Time lies, useless as a sword in the lake. For one, there’s time, and then, there is passage, as in come, squeeze the cheeks of this little tragedy. Who will offer the world their breast? I’m sat, couched deep in tomorrow, hands on the pulse. Tomorrow I will flip onto the pavement and pound it Into confession. Tomorrow I will flip on the tele and watch nothing, I will ride down to a cliff and say nothing. Time waits there, watching over us all like an empty house.
Truth be told, I still find most of my writing to be horrid or gross somehow. Posting them online is one way for me to try and curb this mentality. I need to be comfortable with the things I write.
The taste of dish soap lingers on the rim of the teacup. You and I sit at crossroads, legs dangling over cliffs. This is an exercise in communication by proxy, messages hidden in the fold of an arm.Coltrane murmurs in the background like a roommate, and the television is switched off. This is timeless, this is the way we freeze-frame our lives, this is how it’s always been. Quiet slips into the tea. Outside, the world loiters on to the beat of its own heart, clouds passing strangers, averting gazes onto the street. Your irises cross the street too, leaving without goodbyes. I get up and walk into another room, empty, but I don’t come back. The teacups are left in the sink, soaking everything in.
Written for UCD LitSoc’s Writer’s Bloc! It’s a fun workshop where we get to do short writing prompts within a limited time span. Really encourages stream of consciousness-based writing as well! Also, I realise the tea cup in the featured image isn’t exactly the type of tea cup that would fit here but I couldn’t find an image I wanted. Sorry!
it’s not like they gave birth to me, it’s more like walking through a forest covered in cobwebs in the deep of night, it’s when the village elders check your body for remnants and find nothing. this is when you must be broken and affixed, flaws masked with growth, and there is the fire of inspiration cowing, and there is the hand that moves without guidance, like bullets into the sea, like one’s first knife into an artery, like the first cry of a man being born.
Blog time: I have this thing where I’ve always been struggling to think of people who have influenced my writing. Being more a writer than a reader when I started, I guess I didn’t have proper influence during my ‘formative years’ as a writer. While later on, I did find plenty of poets who I drew inspiration from, Siken being a big one, my internal dilemma was that it wasn’t as though all my poetry were inspired by them, and neither was the influence that apparent: I learned to play with spacing from Siken, but I could have done the same from someone else, etc. I feel a bit guilty because if you asked me right now what influences my writing, I feel like I can only say music and I know that should be ok but somehow I’m not happy with it. Perhaps part of the dilemma in finding the influences behind my writing is that it would also help identify my writing style, and allow me to describe it, and that too may be a fight worth fighting.
Another year, another me. It’s a bit strange – I started this blog as a legitimate blog with some poems from time to time but over time it quickly became a place for me to publish pieces which I could not find homes for, or pieces I just wanted to let loose onto the world instead of being tethered to my notebook.
I can’t say that I’ve changed too much in the past 4 years – I feel like I’m still, at my core, the same kind of person I was, albeit somewhat happier. I do have my demons from time to time, but I’ve learned to invite them in for tea. I’ve learned to find a support network, to be able to rely on others, to be vulnerable and be soft. I’ve learned to relax (somewhat) although the stress of knowing the end to this path weighs heavy.
New Year’s Resolutions – I made some actual ones for once this year! We made resolutions while passing (and downing) a bottle of red wine – so we had to think of resolutions on the spot. I think I made 3 (but I can only remember 2):
To see more, do more, experience more. I’m stepping out of my comfort zone really soon and I want to expand it even further. I want to be comfortable as who I am – I want to grow and grow.
To be comfortable with showing affection to others. I keep thinking of myself as some kind of observer, lone wolf / background character kind of guy and I can’t help but make fun of people and generally avoid my feelings (if any) but this year I’m going to work on that. Last year I had some breakthroughs, even if short-lived, but I’m confident that I can make it this year. I want to be able to tell people I love them without having to go in such a roundabout fashion, I want to be close to people, I want to connect, I want to cross their paths once in a while on purpose, etc.
Writing wise – I’ve been in a slump for some time. I keep reverting back to familiar topics of writing and I have little inspiration to write beyond that. Everything I’ve thought of feels very contrived – especially when I’ve been trying to actively submit my work to journals and competitions. Granted, winning the Arts House competition was great (as it forced me to write 10 ekphrastic poems! wow!) but I feel like my peers were so much better. All of these make me want to write even more – my end-goal is still the manuscript, but can I get it done by April?
As such, here are my writing goals:
To develop something I can comfortably call my ‘writing style’;
To broaden my topics and themes;
To finalise a satisfactory manuscript halfway through April.
One might wonder – who the fuck cares what your resolutions are? You might be a friend, or a random stranger who stumbled upon this blog. In either case, I hope that in the act of posting these publicly, that I can find the courage in my heart not to run away from these goals. I want fulfillment, I want success, I want so much and I know I have to work hard to get those.
outside it is pouring, dark spilling over the sidewalk like a glass filled with the blood of something fragile. you and I are somewhere in this flood of warmth. the rain continues to knock on the roof, a witness to all of this nothing. time drips slow. quiet. you and I will part so soon.
It’s not as much a tussle as much as it is a boxing match; the dodging and weaving like swerving into traffic. The reason people must inevitably bury themselves is the same as why full stops must be full. You know the steps by heart: here is an empty space to be filled. Here is a name erased. Here is another lie for you to be placed in. Graves, too, must be full. You are boxing yourself into a coffin. Your heart is full of mud. Here is an empty filling to be spaced out, crossed out, placed outside of the boxes and the self. Here is a list of instructions for the heart to erase. Here is the box that got the trafficker hung, here is the weave of an executioner’s mask, the judge’s wig, here is the tussle you will bind yourself in, the bullet you will learn to dodge.
Inspired by real life conversations. I’m back on my bullshit of trying to bang out drafts in a single 10 minute sitting. Old title: “Springboard”
Our issues melt away and run, like dirty water into drainage pipes. Black fishes into estuaries. When we are out of each other’s sight, we’ll be out of our minds. Flushed away and forgotten. Invariably some scum stays: stains on a manhole. Is it disgusting? For me to wish thusly: I want to know everything. What are you doing right now? I wonder as I type these words, whether an old poem would remind you of me. Or maybe, an old Weezer track. A putrid display of cliche. Whether some strange, blackened memory comes rushing back out of the depths of the sewer we consigned ourselves to. Something no-one wants to see nor clean. Things – and people – we’d rather let rot somewhere else. So let me say it again, I wish to know everything. As if repeating it makes it any cleaner. I am scrubbing my mouth with this repetition. No matter how disgusting it may be – I want to know where each river ends, where every one runs dry. I want to feel this world: every festering wound, black-mold enclave, drip of a shedding. Every single shoddy half-written metaphor. I want to see you, behind your squeaky-clean 5-stars public-toilet facade. And I want somebody to tell me – that everything which was filthy was fine, everything which was wrong was right – that everything which was not, will be. Truth be told, I’d love it to be you, but I know. I already know the answer. My mind has no qualms with being in the gutter, as ever always.