I have noticed that;
- I like starting pieces with the word ‘and’.
- I like starting pieces with the phrase ‘And I have’.
- I like writing pieces that use the imagery of stars.
- I like writing pieces that somehow involve tattoos.
- I like writing pieces to ‘You’, whoever that is.
- I like writing pieces that has coffee in it, somehow.
- I like writing pieces that pay homage to the night sky.
- I like writing pieces that involve the physical structure of the heart.
- I like writing pieces about falling asleep & dreaming.
- I like writing pieces that address the body and the flesh.
- I like writing pieces.
- I like writing.
I have fallen asleep imagining the phantom caress of your fingertips.
I have drifted off underneath the moonlight, imagining stars in your eyes
and the aurora borealis above our entwined fingers.
I have slipped into slumber feeling the way your holy Soul moved within
my very own ventricle chambers, where I keep my tears,
locked safely away from prying fingers. I have dreamt.
Short, sweet syllables whispered under galaxy-light
explode with helium in the heart of the believing girl.
You know the love I hold for the night sky, you know.
The wishes we made at 11:11 will come true, for I shall not ask Fate
but ask my own strength of will. I will bend the lands and move the Seas.
I have dreamt. I have dreamt.
The dream is no different to the reality.
I still fall asleep feeling glistening touches,
bright with ultra-violet light, scarring the flesh.
Only now I dream, and I know you dream,
and I know that dreams and reality are interchangeable.
Dreams and reality are interchangeable,
we will make it so.
let us make love
I was standing by the cafe when you saw me. We always used to go here. I’d have a caramel latte and you, a green tea. You’d make fun of me for diluting the coffee until it didn’t even taste like coffee, and I’d make fun of you for drinking green tea by the tea bag, instead of leaves. We were both in love with the artificial, I suppose.
When you saw me, you took my hand and smiled that crooked smile I used to love. Years ago, it would have made my heart pound and my cheeks flushed. It didn’t have an effect this time. I think you were disappointed by that. You always knew just how to play me. You always knew just which keys to press to make me sing that melody. I smiled back, but it didn’t mean anything. I want you to know, it didn’t mean anything.
I wanted to get on a train and never come back. I had stood there for minutes, I’m not sure how many, listening to the rattling of the train tracks from the station nearby. I loved that song. It made my bones ache in sympathy, and I felt as though I was a broken down train. I wonder if trains lost their will when they broke down. They had always been built to leave. I wanted to inhabit a carriage and never stop, to travel around Australia until I found new lands or I died. I didn’t mind which. That’s what I thought we were going to do. I thought we were going to catch the train into the city, which wasn’t far enough for me but it would do for today.
You told me you had forgotten your wallet at home. I knew you hadn’t. You, despite your vagueness, never forgot a thing. You had left it there on purpose. We started the short walk back to your house, our fingers intertwined as we went. It was silent except for the rumble of cars passing by. We were walking but I felt as though we were moving down on an upwards travelator, staying in the same spot despite all our efforts. That was okay. I felt like I had no power to stop this. That was okay, too.
You made me a coffee. A caramel latte for old times, you said. I looked around your kitchen, and it was filthy. I felt out of place here, like one polished tea cup amongst broken remains. We drank the coffee in silence. You told me about the chickens in your backyard. I nodded and didn’t say a word until I had finished the creamy drink.
You looked at me and I looked back. I could see every second of the next two hours before they happened. I could see every movement, could hear every gasp. You leaned forward suddenly, and kissed me. I didn’t kiss back, but I didn’t stop you, either. I could feel the stars above me, shrouded as they were by the light of the Sun. Stars in the daytime are like God. They may or may not be there, but you can never be certain. You just have to hope.
I retreated out of my body while you made love to me. It was tender, it was sweet, and you whispered my name. You made sure I felt pleasure. You never realised that the pleasure was coming to me from a distance. I did not feel you. I felt someone else feeling you instead. I can’t explain this to you. I know a lot of people say this, but it’s not you, it’s me. I just don’t like you very much.
I just felt that this was inevitable.
thorny fingers flick the flesh
and i have thought
and you’re there but i cannot touch you
i cannot touch you
—silence comes when true love stops beating
—silence comes when the world stops turning
// silence came because you //
You kissed my hair away
and whispered warmmoist, soft
against my ear
I love you
stroked your hair
held you tight
kissed your mouth
said nothing, dumbstruck by love
said nothing about our love
said nothing, my love
— — Wendy Scott, 1974
“Poetry is a mirror which makes beautiful that which is distorted.”
— A Defence of Poetry, Percy Bysshe Shelley
comfort comes from
- It will rain again. It will be dark and cold when it storms outside, but you’ll be cocooned in your blanket so you won’t be scared.
- You’ll have to study hard for exams for the next couple of years, but then you’ll be free and have the world inside your mind, with your own ideas of how to shape it.
- Your favourite band will change every year, and you’ll feel like you’re betraying the old one. But your heart beats in time with a new song every week, and that’s okay.
- You will make love to a stranger you picked up at a bar, and it will be some of the greatest sex you’ll ever have. But when he offers you your number, you won’t take it, because you’ll know you need to move on.
- You’ll fluctuate in belief, and spend a week thinking there’s a God and a month thinking there’s not, but then you’ll realise that you keep breathing even if there isn’t one.
- You’ll curl up with a lover one day, and his legs will tangle with yours, his arm holding you to his chest. He will smell like home.
- You’ll clutch your stomach and pray to the Gods that the signs are wrong. If they are, you’ll breathe a sigh of relief and keep on walking. If they’re not, you’ll shudder and cry but then you’ll find a way to fix it.
- He’ll shatter your heart when he leaves your bedroom sparse, and the only thing left of him will be a lingering scent that you’ll expel with air freshener. But someone new will capture you, even if he never stops meaning the world to you.
- You’ll worry about whether there is blackness after death, and you’ll be terrified in those months of old age. But on your death bed, you’ll spend those last moments at peace, because you lived a full life and you hurt and you loved and you breathed.
- It doesn’t matter what happens after that.
- It will rain again.
meaning: I have none
Have you ever felt your fingertips plunge into an empty darkness?
It leaves a shiver running down your fragile spine, from where
the potplants and the vineleaves find their sustenance, and grow.
Faith has told me that if, inch by inch, I sink my forearm into the
bottomless abyss, I will feel the end of the world—and find peace.
But I have only explored up to the second knuckle, and all I feel
is fragility and fear. I feel a certain ice-chill which runs through
vertebrate. Have you ever felt the hairs stand on end, a fever
which does not ease, which runs for a decade and affects you
for eternity? You are truly free, if you have not. My fingers will dig deep,
I promise you, but:
I do not think I will find the fundamental secrets of this futile world.
two by two
Her knees are drawn up against her chest, and the moonlight filters through the window to caress her skin. Outside, the acid rain falls, it keeps falling. It’s been falling for months, now. Her fingers twist the cat’s fur gently, and Creature purrs. She is the picture of stillness. She breathes.
“Rain, rain, go away, come again another day,” she chants underneath her breath. She barely seems to move, even though her lips are buzzing a vibrato. The sweet melodies of her voice, a caramel syrup, blend with the ever-present thrum of rain drops. They slide down the transparent glass, and her midnight pupils follow each trailing droplet. Her arms encircle her legs. She has locked herself into a prison, even as we are kept inside this room. The cat continues to purr.
“Will it ever stop?” she murmurs, but I know she intended me to hear. I cannot answer. I have forgotten how to speak. We have spent a millenia inside this room, it seems. I fear that if I were to speak now, my voice would come out sounding exactly like hers. She is the only one I have spoken to for a long, long time. She doesn’t turn, she doesn’t move. She is still, and will not look at me. I do not make a sound. I simply continue to be.
A spider dashes across her collarbone. We have amassed a collection of insects inside this bedroom, even as they came inside to escape the rain. The rain keeps falling, ever steady. Next door, I hear the thump, thump, thump of a man and his wife making love. We are both naked in this room. We have been since we were locked in here. But we don’t make love anymore. We sit and watch the rain.
“Incy wincy spider climbed up the waterspout,” she hums. The spider crawls down her forearm, and comes to rest on Creature’s head. The cat does not stir. It continues to sleep on. “Down came the rain, and washed the spider out.” She pauses. She stops stroking the cat’s fur. There is silence while she and I sit still.
“I’m tired.” She will not sleep, though. Neither of us will. I simply nod, and we watch the rain keep falling. We will not sleep until the rain is over.
Out came the sun, and dried up all the rain,
and incy wincy spider went up the spout again.
“When a naked seventeen year old girl is shedding tears in the moonlight, anything can happen.”
— The Wind-Up Bird Chronicle, Haruki Murakami