MAP

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Audrey Reynolds prose poems 1, 2, 3 and 4.


You can’t hold it back. You can’t ignore the march of progress. It’s madness to think you can. We are playing a different game now. We are all catching up with the new rules. I have almost forgotten the owl perched on the postbox. I no longer listen to the weather forecast. And I have put the figure of me next to the statue of you. It creates a society.

  

 
Make yourself at home. The bedroom is always cold. The heating seems to make no difference. Many things have gone, because I felt brave. I found a sideboard and some cushions to make up for it. Can you see the flowers, lit by the day? And the small cupboard high on the wall? I know there are too many notebooks lying around. None of them full, none of them empty. At night I picture a house, with spare rooms and a garden, to help me sleep. Do you notice anything different? My hair? My perfume?

 

 
Aside from the pink rocket and the painting box I managed to throw it all away. I was able to sweep up the dust. I should have stopped there. I should have been contented. To sit and look out at the English sea, to have the evening to myself. Not another adventure. He found three things to say to me. The next morning I woke up horrified, but I can keep a secret. Feign her utter composure. Of course I knew it wasn’t right. I felt it straight away. He wanted things to slowly reveal themselves. They said he was inscrutable, and why did I get it so wrong?

 

 
I haven’t bothered with a diary this year. I am remembering things. I remember that John Tom died this morning. And that the funeral is on Saturday. I go swimming and say one, one, one to myself for the first length, then two, two, two for the second one. It’s repetition. It’s January. It’s February. It’s time I dealt with the so-called rift. This one is a centipede, the other one is a millipede. Glaciers are retreating, trees are growing. I am between air masses.


Audrey Reynolds is an artist and writer. Her work includes sculpture, painting, text, film and spoken-word audio. She studied at Bath College of Art and Chelsea College of Art, London. Recent solo exhibitions include: Thirteenth & Third Girl, Ancient & Modern, London (2014 & 2012); Anote, Outpost, Norwich (2011); Bayard Eade, The Dock, Carrick-on-Shannon, Ireland (2011). She has also participated in group exhibitions including Camden Arts Centre, London; MOT International, London; 60th Anniversary Show, Gimpel Fils, London.  She lives and works in London.