No Alarms and No Surprises

War... - Editor

by Brian Lyons

The first time Mickey had seen Afghanistan was as he had thundered down into its terrifyingly beautiful landscape in the belly of a great C17 Globemaster. He'd been dazzled by the form and colours of the harsh yet stunning scenery he had swept over. It seemed to him to be a land comprised of huge towering snow-topped mountains, or the swirling dunes of vast breathless desert plains with thin green stains following sparse river valleys.

As they had started to descend, his neighbours on the plane had wedged their helmets firmly under their seats. He quickly did the same; he'd seen Apocalypse Now too.

The gentle tones of No Alarms and No Surprises, one of the more melodious of Radiohead's tracks, rippled across his consciousness through the earphones of his MP3 player. It was a strangely appropriate soundtrack to his very first descent into this country. He took it as an omen.

Mickey loved his music and knew it could be a tool to help him through his time in this place. It could save his sanity. Now, without anything else, he clung to it, finding significance wherever he could in every line. However he was aware that his experiences, and the memories they generated, would, in the end, probably destroy the relationship he had built with those much-loved songs.


All around them was silent, but for the occasional moan of wind and swish of sand. Even the radio was short of its usual frantic traffic on this hot hazy day. Now and again a wayward insect crawled up the inside of a trouser leg and needed an admonishing slap, but that was about it.

"You awake?" Dook was restless. Nothing was happening and he was getting fidgety.

Mickey just grunted, he couldn't think of a sensible answer. Besides, he was enjoying the rare moment of peace they had been afforded.

About me

This is me: home-writer, book-reader, dog-lover and occasional poet. I make this website to share my and my friends texts with You, dear Reader. Please: read carefully, don't be scary, upgrade your mood and be king and leave your comment. :)