Sunday, December 18, 2011

White

Today my hands don't feel like my own.
They are clumsy and unfamiliar.
And warm.
Usually they are like ice.

And when I press my teeth together, I feel an electrical charge.

I think I will run away and become a hermit. I told Francesca and she said "Oh. Okay dear, if that will make you happy".
I don't know that it would make me unhappy.

Saturday, November 05, 2011

A Bit Of A Mental Health Day

I had a bit of a Mental Health Day yesterday. Or Night.
My cat came home with a bloody gash on her leg.
And I cried.
I bathed her wounds tenderly with saline. She got cross and made angry cat noises.
And I cried.
She ran away to under-the-house and didn't come home for hours.
And I wanted to cry but I'd run out.
Fireworks started banging outside and I thought about how scared she must have been under-the-house. I thought "what if she gets scared and runs out in front of a car".
..............
"What if she gets hit by a rocket?"
"What if a crazy person steals her and puts her in a bag with lit fireworks?"
(It was in the paper)
"What if a crazy person traps her in a wheelie bin?"
(It was on the news)
By 4am she was dead. And lying in the road. And maybe only just alive. But wouldn't make it until morning.
I had to look for her! I had to call the vet! How would I get to the vet's?! Where was the clinic?! Was there such a thing as a feline ambulance?? Why hadn't I learned to drive?!!
Should I wake the neighbors and form a search party?
At 5 am she came and jumped on me and licked my face.
I cried. And she swallowed the salt.

By 6am I had Toxic Shock Syndrome. If I fell asleep I would likely wake up dead.
My skin burned all over. I had a temperature. I was fatally poisoned.

At 6.30am my mum said that No. She didn't think I had Toxic Shock Syndrome. Had I slept?

And by 7am I had abandoned my cat, and crawled into my sister's recently vacated bed.


Monday, October 24, 2011

Three Small Things and One Big One That's Preying On My Mind

1.
I am reading ROOM by Emma Donoghue, and it is quietly blowing my mind into a thousand little pieces.

2.
I invariably spell pieces wrong.

3.
But I can spell invariably.

4.
I bought a copy of Vogue. Which I haven't done in a long while. But I saw it on the rack and the stark black letters on the white called to me.
And I read it. And I felt sick with myself and the world. I consider myself to be a feminist in my own quiet way. I've taken a gender and women's studies class, I would have taken more if they hadn't cut them. I've read The Beauty Myth.
I think I've always understood the principles-- I mean. But I've never really felt them before.
Theoretically I've been opposed to magazines only showing one type of woman, unrealistic standards blergh blah I don't need to say it, you've heard it.
But, I must admit, that I've always put pleasure before principle.
I like pretty things. I like beautiful clothes. And I was pretty good at looking past the ideological issues, through to the prettiness.
The fashion spreads existed for me as an escape from reality, and so long as I refrained from accepting them as a realistic standard, I was okay.
But this time I found myself really looking at the women's bodies and feeling uncomfortable.
I really for the first time questioned the idea that they were "beautiful".
I am not saying that a woman who is naturally tall, thin, even featured and possessing an angled face surrounded by a perfectly styled mane of hair is not beautiful.
But none of the women in my Vogue, looked even a little bit like me or the people I love.
I really do want to see different types of beauty celebrated. Real beauty, not "beauty" the product.
Like who gives a fuck about cellulite or stretch marks or weight or height? When I look at the beautiful, exquisitely lovely people around me I don't notice any of these things.
And yet I tear myself to pieces when I look in the mirror.
I don't know. I lost my point, I'm rambling.
I actually started this the other day and then the computer started making funny noises and I got scared and turned it off and lost the end. Which was rational. I think.

Thursday, October 20, 2011

Beloved Katherine


Here is a pic-a-ture I drawed. I'm baby talking because I feel nervous about sharing it.
And I'm not allowed to say the things that are wrong with it. But I wrote that so that you would know, that I know, that there are things wrong with it. Silly.
The scanner did funny things and I tried to compensate for them and got muddly, so it's a bit under exposed. And blue. It's not actually blue. But never mind.
I have a hymn stuck in my head it's a bit weird and disturbing.
Mum: "God might be singing to you."
Me: "Well he could pick a nicer tune."

Monday, October 17, 2011

Possibly my favourite sentence of all time

Probably not, if I gave it serious thought and scrabbled through a pile of books. But I like it very much.

"Delirious with joy, Florentino Ariza spent the rest of the afternoon eating roses and reading the note letter by letter, over and over again, and the more he read the more roses he ate, and by midnight he had read it so many times and had eaten so many roses that his mother had to hold his head as if he were a calf and force him to swallow a dose of castor oil."
-Gabriel Garcia Marquez, Love In The Time Of Cholera

I love the contrast between the utterly hopeless romantic, compulsively consuming flowers, and the brutal practicality of his mother, forcing him to swallow down his love, with castor oil.
And the language is deliciously sparse. It actually makes me feel a bit like I want to eat it. Or just bite someone.

My book is a relatively new copy, but page 79, is completely dog-eared.

Sunday, October 16, 2011

Actually I think I will have a little portrait of Katherine (we are on a first name basis these days) in a little frilly cameo-ish frame on one arm. And then maybe one day when I have extra money I will add Mr Gaiman to the other (We haven't been introduced yet, and I don't want to take liberties, but I don't think he would mind. I hope).

I have little flashes of the future-as-I-will-make-it stored in my memory banks. They are a little bit like dreaming. You see things, but you don't. In between flashes of grey light. Smoke, wavering tendrils.
And so I see half of my thigh, over exposed reduced to light and little shadow, papered over with words I love. My wrists carrying comfort, familiar sounds.
My back tells the story I loved most when I was small.
I am a book, I am a page, I am everything I loved most and have been shaped by.
I have halfway crossed the border between the place I was born and the world I have lived in.

It might happen. I might decide that I love my virgin skin. I might fall into a vat of silver oxide in a freak accident and emerge a bruised blue and spend the rest of my days travelling with the circus*.
But it might happen.


*blatant borrowing from The Five People You Meet In Heaven, the imagery appeals to me today.

Saturday, October 15, 2011

I have been scribbling in my new sketch pad all weekend. I am covered in ink a bit and feeling pretty happy and contented. Maybe I will scan them in later and do a "weekend in pictures" post?
I don't know, they are pretty flawed. But I make no claims to be an artist of any kind so--
no matter.
I will go and eat popcorn until I feel braver.

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Today my head is being a bit mean.
It is saying things like you are boring. And not even a bit pretty. AND NO ONE LOVES YOU OR LIKES YOU.

What a bitch.
That last one was me, not further head abuse.

UPDATE:
I danced to Billie Holiday by Warpaint with a beautiful little deaf boy and a helium balloon, and now I feel better.
We are going to go and feed my lunch to the ducks.

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Cleanliness is better than Godliness.

Hello October, when did you get here?
Oh I'm sorry I must have been busy in the kitchen, but the door was open and you obviously just walked right in and made yourself at home.
I've been feeling reasonably quiet lately. By lately I mean as far back as I can remember without brain-effort. So yesterday. A bit musey and contemplatey and all I really want to do is read books, and take baths and snuggle under sheets feeling snugglywarm and clean.
Clean is such a lovely feeling. I think it's my favourite.
And maybe that sounds sterile and slightly obsessive compulsive, but it's not actually about being germ free. It's about slipping between a pair of sheets that are white enough to make everything else look old and dingy, sheets that have never, ever been used by anyone.
And they're perfect and new. It's ok to overstate newness, things only get to be new for such a little time.
And you've just spent a while covering yourself in warmth and sweet scented bubbles, which perhaps were rose and cardamomy and scrubbed off everything that happened that day.
Until there's nothing left but pink new skin and possibilities.
New sheets on new skin. And wet hair on the pillow.
Best feeling. Best time of the day.
And if someone could arrange for it to rain while I fall asleep, thank you.

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Katya

I am obsessed with Katherine Mansfield.
I am toying with the idea of having her name tattooed onto my body.
Or a patch of manuscript.
I'm reading book after book, and skipping the endings so she won't die.
Although of course, I know that she is dead.
"I would like to speak Russian with you". Some of the last words she wrote.
Russia called to her. She was in love with Chekhov.
She never made it home.
And they called her a liar. And a manipulator. And a plagiarist.
Her husband married a woman who looked like her.
And his second wife learned to write with Katherine's hands.
And when I think about it all, I feel sad.
But also --
--
she used to write when she couldn't find the rest of her sentence.
--
And so--

Friday, September 02, 2011

Tense

I am tense. And tired. And frustrated. And wound up so tightly I might scream, or stop breathing, or catch sight of myself making grotesque faces in the mirror, and recoil.
And I am tired, it has to be said twice. It's probably causing all the rest. I spent another night chasing sleep. It's so hard to lie there passively, with my eyes pinned shut, knowing that I can do nothing else to change it.
It, being my body's lack of ability to do something that is basic, instinctual, untaught and easy.
I felt so happy a month ago. And really I should feel the same way now. I've had a wonderful fortnight. I should be feeling content and happy in a slightly overindulged, gluttonous way. I've filled my mind with the most beautiful images. But they escape me.
I've lost my appetite.

Friday, August 12, 2011

There's Full Moon Tonight

And I can't sleep, it's too bright and something to do with fluid and magnets and tidal pulls.
I'm trying to be very, very quiet so I don't wake anyone up.
I'm a pretty loud bangy typist usually, so this is hard. I am moving very slowly and trying not to breathe too much.
I'm even thinking quietly.

I love books. I don't know if I've ever mentioned that here before.
I like them more than most people.
When I was small and strange and the other kids made fun of me for not liking poo-jokes or Aqua, and wearing funny opshop clothes, I would hide out in the school library and read Nancy Drew mysteries. For 30 minutes I could forget who I was, and that horrible things were happening and just hang with Nancy and the gang. I never wanted to stop reading. I would walk around with my nose between pages, greedily grasping for just one more paragraph, just one more line.

Now that I'm sort of grown up, I have friends. Somehow wearing funny opshop clothes has become cooler than cool. And generally I find that people are slightly disappointed if I've already heard of the band they're raving about, obscurity is prized.
But I still feel a sort of loneliness if I go too long without curling up with a book. It's almost a physical need, a raw hunger.
I spend days sating my appetite, consuming words ferociously. Gorging myself on syntax, prose and rhyme, other people's lives, longings and loss. Until I am filled to bursting, and can finally close my heavy lidded eyes and breathe in calm.

In other news I am making a giant cookie sandwich birthday cake; I am possibly using semi-colons incorrectly; I am going to apply for not one but THREE library jobs tomorrow (biting the fucking bullet); and I am tired all the way down to my soul.

Sunday, July 31, 2011

Happy Smiley

There are so many other blogs with this name.
But there were so many blogs with the other name, and I was beginning to cringe every time I saw it.
It seems funny that a few years ago I thought it was an okay-ish and kind of sweet title.
Cringey, cringey, cringe.
This name make me giggle, and want to type little happy faces.

In other news, I'm pretty sure I caught an eye infection from my baby-cat.
Disgusting.

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Want

I want to write a book.
I want to be lighter and brighter.
I want to wake up.
I want to visit snow bound cities, and sit in an airport where the only voice I understand is my own.
I want perfect teeth.
I want my house to be clean and warm.
I want to be louder.
I want to be able to think of things to say.
I want this feeling to go away, the calm before a storm.
I want to see my future.
I want to be older and younger.
I want to want what I have.

Friday, July 08, 2011

Confessions and Musings In Three Parts.

On "work"-
I'm babysitting, but as my charge ( I love referring to children as my "charges" it makes me feel like a Victorian nanny in a starchy, foofy pinafore) is currently falling asleep on the floor, I think I'm actually just sitting. I sometimes feel like I shouldn't be paid for this.
Until I encounter an exploded colostomy bag/ have food thrown at me/ get bitten so hard that I scream. And then I think I should be paid a lot more.
But really he's an angelchild 90% of the time.

On "religion"-
This one's pretty darn controversial. And not controversial in a cool, fuck the man, rebellious, I cut my own hair and reject all stereotypes kind of way. I am so uncomfortable writing this.
The concept of Atheism makes me feel sad. I believe in god.
And this seems like a failure. It seems to me that a person well read. educated and not particularly stupid, would reach the logical conclusion that there is no god.
I should clarify, I do not consider myself to be Christian. I was raised in a Christian home, and whilst I don't want to demonize (haha, small joke) the culture, I can't say that it's had a positive effect on my family. I look at my mother and see fear that lies beneath her skin and weeps out through her pores. I see taught ignorance, and prejudice, and hands cupped over eyes. I look at my stepfather and see hypocrisy. My brother, and see rigidity, obsession, fixation. I can't get far enough away from myself to see at all clearly. But there's guilt, and anger, repression, anxiety, chaos.
But I still can't not believe in god. And maybe it's ridiculous idealism. Or maybe it's the way I was raised. But I also kind-of-sort-of believe in faeries and the Loch Ness monster. So... um. Moving on.

On "being a nosy nosy nosyparker" -
I love (love!) looking in other people fridges. Forget their bathroom cabinet, I want to see what they eat. If I'm left alone I go beyond sneaky glances, and actually pull out things to properly read labels and ingredients, and see what's at the back of the shelf. All the while trembling and checking over my shoulder. I've never been caught yet. The people here cook with saffron (saffron!) and lots of fancy fancy oils. And I think they're out of sugar.






Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Glowbeth

Good morning world, I'm making pancakes. Massive amounts of pancakes.
I'm also drinking Mountain Dew.
It looks radioactive. I'm probably glow-in-the-dark-able now.
I'm pretending that I don't actually have to take my medication today.
And having a conversation with a rather large doggy trying to climb in my lap, it's mostly going like this,
ME: Meow
JACK: Rowrowrowl
ME: Woowooowooo
JACK: Yip yap... Arf!

There now, aren't you glad I shared?

Saturday, February 19, 2011

Helloooo little bloggy

I haven't seen you in the longest time.
I'm sorry I haven't been around. It's not you, it's me. I just needed some space.
Mmmm internet detox is good for my brain. But I do miss you a bit.
Maybe we can discuss and redefine our relationship. And set some boundaries.
I love you very much little neglected internet space.
Beth <3

Also Dear World At Large
Last night I saw Amanda Palmer play and she gave me a real-proper-holding-on-tight-hug.
It was Awesome.
That's all.
Now I'm going to drop off the map again for a while, so no one can find me :)