Strangers

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We clicked like we'd known each other for years; like the sound of our teeth against each other's when we kissed so ardently we couldn't focus. And for the first time I knew what it was to love, not for the bittersweet beauty of trying to fix the unfixable, or for the bruises that kissed my skin, but for the pure simplicity of her. For the perfect completeness that filled my soul every time I breathed her in. For the first time I knew what it was to love, not just to fill a hole within myself or for the gratification of being needed; I loved despite reason, or logic, or wisdom, or choice. For the first time, I didn't choose to love, but love chose me. And I knew then that the tragedies I'd written and the broken soliloquies I'd acted out were the most amateur of dramatics. For how could love be anything other than the way my heart hangs on her crooked smile when we share a joke? I thought I knew what being in love was, but that's just it; you don't know how to be in love, you just be. You don't know anything until all the empty cracks and spaces in your heart that you didn't even know existed have been filled just by the way she throws her head back when she laughs or by the way she looks at you when she takes off her bra or by the way she brings you coffee in bed while you're still sleeping or how your heart stops in it's tracks just from the way her mouth looks when she says your name. Love is not about how good you are at saying sorry, it's about being thankful for the little things. And I can't remember the time before I knew how she takes her tea or what side of the bed she sleeps on or what shampoo she uses or what her biggest fear is. She makes me come as much as she makes me laugh. She pins me down and kisses me with urgency as much as she kisses my cheek tenderly. We touch each other like we've only just met yet we complement each other like we've never been apart.

We clicked like we'd known each other for years; that's when I realised that I knew what love is.


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Me, through you

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Maybe it's because she always cries when it rains, or because her favourite song is the sound of her own heart breaking. Maybe it's the relentless ticking of the clock on the wall that drives her crazy, or the birds in the garden that she could sit and watch for hours.
She wants everything but she's too used to procrastinating. She's ambivalent yet full of passion and opinion. She's talented and ambitious yet going nowhere. She's damaged yet she longs to fix others.
She's a contradiction of the highest order. And maybe, just maybe, though she'd never admit it; that's why she deserves to be loved.
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Miles

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The miles between us
are suspended in the air like frozen dragonflies.
I have made this journey a thousand times before,
in the half-light of dawn
while you slept soundly on your bed of hopes and big dreams.

The city lights
flicker through your window
and caress your face, in peaceful slumber
as I gaze into the tar-like night
and wish for your words to mend me.

I could cross the miles
and hold you as you slept, knowing
that when you woke, your ready words,
your perspicuous face
could soothe my fractures forever.

And somehow this knowledge,
this reprieve from the cold and the tar-like night
is enough for me to crawl
into my own bed of new found hope
and drift; my breath in time with yours.

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Phoenix

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She came into my life in a blaze of glory, a halo of earnest perfection. She was a golden phoenix to my captive sparrow. Her beauty was incomparable, breathtaking, enough to stop time. My nights were hers; in the early hours of darkness I would think of where she was, what she was doing; my heart beating so loud I could hear it ringing in my ears, keeping me awake. Keeping me alive.
Before her I was a nothing, a nobody. But she, she taught me how to breathe again, unknowingly encouraged my wings to unfurl and made me feel like a somebody. She put the spark back into my eyes and lit a match with it, illuminating me.
I walk on clouds and I walk on eggshells, but whichever way I walk my destination is always the same. I will forever find myself creeping back into her bed, lying there in the early hours of darkness, knowing where she is, what she is doing. For in the absence of a cage I have the whole world in which to stretch my wings and fly to wherever she is, settling in beside her feeling that this is what I was born for, comfortable in the knowledge that even a golden phoenix has to burst into flames in order to be reborn.
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Urban Outfitters: Exploiting Mental Illness

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Urban Outfitters Fashion exploiting mental illness

A friend tweeted this picture last night, taken from the Urban Outfitters website. As you can see from the photos, Urban Outfitters is currently selling two t-shirts exploiting/making fun of mental illness, one saying 'depression' and one saying 'eat less'. I would love to find out who approved the production and sale of these t-shirts, and ask them why they thought it was acceptable?
Depression and eating disorders are very serious illnesses, but because they are not always physically visible, people like Urban Outfitters think they can make a quick buck exploiting other people's pain.

What sort of message is this sending to customers of Urban Outfitters? That it's okay to be a bully and completely judgemental about mental illness? That people should in fact actually eat less and be disgusted with their own bodies?

It is this negative, close minded bullshit that reinforces young and vulnerable people's ideas that they are not good enough, not pretty enough, or not skinny enough to be deserving of love or happiness. This constant judgement that anyone suffering from a mental illness is crazy or weird (or in Urban Outfitter's case, easily exploitable) does nothing to help anyone who thinks they have a mental illness to reach out and ask for help. According to mental health statistics, 10% of children in the UK have a mental health problem at any one time- and no wonder, when all that they are surrounded by is the constant notion that thin and pretty = successful, and anything else is not acceptable. How can big stores like Urban Outfitters feel comfortable knowing they could be contributing to a child having a mental health issue? Obviously children are not their target market - children are not the target market of a large majority of the media surrounding us, but it's still easily accessible and the messages are all the same.

Statistics also state that 1 in 4 adults have a mental health issue, and that the UK has the highest self harm rate in Europe - showing that mental health is a real problem with real consequences. Glorifying it as some commercial slogan or 'cool statement' is disgusting and is going to do nothing to help reduce this statistic.


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2014: The year of hard truths

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Chancellor of the Exchequer George Osborne has warned of more cuts in the coming 16 months in a year that is to be known as 'the year of hard truths'. An estimated £25bn of savings is to be made, the majority of which is coming from the welfare budget; in particular housing benefit for the under 25s. A further £12bn welfare cuts are to then be made in the subsequent years following the 2015 elections.
According to Osborne, it makes sense to attack this 'enormous budget' first, believing that those claiming housing benefit under the age of 25 are essentially sticking two fingers up at those who can't afford to move out.
Firstly, I've never heard such a load of shit in my whole entire life. The benefits system as a whole is largely flouted and abused by those who are able to work but choose not to, so why single out under 25s? Hard times can fall on anybody regardless of age. Secondly, to suggest that housing benefits are being used by under 25s to solely fund a move out of the family home is preposterous. I moved out aged 18, funded by my job like most other hard working people out there. Fast forward five years, and I was made redundant and forced to rely on housing benefits as a way to pay my rent whist looking for another job. Did I enjoy it? No. Did I abuse it? No. But did I need it? Yes. In this current climate, job security is at an all time low and people out there - whether under 25 or not - need to know that if times get tough, they can draw on a resource that they have helped pay into. Housing benefit costs for under 25s totals around £2bn, whilst approximately £3.5bn is still being pumped into British prisons offering criminals a more comfortable life than many of us scraping by, penny by penny. Go figure.

All of this comes after a previous £7bn welfare budget cut out of a total £83bn back in 2010. Osborne has inherited the biggest budget deficit of any economy and therefore, understandably, drastic changes are expected to be - and needed to be made in order for our country to survive. Since 2010 however, as a country and an economy we have turned a corner - yet more cuts are predicted until at least 2018 due to Osborne's failure to balance the books. I find Osborne's views completely idealogical and quite frankly, ridiculous; he has evidently never had the misfortune of being a young person living on the breadline with no foreseeable way out. It's time for him to start concentrating on the real problem with the benefits system instead of preventing our young people from ever receiving the help that they may one day genuinely need.


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The Well

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Those first passionate throws of love, they hypnotise me and terrify me both at the same time. Those aching moments when every cell inside of you yearns for someone, someone who says they yearn for you too, and all you can do is hope and trust and pray they feel the same as you do.
Because when you need someone that badly, when you need them to need you too, you'll do anything to keep them. It's like you're at the bottom of a well, and you're looking up at the opening and you can see exactly how you fell to the bottom but you don't know how you'll ever climb out. And then this face appears, this face in a halo of light, telling you they can pull you to safety and it's like suddenly theirs is the only face that matters. And you want to reach out and let them drag you into the light away from your fear of the darkness but you don't know if they are strong enough to bear your weight, or even if they'll want to. Because once you're climbing up those slippery bricks and you let that person see you're depending on them not to let you fall, your soul and all it's flaws are illuminated. It's like you've spent every moment of your life at the bottom of the well wishing you'd see the light, and you've craved it for so long you don't know what you'd do if it blinded you.

How reckless and beautiful we are to keep tripping down wells and falling in love with those who come to find us.
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