Primal Landscape

by on January 13, 2017 :: 0 comments

photo (above) "We Build Fences" by Tyler Malone aka The Second Shooter

Day World

Hickory Dickory days, divided into boxes— Time to eat breakfast. (Finish all your egg!) Wash your hands and face. Brush your teeth. (Always up and down.) Sit on the toilet. Wipe front to back. (But never why.) Story time— play time— lunch time— nap time. Take the key and wind her up. If she hollers, shut her up.

(She never did.)

Everything was pink and ruffled and always in its place. There were music boxes, animal crackers (Only two!), and a winding staircase down.

(She always said please and thank you.)

Mother could seldom be seen, but there were Nurses— most of them fierce and scowling— only one who gave hugs.

There was a right way to do everything— do’s, don’ts, rules— ever changing, ever present. Telling lies meant a spanking with the hairbrush. Breaking things meant a spanking with the hairbrush. Disobeying meant a spanking with the hairbrush.

(She never did.)

Sometimes there was sunshine. Afternoons in the park, when Nurse pushed the swing. (Be careful!) Walks with Mother around the block with the big brick wall. (Look at the sweet little flower. Don’t pick it!)

Step on a crack, you break your Mother’s back. Step on a line, you break your Mother’s spine.

(She never did.)

Night World

Long shadows— Bedtime— Night— Bottomless abyss— no walls, no ceiling, no floor, no star to wish on.

Dark was afraid— an ache in the pit of the stomach— long, long, sleepless nights. Mother will go away. She has already gone away. She will not come back again.

Formless feelings. Lie still! You’re supposed to be asleep! No, you can’t have another drink of water. If you get up again, you’ll get a spanking!

(She didn’t.)

Night was the world where people went away. Father had gone. Mother would go away again. There was no one who would stay. There would never be anyone who would stay. Never, never, never……

(She could count on that.)

editors note: Saying what’s never true is what we all can count on most. Embrace something routine and name it love, it’ll get you through the honest days. ~ tyler malone

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