Tuesday 25 October 2016

Snapshots: In collaboration with Lara Usherwood


Giant crystal dagger points with the whole world inside- clouds and cutting blue and sharp colour that kills shadow- angular lines of concrete begin and end in each other- industrial mechanisms and industrial strength- masks the whispers of moss and roots that edge through the cracks in a begging effort to be heard- and I do hear them in mice language they call to me and echo footprints and I smell earth- I do- even when there is only a crack in the sky- it smells like fresh wind on the washing line and rotting apples underfoot. Gliding above me with effortless flaps and dainty bristles of silk-swan feathers- birds swoop and slide and I think of that noise of the tongue- the click-clock of horses hooves- and I do it and feel childish though I’m alone.
    If it is sun it is yellow and not calm- it is more of a still storm that hasn’t begun- tea leaves at the bottom of the cup- sunken stories still asleep- earth on my cheeks like stains of adolescence- fighting the urge to place any sense of these sun-spots and dark vacuums- somehow it is quiet- somehow I am free.
    If it was cold I would hug my knees but instead I sit like a statue and breathe- thick questions threaten to beat me- wretched stick that I am- fallen leaves that I now call my bath. There is a sense there is a sense and as now very real very touchable alarms sound, and feet pummel concrete, I am drawn to the roof of my mouth- my pallet- click-clock and it echoes.


What do you leave me with? I bear the brunt of your punish- between margin lines and estimated times- far from the drying cups on the draining board- the stray cat hairs brushed off your jacket- I stand- misjudged- as you scrutinise with bared teeth.

    Why see me so? We had years of abandoned life and decisions to let go- now all I feel is grasps- this skin is not my own and as I attempt to dance defiant I feel the cracks and they show, I still feel your long hands- somewhere there is the rumble of your hands clapping- the metallic tang of a singing bowl- suddenly sinister and flawed.

    What are those guns made of? Material or not, I know I’m on trial, and no, I have not grown up enough to face it- my shoulders are bare and you know how I shiver. 

    With all the scans and prints and sparks in the dark-

     Why would you leave? 


I took his order with a bored kind of zeal- a lazy interest in the way his eyes rested on a specific part of my ribcage- at the dip and groove and curve of my breast- where I know lies a chalky moon of rubbed-off deodorant. Mushroom omelette and Earl Grey tea. I glanced at his beard and felt queazy at the thought of egg getting stuck in the bristles. His dog barked at me outside when I let him in. It was chained up- an Alsation- and I bounced back inside, my heart racing- I’m scared of dogs I said, breathless, like he ought to know. I showed him to a table round the corner where the lights are dim- I didn’t want to see his face- I felt I could not forgive it in a flourescent glow. There was something about him that made me act sour and yet I asked him- how do you like your eggs? Can I get you some toast- brown? Buttered? Milk in your tea? Sugar? I let him gobble me up like an apperitif but I could feel some throbbing sludge under the waistband of his jeans that reminded me of where I stood- hovering above- eagerly awaiting his desires for the day. 

All photos by Lara Usherwood