Come on you're not dark. You're more sweet than dark.
I am not sweet FEAR ME I AM DARK I AM THE NIGHT GRRRR!
I am not sweet FEAR ME I AM DARK I AM THE NIGHT GRRRR!
Eloise, with your red lipstick and black dresses. Eloise, with your long hair and longer stories. Would it surprise you if I told you that I loved you?
You are a sunset pink, a lullaby before a dusk dream. You are seashells glistening on the shore, soft clouds settled in a valley. You are…
Beautiful Aditi wrote me a love letter. The swooning will continue all day.
You’ve been paying attention, anon. A+ for you.
Everywhere except the bedroom.
Stop looking for something to work out this time. Work it out for yourself. Get that list done. Get it done. Nothing is as hard as you perceive it to be, precious woman.
Oh cthulhu, santa claus, krishna, how you envy those who express without fear, but it’s not about stripping back selfhood. It’s about trusting your voice. About doing the messy, internal work. About looking at that which you don’t want to see.
Write like a beast, write like a jet plane crash, write like a motherfucker. Write like dark matter unleashed, write like the ever-growing sun. Write like Venus and Mars flicker in your sky, and they don’t look so different from down here
28 names on a page, here in your 29th year; a piece of heart allotted to each.
You saw that some were large, and some were small enough you once thought them insignificant. You saw that nobody passes through you without taking an atom or two with them when they leave. Let them go. Get right with their ghosts before you smudge them out of the halls.
Mind like a diamond. Heart like a sponge.
Pour it out. Thick, clear, bloody - however it comes. You heal yourself, you grow a new set of courageous lungs and you trust the voice they propel. You crack and crease.
You flame without fear.
My Dad had his 12 month cancer screenings yesterday and got the all clear.
If I could, I’d raise a bloody glass to that.
Damian was out of my league.
He sold freedom with his cheekbones and hope with his obliques. You would stroll down Swanston street and see him smouldering out at you from any number of billboards or shop fronts with those perfectly too-far-apart alien eyes. His agency could sell him as high street or high fashion; he booked every job.
So there I was, minding my own business. Truth be told, I was bored. Sipping Sailor Jerry and ginger, chatting with the girls in this sweaty meat market of a club. Jocks with law degrees lined up against the bar flanked by booths. It was famous for this tight squeeze all the way down one side, so that if you wanted to go to the little girl’s room, you had to shuffle past a row of erections pressed into your back.
But I wasn’t there to find a boner. The dress was hot, sure. It was doing all the right things on the front and wicked deeds at the back, but its wearer was disinterested. Closed the fuck off.
Then the cheekbones walked in.
My friends knew him, whispering excitedly as he began sauntering over with that ten grand walk. I turned my back, leaning over the bar to order us another round. Yeah, I’d seen him around, hanging in the back room of Boutique with the Kates and the Taras and the Natashas with the legs legs legs.
Regular humans like me become invisible in that kind of magazine spread crush. I didn’t expect tonight would be any different. When I turned around, I could see Madeline was wide-eyed, talking close to his ear with those big, natural lips of hers that most girls would pay through the nose for.
Good for her. Maybe she’d get to rub up on a little perfection tonight. I could see she was cranked up to fifth gear, all charming giggles and ruffles of her trendy side fringe. Any man would be captivated. His eyes, though. His alien eyes were on me.
It was unsettling. It was as if the natural order of things had been disturbed. I refused to meet his gaze, kept trying to move out of the eye line of the hard 10 who had no business staring at me. He closed the distance though, leaving a disappointed Madeline in the dust and me, a deer in the headlights.
Before I knew it, he was telling me his name and I heard myself exchanging it for mine. “I know who you are,” he said. His voice was like velvet propaganda. Like poppy milk. Too rich for my taste.
The wang gauntlet was starting to look good, but before I could escape to the powder room, his friend was suggesting we hit Monkeybar. The girls twittered in agreement and I found myself piled in Damian’s shiny 4WD (he wasn’t drinking, he had a show the next day) and en route to the notorious skankhole that never closed.
It was 2:00am and every clubrat in the city was lining up to get in there, pinging off their eyeballs. Damian took my hand as soon as we reached the front of the line, bypassing the bouncer after a friendly fistbump and a “she’s with me” to the perky doorgirl collecting cash. She’s with me? The fuck even.
I started off strong, rolling my eyes every time he called me beautiful, but as many times as my left eyebrow skeptically raised the roof, there’s something about that kind of physical perfection that wears your disbelief down. The bookers were right, the guy was solid gold marketing. I wanted to believe the fascination in his alien eyes as he confessed to his crush on me, laying on the adjectives thick as provincial butter.
You’d think macking on with this Adonis would be a highlight of a lifetime, but that’s not what stands out in my memory. I think we kissed somewhere on the dancefloor, smashed between drunk hipsters and teetering cupie dolls. Heavy petting in a sticky booth, it was around 5:00am when I came up for air. The girls were nowhere to be seen and I needed to get out of this dive before sun up.
“I think I’m going to marry you,” Damian said, staring at me sitting in his passenger seat at a set of city traffic lights. I told Romeo to keep his eyes on the road, secretly loving that he continued to gush. He told me about his political aspirations, and how I’d make a perfect first lady. “I need someone like you, somebody smart. Beautiful gets boring when there’s no intelligence behind it, you know?”.
Model problems sounded real tough.
The behemoth of St Patrick’s Cathedral loomed, its majesty never failing to stir me. When I said as much, he swerved to pull over, coaxing me out of the car and up to the huge steel gates that surround the sublime cathedral garden. The sun was coming up, a pink glow creeping over the spires and this tall god-like figure wrapped his arms around me.
The city was dead silent. Reality slept. This is the moment I remember.
My bed was calling, and he’d have to work a hell of a lot harder to get in it. Pulled up to a standstill in my street, the demand for “just one more kiss” soon wore my patience down to the nub. He was pawing at my body now, like a dog begging to come inside.
“Goodnight Damian,” I said conclusively, reaching for the door handle. I swung my legs out of the car and turned my head back toward him for a final flirtatious smile.
He was sitting there with his fly undone, penis in hand. (Literally, one hand. Its entire length laying stiff, almost across the flat of one palm. Perfection did have an Achilles heel, after all.)
“Please, just touch it? Please?! Just a little bit? Don’t be heartless! Pleeease!”
I don’t think I’ve ever made it to my front door faster than I did that night.
I found out the next day in girly debrief and routine facebook stalk that he had a girlfriend. Of course he did. She was a German lingerie model who seemed much more his speed. The world made sense once more.
Yeah, Damian was way out of my league. But to this day, when I see him on a billboard or on TV, no matter how perfect he looks, I can’t quite erase that last image of him.
Pleading pathetically. Exposed weenie in hand.
Your blunt fringe is too short and it never sits right, Natalie. I love to watch you self-consciously running your fingers through it. I want to see you peeled out of those vintage woolen sweaters. Meet the mewling nymphette that lies under your modesty, Natalie. The way you shyly say my name when you bring new students around to meet me. Gluten-free Natalie, always carefully examining the food at parties, pushing your glasses up your nose. Natalie of the brightly-coloured stockings and knee length skirts. Sensuality swathed as if you are afraid of it. I see it, Natalie. Eyes like muddy stones in a semi-forgotten river I visited in childhood. Walking behind your plump bouncing bottom, Natalie. The telling rosy flush on those cheeks when you look at me, Natalie. Fiercely intelligent, bookish, Natalie. Your hair. Your hips. Everything about you, Natalie.
Writing is a lot like alcohol addiction. You don’t forget how to do it just because you go dry. And when you start again, in the beginning, you’re sort of a sloppy mess… but before you know it, you’re pounding it down like a champ, teetering on the edge of oblivion.