When Trying to Write a Novel . . .

I am held together with butterfly stitches
Pulling at the seams

Starving, striving, bone tired, ragged

I swallowed a piece of bread and grew two sizes

I awake to the skin peeling from my breasts
My dream of you interrupted by a little boy who is always whining
Ill tempered
I get cruel
I need black coffee

I need the Atlantic air

to climb into a dark cave and pull the covers high up over my eyes

To cover my eyes like it was all a dream
A most beautiful nightmare

I want my old skin back
The skin that didn’t require so much maintenance
The skin I rarely had to think about

My skin
it is getting older
It droops down my face like a sculptor ran his hands over soft clay
Thumb and forefinger
Pulling down down down, from the corners of my mouth
Gravity sculpted me angry and sullen
He pulled hard on my thighs and made my flesh dimple
He played tug of war with my breasts

He laughs

He thinks he’s funny

The sink overflows with dishes
The counter produces more paperwork to ignore
To feel guilty about, always tugging at my brain
Boxes to ship
School paperwork to fill out
Laundry that reproduces like rabbits
Children who need to eat something, anything other than refined carbohydrates
Novels that beg to be written
Words that whisper themselves into my ear when I’m driving, or yelling
When I am always a million miles away from pen and paper
I sprint to find some
I hold it in my hand trembling and ask inwardly “Now, what was that? Please tell me what you said?”

But the bitch keeps silent

She is temperamental

I am enveloped back into the velvety folds of whining, crying, demands and more laundry
I fall backward into it

I pull the dirty covers up over my eyes