This Could Kill Me

Sometimes, you realise things it’s best not to know: a church upbringing is responsible for disappointment thick like missing filling Oreos, and dreams aren’t prophetic however much you hope. There’s more, sure, but lists are fun when it’s who’s fuckable, or which lips you’d kiss if you had to, and whose body you’d trade like Pogs orĀ MTG.

A lot of these realisings happen at night once you sign off with goodbye or no and you nightlight stare, wonder which episode of the season this is equivalent to? The shaky first one, or smack in the middle when nothing happens, is pretty much filler, a bottle.

I realise you but don’t want to. Get that? I don’t want to. I can’t text book digest or essay write, or I could and that’s the problem. Being grown ups sucks. Time to lose brain cells, choose which knowledge to shrink like rice in the microwave, drying the water out you just cooked into there. Head on a stick.

masks

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Was The World Really Built In Six Days?

Did you know a house can take years, six years, ’til it rafter-shoots? And you have no idea the kinds of loans and hands and toolbox riflers you require. You don’t get how much help that you’ll need.

I’ve watched homes sideways slip from cliffs as dad paid for our amusement tickets and he pointed to a cliff-top toilet and said, “Legend has it, the walls fell as someone sat there,” and our firework Thursday nights on wound paths, plank strung and cordoned off where pavement cracks made running tricky, then dangerous, were teetering, on the absolute edge of something: a county disintegrating in salt water, like digestives in luke-warm tea left long enough for the milk to gather a film on top of it. I’d say a skin, but that’s loaded.

Some of the park ended at other shores, sands, heads and hands cropping at the most unexpected of co-ordinates; the sorts of beaches ex-boyfriends picked for group outings, not picnics, because alone time’s a marriage-luxury. The cowboy fort lingered, intact ten feet down, closer to the water, but I didn’t have the guts to climb or abseil, to retread old ground I thought I’d get again. It was a low taunt, impossible forgetting.

And the earth wasn’t built in a day, a week or a month and any evidence suggesting otherwise you should run from like those park stories you’re told when small when shrubs can’t conceal you from strangers intent on taking you. If a scientist says they have facts suggesting a creation manifesto I’d ask who gave Gary Barlow the highlighting job, of picking people out incredulously who have credibility, and why faith exists in a world in which no one writes their autobiographies. And if we could scale history back, simply, in a calculation page or two, why we’d expect god before mistake; man and not dinosaur.

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Control Of The Next

The reason I broke up with you is I had Jesus to think about. And I wasn’t over Kevin and even though you said let’s work through this together, and that’d be a totally romantic gesture now when shit’s more spreadable, I had Jesus to think about, and the nag to get out of my brother’s room (where the computer was) was him and Kevin calling was a mysterious way of his and songs playing at opportune moments (Coldplay at work, when I just got out of the shower) were all him, and my apologies went through his mother and I’m not sure she’d been passing them on. I’m not sure she’s ever passed them on. And that’s a waste of a million lunch breaks. I could’ve hopscotched the shit out of John, kiss chased the ass off of Kim.

You don’t know how exhausting it is having a second conscience stapled to your school shirt, or how 8am anti-masturbation workshops and purity courses will affect you until you’ve got the certificates and that’s a sanction a relationship of mine never had. And you may have been the man to date stamp it, with your bed invites and your, “you and me and us,” and your friend phrases on phones: “She likes Snow Patrol. Yeah but she’s cute, you know.” You didn’t know I was a get outter. A kleptomaniac with men for like ten seconds until commitment was a comment in a feedback box in a restaurant slot, like, let’s have sex soon, or now, and my friends would’ve done it before and I’ll maybe love you forever and even wait if we don’t have to tell anyone, if we can maybe just lie.

And if it wasn’t Jesus and his Tuesday suppers and double Sundays and Monday Home Groups, maybe I’d have done something risky. Like, you know, date you for longer than three weeks in 2004.

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I think I’m sorry but I’m not sure

Jack says he doesn’t say sorry easily, won’t throw clothes out once they disintegrate, can’t give up on a show he’s seen seven seasons of even if it’s shit now. He holds a grudge. And I’m muddied, have been since 2004 when we fizzed like popping candy that got a bit wet then was gone. If he had the power to blacklist me in whichever area was important to me, he would, but so far he’s not got that much sway.

“I apologise often. I’ve apologised often,” I tell him. “Every year when we’ve made up or I’ve tried to it’s like you’ve not listened, like I’m a Taylor Swift song and you’ve not heard the lyrics at all.”

“Lyrics don’t make a difference,” Jack says, “Lyrics can’t make a good song bad.”

But words are all I have, all I hear. And there’s nothing I like more than a sorry to salvage everything, to repair, to placate anyone, and there’s so much to be sorry for. I was always a fake when it came to church except with this: guilt’s my only constant. And you can’t unlearn that.

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