I almost touched someone today
I heard her skateboard clack along the footpath
and I hated her
for the freedom it allowed

She didn’t see me
They rarely do
The leaves of this holly bush
shield my porch from the street
and so much more

I sit here all day
Safe with blood red berries
and sharp pointed leaves
“Dark and spiky” he once laughed
“just like you”

I knew I was healing
after two years of stale air
when I drew a ragged breath
and dragged this chair
to the light of the porch

The air from out here
feels like honey on my skin
I catch the words that float across
and try to remember
how they felt in my mouth

The wheels of her skateboard
sang defiant down the street
and when a breeze chose
to send her cap across to me
it felt like a gift

It swung loosely on a leaf point
and my hand
braver than my heart
reached out to unhook it
You could barely see the shaking

A grunt of thanks
and her song continued
I sat with my honey air
and blood red berries
and shook

I almost spoke to someone today

© bellmusker 2007

Currently unavailable for purchase

One of the blessings of agoraphobia – and yes, there are a few – is that it gifts you with a finely tuned awareness of safe spaces. Watching life pass by my porch was both a tantalising and yet devastating reminder of what I was unable to embrace.

I couldn’t leave my house for an appallingly long time, and I’m still dealing with the intimacy that encompasses reconnecting with people.

I still have a lot to learn.


bellmusker, blood, desire, faith, holly, honey, hope, intimacy, prison, regeneration

I love the words that fall between the cracks; where I have to roll my sleeve up, jam my arm down into the darkness, and yank the stories up by their hair.

I write with black coffee, and bare feet.

Both seem to help.

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  • H Maria Perry
    H Maria Perryalmost 7 years ago

    Very powerful.

  • Lisa  Jewell
    Lisa Jewellalmost 7 years ago

    Absolutely breathtaking, I was on the edge of my seat reading….

    Superbly written, you’ve conveyed so much more than an agoraphobic moment.

  • Anne van Alkemade
    Anne van Alkemadealmost 7 years ago

    it’s beautifully written – so much so that I felt like I was observing the scene
    I was there
    Very nice indeed.

  • Melissa Vowell
    Melissa Vowellalmost 7 years ago

    sigh Bell you get me every time

  • juliejulie
    juliejuliealmost 7 years ago

    wow Bell, this is really haunting in its loneliness and emptiness.

  • mawaho
    mawahoalmost 7 years ago

    Beautifully written from the heart. I feel anguish but also hope. Very powerful indeed.

  • loramae
    loramaealmost 7 years ago

    Oh my…this touches my heart for you…I don’t understand agoraphobia, but I feel how it effects you…God love your heart and mine goes out to you…Extremely touching!

  • MissKristy
    MissKristyalmost 7 years ago

    Good god…I have shivers. Absolutely breaktaking writing.

  • pauldrobertson
    pauldrobertsonalmost 7 years ago

    beautiful… the longing

  • RuthFroehlinger
    RuthFroehlingeralmost 7 years ago

    You are talented!
    Great piece

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