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"Nick's heart tightened as the trout moved. He felt all the old feeling. He turned and looked down the stream." - Big Two-Hearted River, Ernest Hemingway
Peggy was already awake when the vibration and sound meant to wake her happened. She groaned for several seconds before her boyfriend, also awake, made a sound like laughing but wasn't. She rested her head in his arms for a few more minutes before the buzzing happened again. She pulled her hair back into a knot that was too tight and made a small portion of oatmeal with water in the saucepan. They didn't have any pots or pans anymore. Some of the oatmeal got on the hob and the kitchen filled with the oatmeal-burning smell. Swirling with the sun coming from the window, the smoke set off the alarm, and she shut the kitchen door as quietly as her body allowed. She tried on two pairs of black skinny jeans that looked almost identical. She debated before choosing the pair that seemed marginally better. She managed to put on a top and left the house still confused.
i am numbed by the scruff of his beard his bony shoulders abutting his shirt rouse a sense of protectiveness in me shelter in me shelter in here here is the space for you, here i am flaying you down to the bone
every sound is more of a buzz instead of a swoon, a swell, or whispering words on the back of my neck which you touch on our bed littered with crumbs from empty packages of worthless corner shop treats
every day i wonder why you haven't left me yet.
She parted through the door of the bus framed by two boys on either side. She ascended the stairs to the second level of the double decker bus. The children who usually rode the bus to school were seated at the back, as always; she spotted a seat next to one of the children and sat down. The child would be getting off in a few stops, she knew, because of the uniform it was wearing. The child looked at her before playing with its cell phone. She looked past it. She opened the bottle of diet cherry coke she had bought at the corner shop and attracted a few looks from people on the bus. It was early to be drinking diet coke. She pulled foundation and concealer out of her bag and started working on the bags under her eyes. She put on eyeliner. She put on red lipstick and thought she looked good for a moment before the light that reflected off her cellphone changed the image looking back at her. The bus was late to work. She got off a stop early to smoke a cigarette, lighting it with the lighter she had bought in France. It had a woman on it with her tits out, genuflecting in pinned-up earnestness like a convert to the godhead. She lit the cigarette and took the side street to her office.
i dream that men in rough-hewn overalls come banging down my door and with their calloused fists try harder than ever to break me insignificant i trawl and comb back against the breakers the mid atlantic glottal shifts and stops like the creaking of tectonic plates which you ate up so quickly like the infinitely starving bird that you are so sparrowlike and swift and sharp and slurping, always breathing backbones bow back and forth with you on top of me heaving to and fro this ship will sail me back eventually but god//
Inside, the lift rose floor by floor. Someone in the lift groaned "Oh fuck it's going to stop at every floor isn't it." One of the office's cleaners smiled and said, "But going up is good. Every floor is a step closer to God." Everyone in the lift looked at their shoes. Peggy got off on the top floor.
listening to my bloody valentine realizing that nothing really matters and that i haven't been to the cinema in six weeks; think that is the longest i have gone without going to the cinema since i was a child
She sat at her desk and wrote into the screen. Her fingers typed out monotonous sentences; one, after the other, after the other. It was the closest she got to sleeping throughout the day. The computer said nothing back to her at all.
you can't trust anyone especially not yourself
At lunchtime, Peggy walked alone along the river by her office without purpose, but quickly. She walked all the way to the end of the pathway, near the tower where kings used to kill their wives even though they could have just as easily divorced them. She turned around and walked back. A man dressed entirely in neon orangefrom his socks to his sweatband- ran past. The man had on a smile. She envied the man for having an identity, but only a little bit, because she was too tired to invest in the emotion. As she walked back towards the office, she encountered a colleague. The colleague started talking to her and she set her face to as neutral an expression as she could as it talked to her. It was talking about its weekend, which included getting inebriated and eating. It stopped talking, and Peggy managed to put on a smiling face in time for the colleague to not guess anything. Peggy made excuses and walked in the other direction. She put in her earbuds and listened to noisey music for the rest of lunch, holding her coat as close to her body as she could. She didn't look up when any other colleagues walked past.
Every few minutes, she had to look up an address of a place on the tiny island nation she lived in on google maps. The island nation rose up to meet her with the scroll of the mouse; in, out, in. Sometimes she scrolled out to include the whole world and realized how small these distances were. Sometimes she played a game where she would scroll and zoom into the town where her boyfriend came from. She would try to scroll so she would exactly land on the house in which he grew up. Sometimes she got it. Sometimes she didn't. The whole world rose up to meet her again when she lost the game.
THERE ARE NOTHERN ACCENTS ON THE TELE AND I'M DREAMING THAT I COULD FUCK EACH AND EVERY SINGLE ONE OF THEM WITH THEIR YORKSHIRE DRAWLS AND LEEDS ROLLING CONSONENTS JUST TO BE DEEP IN THE HILLS OF EVERYTHING WITH A KIND OF QUIET RESIGNATION STRAPPING YOUNG LADS AND THE GOOD OLD BOYS THAT I NEVER KNEW OVER A PINT AND A QUIZ AND A PACKET OF SHARED WALKERS MIXED WITH FUMBLED INTRODUCTIONS OUTSIDE A CLUB IN CAMDEN
There were times when she had no time to think of anything at all but the words she needed to be writing. There were emails in her inbox, there were clients, there were people. The more work she did, the more she disassociated people from the work. Words became things to be economized; words were to fit the way the people wanted her to be. Soon the words weren't hers anymore. Soon she didn't have words. Soon she.
"felt weird joyous and sleepy sensation then extremely confused and felt like limbs were not working with mild feelings of panic spread throughout the day. consumed two diet cokes. they helped made me awake"
At 6 o'clock she slung her bag over her shoulder and took the stairs, descending spiralling downwards, to the ground floor. Here the wind met her with a fierce gust and she lost her bearings momentarily. She became herself again and steadied herself for another staircase. The staircase passed over the road by the river. The road was busy with trucks and if she didn't take the staircase she wouldn't be able to cross the road. She wanted to stop and look outwards at the cars coming from places far away and imagine who the people were who were driving them, but her feet didn't stop so she kept walking. She waited on the bridge for the bus to take her home. A man and his girlfriend embraced at the bus stop for a long time before they left. The wind picked up again.
…. despite this fact i feel oddly calm about being scared like almost
like i can isolate these feelings…………………………………………..
The key jammed in the lock as she carried her bag and two shopping bags with food through the door. She placed the bags on the counter filled with other peoples' food and negotiated a place for herself. She cleaned a dirty pan and cooked a small portion of tofu. Her boyfriend would be at work until late. She took a shower, leaning against the wall. She felt pleased that she was in the rush of warm water, helpless but to stand there in its stream. All she needed to do was stand there in the water for a moment. She felt unable to stand and sat down. The water pooled and rushed into the drain around her. It made sounds that reminded her of a space vacuum. She sat there for many minutes unable to wash her hair. She got out of the shower having not washed her hair and put a towel around herself.
-just running through my head with no one knows you you're alone in thisnot just killing myself, but elegant exits
She sat down on the bed, wet from the shower. She pulled on a pair of pajamas and managed to get on a top. She did not brush her unwashed hair. She took four pills of her medicine that was supposed to keep her more like everyone else. She watched something on her laptop until she became unable to stay conscious. Her eyes shut with the laptop still on, and she drifted into a dreamless sleep that left her jaw locked and aching when she eventually woke the next morning.
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