A poem from my ‘Mythologising Evil’ collection.
He’s come for me, so
I peel back the mesh of
bone white as jesters —
I throw them to the fire.
In the looking glass behind, they twist
into the screams of my maternal lineage
and the hell each woman raised
I comb the fuzz of my limbs straight,
soften the dagger of my stare
and approach my windowed fate;
soles in soil, palms up facing —
and let your rabid men make a feast of…
‘You have a degree in… Creative Writing? How will that help you here?’
The snideness hangs still in the silence. It’s my first postgraduate interview; a cash-handling role at a bank, and had I not spent the last three years of my life tight roping extensive workload, debt and general survival, then I might not have bothered listing my Creative Writing BA (with Hons, have to weasel that title in wherever possible) as an achievement on my CV. …
Can anyone say with certainty that they recall the day they woke up with acne? I can’t. The last time I had clear skin I was a child, and that’s according to photographs. I don’t remember what it’s like to feel smoothness when I touch my face. My fingers always brush over some kind of bump, scar or scab, and I can’t remember the last time they didn’t.
I think at first it was just a side effect of adolescence, and though I hated it, I accepted it as something that would fade come adulthood. …
‘I want to die,’ is a statement that so often reverberates round the headspace of those co-existing with mental illness. It’s all-consuming; there’s no room to expand the sentence or to flesh it out with context. It just is, and that’s that.
Any measure of triviality can trigger this melodramatic mind state; perhaps you waved at the wrong person, or procrastinated on your uni deadlines to the point where you have 3000 words to write and finesse in less than four hours. Sometimes it really is deep; you’re overwhelmed by the debts you owe and the uncertainty of your financial…
Where am I? The BAFTAs, maybe. Or would it be the Emmys? It doesn’t matter; I shouldn’t focus on the event too much. I’ve won something, and that’s what counts. I’m not sure what to say though. I have this public persona that is shrouded in this eloquent enigma; part poetry, half art. So I sway past a hoard of celebrities who applaud me with such enthusiasm I can’t help but feel flattered. And when at last I make it to the stage, I kiss the cheek of Keanu Reeves (why is he presenting this award?) and delicately clear my…
It’s not like you need a specific reason to start writing, but it certainly helps. As we usher in the start of not just a new year, but a whole new decade, moments of reflection are perfectly natural at this sentimental time. It’s also a period of looking to the future, setting goals, and working on self-betterment. What better time to start working towards what you’ve been putting off for ‘the right moment’?
Perhaps you’ve had a novel idea buried in the depths of your subconscious for a while now, but exorcising it into the external world feels too scary…
Addiction was something I noticed in other people, but never in myself. I was quick to dismiss what I did as mere youthful experimentation, some ‘coming of age’ ritual. Everyone does it, right? I wasn’t like the rotten-toothed crack addicts who’d shout each other down in the middle of the city. I wasn’t like the pale-faced, hollow-eyed people on the FRANK adverts. I wasn’t even like my friends, whose addictions I was always keen to point out and offer agony aunt assistance for. There was always someone worse than me, but of course, there was always someone better.
Pixie-pop princess turned anime villain Grimes announced her third LP last month; ‘an evil album about how great climate change is.’ The title is a wordplay of ‘misanthrope’ and ‘Anthropocene’, a scientific term that refers to the geological epoch we’re currently living in. Meshed together, they coronate the deity of global warming; Miss Anthropocene.
This isn’t the first time Grimes has dipped into dystopian themes. The video for her first viral hit, Genesis, channelled Hieronymus Bosch’s ‘Seven Deadly Sins and the Four Last Things’ in a Sailor Moon-meets-Gaultier desert setting. For Art Angels, Flesh Without Blood featured a Marie Androidette…
I’m the worst possible person when it comes to texting/messaging/WhatsApping/Snapchatting back. It’s not deliberate; I’m naturally lazy and, without meaning to exude pretentiousness, prefer in person or phone-call conversations. Communication is a beautiful expressive medium that allows us to extract similarities/differences from other people’s subconscious, helping us to expand our worldly knowledge and share our humanity. However, talking to people consumes a significant amount of energy, and I feel a lot of us often forget that.
The technology we use to interact with each other proves we’re really in the future now. Friends and family are well within digital reach…
The situation surrounding my virginity losing was bizarre and somewhat blurred. I’d met this boy on Tumblr, then arranged to meet him in London. He called beforehand to ask if I was a virgin and if I wanted to have sex. I nodded meekly down the phone. It was scary yet exciting. I, the lanky acne-ridden teen so often ridiculed for my angsty attention-seeking, had arranged to have sex with an eighteen-year-old who lived in the city.
I was fourteen and, in my millennial mindset, well overdue for a fucking. Really, any sentient life form that looked my way was…