Fingertip tales

Fingertips are like novels,
each of the different lines
telling a story,
distinctly and delicately.
Press your fingertip to mine and
you’ll understand me,
the icy cold touch that stings
like love’s first bite,
shivering on the nape of your
neck as an arm
is wrapped around your waist
and the small of your back.
The first time fingertips merge
together,
the charm of young love,
an unbroken vow.
Ignited by touch,
the rivers of lines
each becoming longer,
the stories becoming deeper
and the love becoming stronger.

Scar

The scar above my eyebrow,
almost as old as me,
marked by my sense of
adventure,
careless some might say.
Strands of hair clumped together
messy blonde and bold
in the class photograph of 2000-
my funny face never gets old.
The older I get the younger I feel,
the less I mind about the scar,
the dirtied hair,
the more I feel,
the less I think,
the less I care.
The scar that marked me,
in time growing young at heart,
I live for the second breath.

Thoughts on… happiness and empowering yourself

Recently I’ve been thinking a lot about how dependent humans are; on other people, on society, on financial security, on alcohol, the list goes on. I believe this is the root of a lot of negativity and depression in our society, that we are conditioned to believe that as people we need to be surrounded by and reliant on things or people to make us happy. In reality this is not a strong or stable basis for long-term happiness, when we do this we lose focus of who we are, what we want and ultimately never reach our own notion of happiness because we are constantly caught in a trap of striving for what we think we need and not striving for what will truly make us happy. If only more people knew that the answer to what will truly make you happy is deep inside somewhere, probably in your subconscious, if only we could all just let go and stop trying to do what we think is right and do what makes us ache with laughter and grin from ear to ear and makes our hearts and eyes radiate with gratitude and happiness. What do you dream about when you fall asleep? What makes you feel beautiful and strong? What do you do because you love it not because you have to?

Lack of happiness is an epidemic at the moment, I worry because as a society we don’t equip people with the skills and give people the tools to reach this, we work hard to teach good values such as; respect for others, the importance of education, being a team player, good work ethic but we often leave out happiness leading to a society full of people who at one stage or another become vulnerable to mental health, relationship or work problems. Equally happiness is important because it is the basis for love and gratitude, arguably with more happy people we can spread more love and build better more stable relationships, stronger workforces brought together through admiration and love and people who are fundamentally happier because they can just be who they are and not who they feel society wants them to be. The secret is to empower yourself, let go of what you think you should be and give voice to what your heart and gut tell you to do, if that means losing people in your life or losing money you must do it. Money has been scientifically proven to have no effect on levels of happiness, empowering yourself and doing what your heart tells you to do has been linked to increased levels of happiness. In my lifetime I have tried to fit the mould, do the ‘right’ thing but when you realise that your quality of life could be so much better what might have seemed ‘right’ is no longer correct, it’s someone else’s perception, you need to follow your own perception. I always think about how strange it is that at one time I lived in the light of someone else’s ideals rather than my own because as humans we are all so radically different from one another that following someone else’s ideals will never allow us to reach our own unique notion of happiness. How fascinating that everyone has different, unique experiences, different things to offer and to say, if we all simply followed our own notion of happiness imagine how many varied perceptions and individual experiences would be brought to our society?

Furthermore happiness is rarely idealised in our society, we rarely see people talking about how happy they are or how grateful they are. Instead we see people on the news talking about how ‘successful’ they have been launching a new business or beginning an acting career, talking about how ‘successful’ the launch of their new album has been. Even on the space of social media tumblr haunts us with the construct of the troubled artist and the failing adult, why can’t we be taught to admire people who have reached their ultimate level of happiness instead of people trying to do what they think will make them happy and what society tells them to do? To those feeling unfulfilled with life, lost or confused, depressed or stressed, single and alone, I am here writing this to tell you that everything you have ever wanted is in reach, within the centimetres of flesh and bone, the walls of your own cells lies the answer to everything you have ever wanted to know about happiness. All you have to do is start noticing, start believing in what you really love and empower yourself, do what your heart tells you to do and not what you have to.

Inner workings of a bisexual mind

Okay he’s really nice and funny, I like him a lot, definitely, that must mean I like boys? Wait but I really like her smile and her legs and the way her hips move, when she sees me it gives me butterflies, oh, does that mean that I’m gay? But he’s hot too though and I can see myself kissing him and stuff? So I’m straight. Although yesterday I was definitely Kinsey 4 gay, haha! Okay maybe not. Shit am I bisexual, but my friend said bisexuality was a phase? It feels natural though like I mean I don’t have a preference for either gender. No, straight is simple and you don’t have to come out and… straight, you’re straight, just a little… confused?! Oh no I’m attracted to this girl sat next to me on the bus, her hair is so pretty, please don’t look at me I’m trying to be straight!!! Oh fuck I’m done trying to be straight I’m going to permit myself to try and think my own thoughts, wait maybe she’s bisexual too or lesbian? How do I figure that out? Maybe she’s interested, okay well I don’t want to miss out on an opportunity here. Nah, mate she’s straight and she’ll find it weird if you flirt with her, how do you flirt with girls exactly? Okay she got off the bus that’s fine, I mean everyone has one exception, don’t they? Ooh but I still like that girl at school, but now I’m betraying the gay squad because I have a massive crush on this guy, ughh, why can’t I just be bisexual without everyone telling me it’s a phase???!!!!

If it is just a phase tell me why I’ve been feeling this way for the last 12 years of my life #fightbisexualerasure.

Isn’t it strange

Isn’t it strange how everything can feel like nothing at all,
the places we go and the people we meet.
All of them can fade and blur, what we see and what we
don’t, be afraid of the way life can sit on your shoulders
keeping you awake all hours of the night,
and that as you toss and turn a single tear can fall down
from a single eye.
You are more than the weight of this emptiness,
whether you cross your legs and your thoughts drift into absence or obsession,
if your mind cannot speak for itself,
help yourself.
If those thoughts cannot uncross then know that
you are not alone. One of many,
the disease walks among us
silently stalking its prey,
but you will let it go one day.

 

a little note- anxiety and low moods are quite natural, it’s okay occasionally just don’t let it overwhelm you. you have the power and the strength to determine how much you want to think and analyse even if it doesn’t always feel like it; try to be active, keep yourself busy, set self-challenges, face your fears and learn how to rationalise your thoughts. you are lovely and you will become stronger.

Facing the fear

We are creative individuals
with beautiful minds that paint dreams, thoughts,
create ideas,
creativity is powerful,
a towering spectacle of intellect,
a brilliant force that moves so quickly we don’t always notice when it’s there.
Afraid of how to plant it down, let it grow,
what is success?
Why are we so fucking afraid of what others will think?
All this time spent painting dreams, mapping ideas but
shrouded with fear by the what, when and why?
Let it
go. Ideas that vanish in an instant,
as we keep burying our heads
deeper and deeper into the sands of time,
all of the spare time we have, where does it go?
Another night spent doing nothing,
start doing what you’re afraid of;
travel the world,
run,
act,
read anything and everything,
talk to friends until your mouth goes dry,
get out there and face the fear,
aim high.
What are you so afraid of?
Life is here to be lived.

What I watched…

Okay so I realise for some of you this maybe a diversion from my usual ramblings about writing, reading, poetry, etc but perhaps a side of me you might not know is that I watch a hell of a lot of theatre, films and TV. Honestly I just find the arts and media so captivating, as a theatre student I’ve watched so much incredible live theatre and I figured this would be a good way to recommend if you like or proffer my own insights into theatre, TV and film. I’m not a high brow critic, I do spend afternoons watching the likes of Gossip Girl and Frozen (why not?) as well as more perhaps intellectual TV programmes and films but hopefully that just means I can offer broader suggestions.

1. Skins

I just finished watching Skins and honestly I didn’t want to love it at first, I like gritty teen dramas but I just struggled to warm up to the frequent drug use, expensive parties and to an extent, the lack of realism in the teacher- student relationships, frequent need to introduce ‘diverse’ characters etc. Fortunately my opinion changed, I warmed to quite a few of the characters in a way I didn’t expect, probably Effy the most, who for those of you that don’t know she is the longest standing character on the show. I found Scodelario’s portrayal of Effy absolutely mesmerizing but I think watching the character develop was the most satisfying part of the show for me. I loved the way Skins was filmed, the bleak and sombreness in the lighting and camera angles in the darker moments contrasting with the sudden brightness as the characters fall in love all so quickly, their is also a wonderful sense of the gritty realism in the filming locations, nothing seems placated and every location has meaning and makes sense.

2. The Grand Budapest Hotel

Rudeness is merely an expression of fear. People fear they won’t get what they want. The most dreadful and unattractive person only needs to be loved, and they will open up like a flower. 

Wes Anderson’s story of a hotel in Budapest during the war and it’s inhabitants who are framed for murder is a classic, an absolute delight. The quality of the film is such a credit to his hard work, in an interview he explained how incredibly detailed the mood-boards for the film were, every single last shot captured in these drawings was then magnified by the artistic brilliance of the actors, designers and technicians. A true work of art. There are many, many references, I notice something new in the intricate fabric of the design or filming or acting that I didn’t notice before every time I watch it; The Great Escape, Lawrence of Arabia, The Shining, The Fugitives. I also adore the acting, particularly that of Ralph Fiennes as the splendidly sassy Monsieur Gustave, his comic timing and quick jokes, his peculiarly overt sexuality that hangs like a question mark on the curl of his mustache and yet his lovable devotion to Zero and the hotel. A role that very much procures his reputation as a fine, talented actor.

3. Better Call Saul

I liked this then I didn’t then I kind of did. To be honest I really wasn’t expecting another Breaking Bad, I just knew in reality, as clever as Vince Gilligan is and all it just wasn’t going to be possible to create something that will ever match up to the phenomena of Breaking Bad. Nevertheless having low expectations I did enjoy the first few episodes of this spin-off I felt like there was a lot of room for growth and particularly with the two skateboarding scam artists shall we say, in the first episode. Unfortunately for me I lost touch, I failed to find the dark humour I loved in Breaking Bad and I struggled to warm to Saul, if we were meant to. Really I just grew tiresome, there isn’t enough scandal for this to ever develop to the stage of compulsive watching for me but I think that’s almost a side effect of the ever-looming shadow giant and success of Breaking Bad. Needless to say Gilligan’s epic filming style with slow moving camera angles is still confidently retained and if you like Breaking Bad and want something slightly lighter, more crime drama than horror and less compulsively addictive then it might be for you.

Waiting Room

Scratched blue,
veins open and cold,
‘just a quick pinch’.
I’m getting tired and old.
A game of two sides,
draw the line,
waiting behind
waiting for you,
two steps behind
‘You’ll pull through’,
says some grey faced woman
with a pointed nose.
Then the blood begins to run
curling, uncurling my toes.
The games begin,
the needle vibrates
the senses sharpen
then I lose all-
It’s all down to fate.
The needle is drawn,
your application is withdrawn
he is withdrawn.
Is it too late?
‘Surgery shuts in an hour’,
an interruption-
in the chaos there is a voice.
It is your voice calling me out,
the match is over.
The winner has won,
the loser has lost
over and over, repeating
the same tune.
This is the waiting room.

It’s Okay

I’ve been going through a tough time recently, occasional moments of happiness have flowered but mostly life has been a challenge. I’m not alone in this, I have a horrible tendency to forget that I am not alone in feeling unhappy. We all have periods of unhappiness and discontent, fuelled often by a variety or a combination of things, A Level exams are approaching, I’m starting to figure out who are my real friends and my anxiety has not added to any of this, I’ve had boy problems unlike those I’ve experienced before and I’ve spent far too long deciding what I actually want to do next year that I’m currently not actually doing anything. University this year just seemed like a bit too much with my being so anxious, I also realised I was not ready to move away from home. However I’ve come to realise that it’s okay. It’s okay to feel unhappy sometimes and to not know what you want, or who you are or what you’re doing. It’s okay that you cried because a boy cancelled on you or a friend didn’t support you when you needed it. Everything is normal and fine and life is just a series of ups and downs, a continuum that accelerates and decelerates, it goes in spirals. It’s not easy. Nothing is easy.

As long as we rise from these periods of unhappiness stronger than we were before it makes it okay. I do not agree with the ‘Wallflower trope’ or the idea that one should experience a Catcher in the Rye type crisis in order to be human, rather those that survive periods of unhappiness are the people we should admire most. It is those that rise from rock-bottom and fly, they take those experiences with them but they don’t become a permanent state. Periods of unhappiness can inevitably flower into periods of happiness and I do believe that we are dealt these challenges so that we can become stronger, better and more rounded, so that we can flourish into even better individuals with a stronger sense of happiness and an invigorated sense of who we are. I urge everyone, particularly those who feel as though they have yet to experience a period of instability that shakes them quite to this extent to really remember that it’s okay. It’s not good but it’s something that makes us stronger and sometimes that’s all that you need to be assured of when you’re going through a period of unhappiness, a simple reminder that it’s okay to cry and to feel sad, not least because you can only get stronger and happier from here on out.

Like

I do not like thunder or
small spaces,
noisy crowds
or busy places.
I like knowing things,
I like knowing you.
Unknown.
A cloud hangs down
and the rain pounds the ground.
Unknown to you.
I like your eyes when they smile
and you look at mine too.
Clouded thoughts
all stuck in my head like
like like.
I know what I like.
Truth be told, all has been said.