Something isn’t right here – Candice Louisa Daquin

As a woman, you’re taught

To speak frankly, but not too loud

Consequences for girls are worse

So I learned

To whisper in a roar

And when I cried, I showed nobody

Using the tears as fertilizer

For my wild garden

I am not a person who believes cruel answers anything

why ruin someone just because you can? As a punchline?

once I was called ‘too nice’ and I am often referred to as ‘sweet’

which are probably both gentle character assassinations

I admit it is not so great being a gentle soul, because people admire

bitches, sarcasm, sass, verve (is that still a word?), spite, caustic(ism) and other

signs someone is strong, because if you are cruel

you are seen as hip in this society

even my neighbor likes it when we shoot the shit and she gets that

glassy-eyed affection for tearing people down and asks me all slurred and heady

why I never slag people off for fun

like it’s the equivalent of BBQ and book club

we covet the beast and drown the babe

when did being wicked get so hot?

Vanity Fair? Pride & Prejudice? Beowolf? The Bible?

I would if I could

move

to an island where

being kind wasn’t seen as boring

compassion wasn’t a character flaw

empathy was the dish du jour

(and you could still have a bloody mary before 4pm

come on, I never ran for saint-hood)

would it get tedious?

I don’t see why

I spend most of my life

plucking the back draft from others snide remarks

out of my fender and wondering when

it became such a thing to be an asshole

so much so we elected Presidents standing for rot

as if we need any more meanness in this world

is it the fall of Rome, Babel, or just the Kardashian?

something isn’t right here and I’d like

to get the fuck out now please

 

Now someone hates me- Henna Sjöblom

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You ever run into someone on town and instantly get a feeling that they hate you? It happened again.
I’m not sure, of course, we locked eyes only for a brief moment; I, standing at the checkout, balancing a bag of Cheetos on my arm and my wallet nailed between my chin and shoulder, desperately trying to insert my Visa card in the reader while answering the phone,
and you, a few inches away, your eyes glistening with disgust,
drifting over my frayed jeans clasping delightfully over my ass, my Dimmu Borgir t-shirt and the black eyeliner smeared out a tad around my left eye.
The mere sight of me has awoken a rage within you,
a fatal combination of sexual frustration and a mere lust for power
You reach forward, making sure to let your arm stroke along my back although there’s plenty of space around us, pressing just a little at the tailbone,
a reminder

that you own me.

Walking home from a party that night, sobbing silently into my phone speaker.
Did something happen, you ask.
No, I say. I’m just menstruating. How else to explain this feeling of insufficiency? Should have drunk less. Should have acted more intellectual. Wow. Should certainly not have laughed at that dick joke. They must all think me so shallow.

Now what did I do? I run it trough in my head. Did I degrade the entire female population again?

Sometimes the road home just isn’t long enough.

I’m trying to make the best of it,
but the truth is,
I hate being in this body
that bleeds, bulges, produces hormones at an excessive rate
I hate not being strong enough to push you away when you grab me
I hate that you make me hate myself

I buy clothes I feel sexy in, then decide not to wear them
The pile of shame is growing in my closet
I spend nights silently apologizing in my mind
Sorry for being weak
Sorry for being disgusting (And, simultaneously, so outrageously irresistible that men can’t help but follow me in the street.)

I had a dream about killing you.
About kicking you down from your stupid bike,
pushing you to the ground,
and drive my plateu heels into your temples again and again,
until you were nothing but a wet, manly stain on the pavement

I laugh in my solitude
at the thought of tearing you apart
everything seems funny until
you point to the cleft between my legs and say it’s improper
I say I have needs
of being seen, being appreciated,
maybe improperly penetrated,
I say,
I’m not a virgin
I like sex
I like to feel attractive
even in my solitude

But nothing’s private, nothing’s solely mine
my reproductive organs, my sexuality, not even my personality
it’s all just mud for the dogs to wallow in
Just what did I do to become so wretched?
Let me show you! I scream into the hands trying to hush me
I can be tough!
I can be secretive and hard-to-get and intellectual if that’s what you want! Just give me a bloody chance!

This is when
you say that I fail to control my emotions
antagonizing my own efforts to bring legitimacy to myself
I’d like to say you don’t know what you’re talking about
So what if I’m a bit in love with you?
So what if I dream of you sometimes
And so what if I touched myself to the thought of you –
Well, not you. Never you.
Just you, thinking that I’m
Valid! I’m still valid! I’m not stupid.
I know when to play silly,
when to giggle,
when to lift my skirt and exclaim: “Ooh! How unfortunate!”
When to moan and pretend I’m having an orgasm,
just so that you won’t feel bad about yourself.
I’ve been raised to satisfy, whether it be by
smiling, agreeing, or just shutting up.
Does the thought of me offering you all of this make me
less worthy in your eyes?
In that case,
maybe I’ll just hate
you too.


The goth girl next-door. Aspiring author. Monstrophile. Horror enthusiast. I write to cope with mental illness and everyday experiences.  You can read more of my writing at Murder Tramp Birthday.

Life With My Mother- Kindra M. Austin

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I love her to the point of madness, my mother, a paradox wrapped in sun-kissed paper flesh. To embrace her is to hold an armful of hollow bones; the shell of a woman short-lived. If only you could study the photographs of my childhood, or look through the lens of my mind’s eye, you would see a healthy petite brunette with a youthful face, immortal, storybook beautiful. Our physical similarities, by the way, begin and end with a square jawline. She’s five inches shorter than I, with a wider mouth, and magic eyes that are sometimes grey, green, or blue, or any combination of the three, which makes me totally “peanut butter and jealous.” And that smile of hers, fuuuhhh! 

She was raised a Jehovah’s Witness beginning at age five until she was disfellowshipped at sixteen. See, the Kingdom Hall Elders don’t play when it comes to girls being raped by a Brother. My grandfather wanted to involve the police in the matter, but my grandmother didn’t…because she’s a bitch. I could go into detail regarding the abuse my mother suffered at the hands of my grandparents (grandmother), but I won’t because it is too heartbreaking, and so wicked you’d wish you were reading fiction.

My mother met my father when she was a naive seventeen, and he was a high twenty-one; I was born two years later in December, 1978, and my sister followed in 1983. My parents divorced when I was eleven or twelve after years of brutal arguing and extramarital affairs. My mother couldn’t afford to keep our house, so she, and my little sister and I moved into a trailer park that could have been the white trash capital of America for all I knew. That’s when the regular heavy drinking began; honestly, I can’t believe it didn’t begin sooner.

We lived in the trailer park for two depressing years. It was fucking awful; my sister was infested with head lice all of the goddamned time, and I was always getting into fights with the neighborhood girls. My mother worked her ass off as a housekeeper at a nearby hotel for the first year so we wouldn’t have to live on food stamps for longer than what was necessary while she looked for other employment so we wouldn’t have to live in the trailer park for longer than what was necessary. Sometime during the second year, my mother began dating a hee-haw motherfucker, and by the summer preceding my freshman year of high school, we had all moved with him. We lived in his house but a few months before he began punching holes in walls, and hitting my mother regularly.

I always knew when a fight was coming. Hee-Haw and my mother would start drinking early at home, go out for a ride and stop at a few bars. They’d come in late, trashed and pissed off at each other. There were times when I thought he might kill her. My sister would always get too close, sobbing, screaming at him to leave her mommy alone! I would always try to keep her out of harm’s way, but it was difficult sometimes being that I was also caught up in the mix, hitting him with my fists or swinging at him with a cast iron frying pan. Once he grabbed my sister’s arm, and I jumped on him. He shook me off, grabbed me by the neck, and threatened to put my head through the t.v. screen if I ever came at him again. Of course, good old Hee-Haw was always sorry in the morning.

One of the many times my mother left Hee-Haw, my grandparents took us in…to their garage. Yeah, they put us up for nearly a whole summer. We slept on mattresses, cooked our food in a microwave and used a big plastic mixing bowl as a chamber pot. Praise Jehovah for loving family!

We moved out of that prick’s house for good when I was sixteen, after he had held a knife to my mother’s throat. To this day it brings me great joy to know that the last thing I ever said to him (while pointing the same knife into his Adam’s apple) was, “If you ever touch my mom again, I will kill you while you sleep.”

I left home at age eighteen, a few months after my daughter was born–she and I moved in with her dad (my future ex-husband). Leaving my sister behind remains one of the most difficult things I have ever had to do; I was the one raising her! Shit, I was the one who looked after my mother (the best a child could look after her alcoholic mother). Every time I recall the night I left my bawling sister, my stomach aches. I can still feel her hot wet cheeks pressed against my neck as I squeezed her body close to mine. And her voice: “Please take me with you, Sissy.” Fuck. I’m crying now.

My mother is what “they” call a functioning alcoholic. She has never been fired, reported to work drunk, or called in sick because she was hung-over. But the term functioning alcoholic boils my piss, if I’m being honest. What’s functioning about a mother who employs her thirteen year old daughter as her chauffeur because she herself is too wasted to drive? What’s functioning about a mother caught pissing on her bedroom carpet because she was so fucking blotto, she thought she was in the bathroom? Or gets pulled over for D.U.I. in her missing boyfriend’s car that happens to be storing guns and ammo in the trunk?  Or goes to the hospital belligerently drunk when her daughter is in labor?

My mother never hit me, or my sister. She never cussed at us. But there was (is) emotional abuse–manipulation is more accurate. I swear, she’s the smartest dummy I have ever known. And so charming. She’s the kind of woman who always has some fucking drooling moron looking to “save her.”

She loves us, my sister and I, more than anything on this earth (second to beer). She always went without the things she needed (except beer) so that my sister and I didn’t have to go without. To this day, my mother will give to her girls even if it breaks her. My mother will help anyone out who needs it. She is the most selfless of selfish people. So whenever she’s angry with me because I fail to validate her (I never lie to her) and decides to tell me to fuck off, or break something I had given to her, I try to remember that I am dealing with the woman I have called my best friend so many times in my life. The woman I can count on to defend my honor, and to cry with me when I’m hurting. The woman who is proud of me.

Yes, I love this woman to the point of madness–my mother, a self-contradicting alcoholic.


Kindra M. Austin is a member of Sudden Denouement, a curator at Blood into Ink, and a fiction indie author. You can read her poems and prose at https://poemsandparagraphs.wordpress.com/ and find her debut novel at Amazon.com  (Amazon UK).