Truth is Iím only here to feed my addiction
Constantly exhausted but wanting more
My anti-depressant suppressant
Donít matter though, cause here I am
at it again,
back for more pain.
I plaster on one of my sweetest smiles and pull back my hair into a pony tail.
Sleek and well-mannered,
just like mum raised me.
But most importantly, I look honest.
I check myself in the rear vision mirror
step out of the car headed towards the house, almost convinced that Iím a good person
My addiction opens the door, gives me one of his cracker smiles and says ďhey! awesome to see youĒ.
Says it like Iím an old friend
Those ones you meet in a cafe for a coffee and polite conversation, but not the type you fuck.
Itís not a day for his cheeky smile though Ė
The smile that made us drink till we forgot who we were, and who we belonged to.
He opens the door a little wider, cocks his head beckoning me in all business-like
and I stumble over the hellos, shove a present awkwardly into his hand, feel my chest tighten as I walk past him towards the lounge.
Been two years since I first walked into this house, on a muggy summer night
Humidity mustíve been peaking 85% but it wasnít the reason I was wet
Heíd pulled me off the front step with both hands
hungry after a chase which had lasted five years
Locked lips and hips in the hallway
Fought our clothes in a wrestling match to the floor
The air was thick with the unspoken absence of the wife, and that other life
Their 6 month old child asleep in the front room.
It had felt natural falling into each other that way
It was inevitable that two minds interlinked
tracing the same ink
had to feel the press of flesh to prove what the mind already knew.
The timber floor was cold on my naked body as he swept my loose hair aside,
I pulled him deep
No regrets. Not yet.
Wasnít much time to observe the detail back then, except now I notice the walls are painted a perfect off-white since the renovation to add a room. Its one of those trendy new white paints, probably called Pale Prim. Much like her.
The house is peppered with pretty stuff collected from travels. Arty shit like pointless coat hooks from Denmark with hats hanging, walls littered with photos that trace 13 years together of all roses and chocolates.
So here I am to pay dutiful homage
as a thoughtful colleague
to the new addition to an already perfect family
The little creation he made in a brief reprieve from my week-day bed
The place stinks of fresh nappies and little feet.
She stands to greet me with little person in hand, and I admire her poise
Give her a kiss on the cheek, and inhale that wife smell
Sanitized and dutiful
cut from a magazine cover
I ignore that pang of yearning to be this woman which is rooted in my stomach
We spill words with grace into the distance between us
as she sits down on the couch next to him and thanks me for the gift (baby socks)
She uses that Honours-Degree-in-Marketing voice which sounds like itís been trained for a pompous British radio show
I like her though
I know sheís smart cause I can see it in her eyes and I respect that
She gives me a look which he doesnít notice, a look only a woman can understand
That ďdonít you fucking come near my husbandĒ look which ends with a hint of desperate uncertainty of knowing the unkown
Too late, I think.
I stay long enough for it to be noted,
short enough to survive
Hiding a desperate exit I stride towards the door full of thank-yous and how-cutes,
†heart pounding in pain.
I want this life, her life,
I want to smash him in the face,
I want his past, his present,
I think Iím going to vomit all over this place
I drive home, via the beach
Take out the gin from the boot to conquer the sin
head down to the seawall
The afternoon is a charitable type of quiet, so I drink to the rhythm of the waves.
Lying back on the cold stone I think of the past few years
those times on his floor, in my bed, on my floor, on my desk, at the beach
of slow speech and soft promises.
I ask myself what I want
I ask aloud what I deserve
Steady tears drop down my face and I hate myself more for crying
No one replies
only the soft lapping of waves, returning to kiss the shore
over and over again.