As she bathed in both warm water and her exhaustion, barely bringing herself to soap her brown body with the slippery soap. She would remember the scrunched faces of disapproving Aunties, almost hearing a chorus of polished West Indian accents scolding her for neglecting to use a washcloth.
Well now she was alone and exhausted half dreaming as she slipped the soap under a large breast bobbing in the warm water.
Pot made everything slow down and feel like before the Christmas party when she was a kid. Everything felt bigger than her then, unreachable, possible but in the future. Then you just experienced and wished you were older.
Now her hands were tangled in a life that began messy as that matted mop she pulled hair out of alone in the temple.
How had she gotten there, and what brought her to this place?
She went from having a baby no one thought she deserved after leaving a man that made her sleep on the floor for snoring and picked her cloths (with no apparent sense of fashion beyond preventing her from embarrassing him with her bright colours) to well not pretending. Or really knowing anything for sure.
So much time had passed since the first time she did this, and stopped gritting her teeth and brushing her hair in favour of finding some freedom.
She remembered in grade 6 she started straightening her hair and tried being normal. She tried solidly for almost a full school year.
In the mirror at home she would practice what to say to Tamara and Katie. They knew how to be almost girls well, Kita didn’t. A weirdo, over protected advisor to late 30s addicts, lover of disco, queer with a solid love of the pornographic at 12… But nothing that made sense for solidly middle class suburn tweens in the 90s.
Looking back it was fairly obvious that she was a writer… Throughout it all she was constantly in dialogue with herself, composing impressions of things. Running through possibilities and memories like scenes she needed to perfect.