Loser

Cellophane wrap or sealed pack or paper bag: clutch me. Try not to drop me.

It, this, crept like damp from the doorway until there was mould along the skirting.

I consciously partook in phone calls and friendings and 56,000 FB messages.

A lie would be I was absent for it. I was absent very little of it.

And now, history book months later, all I want is that wheezing breath next to me.

Hearts suck. Seriously. I mean.

hate you

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You Are Something

You drew a line with a finger, where the booth cushions met, said, “Don’t cross it, yeah?” I didn’t plan to, then, even as I edged closer. That was a test, a buffering at 68% permanently, no chance of an actual load.

You still sit across from the line, always on that side, to my right, and I’m usually first to move. Destroyed now I know what it’s like. Before, I relegated connections to a section in my head for fiction, religion and make believe. That third day I had to concede some times invisible isn’t absent. And now I’m absolute certain of it.

You’re cotton wool soaking me up. And each time a decry of, “Absence doesn’t fondness make,” is thrown between bottled beers, you raise a hand, and everyone knows what you’ll say without you ever saying.

Proximity. Who knew? Who really fucking did, though?

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Dear opinionists,

You do not know a thing and, if you did, you still wouldn’t string a sentence eloquent, worth listening to.

I might never. True. But if I do, don’t think me wrong for not following your advice incrementally, because you wouldn’t follow it fractionally. And you know it.

Everything is perfectly photocopied, the toner picking out every grey, giving sheen only new machines can, and each internet page is perfectly clear also. Everything’s perfect, exactly, and other options are an antiquated ideal you’ve knocked out of yourselves because those you admire did.

Speak to me like a kid one more time. I double dare you to do it. Tell me what I am is wrong. Pry until you’re satisfied. And when you’re licking my bones, magnifying glass study, see the cracks?

I’m learning to clay mould myself with hands which worked better four years ago. And I’ll Polyfiller myself up, and I’ll miss evenings we spent and moments we connected, like episodes of Saved by the Bell: non-specifically. And the overall impression you’ll have left will be exclusively defined by how you treated me when my worst was cake base scraping me. Whatever you said then, sticks. And I’m sorrynotsorry. I guess next time you’ll know not to judge people whose lives you so little know.

Months from now I’ll be 70% myself again, sort of statue strong, and everyone’s scared, everyone will be. Because my own mind. Yes, that, will be a thing once more. I can’t wait for it. And the people, indispensable to me? Ones that believed me, and in me, when I didn’t. Coercion-less. How rare and fucking brilliant that is.

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nevergoingtochange (said like it’s one word)

I phone you back because we’re never done, especially when we say we are, which is why every goodbye’s thirty minutes long; it’s impossible to package us neatly up, like a suctioned haggis, metal ties on the end to keep fresh.

I can’t compile us like an essay collection or tea set for the charity. As a Collected Works we’d maybe make sense, and we’re not nonsensical now, only, there’s always more, especially when we out loud state there won’t be.

We plan Thanksgiving in September, though you hate celebration as much as existentialism, which you hardly hate at all, just you’re not a fan of the quivering limbo it tram seat sits you in, and you can’t get off between stops. Uncertainty’s the kicker.

You text me back when the call’s missed and the call ends more than once, and four hours feels like six minutes, and I know it’s never over: I know it never is.

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Forever

How do you make decisions of forever in slip-moments? When words are so untrustable. If he’d left notes, too, on slips of paper in pillow cases, in make-up cases, on your shelf behind the clock, you’d also question his authenticity like your friend’s Uggs she bought from an online shop for less than half the price.

How do you choose the right thing when everyone weighs and already your skin buckles with the weight of rigorous schedule?

How long will you question and quest?

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Conflagration

If this is burning my life to the ground, then okay. Fire extinguish me. Especially if you know what’s best for me. I’m going to assume that you do.

The advice you’ve cheese fries dished out with lashings of BBQ sauce, is it what you’d want to hear in this exact dilemma? Would you hope for a stock drawer answer, or an inspirational meme, or a worn out platitude that didn’t even work on TV?

Because if I’ve learnt one thing, it’s this: advice is lint.

Seriously, shit. And even professionals, who I total value, if they’d said the opposite of what the underside of my heart says, the really crappy layer, like old tyres with no grip, I’d ignore it. Because no-one knows my nerves like me.

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Fools Rush

You tell me to buy the audiobook, even though I called you, whittling my phone contract down into minus figures, for you to tell me you’re not reading a book out loud over the phone. Our conversations out-price me. And this is costing 50p a minute, probably.

Maybe you think it’s a joke; I guess that it is. Because intonation’s a learnable trick, isn’t it? Really no reason why yours is margarine thick, understands each judder bone better than contractual agreements and metal.

But I don’t want the book, or Stephen Fry, or some palatable, 5-star Amazon review, award-winning voice reading it to me.

Like the things you said last night you shouldn’t have said, but you said publicly, anyway, because you’re table laying, or openly flaying, or we’re somewhat flailing, or you’ve lost that filter most people have to not say the things they think to the people they think them about, plus their most treasured 176 FB friends, this is honestly it: I’d keep you in my ear if possibility, technology allowed it. And it’s boring for you, sure. But not me. Never me.

I’m not buying audiobooks, loser. I feel the same about that stuff that you said. What was it again? And I almost called like 40 times, 2 days ago, just to hear you. My thumb twitched at the dial. Because you make me better.

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Number

There were other offers. I don’t want you to think that there weren’t. But hotel rooms are a palate cleanser. And you’re on speed dial.

I don’t know what we talked about; it wasn’t much of anything, actually, that we hadn’t said already. Still, it was ’90s Dayglo coupled with Skrillex songs.

And it didn’t cut out, did it? The signal, I mean. The way it does every other time we talk from our actual houses. No-one redialled a million times. It was an ever connected line, for about three hours. Not eternity, exactly, but the things I learnt.

Every one of your stories, even the worst ones, I’ll take twice. If you run out, if that’s possible, three’s fine. Just don’t stop talking. Texting. Typing. Blogging. Logging the fact you exist in survivable formats, archive-able ones.

No-one cares if it’s true, but you may be the tattoo I’ll not bore of. Only, what font do I get you in?

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Scratch

I had this dream, or it was like 5 dreams, in 9 hours sleep; you were scattered between 3am and 11, in fabric-like fragments, and each extra doze was a salt pinch of you, until I couldn’t close my eyes more.

You finished playing, and in the green room after, someone wanted a photo, so you stood on the ledge with the others. The open window was a straight drop but no-one was phased. I felt the outside air buffer you, and when they all got down, untwining arms from you, I felt you waver and, instinctively, pulled you down, took your hand even if etiquette said don’t. And that was enough to start it.

I don’t know who asked. Whose idea it was. But we said let’s spend some time alone, to see; we both agreed.

The rest’s a badly cut movie, jumps making the narrative incoherent, if incomparable. I trawled strangely linked hotel rooms, mostly empty. But, remember this: we kissed like a TV kiss, where you can’t but you kiss because the script dictates. And even if it didn’t, you’d do it anyway, because it’s a dream, so why fucking not?

And that’s the essence of it, like a retina scratch, not on an eye but the screen of a MacBook, so all the more serious. I’ve been looking at it all day. You’re not online. But you’re writing this shit too. I know that you are. Will you always be writing it, the way that I’ll always be writing it? Do the words urge?

make it

Point Match

It’s two words: match and point. I pick discrepancies up each piece I read. Whether you like it or not, I am your editor.

You got the volley right, the limbo, the way we photo developed until every picture was a little reddy orange, overexposed, ultimately unframeable. And endless.

So I ended it, quite unprompted. Except, do you even believe anything’s over which wasn’t before? That we’ll never really talk again? Because I don’t.

There’s always next week. All I need’s a pencil and a print out of everything you ever wrote. I’ll perfect you. That’s what I do. And you know that, don’t you?

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