Friday, March 6, 2009

Seven Layers of a Wound by Carly-Jay Metcalf

Seven Layers of a Wound

the first layer – green eyes, blue eyes, your eyes

his girlfriend’s party

Whispers beat across the wind

that he liked me more than her.

He would phone me in hospital,

visit me with fistfuls of daisies saying

how much he cared,

like some sort of thin vow.

I knew where this was going and I liked it.

One night, she had a party.

Too sick to go, he called me from her house.

Broke up with her.

On her birthday.

It felt like my birthday.


it was crash bang boom and I was in love with him and he with me and it was going to last forever because he wrote me letters asking me to be his wife and have his children and we were sixteen but it didn’t matter because I loved him and it was going to last forever because I loved him and he loved me and it was going to last forever. Because.

the meaning of things

He went down on me for the first time

while our parents were in the kitchen.

Throat on fire, hoping winter air would curb that vocal wrench

where everything is white and silent and pure and then,

when you harvest the agony, you think—

‘maybe there is a god’.

He suckles my clitoris like a baby would a breast,

my vagina swells with blood.

Blushing, my pelvis cracks when I spread my hipbones,

his tongue warm, like it had been dipped in a freshly drawn bath.

I take to finding him with my hands in the darkness,

grabbing his hair, stapling him to me.

With my ass bearing down into the mattress, we knit our fingers together

like we’re about to die, but really, we’re just saving each other.

I spray his mouth and for a moment I don’t know where I am.

To be fucked by a tongue;

catching the rise and fall and a wet warmth circling your clitoris,

gliding along sheets of pink and burrowing into creases until the hollow has been sated.

You need a sharp tongue for that.

A long tongue.

We never fucked.

big girls don’t cry

Being sick was too much for him.

He wanted a normal girlfriend.

One who would not be sick;

who could do things normal

sixteen year old girls do like


go out in the cold,

have sex.

Some cold sonata squeezed out its final note

leading me to a place of false promises

on the back of a broken string.

Circles under my eyes darkened to a colour you see

just before a big storm.

Just as if I had been punched.

I knew people knew and knew they were talking about me.

Perhaps I deserved it for stealing him away,

but I hadn’t stolen him from anyone.

He had pocketed my heart and come to me with more daises.


I wore my sister’s good jacket to his brother’s engagement party and he vomited after too much tequila trying to impress me.

It was raining and gravel packed the furrows of the tyres crunching under the weight of my wanting to be tucked away

somewhere dry and cosseted while speeches were being spoken.

I met his parent’s friends and I was the darling.

They adored me and I was a part of him and he, a part of me.


I stayed away from school.

Melinda died and all I could think on the way to her funeral was,

‘I wish he was here to hold my hand, and for me to hold his.’

She was his friend, too.

That wound of him never healed, for time doesn’t heal wounds like that when they’re

raw and bloody and have left a cleave in your chest.

Grief dulls to a blunt unfeeling and a wish that we had fucked.

I dissolved until I was a shell of a girl where no one understood me.

I hid myself away.

He changed me; made me bleed.


LiteraryMinded said...

Really, truly amazing. Love it.

CJM said...

Whoa, thanks. You just made my week :)