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Tamara Fraser Aug 2016
We found ourselves in
a sticky
sticky mess
didn’t we?

We can be so intimate,
because I hate making my walls
from already crumbled bricks and
clay of wilted loves,
the dredge and slurries of everything that went wrong
plasters together the insecurities I hide from,
to protect you from.

You didn’t even build the offence I expected,
to prompt my building, my construction and strategy and
internal combat.
I didn’t have to crouch at your feet,
long forgotten how to feel for myself.
So mastered at letting you take over my body,
make it move with you where you need it to be,
matching ecstasies and heartbeats
and sweat and moans,
feeling you aroused,
secretly wondering if I was made of stone.

It took one touch
to do it.
Just one hopeless exploration of two bodies,
for me to return to my shrivelled husk,
tearful and vulnerable and exposed for all the others,
tainted parcel, envelope turned inside out,
only wishing to be your absolute perfect,
in and out of bedsheets and
the expectations we see peeking out of the shade,
******* us and ruining us as we go.

But you make it seem all ok.
You make that one shadow in my past,
turn me into something else entirely.
It still bothers me, plays me, screws me over and over
until I break a little because it’s just to much trauma to overcome.
Being used for little night-time, quickened searchings,
finding out what people always want from me,
and what they are happy to leave behind them,
with me.

I’ve always known about emotions.
But I don’t think it’s ever been this easy to feel them.
To feel that rise and fall of a wave people keep ranting of.
Because of you, I get it now.
It makes me see stars and feel everything hit at once.

It’s always a start that ages before it’s time.
It’s always the nerves that settle under my skin,
bumps and bruises and dead hour wanderings,
waiting for the inevitable moment it all ends.
As soon as you like me, I start to panic.
I can’t sleep and eat waiting for that little rattle,
pop shake
of when you pick up the phone and make my panic real.

I can only believe you for a day.
I can only like you for for a day at a time.
I can only show you what I am for a day at a time under very
rational considerations.

To feed you until you want me no more.
You can scrunch up your eyes and turn to plead you would never,
but having been a lot of messed-up lovely things to a lot of people,
I know you are a human emotional puddle.
And they were all human too.

And all our time together
becomes a heartfelt plea,
the heavy, pressure-on-chest of hope
that no one ever warns you about,
of the dangers of letting yourself go
with them
that special person
feeling everything you strive so hard to suppress
given over to trickster hands and laughs
of those emotions you fear.

We don’t regret it.
Not at all.
But all our movements and affections are
dictated expiry dates,
and I hate it being about us needing
to consume as much of each other
before the time ticks over and
it’s all spoiled.

So this solidifies where I am,
where I am coming from,
when I curl up next to you.
This is my flagged position,
in this strategic push-pull, give-take, want-relinquish
games we desperately seek to play.
I’m always the loyal friend, crying when you close a door on me,
or leave me aside,
or throw me away for someone, something new.

So instead
for now,
I’m going to remind myself of all the things one day could be true.
And get a little lost in you,
because that’s all I can do.

It’s that or I’m going to have to watch you walk away,
and hope I feel this rollercoaster again.
Tamara Fraser Aug 2016
A time,

sometime before the last time,

or even a little more lost

in a dusty box

the time even before,

I wanted to tell you something, sweet.

When you press against my skin,

or hold me at length,

you are wearing, shredding,

tearing and smoothing my very


I wear myself upon my skin;

internals are external,

I don’t hide behind mirrors or imagery;

magic tricks, pops of champagne,

dazzling details or embellished,

encrusted, coated

and processed


Those who are privileged;

ungrateful and cursed with ignorance,

little awareness for the multiplied demons nesting

in blackened hearts,

sipping sour emotions and rancid feasts,

those are the people who hide what doesn’t need to be hidden.

Those who are privileged;

independent and cursed with anxiety,

pressure behind their eyelids at night

and a very heavy head to move and keep

the walls up, guarding against the terrors and the screams

and the glistening shadows, slick with grief and

self-pity, self-loathing and what people judge

as an infernal mental contagion,

but really is just an unfortunate, battle of imbalance and chemicals.

Awry and lost and deep trodden in a mind that never rests,

always misses a beat chasing other beats

and fearing the biggest monster in the fields called mistake.

Those are the people who wear it all like skin, coloured by bruises and patterned

with cuts, carvings,

soothing over the outside and deciding its already faulty,

can wear it on the outside because its already broken,

not really worth protecting

and don’t hide would could and would mostly be hidden.


this is me.

I’m rough, I know.

I rest

in your bed

when I’m scared of being alone with myself.

Depressed again and as I lose control,

realising I never really have an end

keep pounding and chipping at

every word I’ve ever though and every feeling

I’ve ever had to succumb to,

I’ve ever always had to feel,

sending for help and working on strength to rebuild,

shoots flares in a black blanket of sky;

lending your little demons the opportunity

to find you.

Jealousy is the most dangerous form of punishment for us.


These people that we are.

We crave respite, sweet.

Out of earth and mind and here and now,

out of beats and taps, clicks and repeats.

Out of straddled cycles and digging into ourselves with

our own fingernails.

But really, I can’t call you sweet.

You’re just the person I imagine

so I’m never caught alone with myself.

You’re just the person I want for myself,

and can’t reach towards, afraid and corrupt and broken to you.

Blacking out with my eyes open.

A blank space, a blank knot and a blank guess,

rolling over inside.

Short-term memory shot.

Feeling the weight

and the hatred of my omnipresent self,

mind disheveled, unraveled,

fighting a battle you can’t even see;

takes one to know one.

I deal with my pain,

no one else digging enough to find a spring,

land-locked and bone dry,

questioning the mirage I stumble through a desert for.

Questioning what real is,

something everyone can pick and grasp,

smoky cloud and bitter wind to me.

I try and see some reasons,

stumbling in the finding

of plain ground, nothing else.

Perpetually uninvited yet constant host,


addicted to everyone else’s company.

Asymptomatic to symptomatic,

mind the bickering beast,

same person, same bodysuit,

but I,

I’m locked inside with you,

yet watching you wreak your havoc,

vicious, bitter monologue ringing wall to wall,

grating and wailing and driving me broken

and twisted and pinned like your own art.

This is what I wanted to tell you,


When I noticed a break in the internal racket,

a clear view from my cell into yours

I realised nobody wants to hear about this abuse,

not even you;

avoid, ignore, pretend it isn’t real so you can sleep

alone in your cell just one more night, again.

I just want people to better understand what this is like.

Why I simply can’t explain it.

Why I can’t tell you.

Why you will run.

Now here’s your cue.

Stand up and

Walk out on me.
Tamara Fraser Aug 2016
I’m so scared of what you’ll do to me.

I push you away at the start because I care.

I’m all cold fingers and neck as you inch closer.

I know that giving my heart over to your hands is delicate and dangerous;

I realise having it injured by you is more fatal than another, more blood loss,

more bruises, more painful blossoms.

I always want you nearer; no one can comfort as you can,

until you turn off the lights

for the night

and all I see are abandoned impressions of you around my room.

But I need to stop you. Right here.

I need to keep you an arms length apart from me;

stop you kissing and touching me.

Not because I don’t want you;

I will always reserve a place for you, always part of my dedication.

I want you all over, from head to feet.

But I need to stop myself from falling into the one abyss

I know too well.

I need to prevent you from loving me for a time,

or at all.

To keep you from breaking the blissful illusion I conjure;

to keep you from lying to me about why you can’t love me anymore.

To stop you from taking me over.

To stop you from making me believe you are like all the others before you,

inked and stabbed on my skin like knife cuts.

To keep me from imagining you were never there;

a dream that swirls with reality where it has no place.

To ensure you don’t start picking me apart with your teeth, while I sleep,

and you begin to fade.

I don’t want to meet the same river of conclusions, fussing and moaning and

screaming about the agony as you pull me apart one final time.

Take what you need and run.

Scoop it out like melting ice cream and disappear somewhere out of my reach yet

close enough to invade me again when you need to.

I don’t need to feel this again.

With you of all people.




Tamara Fraser Aug 2016
I’m frightened.

I try to follow the rules, but danger is contagious.

When you breathe, something breathes back.

When you start to truly feel the sun, the rain clouds settle in.

When I take a chance and smile at you, you don’t even see me.

When I try and tell you to protect yourself from me,

you unburden your chest before me.

When you try to take my clothes off, I don’t let you.

When I try to hold back from needing your skin on mine,

I give myself over to you and succumb to what I can do.

What we are always free to do and make and see and need and feel and

lust for.

When I tell you all my truths, you reply with homespun lies and

glistening dreams

far too slippery to hold on to.

When I donate half of my order to you, you run from the attention;

hiding out in the deepest shadows and insecurities that are threads in


When you push me out and let me in, I only try to destroy your walls and

invade your lands.

When you make me feel like a woman in your eyes, I fear you in the dark;

where your hands are going, what you want today and what you’ll need


When you lean in to kiss me, I can already feel the metallic tang of

blood on your lips.

When I get to pull you closer, it’s a second of spark and minutes of


When I desperately want to savour what you say, I can’t begin to make

the words stay still.

When I dream of you, I can never remember what it was about.

When you prepare yourself to invite another into your sacred spaces;

witness the shadows, the creatures of your thoughts, the past and the

present you,

you must also prepare to bleed.

Prepare to kiss back and notice the cracks in your lips.

Prepare to touch and notice the bruises beginning to burst beneath your


Prepare to love and notice the heart the begins to hurt and skip its beats.

I go to bed and wonder why I was never


good enough for you.

When she says no to you, think of me.

Because there are always two sides to every argument, every process,

every feeling.

And you are entitled to bear them too.
Tamara Fraser Aug 2016
Music sings out, sobbing in the silence

of a darkened room.

It rises and falls, waves of calm and turmoil,

shared in bursts;

crescendoes of chaos and gentle melodies,

like bridges between tears.

This is where heart-ache resides;

patient and deadly, it waits.

It lurks in crowded corners, along with

all the other sins you make room for.

It makes the music you wish others

could hear, soft murmurs repeating

long into the night.

This is where everything resides.

The dark portions are home to all

your creatures, and all the music

they make;

worn strings and sticky keys.

Jealousy and its drumbeats

paired with dishonest notes and

the jagged shadows of your temptations

and spite.

The room is loud around you, but no one

on the other side of the door can hear

you cry it’s too loud.

They hear a rustle of leaves in a barren night.

Nothing more.

I confess.

I confess I still love you.

I confess I still desire another, and another;

I confess to all these temptations, passions left

sour in my mouth.

I confess to dreaming of you hurt.

I confess to rejecting your body once before,

a one night stand left on pause for days.

I confess to inflicting your words, just like I confess

to feeling bruised and wounded.

I confess to tears, when I see you embrace another.

I confess to tears in the long, cold night; because

I only feel empty at the thought of your name.

I confess to wishing I’d screamed at you, howled

in agony before your eyes as you slipped between my fingers.

I confess to hoping you would admit your scandalous lies,

and confess to knowing you never would be good enough to.

I confess to whispering your name above me,

and being glad I don’t have to bear a response.

I confess to painting your memories in words,

and loving how they float away,

as slippery and fine as silk.

I confess all these things, in your name.
Tamara Fraser Aug 2016
This is what hurt looks like.

This is what pain creates, added that

you are conditioned to feel sad.

Chemicals unbalanced and unchecked,

You’re a ticking time bomb waiting to explode.

The sudden icy tingle of cold

as you move from warm sunlight to shade;

the sudden shimmer before your eyes,

blending into the last sight you wish to see that day.

The sudden jump in your sleep,

before you fall and wake knowing you will, soon;

the sudden lights that dance before you,

before you know they’ll eclipse you as soon

as you are left alone.

These are all the ways you are unpredictable.

These are all the little things you

plead for others to understand.

And all the little things they never will.

Because that is the cruelest blow, the

omnipresent bleed underneath the skin,

the constant broken limb and sickness that

doesn’t heal.

That is the cruelest part of all;

they just don’t understand.

I write and let the frustrations climb the pages;

mountains inked out before me to mark

the journey’s edges.

I write and leave traces of every scar and wound,

praying one day you will find them.

I write to leave it all behind;

leave the roads mapped as far as they have been followed.

I write in order to tell you things I no longer can,

to remind you of what I was, what I did, how

I helped you move on to someone else.

I write to ask you the questions you never allowed me to,

to ask why




This is how I process all the ways I hurt.

So I can avoid the physical cuts and bruises.

So I can gather my defences, to brace another onslaught.

So I can enjoy, love, laugh, grow while my demons

are away, left on quests to search for the proofs they can

use against me; paste on walls in my mind.

I know you won’t understand,

I know you can’t and I have learnt to allow you

to fall short.

But you need to hear some truths regardless.

This is how I process all the ways I hurt.

How do you look at yours?
Tamara Fraser Aug 2016
You coated your words in spice;

fragrant lies perfuse deep inside.

Wrapped and bundled and brandished

in bouquets of flowering excuses.

You’ve taught me a lesson;

after letting those words of yours

taint the inside of my head,

dripping into my heart.

Spoilage, wasted.

Never could you have committed

any crime more cruel.

When your flowers wilt

and fade,

when your spices turn rancid,

I will know what it was.

You never loved me at all.

You can replace me in days.

Find a new love to call.

Apparently she fills the voids

I couldn’t anymore.

Take those fanciful dreams of yours,

of you and me and memories,

and bury them alongside what’s

left of me.

I don’t need to be pulled along

into your little playground;

your little fair, exhibit, of

times gone by when we

once touched.

Just know that I’m still the one

who took you exploring.

I’m the one who offered you a different


I’m the one you worshipped naked before you

not very long ago.

And you, girl.

I can only offer you such sympathy.

Because you’ve opened yourself to the same shadow,

the predator in all loves;

the one that toys and bends and preys on that

vulnerable little parcel of yours.

The one that beats for him.

But don’t forget it also beats for you.

And do you really want him to tease and taunt and

hold that thing?

Poor girl.

When he brandishes that same bouquet at your door,

you know it’s time, poor thing.
Tamara Fraser Aug 2016
The way you say those words

makes me

fall back in.

The mind games you play

can be so cruel;

causing stings and pulses

surging in my skull.

You’re not an addiction;

I would have to enjoy you, crave you,

need you for that.

No, you are a deadly medicine.

My sickness is loneliness

and you are the drug I take

to cease this episode.

Your domesticated wolf.

I have claws and teeth and all

the things you want to strip me of.

But they are also the features you

long for in bed alone at night.

I can howl and


and whimper at your feet.

Still you trap me in a leash.

I hunt you during the day;

but you chase your hound at night.

I’ve loved you and lost you;

it’s time for me to stalk,

to roam the wilds, free of you.

But you only grasp my mane tighter.

You ***** my heavy, soft fur;

marvel and leer at my savage,

intoxicating form.

You think you have tamed the beast

which means you can own me.

‘See these luminescent eyes?

They’re mine.’

You make me feel the unbearable

weight of guilt;

strapped along my back.

Of trying to stop this imprisonment.

Because it is a hellish cage for us both.

You make me feel all fetid and rank inside;

endlessly making the mistakes you don’t know if

you can forgive me for, love me for.

I don’t want to be dealt the vicious card of villain.

I don’t want to be the murderer.

The internal bleeding I hide,

makes me realise

I have no choice.

Lose you, be loved by you, end you,

all mean the same twisted inky blotch.

I only wish I could have been the one to lunge.

Lunge for your throat.

Rip gashes in the sinewy, tall

master I have.

Tear your limbs from you;

cleave your confidence, your stoicism.

Erase that brutish nature only I can see.

Instead of you choking me.

Instead of the tight noose around my throat.

Before you cut it off and whipped my hide

as I bounded to the closest shadows I could find.

Tamed so much that power was forgotten.

Your domesticated wolf.
Tamara Fraser Aug 2016
How do we speak to each other?

How do words become a universal language?

How do we explain ourselves if we can never speak for each other?

A gentle kiss, quickening, deepening before its lost,

a warm smile but a whispered laugh.

A heart so light but a body so tired.

You unfurl for me, a bud springing open on the morning breeze,

palms open and eyes exploring,

so fragile yet so terrifyingly strong

it blinds me,

it shakes me,

it unearths the roots i worked to bury for myself,

it wounds me to falter before you.

You bare your soul,

a mirror uncovered despite the dust in the air.

it stands before me,

I can see myself stripped before you too.

you allow the light to drip down,

bathe you in vulnerability,

and that is a strength I can only look at in wonder.



too brilliant it hurts to be the one to shatter your glass.

You feel me trace

your face,

fingers graze along your lines,

leaving cracks where I touch.

I know i’ll never open myself to you.

I know i’ll never unfurl like you have, because



I don’t know what to expect.

of you.

of me.

I feel the longing warm the glass.

you want me

but i can’t provide.

I can provide for others,

who pierce my skin, eagerly fumble with my clothes,

press against me fiercely to absorb what they need.

but for you i feel too adequate,

too humble,

I know i do not crave your touch,

I feel

in a cavern where i safe-keep my heart, my feelings;

that I can provide only what a friend might offer,

only insight and best wishes.

I cannot feel like perfection bundled in your arms,


I feel

my being beat against my walls

screaming that it isn’t my place to be there

in your arms.

I cannot linger in your light,

i don’t want to trail my dark ink,

thick and clotted,

across that golden shine.

I only want comfort for us.

I only want that burst of sunshine

dripping gold and gems and diamonds,

of when we meet and explore the people who were meant to hold us,

embrace us,

coat us and touch us, whisper and laugh and cry before our outstretched

arms to one another.

to be the lovers to us that we desire.

to be the safest


to be the safest shelter we could ever find amid a burning field.

the people we were designed to allow to pick apart the cobwebs, the

bruises, the joy and the

darkness we all carry inside.

I want to feel that.

I don’t want to see you break into pieces at my feet.

I don’t want to see shards of something so beautiful.

we want to be worshipped.

to feel we could walk on broken glass so long as

you were there to hold us tight at the end of the road,

to make us smile without even thinking

to make us burst without reasoning to.

to not even need words, explanations to others, gestures,


to not even need to think about how we look.

but I don’t think my love will kneel before you and worship the thought

of holding you.

does that make me horrible?

why do I feel like I’m burning?

can you belong to someone while you wait to hopefully,



decidedly belong to another? the one you need to belong to.

Is it cruel to wait and play and tease,

knowing this,

or is it crueler still to break them open?

to make them fall away from you, to fear you, to make them taste the sour


of you

instead of dragging them behind you in chains they want to bare.

How do you know all this?

or are you simply deceiving yourself?

where are you?

where am I?

Cold, damp, broken surf washing over my feet.

salted like tears.

Except I know they are mine.

I know you are still that beautiful golden mirror,

I keep

in my cavern

tucked away.

I know you stay behind a dusty, ***** sheet.

but right now I need to turn from this place






please, release yourself from me

and be free.

— The End —