Have a little cipher, friends, and a babbling brook of badness. I don’t suppose it’s without reason you’ve only heard from Mel of late.
There was a month (give or take) where she fell really hard. Hit back a good ten years, struck until she (like others before her) hid behind third person. The stories, they grip her, she couldn’t say why. It isn’t real, is it? Not official. But there are always more of them, effectively unending, even when she skips the ones that go nowhere.
Some miss the mark, character-wise. Obviously wrong, a forgery a child could spot. Off-putting. Some aren’t obvious but by degrees veer off otherwhere, and she should be used to that (it is fiction after all) (this is what fiction DOES [oh dear, much less force in the third person singular rather than plural (that’s what stories DO [much better])]) and yet and yet she cannot stop reading she cannot stop wanting something and for a while it seems these stories give her that and yet it becomes clear that they can’t.
The time is now 11:04 and that is longer than she meant but on the other hand, there’s still enough time to wash up the dishes, to sort through that pile of papers, time enough to put some clothes away.
Okay, so it was just after 11 but now it’s 11:42 and that is significantly closer to midnight but it’s not there yet. She can do those things on the list after she finishes this bit.
Oh look, suddenly it’s 12:20.
Suddenly it’s 12:36 (barely half past, really)
it’s 12:49 (not 1 AM, she’s fine)
it’s 1:23 (if she wakes up at 7 precisely that will be 5 hours and 37 minutes of sleep which is surely enough to be getting on with when there’s coffee and nothing too demanding, right?)
it’s 1:54 (I should be in bed)
it’s 2:07 (and now, finally, she’s finished reading and it relinquishes its hold and her eyes are burning a bit and she won’t click on anything else she swears it after all you can’t possibly when you’re leaving out commas and full stops)
(and yet the apostrophes remain; she can’t figure that out)
(semicolons as well it seems)
Bed. Overwarm. Mind spins a bit, a top about to rock and tip over and skid to quietness.
It has been a long month. Sometimes I can resist the urge. But sometimes I sit and read; I can do no other.
God help me. Amen.