southern nights


the chaotic landscape of a student union bar at midnight; muddy floors covered in the sweet stickiness of cheap vodka, freshers violently hugging, kissing, crying, screaming. and their eyes, incapable of focusing a glazed gaze of oblivion, spin inwards towards the hearty warmth of a soaking red wine-coloured brain, dissolving piece by piece like feta cheese in a water bath.

my friend and I drink doubles, slowly adapting. the boys are all cute teenage hipsters with big lips and curly fringes, dancing awkwardly to a string of Christmas hits and smiling sweetly at nearby sexual subjects. at one point we’re pushed down a flight of stairs. adolescent hormonal turmoil forcing itself down a crowded corridor, bouncer biceps flash past and we fall to the ground, helplessly hitting the floor like two car crash dummies.

London is dressed in a tacky winter nightdress as I make my way home, shining bright but fooling no one, the homeless shaking uncontrollably at the pavements of her very heart. I go from south to north on various empty buses, through the strange, dark streets of Bermondsey. I read the same poem over and over on my phone, but can only memorise the first paragraph. you do not do, you do not do. the calm water of the Thames cut the city in two like a blood-black whip, throwing the icy lights back at my pained eyes as I’m struck by its sudden, spark-like beauty, soon gone.