The Bread Shop
When I was 11, I couldn’t go to school
because there were voices in my head
that I thought were ghosts
calling for me to join them.
I was afraid of falling asleep
but my aunt told me,
to dream of one place that nothing
could hurt me.
So before I slept,
I thought of a bread shop.
Everything washed in a sunny shade
That same year my mother wouldn’t talk to me
because she couldn’t hear what I heard
and wrote my fear into belligerence,
beat me into submission.
So I sat by the old landline
and called my father,
wishing someone would come home
to save me from me.
But when I was 12,
I watched my father move his things
out of the house and I should have cried
but the man never came back, so I didn’t.
Now I am 23 and I don’t believe in ghosts anymore.
The voices still talk to me, but they all sound the same.
Still I keep dreaming of a better place,
sometimes a bread shop,
sometimes a house with a hundred rooms,
sometimes a boy lying on the same bed,
sometimes the same boy driving us far, far away,
sometimes a table with 4 seats filled in,
sometimes of things shaped like cigarettes that keep me smiling.
Sometimes I dream myself out of my own body.
Maybe I would have somebody.
Maybe I wouldn’t have to be me.
(Vivien Yap is a writer and musician from Singapore. Growing up a quiet girl with loud thoughts, Vivien has learnt to let her writing carry the weight of a suppressed youth.
Vivien’s book ‘Can You Hear Me Now?’ is now available for purchase online. Website: http://vivienywq.wixsite.com/creativesFacebook:www.fb.com/buttlicksInstagram: www.instagram.com/buttlicks)
The Beautiful Space-