Brighton, England
2 April, 2018

My duvet is swallowing me whole, it feels like. I’ve been up, and gone back to bed, and up and bed again. It’s one of those days when nothing gets done and all I want is to disappear into the covers and not surface for days.

Joni Mitchell starts singing in the other room. Well, not her but… her, on a record. The scratchy record, I hear it spin.

“What are you doing?” I ask while sitting up.

I gather all my strength, physical and emotional, and crawl out of bed. I put on a pair of joggers, a shirt and tiptoe into the other room.

My heart melts. I find him on the floor, wearing his straw hat, just sitting there with his legs crossed. Listening to one of my favourite records and Joni singing, saying she wishes she had a river to skate away on. If only. I sit on his lap, resting my head on his shoulder. For several songs we stay like this, intertwined like a little nest, until that side of the record is done and all there is is that sound of the record spinning. I look out of the window, it is sunny, or maybe not. I can’t remember while I’m writing this. My heart feels fuller, my mind calmer.

Sun or not, there is love.


My Softness

My softness is not a threat
against your armour
of shame
and masculinity faked

I am here
with all I am
which is all I’ll ever need
to push against your (un)kind

My softness,
your fragile ways;
somebody might say
we are alike
but there is nothing alike about
my fragility which makes me strong
when yours

makes you sad, unable to plead
or bleed

My softness
is the ultimate armour

Worcester, England
31 July, 2017

I step outside and the air is cool, the ground dry. I embrace the air, I breathe in deep, letting the coolness of it wash over me. It’s so completely silent for a second, the only sounds the occasional drag of a cigarette and the old man next door coughing, I hear him through the open second-floor window.

Out of nowhere, a white feather falls down from the roof and it’s almost in slow motion for me. I can’t stop staring at it. They say white feathers mean angels. I think of time, and I think of a lot of the places I have been to and all the places I yearn to visit. I wrote a bucket list today and it’s made me anxious.

The old man coughs again, it makes me think of death. Not his, I hope he lives for a long time still. Just death in general. I take my shoes off and press my bare feet against the cold stone floor. It rained earlier today.

The distant sound of a car passing by reminds me of a city, and a warm hand in mine. I’m not sure it’s a real memory, now that I think about it. It also reminds me of an old building I used to go in every day, the one I used to call home. Ironically enough, it stood right in the centre of the city I never really learnt to call home. My mind has been imprinted with the stone walls that have been there for probably over half a century. They are still there, as are the memories. I wonder if the happiness of the time, the one I left, is still there; or if it ever was.

I slip my shoes back on as quietly as I can and step back inside. My head feels heavy, and the ticking of the clock is so very loud.

Oulunsalo, Finland
25 June, 2017

Us, right here and right now is absolutely everything. With the sun’s last rays on our skin, while the birds are singing and diving in the water, I feel your heart against mine. I realise this is a cliché, but sometimes those moments are essential. I am scared about the future, but there is nothing in this whole wide world that could calm me the way you do.


The person you thought I could not be

I’ve become the person
you thought I could not be

I’ve done the things
you said I wasn’t brave enough to do

I found my true self in the arms of others,
once I had decided I wouldn’t let myself be smothered

I gave so much to myself,
I forgave myself

For myself I provided love,
for myself I provided life;
the kind I needed
to be able to put down that metaphorical knife

I asked the Universe for help, I pleaded
to grow 
into the person I now know –
the version of me who exceeded the old me
and made her take a bow

Sometimes I look back but then I run
for the things you said I couldn’t,
but have now done

Grandmother – after

Everything feels so much heavier without her

My phone, heavy in my hand –
yearning to call and hear her voice

My head, heavy
with my mushed up brains from all the crying

My insides, heavy
from worry and sadness

My steps, heavy
when I step on the graveyard

My hands, heavy
when I shovel ground on her coffin

My heart, so heavy
when I think about her fragile arms around me,
her telling me she loves me

My heart, so heavy
when I think about the last view I got of her –
at the door of her flat

“I’ll see you soon, I love you.”

My heart, so heavy

This is the way I stain myself

I love myself with my fingers
I love myself with thoughts;
thoughts that are hazy

This is the way I stain myself

I un-purify,
electrify myself from the inside
and outside I rub myself dirty

I wish I felt like I was worthy
of words and the tickling sensation
deep in my belly

Closing my eyes takes me away

I hide deeper under the duvet;
my arms feel weak
from all the pulling and pushing
and the ambushing I am the subject of

Silence is the remedy

Under the twinkling lights

Here, under the twinkling lights,

I listen to you play your ukulele

I look at your soft features and listen to you breathe,
with the twinkling lights above us,

I listen to you play

I smile at you and you smile at me,
with a twinkle in your eye,

under these twinkling lights

You play, each song softer than the one before…

I sing a little, but cannot concentrate

I look at your face and you look at mine,
under the twinkling lights