I have my own shadow and it belongs to me.
I have my own shadow.
Yours can hang with
If you want
For a while
Sunday is cold and spent in Brunswick. I am always so happy when in that area. It is where my person and I started out. There are happy memories at every turn. I am drinking in the present. It is a conscious decision that I have made for the day. There is hand holding and laughing. The wind is cold and hurts my person’s ears. There is brunch at a cafe on Albion street, a place with an actual open fire. I warm my butt as I stand in front of the flames and drink coffee. We talk about the new Ghostbusters film and why it was good. My brunch in mostly sugar: doughnuts and candied walnuts with mascarpone and berry compote. They sky was blue in the morning but by the time we finish eating and make our way to the garage sale (it is over by the time we get there, but, there is a dog to pat so not a waste of time). We go to Round And Round redords and peruse the selection with contented smiles. I eavesdrop on the music talk between the two guys standing behind the counter. One of them has a very delicious sounding Scottish accent. We shove certain records under each others’ noses and laugh or oohh and ahhh in wistful desire. It is a toss up between TV On The Radio’s Dear Science or Sleater Kinney’s Dig Me Out. TV has past memories of connected to someone who is best not remembered fully. There is dull ache and feelings of foolishness on my part and feelings of betrayal. I put The Dear Science albumn back, it slips swiftly and easily in between other records. It feels good and cleansing, letting something like that simply slip from my own fingers and fall neatly into a crack.
Sleater Kinney is the better choice. The choice that respects and plays homage to my current reality. I take it to my person as we saw the same albumn somewhere else. ”Is it cheaper here than at the other place?” I ask.
”I think so,” They say after having a think.
I take it up to the counter and hand over money. I am smiling.
You cannot go to sydney rd and not stop in to the Eddie Castle for a drink. It is the best time to go on a cold sunday afternoon. It is not crowded and there are families with kids, having lunch and family time. The music is always good and the bar staff friendly. We start to thaw out as soon as we enter and I go to the ladies. I walk into a cubicle that and sit down, there is always stiff to read on the walls of this place and today I am not disappointed.
I decide to buy a drink for myself and my companion. I daydream about moving back to this area and being closer to my friends. When I come out I search for them and go join them where they are sitting and looking through a street press. There is a cup of mulled wine just sitting there as though I wished it. I hop up onto the stool and wrap my cold hands around the warm glass. The smell of honey and cinnamon and orange peel. ”Great minds think alike.” I say happily as I sip.
There is a spontaneous drop in to Scavengers, a second hand clothing and nicknack shop. It is one of those rare times where you find somethings that are simply perfect for you and the size is right and feel is right and it all comes together for under thirty dollars. I found a pair of silver sparkly high top sneakers. They looked hardly worn and fit great. I love staring at my feet in cool shoes. I also found a lilac coloured zip up hoodie with short sleeves. The lining was fleecy warm and the hood was lines with pink. It had that grim weather London hip hop/ Lady Leshurr vibe. It did say OSAKA 6 on the back, and I did love Osaka when I was there. It seemed like the item had been quietly waiting for me to come along and nab it, as did the high tops. Wearing the two together made me feel like a roguish hoodrat Cinderella. ”Cinders” to my friends.
PLEASE NOTE: When growing up on the farm and doing a great deal of the housework and sibling care to help out my parents. My mum and dad did nickname me ‘Cinders.’
It is starting to get dark as we walk home from the train station. There are lights starting to come on in the windows of the fancy houses that line the leafy street. there is the smell of wood fires and birds are starting to make the sort of sad but happy twitters they make at sunset in winter. I consider this Sunday of embracing the present a success. We hold hands as we walk.
It is Saturday night and nearly midnight as I stand on the platform of the train station with my person. It is Glenferrie train station and as we stand in the cold cold night air, i hop from my left foot to my right in an attempt to get less freezing. There is the sound of young uni students yelling and laughing and putting out their needs and wants with unabashed and guile free swagger. There is a nightclub near the train station and as we walked past the line of youthful scamps was so long it went up the street and around the corner. It made me remember my own uni days and the utter fear of missing out on all the gossip and drama if I stayed in and studied on a Thursday night. I no longer feared missing out on any of it and walked hand in hand with my person as we made our way past all the baby faced drunks.
On the train platform are two pigeons. My person points them out to me and we observe as they hop around on the ground. They put their beaks together and there is a sort of fluttering as they each peck each other on their necks and throat. It soon becomes clear what is happening: I am watching pigeons have sex. It does not last very long. The male mounts the female for a moment and the wings flutter up in a little show of…orgasm? Climax? Something like that. After the male dismounts. He hops around the female in what looks like a very cute version of a post coitus victory lap. He hops around the female as she stand there with an air of boredom as if she was expecting this to happen and knows it is simply one of those silly little things that men do. The two pigeons do not even scatter when the train pulls in. They are birds and have no respect for the rules of yellow line. They simply half hop half walk away together on their little feet.
On the train it is crowded with people on thier way out for the evening. There are three young women sitting in and slouching in a group of four seats. They are asking for phone nmbers of guys and giggling. They are all beautiful and when one gets up to get off at the next stop there is a young man slowly inching his way into the cluster of friends, like a two legged love shark. The young woman is standing at the doors as the train pulls into the station. She is in grey jeans and faded convers. Her hair is long and shiny and her eyes are almond shaped and dark brown. ”Bye.” She says to her friends. ”Have a fun night.”
”Stay.” The guy says. The young women laugh and roll their eyes. ”Oh, God.” One says.
I try not to laugh out loud. Guys in their early 20s are so soft and fragile. I imagine simply swatting a whole lot of them out of my way. They fall like feathers and take a swirly rout towards the ground. My person reaches out and places thier hand on my fragile and pointy knee. I place my hand over theirs, it is very cold.
We take the short cut through the park, so my person can play some Pokemon Go as we walk. The moon is almost full and very beautiful. I did not bring my phone on our date night. I like to pretend that I do not have one, sometimes. It is good for maintaining imagination. I still like to get to look at the pokemon on my person’s screen, before they catch it in a ball.
I practically run up the steps with my key in my hand. The house is warm and I take a moment to not take it for granted. There have been heatless houses in my past and I do not want to get weak. Perhaps that is why I insist on walking out in the cold whenever I can. The sting of cold makes me feel alive and alert.
It was silly and stupid. I did not think so until after the fact. I remove my coat and hang it up, remove my blue leather ankle boots. While the person in my present goes about getting ready for bed, I check my phone. There it is in my inbox, a long message from the past. A message not invited. Why does this happen so often? This person has read my words. ”Come across them” to quote properly. (this is the writing in question: https://gremlinface82.wordpress.com/2016/06/04/happy-birthday-former-sweetheart/)
It is interesting that they only ever come across the writing that applies to them. If they truly care about my art, why the hell don’t they put some money where their stupid typing fingers are? Buy my poetry book? The meandering message is long and full of cliches that make feel like this person from my past is patronizing me. I can feel the invisible hand reaching out from the internet and patting me on my head. This makes me angry. ”Your following your dreams in the face of such adversity”
Fuck off. I hate this and I hate that it was considered an invitation to open lines of communication. It was not. It was art and that is all it was. The questions were hypothetical. I did not care to get a glimpse of their current reality. Your wife is feeding your newborn son with a breast pump? WHAT IS A BREAST PUMP? I DONT CARE AND NEVER WANT TO KNOW. Worst of all, by contacting me and telling me things that I did not know fully, they have made the piece of writing seem stupid and the heart of it is now pulpy and bitter, no longer tinged with thoughtful imagination. They have made me angry and opened up things that they had no right to open. It is like I am back there and little doors of bad memory are opening all over me and the reverb is unpleasent. They are mistaken. They were emotionally abusive. It is becoming clearer and clearer as I crouch down by the side of the bed. My hands shake as I read and reread. God, why do they think I would ever dedicate anything to them? It is done for me and always for me, never them. They would do better to spend their time sharing the parental load they helped create.
”What is the secret. I’m sure if you tell me it will hit me. My stoner brain cannot remember.” The secret? They want me to simply spill it out? If they cannot remember, it is not up to me to tell them. They can pay for the magazine or literary journal that publishes it.
I put the phone down and go about getting ready for bed. I turn of the lights and crawl in to bed. I press myself up against the back of my person. A back that feels so familiar now, I could press up like this, behind 100 different backs and be able to tell when I got to this one. I press my face between their shoulder blades and think, that if they ever leave I will kill them the same way I killed the others. It will be bloodless but better than doing jail time. It will be more beautiful than crying in public. I don’t own anybody.
And they do not own me.