Mitchell's Mustard Blog

May 13, 2017

Bruised

Filed under: A Little Something — Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , — mitchellsmustard @ 1:14 pm

He had come home from school with another bruise, another one to add to the collection. This young boy full of charisma, charm, and joy when encased by the families four walls ached physically and mentally without a peep. His mother could hear him quietly weep in the morning whilst getting ready for school, which in turn made her cry for answers, but he was proud and strong and a shrug of the shoulders was the answer to all. He often came home with rips in his clothing, when doing his washing she would find blood stains on his sleeves, his explanation was yet another nosebleed. She watched her young boy battle in silence, the more pressure she applied for answers the more he closed up and became aloof around her. She had spoken to the school on numerous occasions but they explained that without her son coming forward they couldn’t pursue. A promise to keep an eye out for him was lost in communication because he had come home again with a cut on his head, an accident he had explained. His eyes told another story, a silent uncomfortable story. Over the last year his character had changed, her brave little boy seemed to fear the outside, and worst of all, fear the inside. His brave little smile had left, his charisma had been removed, joy was a thing of the past. She confided in friends and family, ‘troubled teens’ they’d say to put her mind at rest. But she could see the screams behind his eyes, the damage to his body, the way he flinched at movement.

  She had heard him weep again in the morning so she confronted him, no prisoners, she wanted answers. Where had her charming and enthusiastic boy gone? What was happening?

  As she broke down, so did he. He was curled in the corner lost and fearful, she had scared him. She knew she needed to apologise . . .   

   . . . But it was too late, that day he had taken his own life. She wished someone had listened, wished she had worked harder to get to the truth, wished her little baby boy had opened up. But, all the wishes in the world had expired. Stood by his graveside she cried for today, cried for tomorrow, and feared whatever followed.

October 9, 2015

Drawing a Line In The Sand

Filed under: A Little Something — Tags: , , , , , , , , , — mitchellsmustard @ 1:49 pm

Like the strength of waves, beating and crashing. A power of vengeance, sorrow, and regret. Pulling away as it rises, then striking, giving only a moment to catch a breath. He had never felt tears like it before, the waves behind his eyes. The heartlessness in seeing a proud man break down, to crumple like an addict, pulling limbs in as tight as possible, folding into nothing but himself. Protection from any other blows, but wasting time because he knew that the first one had already defeated him. “You don’t realise the size of your heart until you feel it ache” he said to anyone, and no one. Surrounded by all the love one man could ask for, yet, in this moment he felt further away than he had ever been before. He was used to the distance in miles, not emotions. His wife and children loved him, stood by him, but in that moment he refused to reach out. They are the love he lived for, but he had just lost the love that he had never lived without, this was untravelled territory. The unconditional love will always resume, but the warmth that came with it had faded away in it’s sleep. Today, drawing a line in the sand, no going back, it’s all different now. Everything looked the same, smelt the same, but it wasn’t. The world was now missing a vital part of his life, his idol, his hero, his father.

June 23, 2014

Lost Fragrance

Filed under: A Little Something — Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , — mitchellsmustard @ 12:47 pm

Her fragrance danced around the house like a whispered breeze, enough to distract but never enough to catch, to hold for a moment, to pull towards him and hope that she would follow close behind. The fragrance that’s missed but never lost. Voices of past conversations echo from wall to wall, but always in the adjacent room, a tease of his loneliness as he sat in silence. After all that had happened, it was the silence that strangled him, held him against his will. The sound of her singing in the shower, high pitched disagreements, her enticing moan as she straddled him, or her laugh that cradled. All lost without a decision to make, taken. The cruelty of her belongings still layered through his existence, he knew she would never return but he wasn’t quite ready to move anything in fear of forgetting. Every morning he was distracted until he absorbed the memories, seeing her medication in the bathroom, over and over he felt chewed up and spat out. Bitter, he blamed everyone, everything, he blamed the medication because that was the hope they had clung onto, a false hope that never paid off. Every night he was reminded of her frail body fall to the sickness that controlled her, consumed her. He had watched the disease wrap her up into an uncomfortable environment, pushing away and drifting off with exhaustion. Her pained facial expressions screamed in the silence of his mind. He felt lost, empty, and angry. He needed time, but that had slipped away from him just like her fragrance. They told him that each day will get easier, until then he’d breakdown, hiding his tears behind closed doors because the children couldn’t see him like this.

May 15, 2014

To Whom it May Concern

Filed under: A Little Something — Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , — mitchellsmustard @ 6:54 pm

To whom it may concern,

To gain, to love, to change, and to lose,
It’s what I do.

I crave your attention to cure my loneliness,
to fill the gaping hole that resides in my chest,
a decision made on impulse,
rather than a future to invest,
a hand to hold, but I don’t love you,
I shrug and confess.

I become tired of being grounded,
so I unwrap myself from your arms,
saying things that pierce your skin,
punch drunk from your angry palms,
selfish greed floats to the surface,
swallowing my good intentions and charms.

I will hurt you, its nothing personal,
to crave a love, It’s not intentional,
to gain, to love, to change, and to lose,
It’s what I do.

A restlessness that will always prevail,
love that mimics the weather,
I smiled, and nodded along,
but it was only you who said forever,
I hold my head high as I bleed from the inside,
when did together really mean together?

The grass will never be greener,
on the other side it’s just the same,
it starts with a similar breathtaking feeling,
but it just ends as a different face and name,
I’m sorry to cause confusion,
but I’m still glad you came.

I will hurt you, its nothing personal,
to crave a love, It’s not intentional,
to gain, to love, to change, and to lose,
It’s what I do.

I’m sorry, its nothing personal,
I did crave your love, but not any more
to gain, to love, to change, and to lose,
It’s what I do.

December 22, 2013

The death of a fisherman

Filed under: A Little Something — Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , — mitchellsmustard @ 4:22 pm

When the waves crashed against the side of the vessel, the boat was thrown side to side like a rag doll in a playful dogs mouth. The grey stormy sky a similar colour to the sea, the boat seemed to advance towards a future of nothingness. They all had families waiting for them to return, longing to hear the cheers of loved ones as they step onto dry land, a fond memory from each trip. Only he longed for the next outing. Spending weeks aboard and his body became used to the rocking, the unsettled sea waiting to swallow his boat in one almighty gulp. He could never explain how much he loved the sea because it would always be his worst enemy, it had beaten him black and blue, it had taken his men from him, taken the soul and life from the back of his eyes as he watched it claim victims, people he knew. Returning to tell their wives that life was now different, the expression on their faces as he became the enemy and not the sea. He had battled with his foe for many years, the creaks and groans of his boat had become his home, longing for his family but knowing he couldn’t stay on dry land for long. He couldn’t get the rush that he experienced at sea, she was his ugly mistress that could turn her mood at any moment and test the boats ability to perform, a battle with a beast that took no prisoners in a moment of weakness. He always believed he would die at sea one day, hoped he would be taken by her, they teased each other even though he knew she would win every time if given the chance. He felt he wasn’t ready just yet, she had taken so much but still had so much to give. She would rest like all other things, to build up her strength for her next attack, the calm before the storm. He watched her build, watched her huff and puff around them. He found beauty in her anger, this seemed to provoke her strength in some way.
Pain surged through his chest as he collapsed, If only he knew that his wild mistress wouldn’t claim him after all, would he have returned? Taken his last step onto dry land, to leave her crashing at his back, tempting him to return. To think that it would be his own heart that would fail. As he crashed to the kitchen floor his first thought were of his family, but to them he had become a stranger. He longed to feel the sea around him, drag him under and pull him into her, to feel her anger around him. Take him under her ice cold wing to numb him from the pain, they had toyed with each other for so many years, it didn’t seem right to die without her. He missed her whistling in his ear, baiting him to make a mistake. He wanted to be taken by her, she deserved to win this battle, but it was not gods will.

November 7, 2013

The Tartan Blanket

Filed under: My Work — Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , — mitchellsmustard @ 5:30 pm

He spread the tartan picnic blanket out with care, making sure all corners were straight. Every year he used the same blanket to protect the importance of this tradition, it was used, washed then folded neatly and stored away until this day came around again. The tartan was laced with yellows and greens and over the years the colours had faded to give it a vintage look. He loved this blanket, not because of the colours, not because it was of an age, but because it was one of the first things that she had given him. He swept the loose mischievous blades of grass away with his hand, “she’ll be here soon” he told himself. Every year in the same spot this picnic was set, to a standard that she would approve.
The first time they discovered this spot was by chance. He had just moved to Cambridge and she came to visit. A romance by distance is hard for the strongest of relationships, but they were strong, she was his queen and nothing would stand in the way of that. They had spent the day walking around his new local area, stopping on a bridge that looked over the river Cam, they stood and they watched as the water passed below. He whispered love songs in to her ear to make her giggle, she was bashful about love. As he went to tickle her sides she ran to the steps next to the bridge, taking each one carefully in her heels. She made her way onto Jesus green and finally stopped, turning she expected him to still be on the bridge looking down at her, but he was hot on her tail. He took her by the waist, picked her up and spun her round as they both laughed. They eventually fell to the ground, laying on the grass entwined. They stopped laughing, they stared at each other, they smiled, they were in love. They spent that afternoon together sat on the bank of the river watching the water pass under the bridge, talking of future plans, not realising they would make an effort to watch the water pass this same spot on the same day each year. It was their spot.
He took a step back to view the layout of his affections, brushing his hands together as a sign of completion. Sitting down next to the picnic basket he considered opening the bottle of her favorite wine to accompany him while he waits, she wouldn’t have minded but he still felt that it would be rude to start without her. He tapped his fingers on top of the basket, some would think of it as impatient but she knew him better than that. He watched the river pass under the bridge, gently flowing past like that of his life, the occasional bit of debris twisting and tangling with its surroundings to give the water an uneven run. He sat, he watched, and he waited.
Each year they spent time at this spot talking about future plans, with each year that passed their plans became smaller but their achievements became bigger. She had moved to Cambridge, they lived in a small two bedroom house off Hills Road. The news that they were to become a family had come as a surprise, a good surprise. Nine months passed quickly and they welcomed Isabelle in to their lives, she was a quiet and adorable baby, giggles and brunette curls. The only thing that didn’t change from that moment on was the love this little family shared, his job, the money, their friends, it all spiraled around their beautiful little girl, but he wouldn’t have had it any other way.
He watched people pass by as he waited, the fruits of one existence viewing the many, remembering, romancing in the moment, and sympathizing. Loud disobedient children, just like their Isabelle had once been. The young and adventurous, who learn only by mistakes. Young couples holding hands, causing a smile to the happy, yet disapproving to the disgruntled lonely. And the old that take their time and refuse help, holding their pride higher than their health. He watched life, he waited, he smiled.
Isabelle grew quicker than they could have ever imagined, gone were the days of cuddles before bed, he missed the days of testing his imagination for a bedtime story, to watch her drift off to sleep as he explained how the prince and princess had met, or how they had saved their kingdom. He even missed pretending to eat and drink at one of her tea parties, he felt a little stupid when she insisted that they dine out in the street for all to see, but it was for her and he would do anything for her, that had never changed. Even through her troubled teens, the many broken curfews, the bad attitude, the long nights of waiting up for her to get home, in fear that something may have happened, dreading that phone call. He was never soft on punishment with her but he knew there wasn’t anything that he wouldn’t do for her, even when he was still upset.
He watched a Cambridge university rowing club across the river, synchronized movement by the crew pulling their racing shell from the clubhouse into the water without a hitch. This was a common pastime for many while sat on the bank of the river Cam, something he had watched with interest over years while he waited for her. He liked to reminisce about his wife, from the moment they met she was destined to occupy his mind, even when she wasn’t there. When he proposed to her he had sent the ring through the post to their home address so it wasn’t expected. He fondly remembered her face, how it turned from surprise, to a smile, to tears. She said yes as soon as she could find the words. Remembering the funny faces she used to pull at baby Isabelle to make her giggle when she thought he wasn’t watching, he never told her that he saw her.
She had started to lose a lot of weight, she looked drained. As stubborn as a mule but she knew something was wrong. By the time she had her first checkup, the cancer was diagnosed at its most advanced stage. That was the day it all changed, the day everything came crashing down. She closed up, his queen had become vacant, she had disappeared out of the back door, just leaving someone who looked like his wife behind. All communication had left, it took the playful smiles, the infectious laugh and her comical wit. A shell of the woman he loved, she had given up before the first bell, that’s what tore him apart the most.The last goodbye was the hardest part, to bury his queen, to be alone knowing that she will be waiting for him, alone.
He was staring at the water day dreaming when he felt movement next to him on the blanket, she had silently arrived. As he gazed at her his heart started to pound against his old and tired ribs. It had been three years and he missed his wife that little bit more every day that passed, she still occupied his mind, even though she wasn’t there. Caught in the right light, the resemblance was flawless, Isabelle looked like her mother. The same facial expressions that would always melt his heart. He loved spending time with his daughter, because little parts of his wife lived on in her. Just like her mother, she had grown to become an amazing woman. His heart swelled with pride.

September 2, 2013

A Life to Bury

Filed under: A Little Something — Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , — mitchellsmustard @ 6:29 pm

You could smell the whisky on his breath, but you couldn’t see the loathing behind his eyes, the loathing of the job in hand. The only thing that broke the silence for that moment was the rough sound of his hand rubbing four day stubble on his broad chin. The stale smell of cigarettes strangled the collar and sleeves of his shirt, knowing that the feeling of someone watching him will never go, not while he’s here. The wind whistled, pulling at his unkempt hair, cartwheeling leaves falling into the freshly dug hole he stood above. Sweat started to build at his hairline, he was nervous, exhausted, out of shape. She always said he was out of shape, at this moment he felt like she was right. He felt small, insignificant, lost. He didn’t want to be there, he would have done anything to still be in his house, reminiscing alone, the sound of ice cubes against a tumbler, behind a locked door. But he had to do this, he signed up for this years ago but he never really gave it any thought, this day came earlier than ever expected. He’d rather it was someone else standing in his shoes right now, but a promise is a promise. The morning sun on the rise, the beauty of another day distracting his fearful eyes. He was scared, tired and from this day forth, alone. He stood for a moment, placing his body weight on his shovel, the sweat and dirt that covered his face disguised his pale sickly complexion. He knew the black cars would roll up soon, holding his life in a box. His mother used to say “for every tear you cry, will be returned when you die” but his tears were gone, dried up and forgotten just like him. He had anger, he had pain, but he didn’t have the energy. His arms had become heavy, his heart in his throat as he saw the reflection of the sun on the leading car. Today is a day he will always remember, for today was the day this now lonely grave digger had to dig a hole for his own wife. A promise is a promise.

June 23, 2012

Pain and Pride

Filed under: A Little Something — Tags: , , , , , , , — mitchellsmustard @ 12:44 pm

“I do love you, but. . . .” she stuttered,

That’s how the conversation started in the corner of the coffee shop, the modern chrome and pine interior started to close around him, strangling him with invisible ties.

“But what?” he replied choking on the lump in his throat.

“I’ve fallen for someone else . . . I’m sorry” she started to sob.

“What . . . ?” he stared at her trying to digest what was just said.

She pulled her hands from the table and placed them on her lap and her eyes followed.

“That’s all you’re going to say?” he said through his gritted teeth raising his hands in the air.

Everything in the room had disappeared; all he could see was her. She looked uncomfortable, probably because he was making a scene in a public place.

“What the fuck are you crying for?” he said whilst failing to hold back his frustration.

“God . . . You can be a real dick sometimes you know that?” she spat with venom.

The room was spinning; he felt the heat prickle up his face.

“I’m better than this” he lied whilst standing up.

Feeling punch drunk he headed for the door, his jaw feeling stiff and his eyes feeling as they could roll into the top of his head. The cold air slapped him in the face as he opened the door, he looked back at the table because he still cared but the girl sitting there wasn’t the one he loved.

His paranoia started to play games; everyone around him in the street was looking and laughing at him. His vision blurred and his mouth dry, his senses felt heightened but reluctant to work. Feeling as if he had left all of his pride at the table he started to cry, a crushing cry that should never be seen by a dry eye.

 

Days passed, weeks had passed. Days and weeks filled with self loathing, self-pity, self-pride and then the strength to build new foundations. Days and weeks of text messages written but never sent, over the weeks the feeling to communicate slowly starting to subside. The pictures became unworthy of their frames, the memories becoming lost behind the shadows of the new. She was never forgotten she just became unimportant, that’s what time does.

 

I miss you x’ . . . . He couldn’t actually remember the last time he had seen her name on his iPhone. For weeks he had prayed, wished and cried to receive a message from her but now he hated her name, he hated the thought of her thinking of him but he couldn’t help but wonder how she is, what she wants.

‘What do you want?’ he replied a couple of days later. He never understood why people play games by text, not replying for two days etc but in this occasion she could wait.

‘Can I be honest with you x?’ her reply causing him frustration.

‘What do you want?’ he replied with hope that he’ll get a straight answer this time.

‘Meet me in our coffee shop at 5pm, I hope your curiosity will steer you x’ as much as he hated the thought of seeing her, this invite made his heart jump.

 

Stepping over the threshold of the coffee shop he realised that he hadn’t stepped foot in since they had parted ways, the place looked different, it looked old and just a memory. On a summers day the interior felt over cast, still built of pine and chrome but looked worn and rustic which surely wasn’t what they were going for. As much as he hated the thought of caring about her, he showed up and that must have said something. She was sat in the corner toying with her cup with both hands; she looked up as the door closed and gave a nervous wired smile. She looked tired, worn and unloved. The deep dark rings under her eyes told tales of the lack of sleep, a substantial weight loss seen in her face and chest.

“Hi, you look good” she said as he made his way over to the table. To repay the compliment would have been polite but he didn’t want to lie, she looked unwell.

“Hi” he said as he took a seat opposite her.

“I’m glad you came” she said with a cracked smile, it wasn’t the smile he used to love.

“So . . . what’s up?”  He half heartedly asked,

“I’ve missed you, I wanted to see you”

He sat and stared at her, not sure what to think or feel. Part of him wanted to reach across the table and touch her hand, see if she still felt like the women he once loved.

“I thought you’d be pleased to see me?” she said to break the silence.

“What do you want?” he replied. Images of holding her, kissing her again in his head swirling with mixed emotions.

“I just thought we could spend some time together?” She reached across the table for his hand.

“Why am I here?” not sure whether that question was better directed at her or himself whilst he pulled his hand away from hers.

She started to sob, closing her body language to protect the weak spots. He wanted to lean forward to hold her and tell her that things will work, they’ll be ok but he sat back in his chair with his arms crossed. He still loved her; he still pined for her touch. He knew that being with her would make him happy again, the happy that he enjoyed and the happy that he hadn’t felt for a while. He missed that feeling, he missed her. He could feel his armour slip, his pride seep away like a sand castle in the wind, grain by grain she had him. But that’s when she said it . . .

“He cheated on me” the muffled voice came from behind the hands covering her face.

“What . . . what did you just say?” he hoped his ears deceived him.

“He cheated on me; I’ve made such a mistake. I know you would have never done that to me, you loved me.” She sobbed whilst removing her hands to try and keep eye contact.

“So wait a minute . . . he cheats on you and you think that I’ll come down here and comfort you, everything will go back to how it was?” his pride took over, he felt stupid. His anger came to the surface and she started to sob again, probably because he was making a scene in a public place.

“You always loved me no matter what” she said wiping her eyes with her sleeve.

“Right . . . I really want you to listen to what I’m going to say, I don’t want there to be any miss interpretation . . . . . Fuck you!” as he stood the sound of his chair legs dragging on the floor shattered his heart.

“Wait . . . please” she pleaded.

He stopped and turned his head to look at her over his shoulder.

“I’m pregnant” she looked defeated and tired as the words slipped from her mouth.

“I’m sorry” is all he could muster.

Feeling punch drunk he headed for the door, his jaw feeling stiff and his eyes feeling as they could roll into the top of his head. The cold air slapped him in the face as he opened the door, he looked back at the table because he still cared but the girl sitting there wasn’t the one he loved. Once again he cried a crushing cry that should never be seen by a dry eye.

February 11, 2012

It’s a Mother Fucking Spiral

Filed under: Just a Thought — Tags: , , , , , , , — mitchellsmustard @ 11:37 pm

They say that sadness becomes easier with time, surely you feel sad for a reason and that the sadness doesn’t become easier but just slowly forgotten? Sadness will engulf you in flames and leave you with foundations to re build; it will never take everything but just enough for you to know that it can be done. Sadness causes you to take twice as long at doing everyday things, twice as much thought behind the simplest task. The urgency of anything seems to seep away, put everything on hold because the spiral has begun. From personal experience I found normal uncomplicated routines a challenge such as eating or sleeping, which in turn then made this mother fucking spiral harder to get out of. We all have our own reasons for feeling sad sometimes but we have to learn to live with this as its part of our existence, part of our inner being. Your body goes into slow motion but your brain has never worked so hard, over and over again you think about everything and nothing. When you’re sad even your music taste changes, nothing heavy but something with thought. I normally turn to acoustic melodies with male vocals, Chris Cornell to Jack Johnson. Sadness is good for you, let it engulf you, let it cause you issues with everyday life, let that spiral begin but don’t let it take over. It’s healthy to feel sad; it makes you more appreciative of the things that don’t make you sad. It’s just an emotion just like hate and love, they all have ups and downs but the important thing is you don’t give up. It’s not so much about why you feel sad but how you deal with feeling sad, this is a mother fucking spiral so grip hold and ride it through.

 

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