First section

Raw Pustle Sun

Content warnings: body horror, eating disorders, and child abuse.

jorvn jones

I could have known in advance. You must have been wondering how could it be that I could have ended up so abject. Such a bucket of bones, a sack of onions squirming against their sackcloth, a squeezed fist of boils seeming to balloon into forever… yet I can’t even remember when was the first lesion. Probably an inner ulceration. Some mild discolouration. Grown hence, and grown upon grown upon and growing on… Oh that that fist may close upon my agonies, that they may demise. Until then, I remain a grotesque turnip mutation, some swamp excretion, not fit for vision.

When still growing, that body they called mine, still a pooling, slow opening, fissuring, puckering and closing, loop of strings of this and that, pale and droop and gone flat, or, you know, taut, they gone taught me what was me. The look, the look, the promise of the look, denied. The comment comment comment, meant, like a comet in my hormonal brain still not grown, but gone explode. On skin, in skin pustule, a little bit of brain drool. Drilled in so cruel, learn the way of the world, gone learn.

Learn shade, out of glare, out of the light, find that corner in which to hide, to screw yourself up into a ball, and wither, and curl some more. That corner don’t have crease enough to fold yourself in, but there’s within, within, you can’t get in. Quite aware of the walls I was building, feet hopping over the sharp objects that came into display, as my head down, I walk that way, the path way, the side walk, away from the gaze, out of the light.

Your own family turning on you, as you twist and turn. Against glare, plated out. Spooned up tunnels attempting intricate knots of blights. Tunnelling against solid rock, ricochets back. Silent cataracts, shells off prawn hinds. Crunch, crunch. The body a resistance, the cruel turnings over of forks and knives and casual barbs designed to go down like those deadly carbs. Back then I could eat all I like, never gain weight. You soon learn you become a figure of hate. It lies in weight.

A wheezing shriek caught in the throat of a wildebeest. A gasp that went down too far too fast. Then got shovelled over with dirt and ash. That was mama. Mama stuck a fork in the meat and veg so as to turn ‘em over. She was always turning the soil, like a body was beneath it. Succulent little roses of greyed smoke fuming, always hanging around. Like wreaths for bodies buried in her garden. She’d shovelled so much shit out in her time that it wasn’t another thing to shovel out some more. She could always shovel more dirt on me. Choke an answer out of me – “You can’t do that.” – always her first words. Choking any reply before it left the windpipe. A wheezing shriek caught in the throat of a wildebeest. A last gasp drawn out for so long that it became tar, outlining the body, shovelled over.

Her reflex, her multitask – “You can’t do that. What were you thinking? You can’t do that.” – backed up with solids. Fork in the meat and two veg. Papa was rigid solid. Inflexible, unforceable – yet a flex of might, an enforcer. Might that might never entertain a possibility that something might… Firm and rigid. Solid. Monolithic. Dark and archaic like god, behind some cloud with thunderbolts, ready to strike down. Unforgiving. Punisher.

Or was I the unforgiving? Punishing myself with the laceration of tongue pushed firmly in clenched cheek, teeth gnashed down on ’til blood drawn. Swallowing words, swallowing words. They were shovelled over. They were solid. They were the rite of my birth… Each word detonated another seed deep inside me – another tendril loop. Erupting like arteries. Forcing the choke.

Staring into an egg like it was an atom smash sun. Words catapulting into tiny explosions – supernovae against my rictus mask – quivering. Like one jolt would disintegrate it to mash. Boiling over. Boils grow up. Splinter skin. Push towards the sun. The light a dumb yellow. Quiver, quiver. Shovelled over, and away. Solid. Mash. Every colour numbed.

You can’t turn it in enough. Unheard, or heard too much, at the expense of hearing. They shout it down. They twist it around. They shut it down. Fold it in, take it in, take it in, spit it out, it solid the mouth. It soiled the mouth, but grows mulch in the brain, with enough rain.

Little seeds that grow, in plain packaging, ruined by pustules that burst and twist the skin. You soon become used to the twisting of the skin. Twisting from within. No matter how twisting it’s always your turn. Turn your voice in. Shouting at the plants won’t make them grow. Shovel enough shit and you never know. Back then, those days, I could eat anything. Never grow.

What’s gone makes me grow… A way with the strap was like bootlaces to my father: a way to pull up. You pull yourself up. Rattle against the cage. And though Time is a cage, cages can be timed against, pulled out from under, and then you’ve flown.

But there is no horizon that comes any closer than through a lens, the horizon is all ways somewhere to go, is always reflected back. Yet that’s where the light doesn’t catch. Just reflects. There is no safe sanctuary where you can magically go. Weeds always get under the cracks that try to smooth, and smooth can just be a pressing down, eventually those pustules go, but the seeds are still there, folded in and turned over with a new soil. Flick through with your fingers you can see the many things that figure in a new day soil. Every day a new soil, and if you don’t, that’s a worry. You start to regulate based on the daily soil, and make predictions, and fold your day around, like fingers in a closed fist. And pay attention to the seasons, and how they change the flows.

Each day waiting for the new soil. Relying on soil.

Press it in, it’s like concrete, it’s so cold. Rub it down, it’s so concrete. Like a chest. Like soil falls from a bank into a river and gets carried… silent silent silent all the way… carries more. Jumps over the river, but then, there are also the returns. Dividends. Turns. Turds and burns. Lessons learnt.

’Til you’re meek at the dinner table, waiting for your crust and curds. Cos you know the value of a crust, underneath it is a quarry, it holds so many quarrels, and so much dust, get your teeth under that, you might find blood. Might have dried up. Left a stain on a wall. Like where a toddler crawled.

Under the table, those deals that are never spoken of, behind closed doors, they grease the palms, they make the world go around, so people get what they want.

But there is always someone who didn’t get what they want. Or who don’t want what they want. Or can’t. Or is a cunt.

Can’t complain, cunts reign. Or else everyone is stumbling to sweep one off its plate.

Pull the tablecloth out from under the plates? Better learn, tantrums don’t work. They lie in wait. Better learn, bodies don’t work forever. Blood dries up. Nappies on an eighty-three-year-old veteran. Circled the sun, a few sums, more losses, but add them up, and you’re back where you begun, but of course it’s spun. The body decays, maybe the brain is saved, maybe you want to switch it off. The noise is constant, even if it’s a silent pitch, the debts and the worries. The world’s a son of a bitch. And sometimes you even meet the original bitch.

Fold in again, and the folds are on the surface. The wear and tear of a life’s service. Whose tears don’t make nice patterns. Stuffed away, jeered away. Fold it in, or shake it out like impatient keys, or hide it under a matte base covering so that you just don’t have to deal, because you prefer the ease. The ease of not knowing. Of discovering remains. Putting together peace. Against the strains. But like decay in teeth, it stains.

Collected a tear onto a necklace. Used that tear to smooth where tears had etched on me, etched onto the skin, into the skin. Smoothed over each raw pustule like sunlight dapples water, barely touching. Concealing in little ripples. A reflection of the sun, with none of its burns.

But couldn’t be contained. Fresh soil from the bank, dissolving into tears. A world laced with waterways. Lacerated. Pustules latching onto any surface. Bubbling up, the skin was porous, defying the matte plaster of makeup, defying containment. A network of bubbles, pooling, fissuring and puckering. Sprouting in solid sores, monuments to inner turmoil. Dark twists looking for their only way to light. A ravaged beast of sprouts. Vegetable matter. A pummelled meat. Fit for a mask.

You’ve folded into a corner for so long that it’s become a pattern. And you’ve smoothed over defences so that conversations are fences and walls but there’s some bright shrubbery that can be agreed on, even if it’s to put it down. But occasionally there are clearings where it all bursts out again, like a hormonal teenager that can make a show of controlling his shit. ’Til he meets the madame who makes him sit. Or the master of his destiny that makes him sit in it.

Bent over the tiles, ass in the air, under the light, the standing up, the vibrating of every hair. The pustules again, not ready for their close up, in fact spread open, another of life’s tears, and it’s there in the open, and again the comments. But this time is a surprise. What was silent and inwards, innards, pushed outwards, now exposed. And what was comments and catcalls and shouting derision and crowings, is now delicate whispers, the parental concern. What hasn’t been seeing since you were a rugrat, a rug burn ago.

This bridge is more like an aqueduct, with the stubble of puckering stucco, the pale where the sun don’t shine. A reflection. Pustules like when you get too close to the sun, and it’s popping, in little flares. And no choice but to being there. And there is care. A strange masculine bonding from a body knowing and not knowing the surprise until it was there, caught up in the hair, a puzzled stare.

Words aren’t needed to convey the way things got this way. A most explicit re-telling, in the journey of the body the folds of the skin pulled taught pulled wide, and nowhere to hide. There’s still what’s gone inside. But what was folded in, is now spread open wide.

A scar, seated. A scar can be healed, yes. But never gone. An intimate moment of connection. A bond. Where thought was none. A simple touch. And never gone.

First section

Raw Pustle Sun

Content warnings: body horror, eating disorders, and child abuse.

jorvn jones

I could have known in advance. You must have been wondering how could it be that I could have ended up so abject. Such a bucket of bones, a sack of onions squirming against their sackcloth, a squeezed fist of boils seeming to balloon into forever… yet I can’t even remember when was the first lesion. Probably an inner ulceration. Some mild discolouration. Grown hence, and grown upon grown upon and growing on… Oh that that fist may close upon my agonies, that they may demise. Until then, I remain a grotesque turnip mutation, some swamp excretion, not fit for vision.

When still growing, that body they called mine, still a pooling, slow opening, fissuring, puckering and closing, loop of strings of this and that, pale and droop and gone flat, or, you know, taut, they gone taught me what was me. The look, the look, the promise of the look, denied. The comment comment comment, meant, like a comet in my hormonal brain still not grown, but gone explode. On skin, in skin pustule, a little bit of brain drool. Drilled in so cruel, learn the way of the world, gone learn.

Learn shade, out of glare, out of the light, find that corner in which to hide, to screw yourself up into a ball, and wither, and curl some more. That corner don’t have crease enough to fold yourself in, but there’s within, within, you can’t get in. Quite aware of the walls I was building, feet hopping over the sharp objects that came into display, as my head down, I walk that way, the path way, the side walk, away from the gaze, out of the light.

Your own family turning on you, as you twist and turn. Against glare, plated out. Spooned up tunnels attempting intricate knots of blights. Tunnelling against solid rock, ricochets back. Silent cataracts, shells off prawn hinds. Crunch, crunch. The body a resistance, the cruel turnings over of forks and knives and casual barbs designed to go down like those deadly carbs. Back then I could eat all I like, never gain weight. You soon learn you become a figure of hate. It lies in weight.

A wheezing shriek caught in the throat of a wildebeest. A gasp that went down too far too fast. Then got shovelled over with dirt and ash. That was mama. Mama stuck a fork in the meat and veg so as to turn ‘em over. She was always turning the soil, like a body was beneath it. Succulent little roses of greyed smoke fuming, always hanging around. Like wreaths for bodies buried in her garden. She’d shovelled so much shit out in her time that it wasn’t another thing to shovel out some more. She could always shovel more dirt on me. Choke an answer out of me – “You can’t do that.” – always her first words. Choking any reply before it left the windpipe. A wheezing shriek caught in the throat of a wildebeest. A last gasp drawn out for so long that it became tar, outlining the body, shovelled over.

Her reflex, her multitask – “You can’t do that. What were you thinking? You can’t do that.” – backed up with solids. Fork in the meat and two veg. Papa was rigid solid. Inflexible, unforceable – yet a flex of might, an enforcer. Might that might never entertain a possibility that something might… Firm and rigid. Solid. Monolithic. Dark and archaic like god, behind some cloud with thunderbolts, ready to strike down. Unforgiving. Punisher.

Or was I the unforgiving? Punishing myself with the laceration of tongue pushed firmly in clenched cheek, teeth gnashed down on ’til blood drawn. Swallowing words, swallowing words. They were shovelled over. They were solid. They were the rite of my birth… Each word detonated another seed deep inside me – another tendril loop. Erupting like arteries. Forcing the choke.

Staring into an egg like it was an atom smash sun. Words catapulting into tiny explosions – supernovae against my rictus mask – quivering. Like one jolt would disintegrate it to mash. Boiling over. Boils grow up. Splinter skin. Push towards the sun. The light a dumb yellow. Quiver, quiver. Shovelled over, and away. Solid. Mash. Every colour numbed.

You can’t turn it in enough. Unheard, or heard too much, at the expense of hearing. They shout it down. They twist it around. They shut it down. Fold it in, take it in, take it in, spit it out, it solid the mouth. It soiled the mouth, but grows mulch in the brain, with enough rain.

Little seeds that grow, in plain packaging, ruined by pustules that burst and twist the skin. You soon become used to the twisting of the skin. Twisting from within. No matter how twisting it’s always your turn. Turn your voice in. Shouting at the plants won’t make them grow. Shovel enough shit and you never know. Back then, those days, I could eat anything. Never grow.

What’s gone makes me grow… A way with the strap was like bootlaces to my father: a way to pull up. You pull yourself up. Rattle against the cage. And though Time is a cage, cages can be timed against, pulled out from under, and then you’ve flown.

But there is no horizon that comes any closer than through a lens, the horizon is all ways somewhere to go, is always reflected back. Yet that’s where the light doesn’t catch. Just reflects. There is no safe sanctuary where you can magically go. Weeds always get under the cracks that try to smooth, and smooth can just be a pressing down, eventually those pustules go, but the seeds are still there, folded in and turned over with a new soil. Flick through with your fingers you can see the many things that figure in a new day soil. Every day a new soil, and if you don’t, that’s a worry. You start to regulate based on the daily soil, and make predictions, and fold your day around, like fingers in a closed fist. And pay attention to the seasons, and how they change the flows.

Each day waiting for the new soil. Relying on soil.

Press it in, it’s like concrete, it’s so cold. Rub it down, it’s so concrete. Like a chest. Like soil falls from a bank into a river and gets carried… silent silent silent all the way… carries more. Jumps over the river, but then, there are also the returns. Dividends. Turns. Turds and burns. Lessons learnt.

’Til you’re meek at the dinner table, waiting for your crust and curds. Cos you know the value of a crust, underneath it is a quarry, it holds so many quarrels, and so much dust, get your teeth under that, you might find blood. Might have dried up. Left a stain on a wall. Like where a toddler crawled.

Under the table, those deals that are never spoken of, behind closed doors, they grease the palms, they make the world go around, so people get what they want.

But there is always someone who didn’t get what they want. Or who don’t want what they want. Or can’t. Or is a cunt.

Can’t complain, cunts reign. Or else everyone is stumbling to sweep one off its plate.

Pull the tablecloth out from under the plates? Better learn, tantrums don’t work. They lie in wait. Better learn, bodies don’t work forever. Blood dries up. Nappies on an eighty-three-year-old veteran. Circled the sun, a few sums, more losses, but add them up, and you’re back where you begun, but of course it’s spun. The body decays, maybe the brain is saved, maybe you want to switch it off. The noise is constant, even if it’s a silent pitch, the debts and the worries. The world’s a son of a bitch. And sometimes you even meet the original bitch.

Fold in again, and the folds are on the surface. The wear and tear of a life’s service. Whose tears don’t make nice patterns. Stuffed away, jeered away. Fold it in, or shake it out like impatient keys, or hide it under a matte base covering so that you just don’t have to deal, because you prefer the ease. The ease of not knowing. Of discovering remains. Putting together peace. Against the strains. But like decay in teeth, it stains.

Collected a tear onto a necklace. Used that tear to smooth where tears had etched on me, etched onto the skin, into the skin. Smoothed over each raw pustule like sunlight dapples water, barely touching. Concealing in little ripples. A reflection of the sun, with none of its burns.

But couldn’t be contained. Fresh soil from the bank, dissolving into tears. A world laced with waterways. Lacerated. Pustules latching onto any surface. Bubbling up, the skin was porous, defying the matte plaster of makeup, defying containment. A network of bubbles, pooling, fissuring and puckering. Sprouting in solid sores, monuments to inner turmoil. Dark twists looking for their only way to light. A ravaged beast of sprouts. Vegetable matter. A pummelled meat. Fit for a mask.

You’ve folded into a corner for so long that it’s become a pattern. And you’ve smoothed over defences so that conversations are fences and walls but there’s some bright shrubbery that can be agreed on, even if it’s to put it down. But occasionally there are clearings where it all bursts out again, like a hormonal teenager that can make a show of controlling his shit. ’Til he meets the madame who makes him sit. Or the master of his destiny that makes him sit in it.

Bent over the tiles, ass in the air, under the light, the standing up, the vibrating of every hair. The pustules again, not ready for their close up, in fact spread open, another of life’s tears, and it’s there in the open, and again the comments. But this time is a surprise. What was silent and inwards, innards, pushed outwards, now exposed. And what was comments and catcalls and shouting derision and crowings, is now delicate whispers, the parental concern. What hasn’t been seeing since you were a rugrat, a rug burn ago.

This bridge is more like an aqueduct, with the stubble of puckering stucco, the pale where the sun don’t shine. A reflection. Pustules like when you get too close to the sun, and it’s popping, in little flares. And no choice but to being there. And there is care. A strange masculine bonding from a body knowing and not knowing the surprise until it was there, caught up in the hair, a puzzled stare.

Words aren’t needed to convey the way things got this way. A most explicit re-telling, in the journey of the body the folds of the skin pulled taught pulled wide, and nowhere to hide. There’s still what’s gone inside. But what was folded in, is now spread open wide.

A scar, seated. A scar can be healed, yes. But never gone. An intimate moment of connection. A bond. Where thought was none. A simple touch. And never gone.