When people ask me if I’m writing anything, I want to say, “Yes, I’m collecting fragments.” Because isn’t that what the majority of writing is? Gathering fragments in our small attempts to put the world and ourselves back together?
Like this one from Penelope Lively’s City of the Mind: “She starts to sob, the child: a fragile human sound that should soak into the bricks and lie there for a hundred years, to be heard again, and again, and again.”
Or how somewhere across town is a psycho with a subwoofer in their apartment that they only use between 10:30 and 11:00 with the windows open to the inattentive night.
Or how everywhere I go, there are men shouting at women and women putting up with it but no women shouting at men and deep down both are afraid of themselves.
Or how the ceiling shudders with the thud, thud, thud of my upstairs neighbor’s heel, heel, heel circuit from one side of the studio to the other. I pray that someday they will take off their boots and know it is good to rest.
Or how in England, my friends called me “ghost feet” because my steps never made a sound. But they weren’t the ones who found me after I almost walked into the woods with no intention of surviving. Ghost feet leave no sign of their presence. Ghost feet are forgettable.
Ghost feet just want to be loved.