Issue Two

Abigail George

Family

For Mishka and Stuart Hoosen-Lewis

Obligations of family, the victory falls on us, 

it feels like it did when I was little, it feels as 

if I’m slowly dying inside. I think that I’m only hurt 

by all of you, you, your mother, sister, brother. 

I wish I was dead. No longer amongst all the living. 

The air is filthy, the rags are filthy, the passage of

swimmers, assault on the ears, the men, the-

(my heart is breaking just for you)

the soldiers, they all seem to think, and feel, 

and see strange things. The scar must always

be professional. Wash clothes, hair, clean

bedroom, take my anti-depressants. I gained

so much. He paid me attention. Nobody paid

(my arms are open just for you)

me attention like he did. He doesn’t think of

me, distraught and going to pieces over him.

Nobody loves me. That’s my trouble. The 

victory falls on us, obligations of family, yoga

today was excellent, blue imprint burned on 

(I began to build a world of my own)

my brain, I was in my element in his halls and

corridors, I appreciate how you raised me.

I linger in the Southern Hemisphere, I am 

the dead intimate, the dead poet, the dead man,

the dead woman, I’m origami, I’m habitat.

(and I filled it with ex-boyfriends) 

I think of the orphan men, the cat ladies dancing 

with all their cats. Intuition like fear is just 

like an illusion, and life can carry you like 

purpose. If only I could see you now, missing

the war, you must remember my breakdown. 

(I don’t need advice on relationships)

I know who’re you sleeping with, and she’s

beautiful in all the ways that I’m not. Maybe 

I’m hetero-, or Rasputin, or William Styron.

I figured it all out. I was high and low and 

every little thing in between the truths and the 

(I don’t need to have physical pleasure)

white lies. Being in love makes you seem a 

little crazy, and you can’t seem to think in a

straightforward manner, you can’t seem to 

see the stars for the moon, the daylight for grace, 

the mercy seat for a life that I wanted for myself.

(There’s blood, sweat and tears in my writing)

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