I’ll still know

I’ll still know your birthday. I’ll still know the date you said yes, still see the girl with her hand to her mouth and her back to the wall, surrounded by love and alcohol – these midwives who birthed her grief, and carried her, carefully, back into the world. I’ll still know those next years by your doorContinue reading “I’ll still know”

The hours that change us

The world has shifted in just a few hours. The way it always shifts in just a few hours. It’s not years or decades – that’s simply how we accommodate the axis-shifts, how we adjust and recover from them, before some other hour sets us spinning. We think in years – how was this year, what’s yourContinue reading “The hours that change us”

Without my permission

Wednesday April 17th, 2013 Today is my last day. Of what? Of being alive? Of being in this world? Not exactly, because I’m here still, in a way. I can see everything and feel everything, although I’ve been trying to get that right, because it’s not exactly feeling, is it? It’s not the same asContinue reading “Without my permission”

Most everybody knows

People die every day. In minutes. Seconds. The closing and re-opening of an eye, and the world changes direction, spins you or him or her away. Out into the nothing or everything, and not here. Not here ever again. In New York alone, 150 lights go out from one midnight to the next. Cancer, cars,Continue reading “Most everybody knows”

A place like this

Chewed up. Spit out. That’s what they say about girls like me. In a place like this. As if the city has jaws. Great, chomping concrete jaws that bite down on new flesh, and then, disgusted at the freshness, spew it back out. As if the streets are littered with lacerated hearts, with open wounds and cardboard stories. They say I’m boundContinue reading “A place like this”

The needs of the dead

It’s Mimi’s job to prepare the dead for their wake. As she explains it to me over mouthfuls of cherry cheesecake, when a loved one identifies a victim, they are often exposed to a body that is broken, traumatised. So she tries to make that last viewing better for closing eyes, for what is seen in the dark.Continue reading “The needs of the dead”

The familiar ugly

Maybe that’s this strange shame I’m feeling. An embarrassed disappointment that the shine has come off my new city, that it took so long. And how the real glare, the thing standing out, is me. I had intended to go for a cocktail, I was ready to venture out to some busy, pretty rooftop onContinue reading “The familiar ugly”

All I see

I am wrapped in something silver. Shivering. They keep calling me m’am, and they take turns with their questions, pressing gently against my confusion. I am trying to concentrate, trying to swim up through my saturation, but my eyes keep going to their belts, their thick black weapons like anchors, and how I could justContinue reading “All I see”