I stepped out of my room and peeped over the edge of the banister. I could no longer hear the screaming and shouting and a rock seemed to have planted itself over my chest. There was a ringing sensation all over my body like it was telling me to not go down. The staircase loomed out of the darkness like a wall stopping my descent, but my stubborn streak revved up and I took a step and jumped at the little creak the floorboard made under my petite frame. I waited with out breathing for several seconds then let it out slowly as my head felt like it would pop. There was still no sound from below and I daringly took another step with a hand on the wall to guide me down the broad staircase. Halfway down, I felt something wet on my fingers and I pulled my hand away and wiped them on my pyjama bottoms. I knew what it was, but my mind refused to think about it in that moment and I continued down the steps with the copper smell getting stronger and stronger. As I stepped on the last step, my socks felt wet and I jumped off and ran into the kitchen. I wish I didn’t. I wish I had stayed in my room or gone to any other room. Even if I had just sat on the staircase, waiting for someone to come get me, it would have been better than seeing the scene from a horror movie all around me. There was red streaks and splatters around the walls of our small kitchen. There was a pool of it getting bigger from behind the table and reaching down the legs of whoever was laying on the floor. I stood in absolute terror, frozen, till a sound from the backdoor got me moving out of my trance and I began to run back upstairs. My wet socks slid across the shiny floor and I fell forward. The hands on my ankles made me scream and I curled up waiting for the plunge, knowing this was the end. I would die on this staircase and look like the body in the kitchen. My screams became muffled as the hands tried to pick me up and I grabbed on to the rails, fighting till the end. After several seconds the voice penetrated through my fear and I deflated in a fit of sobs, whilst my mom held onto me. We stayed like that, bloodied and sobbing on the staircase till the police came and whisked us out of that hell. We were taken to the hospital and then the questions began, but I could only remember the staircase. I was able to describe the smooth floor, the colour and pattern in the runner, the grooves in the banister and the creaky top step, but everything else was blank. After an hour, the doctor made everyone leave and I fell into a dark slumber from the medication. It wasn’t until several days later when we walked back into the house and I saw the staircase, that it all came rushing back and I ran out screaming. I never went back there physically, but the staircase always crept in to my nightmares for years after.
Staircase of Life
It rises before me; it circles and turns, up and up and up. Higher and higher. There seems to be no end. I do not know when I’ll reach my last floor; what if I don’t reach it at all? And to be quite frank; I’m afraid of the heights and falling. Falling back down. I sigh and take the first step.
“Today is the first day of the rest of my life.” That’s what my father says. So, then it must mean that this is the first step that I’m taking today to keep on trudging onwards in my life. The staircase of my life. Scattered with obstacles. It looks like the staircase of a household that contains a hundred children, and like the housekeeper can’t keep up with the mess anymore.
Pushing the building blocks to the side with my foot, I finally step on to the now much-safer second step. I have to go up this staircase barefoot...Unprepared. Able to step on every sharp thing, every round thing, and every slimy mess.
Yes, it’s the staircase of life. Messes, traps, and obstacles everywhere. Barefoot we go in; blistered we come out. Unscathed, innocent we enter; bruised, battered, and experienced we exit again.
But, in the end, it’s all about the experience and what we did to make it better; not just for ourselves, but also for others. No matter all the troubles, there is beauty, love, and fun to be found on this journey. Yes, this staircase might be treacherous, but in the end it will be worth it...
The groan of an old floorboard, footsteps growing louder and waining over and over. Streams of light illuminating an avalanche of dust. Containing prayer for something, anything, to come through. An old nail, a piece of scrap metal, it doesn't matter what anymore, a broken fork will do nicely. A shallow, quiet, movement to the old door. Nothing pulling back. Stairs creak with each step, the round knob turns. The time is now. Ready to climb?
It was a steep descent, winding into a cool, velvet darkness. The boy could just see to the seventh step from where he stood, lighting the way dimly with the flashlight he was grasping in his damp hand. He was nearly trembling with fear. It turned his stomach and kept him lingering at the top, undecided. One moment he had resolved to begin the journey down the staircase and was preparing to climb down the precarious wooden steps, the next he was unconsciously moving back from the edge again, feeling his heart hammering in his chest. He wanted to close his eyes to calm himself, but he didn’t dare. Not while he stood so close. He had to keep his eyes on that dark hole, had to walk down those steps. He had walked that way a dozen times, but never unaccompanied ....
You’re being ridiculous, he told himself. What could possibly be down there but old spiderweb and dust?
Still, he couldn’t move. He was paralysed with an irrational fear, the fear that there was something else in that deep abyss; perhaps not something tangible, but still, alive; crawling, even. Something that hid in corners, that would stand behind him one minute and in front the next. If he could only stop thinking about it … it wouldn’t take long to get to the bottom of the cellar, collect the jar, make his way back and shut the trapdoor again, not long at all. He just had to force himself to swallow his fright and make a move. But the jar was so big … so heavy … more of a bucket than a simple preserving jar. What if he couldn’t manage?
“Michael! What are you doing in there?” he started as he heard his mother call from the kitchen. “Get down there and find that sauerkraut if you want to eat. You’re not scared, are you?”
The boy gave it no more thought. He scurried down the winding staircase almost without seeing where his feet were landing, found the jar, and heaved it back up as fast as possible -- perhaps faster than he had thought was possible.
Nothing. There had been nothing down there but old spiderwebs and dust, just as he had known there would be. He laughed nervously at himself as he fastened the trap door, laughed at the fantasies that had filled his head. He was almost in tears now; but he told himself they were tears of joy. It was not until he had made his way safely to the kitchen and was breathing a sigh of relief that he remembered he had left the flashlight at the bottom.
He looked at his son’s large house with a sinking feeling. He just knew they’d made a mistake. But what man has won an argument with a wife who hasn’t seen her grandchildren in a year? He glanced at her as they waited for the door to open. She was excited, happy. He sighed, relieved to note the son’s warm welcome matched his mother’s enthusiasm.
The welcome elsewhere was lukewarm. He drank his tea in silence, wishing he was back home, wondering how they were going to pass the next 5 days. He glanced down at the little girl, leaning against him, while she chattered nineteen to the dozen with her grandmother. Was he the only unhappy one? Or was it just discomfort at the obvious differences between their small village home and this large almost mansion. Or something else perhaps, which he wasn’t willing to articulate.
“The baby’s still asleep, why don’t you take some rest and we’ll catch up with him in the evening?” their son suggested. They nodded. “I’ve put you in the first floor. Less to climb.” He stared at his son. “First floor? Isn’t there a room here, on this floor?” His son looked bemused. “No, no, all the rooms are upstairs. Is there a problem?” “No, no problem,” he said huffily as his wife looked uneasily at the long climb up. The doctor had recently diagnosed his joint pain as arthritis with the admonishment, “Avoid long walks, don’t climb stairs.” He had laughed. “There are no stairs in our small house, eh. And I never walk, if I can help it.” They had both guffawed and there the matter had rested.
The little girl had already gone up for her nap. He rose with a little difficulty and walked slowly, unwillingly, towards the stairs. It was a known fact that nobody understood one’s aches except oneself. He anticipated the right knee would be throbbing by the time they reached their room.
Just as he placed his foot on the first step, his granddaughter came running from the higher floor, her mother calling after her in vain. She ran down to him, took his hand in hers and said, “Grandpa, let me help you up the stairs. Take care now, hold on to my hand, I won’t let you fall.”
He smiled. It wasn’t going to be such a bad 5 days ahead, after all.
my aunt's family lived in the same country as us, so we saw each other often. i liked her. and her kids. she had three, all younger than my mom's three. i always tell people she mixed up the order, cause her oldest is my brother's age, her second is my sister's age, and the little one is 11 years younger than me. in other words, i was excluded, not part of the adults, but not part of the children, yet again.
this was many years ago, before the little one was born, my sister and her cousin-turned-sister were playing at the top. of the staircase. no one knows what really happened, because everyone has different stories. i think my sister left, to be replaced by my brother, who stood behind his little cousin, guarding her from the steps. then, she fell.
she fell down the staircase, smacking her head, and jaw over and over again. i didn't know what to do. i froze, i was 11. my aunt screamed, by mother ran downstairs, noticing the blood on the stairs. two of her bottom teeth had been hit so forcefully they went inside the gum. once again, i didn't know what to do, except call an ambulance.
what happened after was pure chaos, and i can't really remember it, until the paramedics showed up. they were calm and collected, reassured my aunt and mother that she will be ok, and took my aunt and my little cousin to the hospital. i was left at home with my shaken mother to clean up and, as she ordered the rest of us, to go take naps.
Staircase to the stairwell
The stained & chipped staircase led down into the deep dark depths of the soul. Who that shall enter be rewarded with knowledge, courage & undying love. But those who take for granted the goodness, shall be captured & swallowed by the evil named death & be thrown down the black, chipped never ending stairwell so that the last thing to see is the souls daunting expression of a blurred smile & chirping echoed smile.
The Spiral Staircase
Staircases, all houses have them. Some staircases are old and creeky, some are made from polished marble. I remember as a little girl, my parents had a spiral staircase on our beach property on the coast. I've always liked spiral staircases, winding up to somewhere and wondering what could be at the top? I remember pouring over those fairytale and adventure books and seeing illistrations of them leading up the princess's tower, or perhaps a secert hideaway for spies or pirates with false walls and traps. Some staircases lead to a fabulous treature or a dead end. Yes, the spiral staircase. I would pretend that the staircase was magical leading me to a fantastical world. Sometimes, I pretended that I was going to a tea party with fairies in a hollowed wood. Other times, I was on lookout from my observation tower and trying to see if I could see any pirate ships. Of course, to most it was a simple iron casted staircase but to me it was a gateway to a fantastical magical world.