Hauntingly, the man stares into the distance, his eyes sunk deep into his face, retreating from the light, from the world. Unfocused, the world is blurry, (though there is nothing to see) and it is so easy to forget how to blink. There are storms in his eyes. They are the dull grey of a troubled ocean, where once there were flecks of light and life there are black holes, swallowing up everything in their path. Yet emitting nothing.
His face is a map. Each wrinkle a path, a story, a time, a place, a person. They lead to long lost loves and laughter. Follow them. Some have become trenches, so hollowed by sorrow and loss that they seem unending, the scars of a battle well fought. His beard is a broom. Bristles sprout from speckled skin, a monochrome wall warding off intruders. It has been a while since he has had to let someone in. He is fading, the...
Time waits for no man. It moves, constantly rushing, slipping, sliding away from us as we chase it. Stretching, squeezing, bending in an endless current. So fast, the way that everything can change in an instant and just when you think you’ve caught up? It switches direction, jumps, droops, falls as you helplessly try to sprint after it in a headlong rush. We only have ourselves to blame, I suppose (they say time is a concept after all) for trying to bridle it, squash it down and measure it as it just. Keeps. Ticking.
I used to think I was a rock. Sturdy, solid, unchanging. The one constant in the midst of a rushing river. Special, sorted, whole. But rocks can be broken, split apart and shattered. Scattered into a million pieces, forced to succumb to the flow like all the other debris from the lives we left behind. You see, the current won’t let you stand for...
I think that sometimes
that people change
That the girl in my tutor
I first talked to
four years ago
is different now. However slightly,
she has changed.
I pack them in boxes,
seal them up,
and put them aside, under tidy little labels.
And walk away.
And I think sometimes
that change is okay.
And maybe it’s okay for me to change.
To want to stop being the quiet, smart, shy one at the back of the class,
that being able to chat with more people
Doesn’t mean I have to be ‘popular’.
It certainly doesn’t mean I have to desert my friends.
So I unpack the boxes,
rip up the labels,
and walk away.
I write. I write to find myself. To gather the words to sum up my innermost feelings (they say we were once hunter-gatherers and it's never been more true), those which sounds don't justify// I write to lose myself. The endless flow of commas, full stops, verbs, nouns// I
Periods. Half of the world’s population have them and yet they are still seen as something to be ashamed of and hushed up. We push thoughts of our menstrual cycles to the backs of our minds until that fateful day once a month when we ‘check in to red roof in’.
Once upon a time, periods were celebrated. Period blood was seen as a cure-all and calendars would be based off of the length of a woman’s menstrual cycle, so what changed? Even by medieval times women were starting to feel ashamed of their periods. They would wear pouches of herbs around their necks to hide the smell of blood or burn a toad and wear its ashes to supposedly ease the pain and heavy flow. Fast forward to Saigon in the eighteenth century and women were being denied work in the opium industry on account of their periods making the opium taste bitter. By the 1900s, men like Freud...