Prose

Noceurn

At one point your landlord, if that’s what they’re called here, asked where you were from and you had to say that you honestly could not remember but it must not have been good because otherwise you wouldn’t have had such a strong desire to leave.

17 July 2018
No Sick Penguins at St Kilda Pier

“It’s a water rat,” I say to Hannah, but she probably already knows that. The rat pulls itself up onto the boardwalk and rests its little hands on the hunk of bread. Its stomach bulges. Hugo takes a nibble and then drags the bread down into the rocks. The white tip of his tail flashes.

Sirens

The rocking chair swayed back and forth like water against the hull of a ship. Through the window, she could see that the night was still. In the valley below, the soft glow of the town stretched all the way to the shore.

8 June 2018
Night of the Beast

Have you heard about the Night of the Beast? It’s the day those creatures we cared for, creatures we treasure, and the creatures we hunted come back to our world. Clothed in the skin of the underworld, fit for a hot summer evening, they march down the streets, their legs returning them to homes where the memories of them subsist.

21 May 2018
Changeling

He was wearing a coat of leaves, the body and genitals covered in poultice. I’ve always known when mirrors lie. His face, though, was my dad’s fly lure, tremoring over a lake body, my gums reddening when I brushed too deliberately, the desire to chew with my mouth open, the wasps I’d seen fumigated by mum in our roof, their nest like a football. I gazed hungrily as he pointed to a mound of earth on my left—his right—nails bark-splintered.

Bananas

The living room looked out over Elgin Street. Her flat was flanked by an Indian restaurant and a car park. The boobs the chalk were referencing could only be hers. She flung open the window and leant out, as if the scent of the chalk writer still hung on the air and she could sniff them out.

Bananas

I open my eyes. The bananas are still there: curved bodies and rubbery skins speckled with dark bruises, decay spreading from the inside. I tug at the smallest one but it doesn’t budge. With a quick, jerky movement of my fist I rip the banana away from the bunch, exposing a crooked line of flesh just below the tip. The distinct smell hits me immediately.

18 April 2018
The Colour of Grey

The contrast was enhanced as the surroundings got progressively darker. I could sense another alien colour, just above the orange, which I had not witnessed till then that day. To him, it was a sky blue. At that point, even the sea began to participate, carrying the sunlight towards us, through the waves.

Regular Abductions

. The streets are threatening. The world is safer all the time. All of life is dangerous to the touch, and every day, fewer men rot away. New government initiatives have reduced the number of plane crashes, children are regularly abducted from well-frequented public playgrounds and canned tomatoes are cheaper at the local supermarket. She rolls her neck—once, twice, three times if it matters, and it could very well matter. The wind, rolling off the sea, continues its surge and tide; the lilac and turquoise stripes above the storefront deform and misalign. A flutter—I think this is right—in the wind.

“Earth to Ale.”

There’s a voice, and suddenly everything around you comes into focus. You see a hand waving insistently in front of your face.

“You okay? You need some air?”

27 March 2018
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