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14 Sep 2009

Just because I washed my mouth out with chloroform
and buried your cufflinks in elaborate tunnel systems in the garden,
doesn’t mean I wasn’t forced to release butterflies from my belly
every time the phone rang

And just because I stitched my fingers by accident to your sister’s wedding veil
and you caught me bleeding in the dressing room
pretending I was a Medusa in the mirrors,
doesn’t mean I wasn’t dying to cocoon you in acres of fabric
and roll you all the way to Paris to present you to the Emperor

And when your relatives tested me with helium cakes
and stuffed my ears with saffron to see if I would combust,
don’t think for a second I wasn’t storing sugar in my mouth for later,
even when they poured liquid-gold into a cement mixer
and insisted it was customary to drink it on the fourth hour of the fourth day
wearing nothing but peacock feathers and a chandelier nose ring,
I knew they were taking the piss

And you must be mad if you think I really have an Olympic medal in body contortion,
I was falling in love and I wanted you to think I was nubile.
However, I was once spotted as a child back-flipping across electric train tracks
because I wanted to impress a boy whose name had the atmosphere of a bumble-bee.
This turned out to be a glitch, not a trend or indeed a trait as I had previously claimed

I admit now I might also have exaggerated the extent of my interest in antique maps.
While I agree their mustard yellow corners taste like the tobacco of pilgrims
and it is curious that Germania was first sketched by nervous anthropologists
hunting for dog-headed wilderbeasts,
I never wanted maps to exclusively fill our entire house
because they demand close scrutiny and induce jet lag

Which reminds me: I knew all along that you stole my narcolepsy pills
and tried to sell them back to me as sugared almonds.
I didn’t say anything at the time because I didn’t want to start a row
but if you wanted me to be quiet you could have just asked

And just because you felt compelled to serve me with an injunction at dawn
and plead with clerics to cleanse you of my evil
Doesn’t mean I wasn’t swallowing evidence in the car park
hoping you might like my outfit and give me another chance

© Sarah Gillespie 2012 Web design by Linus Design