Amortentia and Pumpkins

Human's have approximately 12,000-50,000 thoughts a day. I'm just trying to get as much of mine out as possible.

Blood Ties

by amortentiaandpumpkins

The past few months, I’ve witnessed the breakdown of a family that I once thought was impenetrable by any sort of negative force. My family. 

A family that I thought would put family first, before money, personal gain and reputation. But I’ve realized that these days, blood means next to nothing. I witnessed my father coming back from work, where his boss is a cruel, ruthless scumbag and, unfortunately, a relative. This tyrannical fuck used to treat my family (my parents, brother and I) all the time, with gifts, trips and words of so-called kindness. This was when my dad was still working for him, and everything was going well with the business and all. But just because my dad decided one day that he would rather do his own thing, he gave his notice, after 24 years of hard work. To which this cretin not only refuses to accept it at first, but cut all ties with my family. He might as well have spit on my father. This man really put the dick in dictator, as not only did my dad quit without a severance package, he let go of the dedicated staff that worked in my dads department. My dad is at the airport right now with my mother, both of them comforting a member of staff right now, who has been crying for the last few hours. She had been at the company for almost as long as my dad himself.

After seeing these series of events unfold, all I can say is that I’ve really learnt that, just because someone is family, we can never truly trust them. Sure, we have the same blood. But what does that really mean? History has shown brothers murdering brothers, mothers sacrificing their children for their own personal gain. Of course, it is not as drastic in this day and age, but this was still pretty  shit. You think you know someone, but you really don’t know what they will pull, simply because of a change that wasn’t previously predicted. I’m willing to bet that he (I refuse to call him an uncle anymore) assumed my father would work for him all his life, and couldn’t stand the fact that my dad wanted to go towards another path. It sickens me that he ignored the years of hard work my dad put in. On the contrary, he should’ve told my dad that he was sad that he was leaving, but grateful for his work and wish him luck for the future. This would’ve happened if he was a decent human being, let alone family. 

I’ve also learnt that expectations from people should only be built upon during difficult times that you have faced together. The gifts and everythign received from him… it was all materialistic crap. What my family really needed throughout it all was support. Something only given when it was convenient for him, and never for us. 

 

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Unique Selling Point

by amortentiaandpumpkins

Today, I went to the cinema with my family, where I saw someone I knew from high school. I don’t mean to sound dramatic, but that person was my nemesis back in high school. How and why? Long story short: she was a friend, and then went behind my back and started making my life hell for a bit. I think what I hated most was how I let her get under my skin.

There she was, dressed like she was about to walk on a run way, and there I was, looking like I was ready for bed. She was decked from head to toe with designer (although, probably fake) and make up. I, on the other hand, had no make up, and with my newly short haircut, resembled a 13 year old boy. A feminine one though, with my pink scarf, might I add. Something that hadn’t been in my system for a long time started creeping back in: insecurity. I hadn’t felt this way in quite a while. It’s what seeing people from high school does to you I guess. But I didn’t like this feeling. In fact, I wanted to run out of the movie theatre there and then, just to get rid of this feeling. But instead, as I waited in the popcorn queue, I started thinking about a few things.

Right, so I probably don’t have much going for me, compared to her. I don’t turn up to normal places looking like a supermodel. I don’t have this winning personality, or the brain of Einstein. I don’t have any extraordinary talents, frankly speaking. But what do I have? And it hit me. There IS something going for me. I found my USP*.

Let me rewind back to when I was describing and contrasting my appearance to the girl from my high school. I realized that what she’s doing is an illusion. The make up. The threads. The excessiveness of it all. Does anyone really know what’s behind all that? A quick (and slightly regrettable) scan through her Facebook went to show that what everyone sees is a grand facade. Granted, maybe there are a few people that see the “real” her. But then I think about me. It’s not just my appearance. But let’s start there for argument’s sake: I have honestly stopped caring too much. Yes, there are days and occasions where I will make the effort to look nice, like a birthday party or date. But the cinema with my family? I’ll stick to my jeggings, Ugg boots and unkempt hair, thank you very much. I want to be comfortable! Then in terms of my attitude, my persona… I like being silly. I like being crazy, and quirky, and I like showing how I feel. I like crying in front of people, because I want people to know exactly how I feel. I don’t want to hide. I want to expose myself, all of me. Because I feel closer to others. I feel like, why hide? What’s the point? It just builds up, and rather than reaching a bursting point, it’s better to slowly let everything out in the process. 

Erving Goffman, a fantastic sociologist, puts it very well: social life is like a play. Everybody has their “front stage” which is basically what they let others see of themselves, and their “backstage” to relax and let yourself go. And when it comes to me, well let’s just say, I’m not afraid to dish out VIP passes. 

With that in mind, I held my head up high, and walked straight past her. 

*USP stands for “Unique Selling Point,” which, in business terms, pretty much means the attribute a product possesses that makes people want to buy it. Being a Marketing major, I couldn’t resist using this term. 

Sound Waves

by amortentiaandpumpkins

I used to listen to music for the melody,

Listening to the lyrics felt like a felony,

I never took in the words of the songs,

Lacking the experience, it just felt wrong,

I never felt the emotions so real,

I had no idea how to really feel,

Until he came along, showed me the ropes,

My faith was restored, he gave me hope,

Finally it all started to make sense,

The power of it all was truly immense,

Finally I understood that four letter word,

Before, in my presence, it was left unheard,

At least it was empty, loaded, nonsensical,

A word that was once incomprehensible,

But the chemicals reacted, the music and him,

The songs, heavenly, just like the hymns

I heard as a child, in a hollow room,

Never the spiritual type, but deep in the gloom,

A light finally shines, and it dawns on me,

Slowly, ever so slowly, it was meant to be,

My captain. He rides slowly in the sound waves,

Calm, and my body, I finally feel safe,

And the music forever echoes, into my ears,

Eradicating all my worries, all of my fears. 

Timing

by amortentiaandpumpkins

An hourglass hanging from a necklace chain,

A clock to show you missed the last train,

Now you’re wondering where to spend the night,

You decide to go watch the city’s lights,

A cold harbour, but you dare to venture farther,

But with each gust, it feels just a little bit harder,

But you reach a spot, and you feel satisfied,

View of the black sea, the sound is amplified,

But you feel serene, until a tap of the shoulder,

You turn around, suddenly you feel colder,

A ghost from the past, at the coast at last,

You’re wondering whether to get away fast,

For you were let down before, it may happen again,

Who knows how long it’ll take for the wounds to mend,

But something tells you, the look in their eyes,

This time there will be no troubles, no lies.

You allow yourself a small smile, a reciprocation,

A little bit of an urge, a little temptation,

You keep some distance, don’t send any signals,

But you can’t help it, you feel a little tingle,

Down your spine, you’re going out of your mind,

Before you know it, their hands start to find

The back of your neck, start of with a peck,

You should, but you don’t ask for a rain check,

There are no fireworks in the sky, but in you head,

You’re feeling dizzy, but you go on ahead,

A simple kiss, but a fall into the abyss,

The fear that you’re going to hit but miss,

You pull away with that thought lingering,

You feel the wind again, you’re shivering,

Pursed lips, you say it’s time to go,

Thank you very much, hope you enjoyed the show.

 

 

 

Stars

by amortentiaandpumpkins

I saw a perfect triangle tonight.

A constellation, terrifying, bright,

Blinding my eyes, although it may seem,

The stars do not significantly beam.

Significance is key, forget the objective perspective,

When you look at the sky, it’s about being perceptive,

Believing in what you see, rather than the tangible,

Although it burns, you’re incapable of being infallible.

They meant something more than you could imagine,

They meant more than you could ever even fathom,

And yet despite being a small part of a bigger picture,

It feels like you, out of everyone, got the taste of the elixir,

Life seemed unfair, you were constantly unsure,

Until you glanced up, taking in all of its allure,

At that moment, your whole being felt secure,

You were reborn, flawless and pure.

I saw a perfect triangle tonight,

I don’t know what it meant, I don’t know if I’m right,

The geometric beauty, grasping for a message,

To bring your life out of chaos, madness and wreckage.

Trust

by amortentiaandpumpkins

I think that one of the biggest ironies of this world is trust.

Trust is something we consciously hold as important and precious, yet it is one thing we can give away, blindly and completely subconsciously, to complete strangers.

We put trust in the chefs that have produced the food that we consume in restaurants. How do we know our food doesn’t contain poison? Or some disease or bacteria, like E Coli? We have no definite way of knowing. Yet do we ever consider it before digging our fork in that steak, or pie, or whatever you are fully enjoying eating, and putting it in our mouths? No. Never. Don’t lie.

How about that cab ride back home? A little full. Maybe a little tipsy on that wine, no? Ok, so we’re doing that sensible thing by not driving ourselves. But how do we know that the cab driver isn’t bombed himself? Or maybe he’s really tired and drifting somewhere between being awake and in deep sleep. Or… He could be a criminal on a getaway ride and you happened to hail his cab and he had no choice but to let you in so he could take all you valuables and leave you stranded. But you never think about that. You think about getting from A to B and your biggest worry is probably only do you have enough to pay for the ride.

It’s crazy how we can put our lives in the hands of strangers. But sharing a so-called secret with people you consider as your closest and dearest? No… You would think twice. It probably isn’t even life or death.

Ironic, isn’t it?

Silly Me

by amortentiaandpumpkins

Silly me. A paper and pen in hand, but for all the wrong purposes.

It was supposed to be purely academic,

And then it hit me and the world became psychedelic.

Blinded by white moonlight, and the fire in my lighter,

Desire. The burning in my lungs feels required.

Silly me. Like a big wave, it hit me, and I lost my balance.

But the tide pulls in, and I suffer from it’s absense,

The withdrawal symptoms. I can’t breathe,

Only with it’s touch I can be freed.

A three tier cake, with it’s many layers,

This game can never have too many players,

The baggage only comes and goes on a conveyor

Belt. Until then I’ll go ahead and say my prayers.

Silly me.

Disorientation

by amortentiaandpumpkins

Don’t you have those days where nothing makes sense, and everything feels simply out of place? When it feels like your mind is far away from your body, and any sort of effect on your body does not affect your mind because of this reason? It’s like your body wants to do nothing but sleep it off, but your mind is on full alert. It’s processing faster than a new state of the art MacBook.
Let’s add a third element to this equation: the heart. Imagine a body that just wants a bed to lay on, a mind with thoughts to match a cheetahs speed, and a heart that’s burning like fire on petrol. Imagine the intensity that your body is experiencing without the effects of any type of narcotic substances. That’s exactly how I feel.
Really, there are quite a lot of things I can call this. Heartache? But I feel that my mind is as numb as my body by that time, as though the intensity can only be felt by my heart. But no, the numbing process of my mind has yet to come, whenever it does. Fatigue? Again no. Once again, the mind would have to falter in it’s speed and intensity of thought processing. Euphoria? Yeah, right. Sure my body feels relaxed and my minds racing. But my heart sure isn’t.
Disorientation is the only thing I feel. Simple disorientation. Where nothing matches anything else. Where everything is inconsistent.

The Written Word

by amortentiaandpumpkins

I like to make out that I’m fearless. Nothing scares me. Yeah sure, I’m not too fond of snakes and lizards, but if I see one, I wouldn’t put on a Broadway-worthy show about how freaked out I am. I’ll just walk away slowly.
But honestly, there are things that share the shit out of me, and I feel it is sometimes to difficult for me to compose myself and say the words out loud.
One of these things is the almost obsolete written word. And I mean the literal form: actually writing words with a pen and on paper.
It scares the shit out of me how people have become so reliant on computers and mobile phones to write anything. Sure, they can communicate their word much more faster and efficiently, and it’s easier to broadcast this message to others once you’re done.
To me, there is something so pure about writing words down on a piece of paper. The way in which no matter how much you cross out words, the crossing-outs are still there to remind you that you’ve made errors. It feels so human, way more human than writing on a Word Document, where the backspace key does the trick, erasing any evidence of error. Some may argue that there are rubbers to erase the pencilled words, or even those pesky white out markers. But the residue of the rubber, the pencil smudges and the messy white out marks still reminds us of the errors we made.
Then there is the handwriting of the writer him/herself. The way each individual letter is drawn. The way the indentation is done. They way punctuations are produced. The intensity with which the pen has touched the paper, to produce bumps at the back Of the page. It makes the writing much more three-dimensional, as the writer doesn’t merely show his ideas through the words itself, but through the way in which these words are written. You can almost what kind of person the writer is without actually reading the words. It’s like reading in another language: you don’t understand the words itself, but the technique can give an indicator of what the writer is trying to convey.
The written word also feels far more personal, and thus superior, than any other form of communication, even talking. The written word shows the thought put into the message. The effort put into inscribing each letter, each word. The time and the patience of the writer. Reading a piece of work written on paper and written by pen feels like nothing else. For me, it’s the purest form of communication.
Back to the obsolete nature of the written word. The place I see it most evident (and perhaps because being in the process of completing the stages of this institution) is education. Back in the early to mid 2000s, when I was still in primary school, almost every piece of work I produced was written out, or drawn. Using the computers at school was a novelty. They were there, we could use them. But emphasis was put on writing. But then comes the later part of the ’00 decade to the present (and, inevitably, extrapolated to the future) we used laptops for everything in school. Although by we, I mean the majority.
I could never get truly used to it.
Sure I use my laptop or phone. I’m using it to write this post, aren’t I? But only because I have embraced the conveniences of using this form to communicate to others for the most part. But it comes to myself, purely myself; when it comes to writing notes for class, writing song lyrics, writing short stories, writing shopping lists, writing ideas for a project or even writing to one person only, I turn to my pen and paper. To me, it’s a bond that I know I’ll never be able to truly break. No matter how much I go on my laptop, I can never truly leave my pen. But it scares me that people don’t do it enough anymore. It scares me that My children may never understand the feel of a pen in their hand and paper under their palm. The way in which this world is “progressing” and at a rate that is almost unthinkable… It scares me.
One more thing: I used to hate my primary school teachers for enforcing handwriting practise for about half an hour per day almost every day. Now I couldn’t thank them enough.

Frajo

by amortentiaandpumpkins

I just finished a smoke break in my balcony, so thought that this might be appropriate.

I first started smoking at age 16. It was after our first GCSE exam. A bunch of us went to this place near my high school with a grassy rooftop to chill out before the next bomb created by the Cambridge Examination Board was dropped our way. My then “fun buddy” had a pack on him. He had been smoking for a while now. I was curious. I couldn’t help admiring the way he held it, and just how it improved his look and aura in general. So I asked for one, and he obliged. I had no idea how to inhale. I was the biggest noob; what happened was I ended up apparently giving the cig a little kiss. Everyone burst out laughing. I couldn’t help but join along and laugh with them at my stupidity and naiveity. But I was determined. 

I tried again after the summer. It was another rooftop party. Something that night upset me, so I asked a friend to let me try a cig (at that time, I refused to drink, so alcohol was no comfort). This time I managed to take it in. A little coughing. But my mouth adjusted. I started to feel a little relaxed. I remember that I didn’t feel conscious of my hands. It felt so natural. 

I went to the graveyard a couple of times with friends during school for a smoke break. But I ended up feeling more satisfied smoking by myself, behind my home.

I wasn’t a regular smoker until the summer before university started. I traveled to Switzerland, to stay with my aunt. She was at work most of the time, so I traveled the country by myself. Train rides were long and there was a lot of waiting on train platforms. One thing I observed on these platforms was practically everyone smoked while they waited for the train. I could understand. It felt so long each time, waiting for that train. Smoking helped pass the time. So I started. 1 a day, 2 a day and so on. 

Then university happened. I thought I’d let go of my habit, but university definitely made it a lot harder. It started off by only smoking on nights out. There were quite a lot of those. It then started happening between classes. I’d be sitting in a lecture, craving nothing but my next smoke break.

My parents found out eventually. My mother didn’t talk. I think she felt afraid of me. Of how I wasn’t this sweet, innocent young girl whose hair she’d make before sending her off to school. My father though… he was a smoker. 10 years. He gave it all up for my mother. But his words couldn’t break my walls. I was unreachable. Because I felt like this was an escape from… everything. But not just that. The habit stuck on.

See, this boy I knew and liked. He’s a smoker. Craving for smoke breaks just for that purpose wasn’t enough anymore. I started craving smoke breaks because I thought we’d bump into each other one day or another in one of the spots on campus. And we did. A few times. We did talk. But nothing. 

So now, I crave smoke breaks for smoke breaks. Sometimes, with a friend or two, which admittedly does feel a whole lot better. But then, I wish that someday, I find what my father found with my mother. Motivation enough to give it all up.