— Creative Memories* —
I halt both feet in quicksand holding two shoe boxes labeled ‘Made in Spain’. One pair is too high-heeled to run backwards, the other’s too small to hold me over the surface. Sinking in, I entangle its laces between my fingers, turn them round my neck and wait for her to shut up.
She doesn’t notice my bones going under. I’m in the dark shadow that stands beneath the sand castle she built overnight, where she dreamed the weather would open just enough to warm her indulgences. But now the shops are all closed, she cries, and the sun is too harsh — she wants me to walk, why won’t I move?
I hold on to the laces and think to pull them down. The memories are too fresh, they haven’t set yet, so her cries refill my empty mind, eating its walls like tides against a rotten boat. I wonder who promised she would be having fun after they teared my womb apart. Her reality is so scratched on that it’s hard to keep track.
Gone. I wish her gone. I pull my carcass up and the whole structure surprises me with anger. I took something precious, every cell in me mourns it, but somehow my womb feels heavier than yesterday.
My second pair of shoes creep along the ground as I pace out of the swamp, holding a box of pink high heels. She’s moaning ahead, not a single gesture to shape a helping hand. The sun’s just too warm for her, she says, and she’s been seated in the waiting room for hours, did I think to remember that? Can I stop being so selfish? I remember how she saw me tremble, throw up and drip to misery, but her only worry is stamped in uppercase against her forehead: FREE HOLIDAYS. The bone in it is so thin that I can glimpse at her imagination and it makes me feel sick again.
I’m walking because each time I stop gets her on another tantrum. How can I be the one left on the moral scale when her soul weights next to nothing? Spanish streets stretch beyond my strength. When we finally reach the hotel I walk with the worries of a zombie: too tired to scare her off, too empty to be humane and with two pink shoes too high to run backwards.
*A mix of non-fiction and fiction. I usually start by writing down events I’ve lived and, effortlessly, fictional actions pop along the storyline; metaphors that convey my feelings better than if I’d reported just the facts. Whether you can tell the difference from what’s real or not, they are all very personal to me and I do hope you enjoy the experience of reading it.
I call them Creative Memories.