Friday, 27 January 2012

The Word Girl

At night I don’t sleep, I can’t, not when the sky is so black and blue, and if I do my dreams are so dark and deep waking from them is like finding my way through a maze; its high thorn hedges casting deep and dangerous shadows. Each morning my eyes and pillows are stained black from tears I’ve cried in my sleep, I can never tell if it’s yesterday’s make-up or that black ache I feel in my heart. And so I don’t sleep, I write, pouring ink onto paper with my heart; stories, poetry and ideas, snippets of beautiful things, a comfort, a distraction from the dark. Each morning my fingers are covered in ink, as blue as the dawn, and is that the mark of a writer? My mother says I was born to this; before I knew the alphabet, before there was school and exercise books full of copied letters, I was writing, covering pages in tiny ooooooooo’s, broken like words on an inked page, telling my parents with all the exasperation a toddler can muster that I was writing a story, as if they were in my way or costing me time. And so these twenty something years later I write, words now, magical, strange, distracting words; my comfort blanket, my saviour; for a word, after a word, after a word is power…. *

I’m wishing for a new start, and snow, always snow; days quiet and still and full of possibilities, days wrapped in blankets and nights full of stars, but my world is constantly grey and dirty, everything is damp around the edges and confused. A blackbird sits outside my window calling in the spring, snowdrops fringe the emerging green like lace, that same green dances nightly behind the clouds overhead and yet the grey remains, like March come early, keeping us in-between…
Today was that grey, the hours felt late and smokey and the tea tastes off. Today I love blankets, wrapped around me in the night, I love the silk roses blooming across my skin, and that ring like armour, my magpie distraction, a scrying stone, I love the green of this land, earthy and ancient and long for the sea, I love books as always, words on white and I loathe rash actions and stinging words, spilt like venom without care… Today the woman I want to be sleeps soundly and that ache is gone, her midnights are happy and never spent alone, she dances beneath those whiling stars and the only blackness in her life is her raven hair…
*Margret Atwood- Spelling

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