Stella’s Hounding  

Photograph by Lani Elliott at flickr

To get to this point, she had to be largely out of the common sense. Like toilet paper fluttering in a steady draught, twisting and snaking the full length of its perforated segments, her nerves never ceased, never settled into any less unpredictable pattern called “home”. Each turn of phrase was a change of heart, emotion’s perpetual motion — she couldn’t f-f-f-find herself for long in a single one of any of her f-f-f-feelings. Voices spoke against her in a relentlessly demented tone of vice. Her search against incomprehension was for anything that would drive her sane — by middle age, the exhaustion was as clear as the no’s on her face. And yet, despite the accumulated mundane darkness, there were moments when — like the brave dog born without eyes — she could listen to the world to the limits of existence in all her skin, as if a Painted Lady had landed slap-bang on her forehead.

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