Friday, 1 February 2013

Things hungover girls say to themselves, Part 1

You wake up with black spots in your eyes like inky fingerprints on a police blotter, except your eyes are the blotter, except you can't read the patterns and find out who did the crime. Your mouth is small with fag ash and crushed glass; you can taste metal, or blood, or old locks and keys. You wake up and lie still for a while, while the room readjusts and finds its mettle. You know this moment, but you are not used to spending it alone. There is nothing to distract you, no body to roll over and bite with sharp teeth, yank away with a fist to the hair.

There is just you, lying, the pieces of the night fighting to place themselves together, garish words you yelled at a tarmac troublemaker, stupid things you said to the shopkeeper barkeeper boy who was kissing you, do you remember kissing him, he kissed you? All these dumb fucks coalescing, or you're the dumb fuck coming together, and no matter how tight you close your eyes there are these thoughts inside your head so that closing is only making a small darkroom for the prints to develop. Ow.

You lie still and you close them and in the air is the smell of chemicals and developer. Click and flash, a moment of light; let them arrive, sit quiet and perhaps they won't notice, perhaps they will go away. Why do you do this and get yourself in these situations, sweetheart? You and your torn tight slipshod shoes, you and your broken nails, do you remember scraping them across his face, that boy, the one you were kissing?

Shut up shut up shut up. But you did and you were outside and the booze made you strong, strong like liquor, strong like a man or maybe just like a fool, but fearless, the way tigers never think about their consequences and that is why we are never friends with tigers, because tigers will rip your face off and swallow it given half the chance, because tigers, kind of, are dicks.

Lie there, lie quiet and think about the bad things you did to make you the bad person you are. Oh look, there you are hollering. Oh god, your voice is shrill. When did you get to be such a fool and a charlatan and a broken doll, when did you start? Would you still be so hideous and so embarrassed if you had drunk that drink alone, sitting in a small room, a cuff between your ankle and the bedpost, tying you home, keeping you down, because really…

You could holler at the walls and scream murder but the only thing dying is the brain cells and don't you think your hands are looking older, don't you plan on coming back here, don't you have any friends for drinking with who you can look in the eye in the morning and laugh? Are there only these cracked bad people who scream back and walk with you down the centre of the freeway, stumble on that curb of stubby grass and petrol soaked soil? No flowers left here, you're not a flower, you think you're a fucking flower and a precious diamond snowflake, but you're just some crazy bitch walking down the centre hollering, and these people are not your friends.

But then you were done on the highway, the freeway, whatever way it was, it went, then you were done and you were in the bar, do you remember? Crick your neck, crack your knuckles, slip to the toilet and take off your tights because your legs are prettier when you've got them in the bag—

Shut up shut up shut up. It's this, it's that moment, you were in the bar and there was the boy, the boy you were kissing, doesn't his face feel nice? Aren't you enamoured with his cheeks? Such stubble and what happened to make you crack, you did crack didn't you, why isn't he here, why are you at home, what is the point in this life that rotates from light to dark to light to dark every day like a goddamn sundial. Oh god, your head. Bleak with aged violations and footsteps in its soil from myths, from legends, from the dead babies of another time. They died. You are not about to die. You will stay alive and half awake forever, like Tantalus, while eagles peck at your liver.

Is that really so bad?

Ok, roll over, take a gentle elbow and prop your body up a notch in bed, creak your way to a half held position, hold yourself, examine these hands. Ow. Still.

Fuck those eagles and their morning pecking and bitching. I bet last night, when you were walking with your shoes in your hand, down the centre of the overpass, or the freeway, or the highway, wherever you were, surrounded by fast cars and lights bleeding into the soft night, tights shorn and shredded, black eyes running down your face, screaming at the sky and the gods and the boys who had wronged you—I bet you were beautiful. I bet if I had seen you I would have fallen in love.

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