inner city - quotes and descriptions to inspire creative writing
The inner city grew out of the cracked sidewalk like the jagged gap-toothed grin of an old junkie. The only splash of color in the grime came from the lurid graffiti and the sidewalks were littered with injection paraphernalia. From every covered doorway came the dejected stares of men and women in their pathetic cardboard sleeping bags. From upper windows came the boom of sub-culture music. The hookers stalked the streets in their skimpy outfits and high boots looking for work, their drug-addled bodies as thin as pins, their cheekbones jutting out through pallid skin.
And thus the whole private life of the street was threaded in lights. There was a sense of indecent exposure, from so many backs. He felt himself almost in physical contact with this contiguous stretch of back premises. He heard the familiar sound of water gushing from the sink in to the grate, the dropping of a pail outside the door, the clink of a coal shovel, the banging of a door, the sound of voices. So many houses cheek by jowl, so many squirming lives, so many back yards, back doors giving on to the night. It was revolting.
The streets that were once sleek new tarmac are now greyed by the bleaching of the sun. The road is a monochrome patchwork, each one lined with a shiny boarder of tar. Despite these fixes there are still cracks and the potholes grow larger with each passing year. The trees that were once fine saplings with soft spring foliage are now gnarled embittered trees growing tall but without strength, competing unnaturally against the towering apartment blocks they were planted too close to. Their bark is mossy from the perennial dampness and incessant rain, except a few weeks of reprieve in the summer months. The sidewalk for the most part is still smooth concrete, albeit scattered with litter and the debris of the moulting trees. Tram wires strung from sea-green posts dangle at a two-storey height, beyond the daily regard of the pedestrians who walk heads-down to their destinations. At intervals are the street-lamps, once painted in glossy green, now dappled with grey chips of undercoat.
The streets were capriciously cruel. By day the shoppers swarmed the boutiques with slogans stencilled to the glass fronts in fashionable off-white. They strutted from up-market cars to flash their credit cards in exchange for designer goods costing many times more the price anywhere else. The homeless still wandered the street, often in noisy exchanges with themselves or another down-and-out. In the coolness of the wintry daylight they were regarded as of no more importance than the cracked sidewalk or the chipped lamp-posts. Indeed the shoppers wished they were not there at all and clutched their handbags all the tighter. By night the up-town mommas did not come calling with their SUV's, the streets belonged to the pimps and the drug dealers. Even the cops stayed away unless there was a complaint from a tax-payer and even then they came slowly. So it was under the sallow lamp-light that most money changed hands; money from stolen goods turning into smuggled narcotics.
The street was glorious in its inception. The sidewalks were smooth grey stones, joined with such precision that the joins were almost invisible. The walls were concrete, but not like a villa in rural Spain; they were more akin to the construction of a modernist skyscraper, all sharp edges and corners. The buildings were nothing short of monoliths, the bastions of the city's pride, stamping its arrival on the map of financially significant places to trade with. Yet no-one had communicated this vision to the citizenry. The street that should have been such a joy to walk was littered with garbage and the detritus of dogs. Enjoying the street view would mean taking your eye off your shoes, and no-one was about to do that.
Gabrielle quickly licked the ice-cream to right it, it had begun to slump precariously to one side and there was nothing worse than loosing an entire scoop to the dirty sidewalk. As usual she dawdled in the way home, looking at the wall for new graffiti. This part of the city would never be like those polished upper class neighbourhoods, but they had the best creamery on either side of the bridge and fine artwork spray painted each nightfall. Perhaps one day she'd make a tag of her own, step out in her cheap black leggings from the market and her hair in a pony tail. She smirked at the idea, maybe next time one of the walls got painted over by the city she'd give it a go. In her daydream a drop of Strawberry made it onto her t-shirt, with a finger she scooped it up. She frowned momentarily at the pink stain before spying Pia across the street. She raised her hand, "Yo, Pia!"
More fragile than the glass that is blown for the throngs of tourists and just as gaily coloured, the butterfly alights softly on the sooty oil drum. I wonder if its feet are dirty, how would you ever tell? I wonder what it eats here in this city slum, where does it find the sweet nectar? Part of me wants to scoop it up but my hands are rough from so many burns and scars. If I killed such a beautiful thing how could I ever live with myself? It makes we wonder if somewhere in the she smog and concrete is a garden hidden behind walls, some oasis of beauty this spark of the creator can find but I cannot.
The newly urbanised city was flooded by a sea of people heading in different directions. The higher class people strutted down the high street carrying their Gucci handbags and wearing their Armani coats. Whereas the lower class people sat down on the cold littered floor begging for money. They had no Gucci handbag to keep their belongings never mind a thick coat to see them through the harsh winter. On every corner there were buskers. Some singing with marvellous talent and others which sounded like a cat in a washing machine. There was also a lot of food stalls selling fast-food galore which made the homeless peoples mouths water.