The Minutiae of Mutilation

Here is where I write creatively.

Fifteen Minutes and a World Away

“Oh, sweetheart, can’t you stay a bit longer?” Mom pleaded with me as I kissed her cheek. “It’s still too hot out, anyway. Jax will get sunburnt if you go now.”
“We would if we could, but Ryan and I have to, um… run some errands.” I said lamely, clearing my throat. “Anyway, thanks for brunch. Ryan just loves your cooking, especially since I can’t even boil an egg. And little Jax here loves seeing his grandparents.” I adjusted my hold on the baby, kissing the top of his head.

Looking around, I saw that Ryan had already stepped out of the house, and into the blinding sunlight. In profile, he looks striking: tall, well-built, his long hair in a ponytail. He put on his sunglasses and started fiddling with his phone. I, however, lingered in the shade of the patio for a bit, hesitant to leave.

This was my childhood home, a large two-level house in a private subdivision. The wrought iron grills on the windows were sparkling clean, as usual; the path leading to the gate was paved with clay bricks. I’ve hosted many parties here over the years, and everyone was always complimentary of my home. I didn’t move out until I was 24—until Ryan and I decided to live together.

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Slow

Let’s take it slow, we said.
One date
one day
at a time.
And I try.

But how do I slow
my heartbeat each time I see you?
How does one slow
a fall down into the rabbit hole
when she knows Wonderland awaits?

Take it slow, they said.
Get to know each other first.
But how, when each conversation turns
into a confession of past sins?
Or when every time I talk to you,
it feels as though I’ve known you forever?

All things considered, I guess
you could say we took it slow,
since the realization –
that I had already fallen in love with you –
dawned on me
just
as the night shifts
to day:
gradually,
quietly,
slowly.


Written years ago, for a lover who eventually left.

melancholia

i woke up
again
to the thoughts of worthlessness
of melancholia
of being alone.

they say you should love
yourself before anyone else can
love you.
but why does he hold my hand so tightly
and gaze at me with tender eyes?

why does he care
if i wake up at 3 in the morning
crying because my head won’t stop telling me i’m worthless?
why does he tell me i’m worth loving?

you don’t need to love yourself to be loved. it is a lie
we tell ourselves because we feel
we don’t deserve the kindness of others.
but we do.

i fall asleep, comforted
by his arms
and the reassurance
of a love to come.


Written years ago, for a lover who eventually left.

I can’t trust my senses

You’re worthless. You don’t matter. Your existence means nothing: you may have been something special before, but not now, and never again.

This isn’t me talking.

That’s Depression, talking in His sweetly sinister voice.

That voice has the ability to permeate the nooks and crannies of my mind. It is a noxious gas tainting my memories, even the good ones. I’ve been living with it for so long—more often than not, in eighteen years—that it’s difficult for me to ignore it.

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Rescued

It was cold, wet, windy.

Photo by Amit Shaiwale on Unsplash

Waves were crashing down upon my head, one after another, pummeling me into submission. Saltwater-soaked clothes like weights, dragging me down deeper into the churning frothing freezing liquid hell, anchoring me to the sea floor even as I struggled to keep my head above the current.

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Months ago, miles away: There are no worse bus rides than the ones that take me away from you

For every day that you and I meet, I hold on to the bus tickets.

At the end of the night, I pull the ticket out from my wallet and unfold it, smoothing the tattered corners, laying it flat before carefully placing it in the corner of my bookshelf, on top of a pile of other tickets. This has become a ritual of remembering: scattered in my closet like confetti, lining the bottom of an empty shoebox, slipped between the pages of a favorite book.

I have kept every scrap of cheap newsprint that chronicles our journey from the beginning, from our first bus ride.

Photo by Bash Carlos on Unsplash
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You, me, and the sea

But time makes you bolder, even children get older. And I’m getting older, too.

Landslide, Fleetwood Mac

“I’m happy we’re doing this,” you said. “We haven’t really talked like this in a while, and I’ve been wanting to speak with you.”
I perked up a little, trying to blink the drowsiness from my heavy eyes. I wanted to listen, to truly hear what you had to say. Then again, you never did have much trouble catching my attention.

tent on beach
Photo by Jamison McAndie on Unsplash
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Away

clouds cloudy dawn dramatic

Photo by Ghost Presenter on Pexels.com

I don’t like it when you’re away.

And I don’t just mean

when you’re far from the reach

of my arms.

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How I started my morning

happy coffee

Photo by Kaboompics .com on Pexels.com

I was drinking coffee this morning

watching the news

when the anchor said an accident had occurred

in the city where I worked.

The streets were all

too familiar.

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Projections

emotions feelings emotion feeling

Photo by Katii Bishop on Pexels.com

On Facebook and Instagram, with a thousand followers, your carefully curated feed.

Scenes of nature: mountains, and beaches with water as clear as can be.

Beautifully plated food in a restaurant whose interior must have cost a small fortune.

Fashionable OOTDs of you showing off your physical perfection in a flowing floral skirt.

Photos of family and friends and your lover, all of whom seem as perfect as you, impeccably dressed, with Kodak smiles. Continue reading

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