Hi guys, the lovely, young woman sighed breathlessly on the screen to her viewers. I clicked of the little pop-up ad at the bottom of her video, concerned with the overt distress she opened her vlog with. The anxiety and stress in her voice were palpable. She looked somewhat ashamed, too embarrassed to even be in front of her camera. She fidgeted nervously with her hair before she lurched into a hurried explanation for her state: I’m really not happy. I only read fourteen books in the month of November which isn’t great, which means I’ll have to read 21 books in December to reach my end of year goal — I clicked off. This was precisely why I had left. It seemed as though nothing had changed.
The poetry world is a mess. Big time. Recently the PN Review published a stinging critique of the “rise of a cohort of young female poets”, those being Kate Tempest, Hollie McNish and Rupi Kaur, and described their work as “the open denigration of intellectual engagement and rejection of craft”.
In early November, on a particular day, six people messaged me ‘happy birthday’. Three of them were relatives (my mother, cousin and an aunt), the other three friends. That was all.
This was the result of my first birthday off social media, making my 26th birthday probably the most sincerest one I’d had in over fourteen years. To contextualise: a month prior I had decided to log out and block myself from all of my social media accounts. Admittedly, this was initially undergone as a form of temporary hiatus, but last week I decided to make the change permanent. Continue reading “deleting myself online”
by Cinzia DuBois
tw: the following story covers the issue of eating disorders.
History is full of stories of heroes failing where they should succeed; and when they fail, they usually do so spectacularly. Don’t get me wrong, heroes are all very good at their job; they’ve completed many masterful quests and epics which have enraptured and enchanted me throughout my life. There are tales, however, usually hidden amidst fragments of Greek and Roman poetry, Norse mythology and Middle-English scriptures, which reveal the kinks and holes in the legendary tapestries. These tales recall the mythological arrows which can pierce the unpierceable armour, and speak of storms which drown unsinkable ships, of illimitable stamina exhausted by reality and of undying love broken by death. Some of these tales are true, others complete fantasies; but the large majority tend to be elaborate exaggerations and imaginative twists on reality: contortions of the real, infected by the human imagination. What lore quietly reveals to us is that no one is invincible or infallible; everyone and everything is susceptible to err, damage, fault and weakness. There is always a way to defeat the invincible hero, just as there is always a way to destroy the invincible beast. No matter how powerful and frightening the enemy, or how heroic the hero, how kind the fairy, how loving the mother, how daring the daughter; lore has repeatedly told us that no one ever completely safe.