This short text is halfway between a personal diary and short story. It is the third written piece we publish exclusively by this young South London based Dominican writer. Initially we thought of publishing her musings under the title Whatever Comes Out of My Ovaries but now we are not so sure which probably is a good thing
Who the fuck is that bitch? People ask in awe as they watch me pass, running at the speed of light, dropping elements of myself wherever I go, flying high by the air I breathe, my hair tangled by the wind.
In a flash of recognition and mysticism, I raise my hand; I own it. All that makes me, me. When the going gets tough, I get going. Away from whatever is uncomfortable, whatever comes my way, good, bad, you name it—usually, the good. My body craves certain chemicals that somehow, I only get by leaving whatever is right.
I abandon everyone, especially myself, which creates a sense of despair I am too accustomed to, alongside a new fear as I wonder what would happen if I actually stayed. So, I cling on to this wasted feeling of loneliness by leaving.
Sometimes I wonder, what would it take for me not to run away? A bribe, maybe? I could bribe myself, how about that? Chocolate, gin, craft beer, anything would do. Anything that would give me that same feeling I get when I put on my blue jeans, my Lululemon whites jacket, my ON trainers and get going. Where? Not sure. The destination is not essential. It’s the going that matters, the moving, knowing that I am not stuck in the same place time and time again, even if I’m going is in circles. Even if instead of the firefly I pretend to be, I’m more like a little mouse, scared of the giants that shout my name and tell me to go away, to leave this place, that I don’t belong here. Maybe I do, maybe I don’t. Their voices are too loud, they bang inside my brain and keep me moving. I leave.
But not today. Today is they day I say, enough of this shit. Today I stop moving. I freeze. As if I have never been running. I’m suffocating. The stale air’s too overwhelming. A dark paradise. I feel I could die with the moon and no one would miss me. Nothing moves, only whispers of who I used to be, of what I used to do. Until I find movement in that stillness I fear so much and make it home, realising that if I can freeze, I can also melt away and keep going. I can somehow still run, by becoming something else. A vitamin swollen, dissolved into the ether, fucking dreaming of a life as sweet as cinnamon. And I, delicate, still dreaming, still flying.
I can stay like this forever. But what is forever? What is final? Nothing lasts forever; nothing’s final. The finite line keeps moving, as do I. I run away from the unknown, only to end up in the same place. What a shame it is, to be running away only to stay still. Maybe by settling somewhere, I can finally leave all this summertime sadness behind. The overwhelm of not being able to cope—the sizzles. I still don’t know. I get caught up into what I think I know and forget there is an unknown world to discover.
Somehow I still run. It’s in my DNA. I’m a runaway. And for what? If Karma’s a bitch, as it should be. But not today. I will patiently wait. Let it catch me if it can when the time comes.
In the meantime, I place my bet. I make a move and keep going, as I say goodbye to my true self, and smile.
Karlina Veras‘ first collection of short stories Yun Yun (pa’ la calor) can be purchased here