Wild World

You remember odd things from when you are young; in snatches.

You may remember suddenly, an odd tune your father used to hum as he walked you home from the school bus-stop.

You may remember your mother’s favourite floral skirt, when she came home weary from another’s day work. And the music she played on the VCR, mix-tapes of Lennon, and Abba, and Stevens. Ah yes, Stevens. You may remember your mother tell you how she loved him, her sing the words our perfectly to you.

‘Wild World’ that was our song. Mama and me.

And, it comes to me in snatches. Again, and again, again when life is unbearable, and the world disappointing the song plays out quietly in my head.

(Perhaps, mama knew. Perhaps, mamas know. They know our destinies from much before they play out.)

The world can be unimaginably cruel. People can say the most unbearable things to you. You are fat. Incorrigible. Undeserving. Smelly. Stupid. Overbearing. Insignificant. Immature. People can thrust all fault at you, hurt you without reason.

It is the only history of the world. And, yet I am (and perhaps you too) continually surprised.

I mull over things people say to me innumerable times, too many times. I go over people’s disappointments, and movie scenes with slavery, and cruelty a hundred times over. Unhappy memories linger- and happy memories come in snatches. And ah, the cruel email stays much longer than the song from when we are young.

It shouldn’t be so.

If we know the world as violent, and people more so: perhaps we should only believe the song to be true. The words are sticky- but only true if you believe them to be- and the song, it’s real.

Words and violence are anger; ephemeral. A song, love, eternal.

You know I’ve seen a lot of what the world can do 

And it’s breakin’ my heart in two 
Because I never wanna see you sad, girl 
Don’t be a bad girl 
But if you wanna leave, take good care 
Hope you make a lot of nice friends out there 
But just remember there’s a lot of bad and beware. ~ Cat Stevens


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