The Flight of a Traveller

She looked out at what she had created. Her year had started off with such promise and yet she felt like all she had done was change peoples lives. And not in that good ’they will go on to do great things’ way.

She had ruined a girls chance at showing off her work and told a guy that she loved him only to find out that wasn’t the case. Everyone said they would miss her and she knew they wouldn’t forget her. But within another year she knew her memory would sour in their brains and they would realize what a virus she had been.

Much like a flower that looks so pretty that you don’t want to pick it and ruin its glow she had infected them, with new ideas that they wouldn’t be able to get out of their heads. They might quit the jobs that are feeding them because she told them they were a good painter, or get a job they hate because she was worried they would starve. Who was she to be making these decisions or be giving people advice? Just because she had travelled to another country did not mean she had ‘seen the world’.

So what was she to do now? Should she continue to be a beacon of light in these peoples world and pretend like maybe this is where she belonged? Or should she pull away to reduce the risk of hurt to most involved?

She wandered how many people would herald her departure, and how many would spend the days missing her. And how long that would last? New-age fairy-tales make it seem like a guy might wait years for someone to return to their life. But that doesn’t seem accurate. After all how many people do you remember from your life 5 or even 1 year ago?

Sure technology makes it easier to keep in contact but that bond would weaken when she wasn’t there to feel their hugs or hear their pain. Their laughs won’t warm her up the same way half way across the world.

But what would become of her if she were to stay? There was really no future, she just wanted to prolong the present. But others would move on and she would feel the sting of being in a place where she knew no-one, that had felt so full once upon a time. She would be the one left behind.

No she would rather cut the ties now and see how they would come back together then see them torn away from her.

The faces of her life waved at her as she walked through her gate.

She knew it was probably the right decision. But what did she really know?

The Truth of the Matter

“Truth or dare?”

It comes out as barely a whisper, his voice hoarse as the night catches up with him.

Our legs tangle together as we sit across from each other. His more than overlapping mine.

I smile slightly as I look into his face. I know what he wants before I even see his eyes lower to my lips and his tongue dart out. I can feel the familiar hammer of my heart and prickle of my skin and I know I need to prolong the inevitable before it swallows us both up.

“Truth”

I see the disappointment across his face and watch his forehead burrow as he deliberates his response. The cogs in his brain turn and I want nothing more than to reach in there and switch them all around. So that he will see me differently, so that he wont notice the stars in my eyes and get sucked in.

Finally a soft smile reminds me of the crevices in his cheeks and all I want to do is collide with him and see if the explosions really will end us.

“Okay,”

His voice cracks and a little piece of me cracks along with it.

“If you had picked dare, what would you want me to ask you to do?”

He stumbles over his words even though I know he rehearsed them first. I think of the thousands of answers I could give him and how he is only hoping for one. How that one could open up a million possibilities and I had the power to unlock them all.

But the thought paralyses me. I can tell I’m taking my time and that he would wait forever for me.

And again I realise I can’t give in to this boy. He deserved a girl who would be right there with him, not one that was already floating away and would take all the pieces of his heart along with her.

I stand up and pull him with me. His hug envelopes me as it has so many times before and I wait for him to pick me up the way he always has. When he doesnt I find my mouth close to his ear.

” I would want you to ask me to jump into the lake,” I whisper.

His laughter rumbles and seems to pour every part of him into me.

“It’s freezing cold!” He tell me.

“Which is why I wouldn’t do it,” I counter before I shrug and head back towards the drinks.

I hear him sigh and start after me. “You’re impossible!” I hear his shout behind me before the music drowns him out.

I feel the urge to look back, but don’t. If only he knew how very impossible it all was.

Dear 2012

I know right now you’re probably lying on your bed wondering how to get the boy to join you, stop.

I know that as the nights and weeks progress you will fall deeper into that abyss and pull away from any of the connection you crave, don’t.

As you lay there I guarantee there are others that don’t even know what they are missing out on. I promise there is a lot more out there for you, even if you can’t quite justify it yet.

You know where this is heading you just need to take the leap.

I know right now as you lay there you are struggling to express your hardships. you feel like a buoy floating in the despair of the unknown. Wait.

You don’t have the answers, maybe you never will, but it will sort itself out and you will find people to support you.

I dare you to break the ties that you know are holding you down so that you can form new ones that will satisfy you to no end.

I know you are lying there wondering why the contact you do get isn’t satiating you. Why it doesn’t feel right and if it will always be like that. It won’t.

You will have more bad experiences to come but eventually you will realise friendship and nights of whispered connections are key.

A whole new world is waiting for you and you can’t even imagine.

I know you think you don’t have it in you. That spending a day with a pad and a pen is useless. It isn’t.

You will find projects that you love and work that allows you the freedom that you crave.

This world will open up and this world will come alive.

I know right now, in that bed, you feel like if you could get his attention everything will be okay. But dont wait around for it. It will take you awhile but eventually you will realise how much you can still have when you let it all go.

Wait for it, I promise you are going to love it.

How to Break a Heart

He wrapped his arms around me and lifted me off my feet in a hug. A small part of my brain hoped it was platonic, that he really did like Aria and that was it. But honestly I knew it was impossible, I had never felt this much adoration in a hug since my dad would spin me around as a child. I guess the father syndrome has some truth to it, because as he dropped me down enough to see his smile I couldn’t help but beam back.

How was it that guys always catch me?

That they always make me feel valued enough that I believe it could work.

But I could see the glint in his eye that told me he had never been to the places that I had. And I couldn’t touch that innocence.

My heart was too wild and erratic, and his would anchor onto mine and hold on until it shattered into pieces.

So how to tell a man such a thing when he does not speak the same language as you? When he can spit rhymes and rhythms and you can barely keep up with the poems of your heart.

How do you bear yourself when the likelihood is to break another’s before it even had a chance.

How to look into ones eyes and tell them that you are not worth it?

Before it can all happen to you.

A letter to my Guilty Pleasure

To my Guilty Pleasure.

I know I shouldn’t, that if I were to tell another about our sordid affair they would scoff and ask me questions I have no answer too. And yet I can’t stop. No matter how ridiculous your plotline, how unconvincing the dialogue I keep coming back every time.

Maybe it’s the nostalgia, maybe I’m chasing the abundance of feeling that all teenageers experience. The overblown anguish, the hope of more, the explosion of love (Imagined or not). Some say these aren’t real, I would say it is more real than the numbness adults convince themselves is normal. To escape the inevitable; the heartache, the emptiness of loss or the end we all face.

Real enough that authors continue to capture in fiction, and producers continue to create in television. In all of which I find you, late at night, under my blankets, in the corners of the internet my sisters lead me to.

Away from the judgement of people who claim it is not worth anything. But I digress, it is perhaps one of the most worthwhile things. It is worth the feelings we have all forgotten; of our first crush, the first kiss and our first dream. All of which seems unattainable and lost. But which we can find if we only choose to look, immortalised in teen fiction.

A glimpse of more

The train slows down slightly, offering up the splendor outside its window. A fascinating landscape, filled with other peoples nostalgia and peeping history. A single street tapers down to a busy city, you can just glimpse people running around completing their errands The rain doesn’t even seem to bother them. Why should it, the sky is a constant downpour of romantic sentiment. Is this what you want? The street seems to widen, to invite; think what you could achieve here it whispers. You could thrive in this whimsical life you suppose, stuck in a constant daydream. Imagine what creative juice would come out of here, no wonder the greatest scholars found their muse in this dreary city.

But what of adventure? What of sunshine? How could you truly survive when the need for sun infiltrates your mind? The carriage is almost empty now; the guards are looking at you expectantly as you stand with your hand on your luggage. “What’s the next stop after this?” You ask out of curiosity. The answer surprises you, giving the guards an apologetic smile you sit back down. Perhaps the next stop will have the answer.

Letting Go

I wrote this piece inspired by Rookie’s theme this month, ‘Getaway’. While it’s too late to pitch it I hope you enjoy it nonetheless. 

It’s hard to know when to let go. There’s always a pull, a feeling. A feeling that you may one day look back on with regret and chagrin.

My best friend spent her 20s with a man whom she thought her life belonged to. She grow old of the soul with him, they bought cats and completed their lounge room and made plans of comfort and intimacy. But he was seeking solace somewhere else and eventually his soul fractured from hers and left her drowning in a whole new world.

Having given my life over to others before I couldn’t help but feel her pain. It felt oddly haunting to see the loss we shared. My experience involved a whole family, with sisters and nephews and dogs galore. I had settled into this life with an ease of comfort I had not felt for a very long time. I truly believed I belonged in this place, in this time, with these people. But falling in love with a man and with a family are two different things and there came a time when I experienced life outside of this bubble and found that I couldn’t quite fit back in.

Never being one to handle things with grace or the subtly I desire hearts were left broken and bonds were fractured. I came back to my own mother and cried on her shoulder for the first time in 20 years.

I spent much of the winter after sobbing over my decision and falling in love with the friendships that formed. I built up a makeshift tent out of my scattered family, my too far apart friends and new people who I wanted to share my life with. I realized that although my soul may be flying around looking for a home there were people willing to help me tie it down.

I wrote a letter to my friend telling her:

“I’m never going to find anyone I feel a connection with again.”

She replied in true bestie fashion

“I’m here for you.”

Eventually I realized that standing still was going to get me nowhere. It wasn’t only people I had to let go of but the part of myself stuck.

Researching made my heart flutter, the options stood out as amazing and never-ending. London, Soeul, New York, LA. They all sounded so sweet, so full I could already hear the memories. I looked to my family, my friends and wondered how I could now let go of these people who made up my life.

They smiled, they laughed and reminded me that distance was but a tiny thing compared to the strings in which we were entangled.

Leaving for the other side of the world at the start of this year was strangely the easiest decision I’ve ever made. To reuse old clichés, it just felt right. I said my goodbyes with a smile on my face and adrenaline in my heart.

But before I left I felt a need to touch base with the same family I had left. It amazed me to find them with arms still wide open. I remember thinking that this is how I want my future home to feel, covered with comfortable pillows and accommodating people.

Now I’ve found new people that feel like home, that push my boundaries and it feels free and wild and fulfilling.

It’s impossible to know when to let go, but doing so has helped me realise what I was scared to lose and how my future life may feel. Living in LA, with a wide-open bedroom and one other unresponsive roommate, I can’t say I am where I want to be but knowing what I want keeps pointing me in the right direction. And knowing there are my tent people on the other side of the world waiting for me to come home, to wrap me in blankets and provide me with comfort, certainly helps.

 

 

 

Fearful

Molly’s eyes scanned the station as she stepped from the early morning train.

Every tailored jacket that caught her eye had the remains of what she was running from. Every glimpse of brown hair made her heart race and her throat tighten, a feeling that was terribly familiar.

Every face jeered at her, a reminder of the words she desperately tried to push out of her head.

“You can’t get away”. It was like a droning, a pounding, a thumping that she couldn’t escape.

Rushing to the exit Molly skirted the suits running for their early morning train, the elderly ladies bustling about like it was their last day and the party girls still giggling from their late night antics. That should have been her, she should have been stumbling home recounting the night to her friends and laughing at what the night had given her. Instead she was running alone through Town Hall station leaving curious stares in her wake.

She jumped at every touch and shivered through the breeze, feeling the familiar piercing stare watching her move through the crowd. She could feel her whole body tense as ice ran through her body.

“You can’t get away” 

Instinct told her to look around but her brain chastised her, telling her that would look weak and scared. But she was weak and scared, what had she done?

Her feet had finally given up and she slowed down as she reached the stairs to the street. As she ascended she swallowed and turned around. She searched the faces, looking for what she feared but fearing what she might see.

Suddenly a force slammed into her from behind. For a few seconds it was all arms and hair and suede until she steadied herself and prepared for the worst.

She wasn’t a fighter but she had no energy to run. This was it, she guessed he was right. She really couldn’t get away.

As her body slackened she heard a high pitched voice that made her cringe.

“Molly! What are you doing here?!”

Nikki stood at the top of the stairs, blocking the path and holding Molly tightly at arms length.

“I thought you would be in bed nursing a hangover right now! But this is great, are you hungry? Let’s go get some food, how do you feel about sushi?”

Tears were streaming down her face, but she nodded. There was no denying Nikki.