Archive for April 26th, 2005

My Room

April 26, 2005

myroom
Originally uploaded by louisemills.

In which I spent the last years of my childhood.

Turning, Burning

April 26, 2005

One moment a piglet
Sucks from his mother’s pink teat
The next roasting
Turning, burning
Licked by orange flame
Over a cauldron that hisses,
That spits
At the country fair
Its juices run down

And the crowd watches,
Salivates, anticipates
The sharpened knife that carves
The slivers of meat
Pealed from the bone
Soon they will be fighting
Over the final piece of crackling
While the farmer stands straight
Stands proud, looks on

Dispatches From ‘Home’

April 26, 2005

Mother insisted on picking me up from Harborne in her car.  She commented on the hospital wristband I am still wearing.  ‘It’s to remind me of who I am and when I was born, you know, in case I forget.’

‘Is that from when he hit you?’

I winced.  Mother’s voice is an assault on the ears.

‘I believe the legal terminology is ‘common assault, Mother.  At least, that’s what they’re charging him with.’

We didn’t discuss it any further.  She would only trivialise and belittle what happened to me.  This is the same person who held a seven year old child responsible for the actions of a thirty something sociopath (Yes, we are talking about my father here.).

And, to this day, I still can’t understand that.

That masochistic gene that seems to run in my mother’s family (at least amongst the women) seems to be absent in me. (Thank goodness). Mother began talking about her sister, M.  (I am hesitant to call her my aunt – not after what she has done.)  She is taking her daughter, J. to court in an attempt to gain access to her grandchildren.  J. was abused by her stepfather when she was very young.  She revealed this in 1999 and her stepfather admitted it.  The most sickening part of this whole sordid story is that her mother chose to forgive her husband. She was waiting for him when he came out of prison.  I find this unforgivable but my mother, as always, joins the exodus from judgement.  M. has labelled J. an evil liar.  She does not deny that her husband molested her daughter but suggests that she is exaggerating the extent of it in order to gain revenge and to increase the amount of criminal injuries compensation she received.  Several thousand pounds, I believe.  In my oh so humble opinion several million pounds wouldn’t be sufficient to compensate J. for the double injustice of being abused as a child and then being abandoned by her mother in adulthood. What I don’t understand is if M feels that her daughter is so evil then why is she so desperate for access to the children that emerged from her womb.

I saw the Living Ghost of Bella in the sitting-room of my parents’ home – sitting on the sofa.  Was she communicating with me psychically? 😉

Little had changed.  Mother still waits on my father and my mother hand, foot and fingernail, as well as paying all of the bills. My brother still treats her as though she is something he has just scraped off the sole of his shoe. But there is nothing I can do about that.  (And, believe me, I have tried).  I cannot intervene and I refuse to even try.

Mr Happy

April 26, 2005

Mr Happy
Originally uploaded by rielouise.

New poster above main (steam driven) ‘puter desk. Hopefully it will have some kind of effect upon my mood. And encourage me to abandon the excessive use of my laptops and get out of bed!

Slow Poison

April 26, 2005

I keep my destiny hidden, my gaze restrains,
Suspends the doped up boys in the auditorium
Oblivious to the way I am degenerating
I clutch at omnipotence for they adore me
Me – the girl who stands resplendent on the stage

I leap into their lives, I occupy their senses
For the duration of the show and in return
They grant me dedication fervent enough
To affirm my status as queen of this scene
They revel in my ostensible magnificence

In my repartee. They strive to snatch
Chunks of me away and my own slow poison
Corrodes my contents and I do not find
The sisterhood I seek in song and the affection
Of the crowd smothers me to death.

Shatterday

April 26, 2005

I met my tutor and fellow members of my tutor group. My tutor was a beautiful Indian woman attired in an elegant silk scarf that floated around her when she walked. This sounds mean but I find OU students insufferably earnest, particularly the supercilious South African young woman who glared at me throughout the entire session.

During the break I spoke to a thin faced, middle-aged man about my plans for the future. I told him I’d be content to be a student forever. My plan is to do an MA (yes, another one) in Creative Writing at the UEA (I’ll be sponsored. I’m confident that my ‘mentor’ will see to that and, with the results, fund my PhD).

‘Germaine Greer says Creative writing courses homogenise contemporary writing.’

Oh, really? And did she give any examples?’

‘Oh no, I didn’t read the article myself. I just heard it.’

I asked him if he’d read her latest offering: The Whole Woman. One critic called it a ‘polemical bomb’. I thought it was an unstructured rant. Oh, yeah, Germaine Greer can be liberating when you’re 15 and your father is a tyrant and you paraded through the house, clutching a copy of The Female Eunuch (‘Hail the Mini Dictator, the Conquerer of Rooms). Life was so polarised back then – rather like Germaine Greer’s world-view.

Needless to say, my interlocuter hadn’t read that either. Then perhaps you ought to explore her works more thoroughly before you presume to regurgitate her views with such pseudo authority. These words remained firmly lodged in my mind.

During the informal discussion afterwards I commented on how much Birmingham had changed. ‘Yes,’ someone piped up. ‘And it was such a dump in the early nineties.’

That was the last time I lived there on a permanent basis. I guess the city became less of a ‘dump’ after it had divested itself of my presence.


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