Hyacinth Girl

I have never read anything more precious than “they called me the hyacinth girl”. I can’t imagine me, sitting in a bed full of crumbs and body odour, being compared to something so synonymous to sunshine and real life technicolour. I think poetry is beautiful, but I do not think the same of myself, and that’s okay.  I don’t have to love myself, but I do have to write bullshit and read poetry. But how dear poetry make me long for something that I can never be:  flowers. I want to bloom, and then I want to die. I want people to look at me for just one season, to smell me, to rub my petals between their thumb and forefinger, to be drawn to me for just one season. I find myself wondering who the hyacinth girl might be, and I can think of only one, but I am thirty kgs away and resemble nothing in danger of blooming. I just want to be looked at for one season.

My mother wondered why I would cause myself pain to have a flower drawn on my arm, but she didn’t ask me why I caused myself pain that one time I tried to kill myself. I am not ashamed of myself, and that is the biggest rebellion, my arm blooms hyacinth for all seasons. I am as addicted to beauty as I am cigarettes and being alone. I don’t want anyone to touch me, but I want to touch others. If I was the hyacinth girl, I could do that, if only for a season.

I want to walk around screaming “I am the hyacinth girl” (“I am so pretty”, “I look like I’m blooming” “Love me while I’m alive”) But  I am not meant to refer to myself as synonymous to sunshine and real life technicolour. I have to live in the monochrome haze of my undying self-hatred, don’t I? I am a woman and I don’t hate myself, so I must sit and brood until I do. How dare I compare myself to a flower, how dare I be inspired by the poetry of a man.

And what does she think of me:  “You’re not even a lesbian”, “You’re intelligent, but you act dumb.”  “You don’t know what modernism is”, or “queer theory”, or “literary theory”.

“You don’t know about these things, because I know about them.”. You love them just like I love all flowers and the ocean, and I just want to work, but I belong to these fields and you don’t understand. I was strong by collapsing.

I fell in love with almost everyone but you. I was only a protégé, but hardly that. And I shared my crumbs and my body odour with you, and I accepted the fact that I was nothing but a man disguised as a woman that you rested your head on for two years. Sometimes I wake up calling for you but it hurts my throat and it’s bad for me so I stop.

There is something so patriarchal about a woman forbidding another woman to bloom.


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