Sunday, 17 May 2015

Lessons #2392

        (These are my Instagram writings from the account @hyperbolemuch)


An Ode To Butterflies (In My Stomach)

I gave birth to mass populations of you
With each razor-sharp, 
Puddle-shallow breath in
And breath out.
The first time I had a crush.

I’ve nursed families and tribes of you,
Every time I’ve really
Really liked someone,
And they walked by 
And said “hi” to me.

I’ve held baby showers for you,
Given you names, like “ImDying Inside”
There’s, “OhMyGod DidWeJustMakeEyeContact”
And, “OhMyGod” “OhMyGod Junior”, “OhMyGod Senior”

Like needy, rowdy kids you’ve,
Raised hell with your fluttering around.
Pressing your downy, feathery bodies 
Hard into the anxious lining of my stomach,
Each damn time 
I even try to play it cool.

Just before I’m about to speak
The beating of your wings
Drowns out the sound of 
Blood in my veins,
And I forget how society,
Usually responds to “Hi”.

Restless kids, you’re out of control
And sometimes take up so much room,
I forget to eat.
And drink too fast.

Which is why I wonder why people
Say you’ll soon be extinct.
Don’t they know I’ve hidden colonies of you,
Deep inside 
The caves of my stomach?

Age be damned,
You’re how I’ll know at 60
That I’m young and alive.

(Picture credit @ballerinaproject_) 


And no one ever told you 
That being young meant
A folding inside,
Starting over,
Stopping swiftly,
Inhaling shyly,
Exhaling frantically 
And letting go

Always four seconds too soon.

                       (Gorgeous picture composition by @ballerinaproject_ with the lovely @katieboren1)




I took your idea of beauty and smeared my freckles over it. I took the conditions you placed on love and smudged  the "You Sign Here" space with my bleeding heart. 
Straight across. 
I bought expensive art and ran a magic marker in three different squiggles, symmetrically around its edges. 
I took this world, broken and bent and hopeful and taught it how to wear its organs inside out, to prevent being misunderstood. 
I made it all mine.


Thursday, 7 May 2015

To You, Mr I Do

(Back-Story: Love comes in all sorts of sticky balloon shapes. My favourite love is what's shared between two friends. This letter request is from a girl who wants to write a love letter to her ‘First Best Friend Ever’s’ husband. Part warning, part testimony and mostly heart – this made me miss all the goofs who are my home and friends).

To You
Mr I Do,

This letter is not to stake claim. Though if I wanted to, I hope you know I’d win.

I've known her since she was a single-digit-something munchkin; when the girl who today prefers blue cheese to gorgonzola and screws up her nose at badly prepared spaghetti would happily eat ten day old, frosting hardened cake sitting in her refrigerator, just because it was birthday cake.

That’s the thing about history, you earn a piece of their life and heart by just sitting next to them and counting together the years flying by. 

Like when we were seven and would whisper to each other about Santa Claus and the Christmas presents we would get. She found out before me that there was no Santa Claus and it was a parent constructed conspiracy. She told me the next day at school in the kindest way possible. HR Departments across the world could learn how to break bad news from this eight year old.

We’ve shared Barbie dolls, traded dreams of being ballerinas then cardiologists then scientists inventing things then teachers to finally settling for The Best Adults That Ever Lived. We’ve been the first one (just when the balloons were being blown) at each other’s birthday party and the last to leave. The ones who weren’t shy around each other’s parents or private property, for that matter.
You think your fights have been bad? 
Try being nine and fighting with your best friend and spending all of lunch hour contemplating whether to talk to her so you can go get ice cream together, or to sulk because no one can sulk like a nine year old. 9 year olds don’t know about compromise, it’s hard to learn and execute what you can’t spell very well. Loneliness is acute when you cannot share everything that happened in your school day with your best friend. First during the day itself and then straight after, as soon as you get home, on a phone call.  Life is always lived in the details.

You might think you’ve been there for her through tough times, but nothing beats being there for each other when you’re turning into an awkward teenager, and trust me there are no other kinds. Treating her rabid crush on Leonardo Di Caprio solemnly and with respect even though the person sharing how they felt was sitting next to you wearing a Tshirt with a rubber print of Leo from Titanic. 

That’s hard and that’s true love.

Our friendship survived many years, moves to different cities, multiple bad judgements in boys and first drinks. She had her first kiss before me at her new school and promptly sent sent me a detailed email explaining how it’s done and how to tell if it was good. 

“If you’ve got slobber all over your face, I'm afraid that may not be a good sign”, she stated plainly in that quiet wise manner she should be world famous for. We traded pictures (actual pictures, not email attachments) of new houses and new friends. We wrote to each other about vacations, school programs and our Great Plans for the future. 

Which is why, even though I was in a different timezone, she called me the day after you proposed to her. She was especially crabby and cranky, she told me. “Were you hungry or stressed out because nothing was going according to plan?” I asked. As expected, she was better after you wisely got her a sandwich and over the moon when you asked her to marry you.

Here’s where I step in and why I’m writing this letter to you. Unlike other friends I’m not going to hurl around vague statements like “If you break her heart, I will hurt you.” I will instead tell you how to take care of her- because no one exists in her life who she hasn’t looked after, from the same room or sometimes even from miles away. 

Get her to stop worrying and to give that ridiculously large heart of hers a rest. She’s good at being an adult but trust me she’s even better at being a kid, remind her of that often enough.
Make sure she’s happy and laughing every night, because there may not exist a fuller laugh you or I will hear.
Insist that she go out with her girlfriends ever so often, because she’s happiest after dancing and she needs to give her relationship with the electric blanket a rest.
When she’s PMS-ing put on Titanic, she’ll pretend to hate it but will cry nonetheless. Don't look at her then.
Be the person who sometimes says No on her behalf. She stretches herself too thin. If she had her way, she would try and solve all of the worlds problems on an idle Tuesday in May.
Find out what books she’s reading – that will give you a good idea of what vacation to plan for her next.

Come visit me the next time she’s coming here, so that I can get to know and love the man that she loves so completely.

In the Age of Bae, I can never forget the fortress of innocence around our friendship which moulded and kneaded me into the grown-up that I am.
We’re both still running for Best Adult That Ever Lived but if you promise to never tell her- she won this a long time ago.

P.s: If you break her heart, I’ll have to find you and hurt you, your car and your playstation.

Best Adult That Ever Lived #2

                                     (This adorable picture, from here)

(To You is a letter writing project I started because there are not enough letters and love going around. If you have something to say with love-- for your ex girlfriend, you current husband, pizza (promise not to make it cheesy), your landlord who let you skip rent or even Ryan Gosling-- I'll write that letter for you.
The final letter will be up on my blog and a copy will be handwritten and posted to you or to an intended recipient. Kisses on the envelope only on my discretion.
Give me a shout at: )