I’m trapped in the wrong dream.
A nightmare that somebody’s having.
And every day my strength dies away; the giver and the given.
No one sees my pain.
No one knows my sorrow.
Nobody hears the dread that I feel, at every new tomorrow.
It’s a lonely road.
Not quite sure where I’m going.
And the weight of the rain that is falling is stopping me knowing.
When is it my time to crumble?
When is it my turn to fall?
When will I get the chance, to be so incredibly small?
Crushed like a snail underfoot.
Lost like a drunken night’s promise.
Tired of the climbing this hill all alone, if I’m honest.
But I carry on. Yes, I carry on
Because I have to. I need to.
There’s no other way; there’s another day.
Can I carry on? Can I be that strong? Forever.
(A work in progress)
With my daughter’s permission, I would like to showcase a piece of prose that she wrote and performed for her GCSE drama exam today. When she rehearsed it in front of me last night I was almost moved to tears, not just by the gentle Dublin accent which she spoke it in but also for the depth of maturity which it conveyed. I was convinced that she was reciting James Joyce at first and was stunned to hear that she had written it herself. The conviction of delivery and depth of feeling in the written words was astonishing. Not surprisingly, she received the top mark for writing and performing this monologue which looks set to bring her an A-star. I am very proud.
I always wanted to be an explorer. To visit England and Europe and the USA, and to voyage the sea to one day come home again and be the same woman I started out as. He will have developed a heart beat by now, fingernails and tiny, tiny closed eyes. I knew it would happen. A small lump of naive life all curled up inside of me, slowly taking away parts of my body to nurture his own and I hate it. The doctors refuse to take him out of me because they say it’s not my choice who lives or dies, that it’s not my choice which way he comes out of me.
They tell me he’s my responsibility, it’s my responsibility. Do you think I was responsible for that? Do you think if I showed them my bruises, and the cut above my left thigh they’d change their minds? They scrutinize me at the question as they pry over my sickly ever-growing stomach, they say I’ll be a fantastic mother - that my husband will be overjoyed. Who? Who are they to tell me to give myself up to another human being just because he grew inside of me? If the doctors, who claim they care can’t help me, then I’m sure the backstreet dealers with their sweaty palms and their shabby back pockets can. They lure me in with their makeshift instruments and their shallow eyes; maybe it’s something to do with the way they promise me my life back.
Above anything else, they promise me my life. I’m being pushed into a position where I have to choose between moral right or living half the life I ever lived …and that’s not right. That’s not right! Why should I have to conform to their idealistic biased male regulations to be considered a ‘real’ woman?
A woman has every right to be a woman just as every child has the right to be a child. The female population of Ireland is being condemned and deprived of their right to be their own by the Irish government, and I’m going to do whatever it takes to change that. This isn’t my only option. I’m leaving for England for the first time, and I’ll do whatever is in my power to change something. Anything. A woman isn’t defined by the way she was sculpted, a woman is defined by her state of mind. And anyway, I always wanted to explore.
Hope Slater. March 2012.
All hell released this raging night
Brought forth from slumber; nature’s blight.
The shrieking wind lashed timbers bare
And thrashed the land without a care.
The rain, as if at sea did lash
The hedgerows with a thunder clash
But there! a lamp, The dark to cheat
And shadows followed little feet.
As through the tempest, fast she ran
And with each step, the dream began.
Not once was felt the sting of fear
A bleach white courser did appear.
Upon its back there was a man.
Along his forehead; dark blood ran.
His breath was short, his eyes half closed.
The bones beneath his skin exposed.
The charger pounded through the night
With mane of fire, burning bright.
She hid at once, in case that he
Might vent his spur on such as she.
But in that dark it was her flame
Revealed conceit, not casting blame.
He hauled the beast into a halt
With snorting breath, and ne’r a fault.
He looked upon her, hiding there
And called aloud: ‘Pray, have a care!’
From deathly skies - a lightening bolt.
The frightened steed recoiled a jolt.
And in the flash of light, he saw
The maiden, frightened to the core.
“You’ve naught to fear,” he said and reached.
Her plaintive cries, his trust beseeched.
His arm was strong, a smile he gave.
Her safety and a heart to save.
“Come here,” he urged and up she crept.
From hiding hole and prison leapt.
She gave her hand with firm belief,
Releasing her from fear and grief.
As through the fetid night they tore,
The demons hunted her, no more.
(From “Turgidity and Tragedy”, dedicated to Bella (ref unknown).
By Bartholomew Brinkley (1806 - 1864)
Essayist, romanticist and gothic poet.
“To Hob or not to Nob”
I think you’ll find I’m picky
when I have to pick a biccie.
And if that biccie’s sticky
it makes the picking tricky.