‘I’ll sing for you,’ you promise, but never do. Instead I get excuses and small talk, coy and cute in my ear.
‘Sing for me,’ I say. ‘You said you would.’
You blink and I wonder how your eyelashes manage to get so dark, your lips so dry, ones that peck me goodbye on the jaw, missing my mouth.
I roll on cooling bed sheets, damp flakes of skin sticking to me like static and take a sly lick of you from my leg. I suck each of my fingers, worming you out from under my nails. You are everywhere and I love it, I imagine you singing for me here and now. In my room, you, singing my song, and making it beautiful.
It doesn’t work. You’re not here. I sniff my arm. Your smell is gone and no crumbs of you garnish my bed. I have nothing of you, so I hum my song, and wish. I close my eyes and follow a ribbon of sound, hold onto it where it pulls me, over mountains and hills, round bends, down steep slopes and up. My calves hurt, stretched then shrinking as I climb, so I stop. I hear it, my song, faint and low. I sway under a navy sky. Night breezes brush my mouth. My lips swell.
I follow my song. I inch up a tree, your bark scratches my inner thighs raw but I shimmy up and up until I peer into a window. It’s you. You smile from behind thick glass, impenetrable, opaque, and sing my song, the one I love. You’re singing my song, as I asked, but you sing my song for her, and not for me, never me. Still, I settle and listen. It is beautiful, the song and you, exactly as I imagined.
By Cath Bore
I lay in the bath with my protruding pregnant belly hovering above the water like a lone island. I waited for the door to go, reminding myself that he is just a person, the shouting can’t harm us.
It’s funny how the sound of a door opening can make you feel so much. In my head I repeat “I am strong my babe, I will save you from this”
Three months later, I packed a bag of newborn clothes for you, stitches barely healed from the birth. I left.
I am strong my babe.
By Eloise Burgess
Her flesh is her prison. She was conceived by a carefully selected mix of pseudo-doctors and marketing connoisseurs, their sole purpose to confine her to a shiny A2 poster. The paper’s margins sliced off her head and her legs, yet she remained. Beyond the curve of the swollen belly and its exposed innards, the crescent that dictates and defines. Beyond the shadow of the pale breast, imagined as a hollow lump, relevant enough to deserve a corner of her cage. She remains; a decapitated beacon of life, a brimming vessel without oars, staring at a waiting room without eyes.
By Lidia Molina Whyte
Photography by Edurne Iriondo
My name is Edurne Iriondo born in Madrid. I am a Brighton based Photographer and visual artist working across analogue and digital disciplines. My work encompasses an exploration of mysticism through the interaction between subject and light. My work is split into two areas that being a visual diary that I have been updating and adding to for the last 10 years and site specific shoots that must intertwine with the energetic signature of the subject.
Cath Bore is a writer based in Merseyside, UK. She writes fiction about the things keeping her awake at night, non-fiction about women, feminism and politics, plus creative non-fiction about anything and everything. Published in the UK and US, Cath has an MA in Creative Writing from Liverpool John Moores University. She is currently working on a crime novel, and lots and lots of flash fiction. Her website is https://cathbore.wordpress.com/
My name is Eloise Burgess, I am 23 and I live in Brighton with my 10 month old little girl called Odetta. Home educated, yoga loving, breastfeeding, feminist powerhouse extraordinaire.
Lidia Molina Whyte
Lidia is an Edinburgh-based writer, reviewer and feminist who loves science fiction and fantasy. She is currently studying a Creative Writing MA at Edinburgh Napier University.