Renewal

Another day pretending to be busy. Carving hours, making them clean, not bleeding into each other. Paused external life has made me dormant, as if the fire flickering out, connecting with others’ flames has gone. Time folds into itself. My mother leaves a text message ­–What would you like for your birthday?– and I’m startled … More Renewal

A Crowded Life

It wasn’t the first time Juniper had imagined living full time in her walk-in closet. It boasted a mauve velvet daybed, a shag rug and wall-to-wall cupboards filled with silk, linen and fine cotton. On days when the world felt too close, sidling up and poking her in the ribs, she would open the doors … More A Crowded Life

Where it Began

An urgent flurry. Words like a flower crown sit lightly. Or encircle and susurrate, make a fevered clutch in the heart, a rush of fire over the skin. I have this. I am this.   A fall into interior depths, loveless arterial passage, where sustenance is absent. Hedge maze of unanswered questions leading to where … More Where it Began

Blue Note

Jacqueline was the pretty one. Everyone said so. On Saturday mornings, the two girls went shopping for their mother. The fishmonger, the baker and the grocer. Teresa peered through the glass of the Tudor shop fronts—the window displays of buttons made into the shape of a lady at the haberdashery and the glass bowls of … More Blue Note

Turning Empathy Inwards

“If someone comes along and shoots an arrow into your heart, it’s fruitless to stand there and yell at the person. It would be much better to turn your attention to the fact that there’s an arrow in your heart…” Pema Chödrön People’s hearts are punctured early. A parent knows when their child is upset straight … More Turning Empathy Inwards

The Space

She carved a space beside the left ventricle. It was cramped and dark, almost airless. But she kept it there over passing months. She kept it tidy, placed flowers to stop it from closing over. The heart, she realised, was like the weft and weave of a rug. The people came and sewed themselves into … More The Space

The Writing Dog

He is ever alert to the sounds of her. Footsteps upstairs might mean she is coming. She may yet share the couch with him. He will lay his nose on her leg and sigh, tail thumping the upholstery in a contented rhythm. On frost-laden mornings she greets him and lets him out. He hears the … More The Writing Dog

A Gift

Tania wasn’t sure why she’d kept it. A round mirror with a gold bevelled edge, the glass curved. Her touch was hesitant as she removed the wrapping, half expecting him to materialise, or be reflected in the surface like a messenger from the past. He had given it to her near the end, when they … More A Gift