Emerson opened her eyes and the world was white. She stretched an arm in front of her to see if it was there or if it had faded away like everything else.
Everything else? Yes, she thought. There was an “everything.” It came to her in an eloquent arrangement of spontaneity.
The smell of tea steeping.
Piles of leaves.
Stuffed animals and lockets.
But where was it all now? Her focus returned to the dangling arm. It was bleached deathly pale. She tensed spasmodically at the unwelcome sight and tried to scrap the floury stain off, but couldn’t. She inspected the rest of her body with an air of panic to find it similarly bland and naked. Naked. Her knees pressed together and she sheltered her chest when the word pressed itself into her mind. She hadn’t noticed her nudity because of the remarkable stillness of the room, but now it made her feel self conscious, though there was no one to see her.
Or was there? She spun around, maintaining her guarded posture, and received a dose of vertigo. Muscles malfunctioning because of the sensory confusion, Emerson lost her balance and tumbled onto a floor neither soft nor hard. She lay for a moment, nausea pricking her throat and worry coursing through her veins, before cautiously picking herself up and peering around over her shoulder. Spotless, unblemished white stared back. She felt it pressing on her in loose shrouds, flooding into her with each breath she took, consuming thoughts and infesting feelings and- Emerson shut her eyes. The blackness allowed her to recuperate. When she left it again, it was with a critical mindset that she examined her surroundings.
Everything was wrong about the space; there was no lighting, no shadows, but the entire place was illuminated harshly. Focusing on the illusion only intensified it. All variables of the natural world, temperature, the movement of the air, hunger, thirst, sound, were reduced to null, leaving her with nothing but an unrelenting absolute: white. It seemed the world had been condensed to one dimension, and though the prospects of that were fairly terrifying, all there was to do about the situation was explore it. So Emerson squinted and rose gingerly.
The fall had disoriented her so that the steps she now took were along the same line of vision she had originally encountered, not the reverse and intended one. But this atmosphere compressed déjà vu into reality; it was impossible for her to distinguish the error.
Walking, or staggering really, proved an immense challenge. There was no way to tell where the ground became the air besides the two points of pressure her feet determined, and it mentally posed a strain as well. How is one to keep from insanity when they’re deprived their grasp on space, time, and sound? By placing one foot slowly and gently in front of the other, she made dogged progress. The methodology calmed her, but not so much that her thoughts strayed from the task at hand.
hands out right foot up right foot down keep hands out left foot up left foot down keep hands out
Emerson probed into wall, wandered over it, wondered over it. She relaxed, feeling she now had some means of orientation, then realized she was in a cage. Trepidation announced itself with a quavering groan. Why did every piece of information she had so far gathered seem to bear barbs? The thought of spending even an hour in this whiteness that she now knew had very finite bounds sent panic skittering about her. With a swallow, Emerson forced her mind into a suppressed mentality and turned around once more.
There was a stark black mound somewhere in the distance. Puzzlement added itself to her screaming but smothered emotions and she stopped feeling enclosed and started feeling curious. She approached the mound with more ease than her previous traverses; having a landmark to follow grounded and guided her footsteps into a semblance of balance. Victorious, she arrived at the mound and crouched cautiously, but distance made its nature only slightly less murky. The object, for that much of its identity was now clear, was extremely heavy or else rooted to the ground, and, like the rest of her surroundings, it seemed to absorb all light. Emerson peered at it from wherever her neck would crane, shuffling when stretching failed, and revealed 26 identical, round, black keys, various, black levers and knobs, and a black cloth belt sporting from the black foundation of the thing. The thing, she could now determine, was a machine. With this analysis, she exhausted visual examination as a means of discernment and reached out to hit a key at random.
A slender limb sprang from inside the machine and bounced against the waiting belt with a loud pop. She jolted her hand away and recoiled from the unexpected noise. So far the whiteness had muffled sound to what she believed was extinction; indication otherwise soothed her, but only after startling. After a pause, she punched at another key with less intensity, so as to stop it midway. On the end, a miniscule stamp was attached. She stared until a letter “H” appeared.
A typewriter. Of course. Emerson had never seen one, only heard them mentioned fleetingly.
It excited her confusion, fear, hesitation into something more material: words. She searched next to the machine for paper and found a single stack well camouflaged with its background. After a few a failed attempts, Emerson manipulated a sheet into position. She spread and flexed her fingers. Then, delicately,
qwertyuiopasdfghjklzxcvbnm. Each letter sent an animated clack into the void that filled it with something more than white. Emerson smiled. The keys were no different than her computer at home, and though she had no other experience, instinct vouched for the quality of the typewriter. All she needed to adjust to was the speed and pressure with which she pushed down.
But why and who and how and where? Emerson had attempted to observe before asking, to take stock before succumbing to the inevitable panic that was sure to arise from the situation. Now, with a potential solution to the peculiar predicament apparent, she allowed her mind to grope at the nature of the situation rather than simply look at it. Perhaps, Emerson thought, in expansion of her queries, I’m supposed to write.
Why am I here and what is here and who put me in this place?
The last thwack disintegrated into silence. Emerson shivered. Seeing them represented concretely made the questions dire. It transformed them from inquisition to dilemma. She bit her lips and jerked her head up. Her eyes panned ceaselessly, but met only the claustrophobic, maddening white. Again, it began to cascade towards her and drag itself into her. She stood, head mumbling with dizziness, and strode aimlessly towards a wall. Her shoulder collided into one without warning. She winced, massaging the hurt bare skin, banged the wall with an angered, scared fist, and returned to the typewriter with a whimper. Wrote she knew this was actually happening and she needed to see something other than white and she was making that happen in the only way possible. Wrote that writing wasn’t working, that she felt afraid and confused and a lot of other things that can’t be described with words.
She stood up again because little splotches of ink aren’t enough and paced nervously around and around, back and forth as fast was possible without becoming disoriented, but inevitably her barefooted tracks spiraled her back to the room’s only reference point: the typewriter.
It should have been menacing: a pure black dot that the brightness of the background only expounded. But instead Emerson began to label it as home, peace, refuge. The words she spilled out of it solidified that.
They weren’t particularly unique or interesting or strong words, but she had never been a writer. In fact, Emerson’s hand had never held a pen with any sort of poetic intent. She didn’t now, either; all she tried to spell out was her emotion. The result was incomprehensible gibberish translatable only to her, but it was something, and she instinctively knew there would be plenty of time to practice. So for the rest of the day she sat softly and pushed keys, closing her eyes when the white overwhelmed her.
Emerson designated 7:00 as night and therefore when she should sleep, though she thought it was at least 10:00. Without any way of telling time, her internal clock quickly sped up to accommodate the stress of the day, letting her rest prematurely. It wasn’t a physical fatigue that made her head nod, but a mental one. The floor was of indifferent hardness, like everything else, and she found it comfortable enough to lie on. She woke in the morning curled around her typewriter, the pages of the previous day gone.
The room had lost some of the claustrophobia it held prior. Her body and mind had adjusted to the illusion, and decided to behave more peaceably towards its achromatic hue. Nonetheless, she made it a custom to walk the borders of her cell, slowly marking smaller and smaller concentric circles until she came to a rest at the typewriter. Now, as she sat, she considered her possibilities. May as well write. The keys banged out foul attempts at poetry, a few inconclusive vignettes, and letters to imaginary lovers. Real lovers, or family of any sort, for that matter, she had none, which she hypothesized as being a primary reason for her current position. All she wrote was rubbish, and she knew it. There were a few lines that were better than others, the promises of potential, but she was exhausted with no real results. It was 5:00 and Emerson slept.
The next day, the typewriter showed no signs of ever having been used. The ribbon was reset, the paper in an untouched stack. Irritation needled her; the writing was in no way impressive, but it had been a huge time investment, and its absence was something of an insult.
She strode around the room, clawing a hand on the walls until they became the letters of the typewriter. And they were angry letters, first about them taking her words, then about the whiteness and whoever caused it. Then they became philosophical, ballooning into the essence of her emotion and it’s meaning. She slept soundly, clutching 47 pages of her soul. When they disappeared the next day, she was upset, but resigned, and typed things reflective and detached.
It was at the end of the first week that Emerson realized she hadn’t eaten or drunken. Amazing, she thought, how easily necessities can slip the mind when no longer absolutely essential. She figured the mysterious things that had put her here and maintained her typewriter also were supplying her with nutrition through some silent means. They also must have been relieving her of any excrement almost before it became a presence, and menstruation seemed to have ceased. Emerson stilled questioned them and wondered at them, whoever them was, but saw no point in doing so as a full time occupation because they seemed rather clear in that they didn’t want their purpose known.
So she developed a daily schedule of roaming her confines, writing, and exercise. In every area she improved, and she learned to thrive in her bland environment. Each element of it grew to have a strange personality, though it was only a reflection of hers. In her faulty, but helpfully so, perception, the walls grew grayer as she got more tired and glowed yellow when she was in a better state of mind. At times they seemed to reach out, no longer in attack, but rather curiosity, and sometimes they appeared to constrict. With time, Emerson’s mind molded her blanched surroundings into something with more life and companionship. Similarly, she invested an entire persona in her typewriter. It was arrogant in some ways, since it refused flaw or mistake, but faithful. There was a touch of sadness, too, in the stubborn blackness of it, and Emerson treated it accordingly, pressing its keys precisely but only as hard as was necessary, stroking its body absently while she thought.
Around the third month, Emerson discovered poetry and its secrets after spending two months perfecting it. n additional 40 days brought mastery of vignettes, and with time, much, much time, she conquered every genre and every form, occasionally creating new ones along the way. When her vocabulary failed her, she coined new words, though this was rarely a problem; despite her lack of venture into writing prior her placement in the room, Emerson had been an avid reader. Now, she contributed daily to the myriad of literature humans had, over the course of history, produced. Each piece was of the utmost quality, worthy of praise and award. And after a month of receiving none, Emerson’s anger returned.
What else do you want me to do? At this point, the paper and her thoughts had become synonymous. The speed of her typing reached its perilously rapid limit to keep up with her mind, and her thoughts automatically organized themselves into cohesive chunks, as if a machine not unlike the one her fingers flew over manufactured them. But her words were far from industrial; the process and the result were not alike.
What am I supposed to do? Emerson, with the only task she could fathom they wanted her to do, becoming a writer, finally complete, grew rebellious. She jammed the limbs of her sacred typewriter until they were bent and unusable. Then, she slowly and with meticulous care shredded the stack of paper. It was 3:00 AM but she didn’t sleep. The paper was crumpled and in bits so she sat cross-legged and stared into the whiteness around her, defiant. She shouted the lyrics to every song she knew, focusing and repeating those exuding rage.
And there ain’t no day
And there ain’t no night
Into the white
Did you hear what I said?
Ain’t nothing to see
Ain’t nothing in sight
Into the white
Her fury was a burning, alive one, and it lasted well past 24 hours. She had, for over a year, done virtually nothing but work for a force she hadn’t ever seen and couldn’t hope to understand. And only on occasion had she complained; doing so, she knew, even now, was useless. What more was left for her to accomplish? She was exhausted and out of ideas, out ideas for what seemed the first real time, but out of silent rebellion, refused to sleep. Her hollered song slowly muted to a mumble, and after staring, eyes drooping, for another hour, the inevitable world of slumber kidnapped her.
When Emerson woke after a long rest, her typewriter looked fresh and never used, and the mess of paper had been transformed back into a neat stack.
She made origami.
For two weeks Emerson investigated mutiny as fastidiously as she had writing, but resignation was as unavoidable as the enveloping whiteness that was the room. So she slowly returned to the typewriter and eased herself back into writing. She admitted that she missed it; Emerson had quickly fallen in love with the dance of the mind over the keys, and it was one she fell back into with grace. Her work improved, even though that was supposed to be impossible, because it was now fueled by passive interest rather than plodding desperation. It made each project unique to itself, not part of a cumulative gathering of knowledge. And she started liking what she wrote and she became a writer.
Emerson rarely had dreams, and when she did, they were brief, muddled, and quickly forgotten. This was the exception, because this dream was anything but monochromatic. Colors flew at her in undulating bulges, migrated into each other, then dissipated with brilliant flashes. Neon shot through her skull until she swore she saw more than the visible spectrum; serpentine slivers of rainbow scattered themselves before her mind. Before Emerson formed intricate kaleidoscopes of oversaturated fireworks, dancing with such ferocity that even in sleep, sleep which allows the absurd to be calmly accepted as truth, she was overwhelmed into a parallel of shock. It was traumatically beautiful. It was appallingly gorgeous. It stunned her, battered her, and levitated her far above all she could imagine. Beneath their lids, her eyes roved and tumbled, and her mouth clenched and slackened and morphed itself into peculiar shapes. The conscience activity in her brain outside that which was creating the dream was indescribable
And yet when Emerson woke up, those thoughts flooded themselves onto paper with a vigor they had never before had. She hunched by the typewriter for a period that seemed unmarked by time, yet simultaneously the essence of eternity, speed of the keys growing faster, then more languid like the dynamics and tempo of a particularly expressive piece of music. She was hardly aware that she was awake; the state in which she wrote was one similar to someone hypnotized. But with the final, grand crescendo of her typing, and surely the content of what she typed, came a sudden jerk into reality. The last stroke fell and Emerson finished. With the conclusion of her writing came an acknowledgement of finality; this was the best she could produce, the end of progress and the end of her journey. She slept with a smile and woke in her bed.
The roughness of the sheets and pajamas irritated her body. It startled her, the physical hurt; she had not experienced it for years, but mental celebration overruled it. Alight with the victory of having returned to her apartment, she squirmed happily on the mattress and thrust both arms up in a gesture of delight. Initial ecstasy faded to a placid enthusiasm in which she basked for a good 30 minutes. Then, the discomfort of the fabric cloaking her penetrated into her thoughts, and she delayed further jubilation until her presence in the world was again asserted, first within the apartment, then farther. After maneuvering into a seated position on the edge of the bed, she shed her clothes, gasped at the breeze in the air, and leaped to close her window. Halfway there she remembered the social element of her species and painfully pulled her nightgown back on. The light flooding from the window was her next challenge. Surrounded by so much white, it seemed being blinded was a daily occurrence to which she was firmly accustomed, but the sun burned her eyes in anew way as she neared it, and she staggered back.
Her place of retreat was the shower. It took Emerson’s skin two hours to tolerate hot water, soap, and shampoo, but her learned determination let her persist and eventually emerge clean and with a more substantial memory of humanity.
Emerson heard her stomach rumble and she laughed; food was not something that had crossed her mind for years. The kitchen was a war-zone. She cracked open what appeared to be an edible can of beans, slid it down her tender throat, then began the tedious purgation of the rest of the pantry and refrigerator. Cleaning had always been fulfilling to her; it served as an emotional catharsis in addition to an externalized one, and after living in the very precipice of spotlessness, white, for years, her surroundings looked grossly cluttered. For the remainder of the day, she cleansed the apartment until only one room remained to battle: the study. Her gaze swept over it with weariness and then redirected at the desk. Next to a flawless stack of paper rested a perfectly black typewriter.
Everything horrible about the white room that she had been suppressing for so long rushed into her without warning or reserve. The emotions she had stunted thrust themselves into her: confusion, despair, anger... Emerson blanched, dropped the stacks of sorted files she was carrying, and wept. Everything that had happened was so unfair; the good that had come out of it was no justification. Why her? Indeed, why at all? What could possibly be the point of putting her through all the agony? There was no wizard at the end of Emerson’s yellow brick road, prepared with a set of answers to all her inquiries. There was nothing but this hideous machine, here again to haunt her. She felt like a lab rat destined to prove some far away scientist’s, or god’s, hypothesis. How long will it take her to find the cheese? When will she be finished eating it? Will she come back for more? Between sobs, Emerson emitted the guttural moan of a banshee. She collapsed on the floor and pounded it with clenched fists. Blood oozed from the indents of her fingernails and bruises marked her skin. Her thoughts whirred into incoherence and she crumpled further, heaving with something that could not be expressed. She stayed there until morning.
When Emerson rose, her eyes were crusty. She returned to oblivion for a moment. Her unhurried breathing matched the pace of her thoughts; what had come with such rapid intensity the night before now took the form of musings culled by reluctance disguised as lethargy. It was all too clear what the implications of the typewriter were. So, even though she was disinclined to do so, she sighed, and, steeling herself, inched to her chair. Her fingers spread, flexed, and hesitated. Tenderly, Emerson pressed out two simple words.
She smiled. Rolled the paper up a bit to a blank section. And kept writing.
Into the White Emerson opened her eyes and the world was white. She stretched an arm in front of her to see if it was there or if it had faded away like everything else.Into the White by =schongslipper
Everything else? Yes, she thought. There was an “everything.” It came to her in an eloquent arrangement of spontaneity.
The smell of tea steeping.
Piles of leaves.
Stuffed animals and lockets.
But where was it all now? Her focus returned to the dangling arm. It was bleached deathly pale. She tensed spasmodically at the unwelcome sight and tried to scrap the floury stain off, but couldn’t. She inspected the rest of her body with an air of panic to find it similarly bland and naked. Naked. Her knees pressed t
But Softly1.But Softly by =schongslipper
I am an artist.
I feel the need to create.
I explore the feeling.
Yet creation is impossible. The colors splashed onto a canvas are but colors; they need to be saturated, pumped with the essence of something.
Words do not add the necessary element. They only waste ink and space. They are clutter.
Even sounds and motion and dance do not breathe anything more than dimensions. How can these things ever become more than the
sluggishly industrious blood of the artist? How can they become thoughts, ideas, suspended but flapping dusty wings
gently, how can art be more than residue?
Images, material, sex, honesty, tears, purgative, travel, touch, music, struggle, nature, fear, depression, consumption, money, rags, paint,
libraries, machines, schooling, risk
Staple***TRIGGER WARNING: This piece contains descriptions of the physical side of self harm***Staple by =schongslipper
The packet had two staples embracing each others' glinting bodies in a crooked "X." The one underneath bulged around it's partner greedily, too absorbed in the presence above it to do its job. Puckered holes to either side indicated invisible mistakes.
The packets were supposed to have a single staple, except this one.
This one was Esther's, so it wasn't supposed to have any.
She lifted her eyebrows, her eyes, her face in gratitude, but, with Mr. Wright's refusal of acknowledgement, she drooped back into her usual vacancy and deftly twisted one, two staples from the top of the paper.
They were strong and sharp and the best possession she had owned other than all the other staples of the past. She didn't remember any of those, though. Lost, they quickly flickered out of her mind like they would from a child's.
Esther ate the bent one. It was too disfigured to serve anything but her appetite, and so
Sprint, My Darling, Like the Virus You AreEveryone hated her because she was perfect. Naturally. Perfect people aren't really people at all. Everyone shouted (under the pretense of a whisper) about her (nonexistent) flaws, about the reasons for their loathing (for which they had none). The perfect girl had friends, of course, but her friends abhorred her. She was an oxymoron.Sprint, My Darling, Like the Virus You Are by =schongslipper
Oxymorons are known to have paradoxical effects. So the perfect girl did and so every perfect person does. In the wake of her calmly controlled emotions were a swarming mass of individuals vacillating between their emotions of superiority and inferiority, confusion and clarity, envy and repulsion.
The perfect girl destroyed all she was around while simultaneously building it up. Every kind gesture had a polar reaction. Every feat poured derision and acid on the accomplishments of others. The perfect girl was plagued by her perfection.
She handled it perfectly, as she had to. She couldn't help create the plights she trigger
|These are by no means my best works, but they're ones I want to improve! Any feedback you care to leave is hugely appreciated.|
he would still not love meBOYS ARE INTO PLASTIChe would still not love me by ~linenandlicorice
i've watched them eat it
mindlessly, long slender
bones and square-cut teeth
he holds me by the mouth tells
me to hush myself because
she might hear, she is perfection
he tells me how he gets off in the night
to her words, and how once he imagined
her louisiana skin caught underneath the
florescent of his mother's living room lamp
i should have told him her skin was so perfectly
pale from being caked by the earth, i should
have told him her eyes were painted that way
i should have told him her hair was dyed and if
he looked at the very root of her skull he could
make out his least favorite color
i imagined having her and stripping her of all the things he
claimed beauty, to watch his jaw unlock as her licorice
and wax lacquered to the floor
what an ugly color of bland she would have been, not having
the synthetics making up for her in the places she lacked
even then he would still not love me
my legs, juxtaposed beside hers
french tipsthe girl with nails that catch your eye--french tips by ~TaiHizake
they're long and tipped with french
"me toucher", they say--
thinks to herself in the morning
if i paint my nails a brighter color
my countenance will follow"
SLam KaZamI'm back I guess.SLam KaZam by ~Artemis-F-Fox
I don't think anyone cares but sorry for disappearing anyways. xP
I don't have anything to say, but I'm writing spoken word poetry for class, and I haven't really done it before so I would like some feedback on the draft. ;A;
It would be highly appreciated if someone could tell me what to do to make it suck less. ;v;
Entangled in my mix-and-match, makeshift reality that's held together by thumbtacks I stole from the hospital.
The hospital, where the ghosts in their thick, white, spreadsheets reassure me that I don't know what's going on, and I'm confused, because there's a reason I call it a place of no return , there's a reason that I laugh so much in that plastic building where they tell me I don't know, and that there's something wrong with the way I think, and they don't know how to fix me,
and I'm confused.
I don't know what's going on.
And maybe I don't. Maybe I'm unsure of my past, what happened up those stairs, or w
The Love of a CatSometimes I will rub against her hand and sing my love to her, to this girl they call “Rebecca”. She’s a tall young creature, completely furless and wears these odd things to cover her body that are called “clothes”. She’s weird and loud but she saved me from my fears. She is my person that I watch over.
I will rub against her hand and sing my love to her as I watch her play with that funny light box which makes odd noises. Most often she won’t show any affection towards me, not right away, but eventually the odd noises will stop and her hands will move to lightly stroke my back. There are times she will get rough with me, or yell at me, or swat at me. Sometimes I deserve it, other times her anger gets the best of her. During those times I will calmly take every punishment even when I just want to play, because I love her. She is my person.
When she cries I will always be there to listen to the many sets of words I don’t understand to t