Better an Empty House

 

This house

Is empty there is no

Tenant here they’ve left you left

First but left the door open

In case you’d come back and you

Did, shield yourself from the Continue reading “Better an Empty House”

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This Will Put You Off Having Children

For as long as anyone could remember, Shannon Fowler had wanted to be a Mother. Even as a toddler, long before her parents even contemplated having to give her the “birds and bees” talk, little Shannon Fowler could often be glimpsed in her families garden, pushing a gaudy pink pram around the perimeter and cooing to her teddy bear within as though it were her own flesh and blood. Indeed, this phase of playing with dolls as though they were babies was something that Shannon did not grow out of until she turned thirteen and even then, the decision to relinquish this once-endearing display Continue reading “This Will Put You Off Having Children”

Writing as Escape

 

When I think about George Orwell’s Nineteen Eighty-four, the prime image of the novel for me is that of Winston hunched over in a small enclave of his room, frantically scratching out diary entries. He gains two things from writing: Firstly, an escape from his material reality; secondly an ability to record and transcribe truth, rationalise and make evidence of the reality he knows. Is it so different for us in 2019? Continue reading “Writing as Escape”

What I Never Said

I find it strange that you still live there, in the house your mother told us not to buy because the roof was falling in and the sink crawled with cockroaches. I remember the look on your face as you disobeyed her for the first time, a mix of exhilaration and fear. You put your half of the deposit down the next day and I did the same, even though it left me with $40 to my name. We were childhood sweethearts, and we thought this was us growing up. A week later, you moved your belongings out of your mother’s house and wouldn’t see her again for a year. I sent her a letter every month to let her know you were okay. Sometimes it was a lie. Besides, she never wrote back. She blamed me. Continue reading “What I Never Said”

The Day Before

My brother died on a Saturday. That morning we’d left him and my sister to mind the shop while Mutti took me on her errands. In the summer of 1939 she’d only just started working as a seamstress of sorts. Letting out waistbands, taking in waistbands, changing the neckline of a dress to make it look entirely new – odd jobs that were quick but required an experienced hand to get those neat, parallel stitches. It was all the fault of the church coffee ladies. Mutti had taken over the social club at the start of the year, and the minute those crow-eyed omas got their claws on her embroidered napkins, her fate was sealed. Continue reading “The Day Before”

The Heroine of Anwae

The wind lashed the banners. Moaning, it swept past the soldiers leaving their arms and legs shaking. Most of them looked out across the plain, heads close to their spears, fingers clutching the edges of their shields. Even though the light of the stars and the moon was cut away by the clouds, they knew exactly what lay on the other side of the expanse. Others were leaning over, propping up their helmets with free hands. Puke punctured the air. Continue reading “The Heroine of Anwae”

Bury your Gays…or Don’t

 

What is Queer or LGBTQ+ writing anyway?

LGBTQ+ or queer writing is simply writing that predominantly explores LGBTQ+ themes, through characters or plot. However, I have started with a definition as I think it is really important to discuss the importance of this kind of literature. Literature is a mode through which writers can focus on an idea and have their readers learn and empathise. That empathy and learning is so important in fighting homophobia in all ages groups and communities. Continue reading “Bury your Gays…or Don’t”