Well the editorial phase for Issue Eight is now in full swing. Tonight we did flash fiction and poetry. We also have our interview with Jasika Nicole sorted out and are plowing ahead with the Verbose feature. We have a few more interviews to get back, the details of which are still under wraps but made me feel like I had to buy adult nappies at one point. This is shaping up to be yet another amazing issue.
Anyway, it’s been an odd weekend. Normally, because I work all week, at the weekend I become switched on to all the things I did not have chance to do during the week. Housework, uni reading, magazine work. I become a bit of a nightmare. As I have said before, I become painfully aware of the passing of every minute. So when a couple of hours pass and I do not feel like I have done anything, I become a little twitchy. Then a bit more twitchy. Then Keri and I argue because I’m being an arsehole, which I am, in fairness. So that kind of puts a dampener on the weekend. I hate the processes that go on in my brain at these times.
So yesterday I decided to chill out and try and give my brain a little space. I got up at 9am yesterday and played FIFA for a bit – not on-line so I didn’t have to spend half the morning calling people on the other side of the internet a bunch of penises. Then I got back in to to have some cuddles with Keri. I feel asleep for about 2 hours but I woke up feeling more sanguine than I have for a long time. I was relaxed.
I get too caught up with hustle and bustle and I lose sight of what is really important. The fact I have found the love of my life and we are forging our own way and we have a roof over our head and eat well and love each other hard. The fact I have a fantastic family around me and some of the best friends I could ask for, even though none of them live in Manchester and we only ever talk on the phone or Facebook. That doesn’t matter at all. The fact is we talk.
These are the important things. I felt quite sad after I woke up again on Saturday. I dreamt that for the first time in years, my entire family were in the same room. We were arguing but it was about silly family stuff, nothing too grand. Just about whose turn it is to do the washing up or what’s being put on the TV. We were all getting along though, as a family. I woke up and, in the midst of my revelation that I do not want to be so constantly switched on, I felt sad because I realised this will probably never happen again. Too much has passed.
Now it is Sunday night and, after a great day of editing and seeing Mummy Moriarty and such a nice dinner – pork, beef steak and liver on the same plate – I am now watching Keri chase sheep on Minecraft. I feel very happy.
Here is a poem.
He told her he expected the washing up
to be done and tea on the table when he got
back from the pub. The door slammed as he left
and a picture fell off the wall in the living room.
She began her daily ritual of cleaning in silence.
He had taken her phone with him,
and the stereo had long since stopped working,
so she could not put any music on to entertain herself.
She scraped the plates into the bin and began to fill the sink
with hot water, a modest squeeze of washing up liquid.
Last month he had told her they were spending too much
on cleaning products and she should be more frugal.
As the steam rose from the tap, she stood over the sink,
nostrils filling with disinfected lemon aroma.
She breathed deeply and exhaled. suddenly
the whites of her eyes flashed, bright and lucid,
perfectly matched by a smile that raced across
her face. She walked to the cupboard and pulled out
a casserole dish. She placed it on the counter top
and walked to the bin, dragging out the remains of
last night’s dinner and throwing them into the dish. This was
followed by the scrapings from the dog bowl, a hand full from
the bottom of the canary cage topped with what got caught in the
plug hole of the rinse sink.
She put it all in the oven to bake and went upstairs to get changed.
Two hours later and the door of the pub slams open.
He does not even look round, his eyes locked on the bosom
of the eighteen-year-old blonde at the bar.
She walks over to him, the low light orbiting and falling
into her red velvet dress.
She looks over and sees the blonde ruffle her hair in
his direction, tracing a hand across her chest.
She smiles as she reaches him and without saying a word,
pours his dinner into his lap. Before he can respond,
she walks to the bar and orders two pints of mild.
One for her, one for the blonde’s face.