Posted in Blog, Creative Writing, Writing

Growing Up

I think wistfully about what I will be like when I grow up.

Clean credit cards,

a clean sink that gleams, as if it has never glimpsed a dirty dish,

a son, settled into sleep (I am so convinced it is a boy),

while I write,

perched on the windowsill,

singing softly to my assorted indoor plants,

and the patient glow of the moon.

There is no landlord,

and I am the lady of a tidy home,

wearing neat, sensible clothes as I turn walks to nursery school into a wild adventure,

quite out of character for my new persona,

but the last little part that I will keep of who I was.

There is a shadow of a soulmate,

when I dream about it,

always in the corner of my eye,

or just out of reach,

and sometimes,

I ask them who they are,

but there is always refusal,

so I reluctantly accept that sometimes,

you have to wait for the answers.

I spend my time,

in the current time, being stiff, distant and weird to suitors,

so I can be sure that they’ll stay,

if I get back to my old ways (which are technically my current ways),

but just like the lonely sea,

I am always left bereft,

so,

sometimes,

I think I ought to try being more palatable,

but who really wants to just be tolerated?

My son has dark brown eyes, like mine,

and I have yet to tell him that the dinosaurs are extinct,

because I cannot bear to break his heart.

He has the smallest hands I have ever held,

but they are always cold,

like a ghost,

and I haunt the hospital,

pleading for peace of mind,

while a doctor (always a male) tuts, and says that ALL new mothers are hysterical.

I have never seen my boy as baby,

so it feels unfair to be labelled as new,

but I suppose it’s one of those things where you never stop learning,

so I lean into the label,

grateful that my child gazes up at me as if I am a God.

Posted in Blog, Creative Writing, Writing

Torn Pages

I tell people that I am an open book, but a book that needs translating,

because it’s easier than explaining why the ink has run and the pages are torn.

I just don’t let them look.

“The book is open…” I say

“But avert your eyes.”

They won’t understand.

I won’t know how to tell them.

Never mind.

I got lost in the forest last night,

just as the sun decided she had seen enough,

and tucked herself up into bed,

I was baited by dark, dramatic branches,

that all looked the same.

“Where am I going?”

is such an eternal question for me,

in a way that unsettles me,

because I don’t think I will ever have a satisfactory answer.

I used to wear pretty, pure dresses on a Sunday,

but I have been Grief’s girl for so long,

that god struggles to recall how I looked in white.

He doesn’t mind,

but he remembers it being so beautiful in a way that didn’t make him sad.

I tell him every day that I’m not sad,

I just don’t have permission to be happy.

Posted in Blog, Creative Writing, Writing

Making Pasta With Morrissey

This is such an old story,

so predictable,

well trodden boards, and all that,

but I gather everyone I know and I tell it again anyway,

because my heart feels like she has never been heard.

I am currently attempting to live in the moment.

I am currently attempting to “have fun” and enjoy being young,

but as I knew before,

and as I already know that I will know after,

I am having a dreadful, stressful time,

because I’m the kind of girl who needs to know how things turn out,

so that she can decide if the inevitable heartache will be worth it.

There is always inevitable and unavoidable heartache.

I am trading texts with a man,

who has an deep desire to tie me up,

and fuck me up (and likely in various other directions) in his living room,

and I think that he thinks my hands are hurried inside my silk underwear,

but in fact,

I am not wearing underwear (please don’t tell him),

because I am home alone,

watching concert videos of The Smiths on YouTube and preparing pasta,

but we are in the moment,

so I play pretend,

in case he wants to fuck me in a more palatable way,

or maybe even wants to fall in love.

That would be nice,

but like heartache, disappointment is also inevitable and unavoidable,

so I try not to get my hopes up too much,

I try not to give myself a headache,

my heart warmed at the thought that I will at least have a hearty meal this evening.

The water bubbles with excitement,

but I do not.

When Morrissey muses about “Girl Afraid”,

he means me.

He might not know it,

but I’d know my anxious agony anywhere,

so, yes, I am girl, and yes, I am afraid.

Where do his intentions lay?

And what are mine?

When does “having fun” translate to having a good time?

I’m sorry,

but I will lose my shit if I have to say to myself

“Jennifer, Jennifer, it was really nothing”

again,

because again,

I am having absolutely no fun,

in my summer of love,

where no love is actually found,

and I am profoundly worried about the safety of my body and soul.

Posted in Blog, Creative Writing, Writing

My Two Fathers Are Watching

He towered over the troubled child,

virtuous, virgin of hope,

a child,

ripped from a child herself.

Messy when she fingerpaints,

messy when she scribbled words that would one day become whole worlds,

messy when she tried to climb the kitchen cabinets for biscuits before dinner,

his very own Macarena.

He had such hope for her,

unable to see her human failings,

and how he’d feel about them,

because a father’s love is beautifully blind,

and she was fantastically flawed,

in a way he would learn to love,

once the disappointment dimmed.

Now,

he still towers over her,

watching from God’s garden as his cherished child fingerpaints herself into futile corner after futile corner.

Posted in Writing, Blog, Creative Writing

The Girl’s Madness – Part One

I meet the eyes of my mother less and less,

because of my envy, that I could never get past,

and the fear that I will pass the point of being her pride and joy, disappearing into her disappointment.

My body is a clam that longs for a pearl,

passed over by the unkind sea,

that never saw fit to find me worthy of motherhood.

I don’t know that I’d be any good.

Children smile at me.

Children stare at me on buses,

but I’m sure it takes much more than that,

to make some cells into a success,

and maybe I just want a child in the way that a child wants an imaginary friend?

I want to pretend that I am not hurtling through the human experience with nobody to matter to.

I want to pretend that when I am gone, an echo of me will remain, growing stronger and louder every day.

I want to pretend that someone will need me, or miss me, or love me.

I want to pretend that my body is not full of poison and could produce something perfect.

I want to pretend that every well meaning but quite presumptuous person who told me that I would be a good mother was right.

I want to pretend I could give up smoking for a whole nine months.