Emerald Eyes, Ruby Skies

November is a lonely month. I’ve never felt this lonely before. In October the scarlet leaves shimmied in the trees like girls in wooden cages and I walked the streets with tousled hair and lust in my eyes.

Writing by Carella Keil
Assemblage Art by Ingrid M. Calderón Collins, Featured Artist for Mum’s Garage II

Emerald Eyes, Ruby Skies

The Click-Click-Click of Your Phone in My Ear

November is a lonely month. I’ve never felt this lonely before. In October the scarlet leaves shimmied in the trees like girls in wooden cages and I walked the streets with tousled hair and lust in my eyes.

For six months I slept with the phone beneath my pillow. For six months you called and whispered your secrets into my ears. For six months you used your tongue to pry me open.

In October I danced on balcony railings for you and wore red beneath everything. When I wore anything at all. We moved together like a cyclone and I laughed at all the damage we left behind. You must have known I was insane even then, and you loved 

                   the way 

                                  I took you over the rainbow.

I knew you six times on a night of thirteen stars. You were asking me to touch the stars for you, so I lifted your hands up to my eyes. You brought down my tears on your fingertips.

Don’t worry. You’re not going to melt. Remember, I’m the wicked witch in this story. You pushed your lips onto mine to stifle my cries and bro ke every last resistance in me. (Why do you fight it baby? Why do you fight it? I want you to cum.) 

I figured, I’ve got nothing better to do than to lose myself in you. So I lost myself. And then I lost so much more. Every time you leave, you leave more of yourself inside of me.

Yeah you leave. Leave me with the broken unborn passing between my legs. The unmemories of a little girl who will never be. 

Blue eyes and an open smile. I was euphoric for a day. For the wrong place. The wrong time. The wrong man. I was euphoric for a day. And I’m the insane one, for acknowledging what my body tells me.

I’m reminded of Dorothy and her emerald search for home. 

I thought you liked my green eyes, the southern slant of my voice, the way I skip down sidewalks, the way I turn everything into a game. So one night while you were sleeping I dug down to the bottom of your heart. But I couldn’t find myself there at all.

I left your bed with my ruby shoes, two roses and your kisses on my lips, went home and found the phone beneath my pillow was broken.

I decided it was time to take the shortcut to insanity. But on the way, I stripped a man in an alleyway, filled up my phonebook with meaningless poetry, made paper swans in a bar and wandered down the hidden corridor that leads from reality into waking dream.

No one could touch me. I could feel everyone just by looking at them. I could feel the world and it was beautiful but it was also hurt.

I was lost without your voice in my ear. You were the only thing that kept me from floating up, up, up. I was lost with a thousand voices in my ear.

So I took a trip down a road of yellow brick and packed my memories into the back of my brain and stuck my keys into my ruby red shoes. Click-click-click.

Headless scarecrows roared after me, chased me all the way to the end of the road. I promised I’d come back, set them all on fire, but at the end of the road

              four men stole my shoes. Stripped me of my clothes. Strapped me on my back to a bed of iron shackles and watched me scream out my demons. And watched me scream out the blood of an unmade child.

And as it turns out, the Emerald City isn’t home but an institution with green corridors and nurses traipsing the halls in scrubs. The doctors never look me in the eyes. They are afraid the flames of my madness might leap into their own.

I am the girl with the lost soul and the heart that ignites like straw. I pretend my heart is tin because that’s what gets me through every long night without you.

You left me lying on my back while a cyclone ravaged my body and mind. You hid from my reality like a cowardly lion. So I’ll leave you, trapped in your own city of illusions, thinking you’re still some sort of emperor, thinking you 

                                                        blew me away.

I hope I made you cry. I hope I melted something in you. I hope a part of you will never stop burning for what you did to me. I hope no girl is ever foolish enough to spend the night in your bed, leave her shoes on your doorstep and her keys in the palm of your hand.

Originally published in Grub Street Vol. 72

About The Author

Carella is a writer and digital artist who creates surreal, dreamy images that explore nature, fantasy realms, melancholia and inner dimensions. She has been published in numerous literary journals including Columbia Journal, Chestnut Review and Crannóg. Her writing was recently nominated for a Pushcart Prize. Her art has appeared on the covers of Glassworks Magazine, Nightingale and Sparrow, Colors: The Magazine, Frost Meadow Review and Straylight Magazine.

About the Artist

Ingrid M. Calderón Collins is a poet and tarot reader. She is the author of twenty-seven poetry books. She lives in Los Angeles, CA with her husband, painter John Collins.

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