold. Fatigued. Lonely. The watch on the corner of the towel says almost noon. Fifteen minutes. I am sticking to the blue loops. They make marks on my stomach.

I peel away from the towel, turn as I stand. The pool is very bright in the sun. Disconnected limbs come through the whiteness. The cries of annoying children: ripples slither along the surface.

I am vaguely uneasy. Shivering.

~ by Disturbed Stranger on July 26, 2008.

84 Responses to “By the Pool”

  1. That’s the most depressing day by the pool I’ve ever read. I didn’t think it was possible to be depressed by the pool, but I guess this is the blog where everything is made possible!
    Well done Disturbed.

  2. I live for moments of vague unease. It keeps a person in touch with their inner demons. Your post has left me with that emotion and my demons thank you for that.

    Thanks so much for your comment on my site. I will always welcome strangers disturbed and otherwise.

  3. where’s the rest of the story? I want more!

  4. hakhak

    Ei, from what country are you?


    elyens poreber


  5. This post put a smile on my face.

  6. Homeless Man Speaks- Yes… This is where miracles happens ;)

    Pure Evyl- Your demons are quite welcome ;) Your blog is equally as interesting. Stick around for more inner-demon-provoking posts! And my blog, too, welcomes demons… and other disturbed figures ;)

    Jena Isle- Lol.. hmmm a reader with a big appetite :) I’ll try to satisfy you in my upcoming posts. But for now, how about you test your creativity and add something yourself? ;)

    rimewire- You tell me yours I’ll tell you mine ;)

    Powell- I’m glad it did… but don’t get any ideas.

  7. Oh i love that and your blog :)

  8. Oh DS, bravo – it is so amazing that we happen to write pool posts on the same day. Loved it – especially the conflict between the heat of the sun and the feeling inside of cold. Beautifully done.

  9. I’m from the Philippines, and you?


  10. Couldn’t you just enjoy the sun and water?

  11. I am getting more comfortable with your writing. It has much more subtlety and depth than I thought before and is very modern, this is so smooth and then just the tremor of unease below the surface. It is very seductive in a way but scary too somehow. Anyway, I enjoy all of your stories, they are great, always worth reading more than once.

  12. soft..sweet and interesting!

  13. there is a depth and length to this beyond the pale of words and breadth of statement. the meloncholy is palpable.
    wonderful write.

  14. I used to have these kinds of ‘uneasy’ days at the pool, that’s why i stopped going :D

  15. Kaylee2- Thank you. I’m sure they love you too :)

    WC- Yes I know! However, totally different perspectives. It’s really interesting to compare. And thank you.

    rimewire- Cool! Kamustaka? I’m born a Kuwaiti ;) but raised a British.

    Amethyst- I could… but I like being a drama queen ;)

    Paul- You really get me. Thank you for your complements. Your writing is as equally as juicy with a little more complexity ;)

    Amu- My post? Or myself? ;)

    ozymandiaz- Deep. Thank you.

    Darya- Interesting… Was it the sun? Water? Or the guy?
    Either way that makes both of us!

  16. This sounds sooooo familiar.
    Is this what I think it is? :D

  17. a5 the good old days by the pool. Now don’t tell me that was depressing! :P although a day by the pool to you means gossiping with a certain someone and staring at other certain someoneS :P

    I like this post. It’s not as depressing as readers may think, I see more fear here.

  18. Super blog! I felt chills as I read through your archives!
    Great job DS!

  19. Who’s the guy? Who’s shirt? Who?!! Who?!!
    I love when the sun numbs you, it’s what I always look forward to when I go for a swim :) it’s relaxing.

  20. I know how this feels. To feel dead. You’d be so down no joyful event can be joyful, you’d notice every tiny thing and hear every little insignificant thing. It’s torture. This is very severe, most hurting piece so far.

  21. q8tia- I doubt it :P

    Dr.Know- I never…
    and fear of what?

    Alyssa M- Thank you and welcome here.

    Queen N- Just another fictional character… and well… you’re weird ;)

    P2C2U- I’m sorry you know how that feels but well observed! You’re on the right track.

  22. I just want to dive into that picture. The water looks so inviting.
    I liked this: “I am sticking to the blue loops. They make marks on my stomach”
    I can see you struggling with the marks as you get up. Probably throw some curses here and there too :P
    And like the guys said, it brings back good memories ;)

  23. I wrote a beach post too! :P
    Actually a depressing beach post! :P
    This is my favorite part, “I go on lying flat, face buried in his shirt, listening to bare feet receding on the tile. Faint slicking noise of water; a heavy scent of oil and flower”. Brilliant details make your writing stand out.

  24. Beautifully done :) … Is this a prelude of more to come ??

    Especially loved “absorbing all my energy and then distributing it to others”

    Very “yin”

  25. mental challenge- I don’t know what you’re talking about… This doesn’t ring a bell at all ;)

    Elijah- Yes I know, I saw your post. Not bad actually :) some pretty disturbed images you got there… Proud of you! ;)

    Mental Mist- Thank you… unfortunately it’s not a prelude… Next post is going to be a little different :)

  26. enjoy this style you have here –

  27. I’m speechless Disturbed. You have a gift of seeing things out of the norm. I don’t know whether to be shocked or enthralled at this remarkable talent. Your words touch the readers’ soul and manipulate with their mind.
    You’ve pulled me right into this post and now I too am worn out and frozen.

  28. Absolutely brilliant.

  29. Replace the pool with the sea and you’d have quite a setting. No wonder you’re uneasy. It’s that artificial blueness of the cold, life-less tiles making you think it’s the blue waters. Nature gave you a wonderful, chloroform-free place to swim, why do you always go for the fake replica?

    p.s. blue loops? everything’s blue to you babe?

  30. ah?

    so you’re in UK now?




  31. I love this post…

  32. deanjbaker- Thank you and welcome here.

    Karri Compton- There really is nothing shocking about it. This is what we face and deal with everyday. It’s just most people chose not to acknowledge it… thinking it would make them “cheerful” and positive thinkers… naïve really…
    Thank you for your complement … And yes I do have a tendency to toy with peoples’ minds… It’s a bad habit I can’t seem to shake off ;)

    Chris- Thank you, you’re not too bad yourself.

    hanan- The beaches here aren’t inviting as I’m sure you know… so private pools substitute… But when I’m abroad I cannot resist the temptations of the beach ;)

    And yeah blue all the way!! ;)

    rimewire- No… Allow me to clarify: I was brought up by British standards. Oh, and you never told me what “hakhak” meant ;)

    vixenfatale- Thank you :)

  33. I wish that I had even an ounce of your depth. The picture was relaxing. I love water to calm me.

  34. You by the pool? That’s can never be depressing.

    I miss the swimming days.

  35. I really have to say this, Disturbed you are not just another-everyday-person. Something about you is captivating and this I can only tell from your writing as I’m not even going to begin to imagine how you’d be in person. But I can definitely tell you this, you’re different and unique in your own way, a very interesting person, talented and an attention-grabber! :) You probably get that a lot, right? Your friends are really lucky to have the chance to be around you but the person I envy most is your lover. I don’t mean to offend. I guess I should be thankful to have met you.
    You’ve got great potential. Your writing says a lot. I hope you consider publishing one day.
    Sorry for any inconvenience or offense.
    Outstanding work.

  36. I second Kevin H.
    Well said mate.

  37. I’m feeling it, Disturbed Stranger. I think this is my favorite piece you’ve written, such tactile and alive images pulling me into the blue.

    PS Paris is a distant dream, now all I feel like doing is going swimming. I wonder why.

  38. Do I get extra credits if I say both :P

  39. heidi- Thank you for the high opinion. I’m glad you enjoyed it.

    J.J- How would you know?

    Kevin H- Thank you, that’s really kind to say… and I’m sure my friends agree with you.

    Chris- Thank you as well, I had no idea you felt the same way too.

    harmonie22- And where have you been? I figured you got lost somewhere on the way back ;) This is my favorite post so far as well. Thanks.

    Amu- Of course you will ;)

  40. looks so sedating
    and the words
    senous and soothing

    side bar – me not on your rolll folk what gives lol

  41. Kevin as her friends we agree, we are VERY lucky.

    and you, Disturbed, la tshoofeen nefsich 3alainah now :*

  42. I’m loving this!
    The sounds on the tiles and the water-footprints around the pool were my obsession when I was a kid. You’ve brought back some good memories :D Thank you Disturbed Stranger.

  43. Chinnah I’m late this time? :P Ok. Awwal shay why are you denying the swimming days?

    I like the post. I like how the sun annoys you :P

    And Kevin I speak on behalf of q8tia and myself…. :P when I say we treasure our friendship with this little disturbed work of art :D

  44. I love~!

  45. kids should have their own pools

  46. rawdawgbuffalo- Yeah looks good, doesn’t it?
    I don’t have a roll folk ;)

    Queen N- You are ‘too’ lucky.

    Alysha- obsessed with feet sounds and marks? and they say I’m weird? ;) I’m glad they’re good memories.

    Viper- I’m in denial I guess, you figure out why :P

    F.- Thank you!

    bored- And exactly what do you mean by that? :)

  47. sad but calming image. It feels like she’s helplessly giving up.
    Done with the book :) speechless. I can’t wait for the next list! :D

  48. For the first time I agree with you Viper! But I can speak on behalf of myself thank you :p
    Disturbed you really are a special person. Verrrry unique :P
    You don’t need to hear it from a stranger to know it.

    So Kev, yes, her friends, really lucky, her lover, very very lucky! ;)

  49. Suffocating words. Even though she’s above water it seems like she’s drowing on the inside. Some amusing imagery.
    Remarkable as usual.

  50. *drowning

  51. “I am vaguely uneasy”

    This is such beautiful and uncomfortable imagery. I think I have done time over several years, walking stuck in vaguely uneasy. Makes me stomach turn just thinking about it. So eloquently captures a feeling in a phrase.

    ::hats off and deep bow::

  52. DS. The beaches here, though not as ‘blue’ as the Mediterranean or the Pacific, are still more inviting than the pools.
    I love reading the post again and again. It has a certain special value (even if it had been mutilated from the original version) maybe made more special by the image of that blueness above, so unlike your usual dark images.
    Wonderfully written as always. Did I say that already?

  53. Ancrene Wiseass- Maybe she is. Next list coming soon.

    q8tia- Thank you, but hearing it from a stanger is kinky ;)

    Delusional BND- it feels exactly like drowning! Thank you.

    Queen of he universe- That makes both of us, but at this point I’m used to the feeling.
    *bow back to you*

    hanan- You can never say it enough ;)
    And when I said not inviting I was referring to the philanderers, perverts and demented homosexuals who can’t control their ogling.

  54. It’s true the beaches here suck!!! I want Cyprus beach :(

  55. You’ve got extraordinary charisma. It’s powerful. You are so naturally full of life and energy that possess people around you to absorb some of your spirit, leaving you worn out, but you can’t blame them it seems uncontrollable.
    Now I understand your post.
    You’re quite something.

  56. Why aren’t you approving any of my comments?!! Don’t you have a heart?!


    Life isn’t fair I know but I can’t stand being away.
    It doesn’t feel right.
    I’m really hurting.
    I want to stop missing

  57. hakhak is merely an expression, or a “sticky note” so to speak


    wow, people actually love how you write, congrats

    have you ever been in the Philippines?




  58. q8tia- We should all go on a group trip.

    easywriter- That was good… you’re quite something yourself.

    Anonymous- Your comments are inappropriate; they are not related to the post or writing in general. This isn’t group therapy. If you have something personal you wish to discuss with me then here’s my email:

    I’ll be more than happy to hear anyone out…

    rimewire- No I haven’t unfortunately. I’ve only been to countries that surround the Philippines: Singapore, Indonesia, Thailand, Malaysia, Hong Kong, China…
    But it is on my travel list and I’m planning to go there with Kuwaiti and Philippino friends ;) So I’ll drop by and say hello… :)

  59. Babe…your come-backs are hilarious. Group therapy? Poor Anonymous. Did you have to embarrass him/her in public like this? You’re so deliciously evil.

  60. and…you do it once again! At first i get the feeling that it’s another lazy day in the sun by the pool, but then it turns eerie and unsettling. It’s amazing how you can twist the view so quick. Here’s hoping for better days at the lake or by the pool this summer.

  61. Oh my God! 7ada yabila group trip :D
    Can you imagine all of us there? :P chaos.

    And lol hanan why are you encouraging her? :p this is no laughing matter, I bet Anonymous is crushed :) (and I don’t know why I added that smiley, chinah mala da3i)

  62. How come all your characters are women?

    Are you a Feminist? Sexist? Any -ist? :P

  63. Vividly expressed deep thoughts.
    Tremendously wonderful blog!

  64. Great talent.
    Great blog.

  65. hanan- I assure you it’s unintentional ;)

    naughtycorner07- Of course! Everything has to be twisted! The excitement is in the twist, is it not?

    q8tia I enjoy chaos… I’m looking forward to it.

    Ancrene Wiseass- You are not patient… My next character is a man. However to answer your questions: sexist? No. Feminist? Yes. Any other -ist? Perfectionist.

    Jamie- Thank you and welcome here.

    Avind- Thank you!

  66. Being a morning person, i like the element of daylight contrasting with a darker personality as opposed to the previous posts where darkness has total domination.. however, the piece is too good for you not to have developed the character further.. An extra paragraph or two would not have killed you.. :p
    p.s. is the hay for the horses to eat??

  67. NnN- “An extra paragraph or two would not have killed you.. ” Yes, but how do you know for sure? I didn’t want to risk it… It’s not worth risking my life over it…

    P.S. Yes it was claimed to be for the horses…I’m not sure… but one thing is for sure Cleopatra was killed by a Wasp not an Asp ;)

  68. You have an unusual rhythm, but it is one that is hard to look away from. When are you going to post another story? Hello,

  69. The excitement IS in the twist! You’ve got that right! :) Keep t-w-i-s-t-i-n-g things up!

  70. LOOOOL ur comeback cracked me up o this anon sij need a kahraba-therapy :p
    back to the post, man your talented narrator I felt like I was there Gosh!!

  71. Paul- No one can look away ;) I’m just too attractive… New post coming up. Hello yourself.

    naughtycorner07- Always and yes ma’am!

    fadidra- Thank you! And yes I know, Anonymous was annoying at first… but after the emails I got, we reached a mature settlement ;)

  72. Mesmerising to a point I am shivering. Tell me Disturbed Stranger, Can the Sun be too bright that it is actually darkness and the glowing moon is the only amount of light that we need? Suffice for us to read and see.

    Good Post, i enjoy ‘reading’ it.

  73. You have an eye for hidden things. Really unique.

  74. One of the best blogs I’ve seen! Your posts are rich in meaning and expression. Do you have any work published?
    I’ll be back.

  75. Mmmmmm, very relaxing…..makes me look forward to my next trip -August 21st-, on a beach at Santorini.
    I’ll create a post with some photos on my blog and you have to let your imagination fly there and come back with the words to author of this post.

    What do u think?

  76. enemy- The sun can be bright yet most people remain blinded and in the dark… If their minds cannot accept the light then what use do they have for the sun?
    I’m glad you enjoyed it.

    Mayya- I get that a lot ;) Thank you.

    Maclean Patrick- Books? Not yet…But I do have a couple of published articles and short stories.
    Thank you for your complement.

    Adrenaline- Enjoy your trip!
    Sounds interesting; you want me to put your pictures into words?

  77. Exactly

  78. Ok seriously… turning pools into pits of hell.. what is wrong with you.. stick to chambers.. its interesting how you didnt mention all the urine in that pool.. i find that disgustingly terrifying.. the thought of swimming in someones waste isn’t appealing and yet we still ignorantly submerge ourselves in filth..that’ll give u a thing or two to think about :P and umm keep up the – I won’t say good just.. okay – work.

    P.S. good job trying to be more positive and choosing happier scenes.. but u clearly aren’t on the right track

    oh and just a little P.P.S if u all think shes so amazing, you try living with her for 17 years :P

    <333333333333 mwah

  79. If it’s alright with you, I’m really interested in reading your work.

  80. L- “Trying to be more positive and choosing happier scenes”… Says who?
    and those were the best 17 years of your life… so quit bitching ;)

    Maclean Patrick- No problem.
    Email me and I’ll send you the links:

  81. The Insignificant Somebody is a perfectly told story. Very effective and very well made.

  82. You have a way with words, sounds like a chapter of a good story, enjoyed it ;)

  83. I felt this one. Great.

  84. the level of detail with which you describe things in your posts amuses me.

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