“Some things are hard to write about. After something happens to you, you go to write it down, and either you over dramatize it, or underplay it, exaggerate the wrong parts or ignore the important ones. At any rate, you never write it quite the way you want to.” Sylvia Plath
Helloooo there beautiful people. Hope you’ve been well. I should get to a non-fiction post soon enough. Let you know what has been up with me.
In other pressing matters, I saw the above quote yesterday. Sylvia Plath couldn’t have said it better. It’s so true about written words both fiction and non-fiction. In any case I decided to share this flash fiction I wrote a few weeks back. That quote prompted me to.
See this story you’re about to read, has some elements of reality in it. Fiction, I have always accepted is therapeutic. It takes a little of us.
What had she gained? Instead her seams were ruffled inside her. She didn’t understand. She couldn’t possibly get it. And the question Uju had asked ” a boy or a girl?”
Aanu knew in that moment that she shouldn’t have told her. There ought to have been a tearing inside of Uju if she got it, the type of tearing that happened inside Aanu the night she found out.
Aanu wished she had kept quiet and nursed the grief in her. It was always best after all not to expose yourself to outsiders. What had compelled her mouth to tell Uju she still didn’t know. What she had hoped to achieve evaded her. She felt like paper; flat and raw.
After Uju heard Toni had a baby, and put the picture on Instagram, Uju’s question was “why did she put it on IG?”
For Aanu that wasn’t meant to be the question. She felt exposed and mocked. Toni was a part of her. Opening up to someone who didn’t get it hurt.
She rubbed her palms together in hopes to get rid of the dark gap inside her.
They had dreamt together, herself and Toni. They had hushed conversations till early mornings. They washed socks for each other when that was all they had to wash and the other had much laundry to do. She had exchanged the Friday fish she didn’t like for Toni’ Sunday plantain which Toni considered too soft.
They had snuck to read each other’s diary. And knowing they couldn’t always keep their diary far away from human reach, they sometimes interwove untrue stories along with the truth. They created a life they wanted by sprinkling their current lives with condiments. Lives more luscious with the boys who stayed around them. So when they snuck and read each others diary they read rich and enviable entries.
Life had happened to them all after graduation. Dispersed them, changed them .
The first time Aanu saw Toni after graduation, Toni had come to unilag to see her aunt who worked there. When they met and their bodies pressed together, Toni had not opened her heart, only her arms. Anu felt a sort of bereavement, and inadequacy. She had opened her heart and her arms without receiving same.
Consequently, they distanced themselves. Whenever she went down her Facebook feed, she would see Toni’s recent photo upload, stare at it then continue scrolling like she had never seen it. Now she wished she had liked it. Wished she had commented. When she had kept in touch. Wished. Wished. Wished.
Thanks Ronke. ?
Very well written. I completely agree with you on the point that fiction definitely carries a part of ourselves with it. And I cannot thank you enough for that quote by Sylvia Plath! Those words are so true…
Thank you too. Yes, we tell stories based on experience, observation, imagination or just any of the two. So much that fiction almost always takes some part of us along.
And yes, Sylvia Path made me understand that it is a normal thing. Such encouragement. May we find more of such quotes?.
I appreciate your comment☺
Indeed. Those three are the prime contributors to fiction, at least for me. More quotes like that.. Yeah. Cheers to that! 🙂
Sylvia Plath couldn’t have said it better.
Amazing story. I can totally relate.
Yes. Sometimes we need some reassurance that what we feel as writers is perfectly normal. Someone once said ‘perfect’ is the enemy of ‘done’. On closer scrutiny, I understood if I kept waiting till I had a story which beat that of every writer I’ve ever read, then I will never write.
I’m glad you could relate. Beneath our differences, we majorly feel the same things.
Thank you Zaram.