I've never been hit in the face before. Being a short white girl I guess that's not surprising, but the fight surprised me.
It started when we cycled from the bar to the party. We stopped to let people catch up and decide our route, but some cock thought he'd call us hippies in front of the drunkest of our number. Suddenly this guy is throwing punches over my head at the guy behind me. Suddenly my head hits the tarmac and I'm watching this bizarre scene upside-down until a foot meets my thigh. But my friend is in the line of this cokehead's punches, so unwisely I rejoin the fracas.
All I can remember is thinking this guy must be high, my hands are pretty tightly wrapped in his hair and he's still going, he's hit my head a few times on the way to his perceived threat.
The police van arrives, and half a dozen people are in handcuffs. I see blood smeared on the back of my hand, and wonder where I am bleeding from. I worry about the half-bottle of wine in my bag, whether this will make things more difficult for me. I am very nearly sober, and this is not fun.
A stout policewoman tries to get my details, while I ask her questions about the man in handcuffs. She takes my phone number and hands me a tissue, but I still don't know where the blood is coming from. I suddenly hope it's mine. People are crying, people are leaving the scene for home.

Later, walking back because I'm shaking too hard to cycle, the police phone me. My friend answers and tells them where to stick it, because I'm in a complete state and she doesn't want me to give a statement. They tell me they will come to my house if I don't co-operate, take me into custody. Nobody else believes them, so neither do I.

Eventually the police hang up on me, because I am talking too much.


She decides to begin this journey nameless, and then ponders the difference between being nameless and anonymous. She sticks with nameless because she wants to be remembered.
At the moment she's occupying an aisle seat on a cross country train, impatiently. Delays, language barriers, lost tickets and thieves. It all sets her on edge. She has no suitcase but a huge handbag filled to bursting. Not necessarily easier or more convenient, she decides it's a challenge.
Besides, she likes presenting a puzzle to the other inhabitants of the carriage. Sitting on a rush-hour train with her long hair loose and messy, her long legs tucked neatly under the seat, almost hiding her bright silver sandals and tanned toes. She likes to think they will wonder where she is going, or why. She has a cocktail dress but no makeup on, wide eyes and no tinny headphones to hide between.
To pass time she flirts with a shy-looking office clerk, blowing a kiss to the girl as she leaves the train in the suburbs. A little later, a man with a guitar case sits next to her and strikes up conversation. He's a musician. He thinks she is beautiful, he wonders if he could write a song for her. Not right here, she hopes. Play me something nobody else here will recognise, she says. Play me your favourite. So he does, right there in the carriage, and she doesn't know the song. She watches his face as he sings and decides that he is beautiful.


Gradually she became obsessed. Everyone could see it, she was sure. Ten minutes before leaving the house she would take up her post: hair, makeup, tug the sleeves of her shirt into place. That 3/4 profile could kill.

Unable to Sleep and Scornful of Temazepam

Crackling, stiff. Starched still and devoid of moisture. I wonder if this is what it feels like to be burned alive, that initial crisping of the flesh. The first transition from hot to cooked. So inelastic, movements of my arms and even my legs have repercussions. I visualise the small of my back like tarmac, folding reluctantly in the waves of an earthquake.
and all the songs you didn't realise you sang to yourself in the mornings.

Every little place. Under your ear, the line of your hip, the skin between your shoulder-blades.