• Vol. 09
  • Chapter 09

Hodge Podge

At school we made a collage; What Describes Us Best,
clippings and cuttings from magazines and catalogues
whose corners peeled blithely from when the Prit-Stick
dried before being glued down to the page.

Images from the fabled toy section of the Argos catalogue
alongside cut-up photographs and print-outs of
cartoon characters all orbiting a crudely drawn,
unrecognisable pencil etching of my face.

Twenty years later I still think about that collage, and
about how an array of things came together
in an attempt to form a picture of a complete
person with any sense of cohesion.

Sometimes the inside of my head feels like that piece
of old A3 paper with facets of my personality
blithely peeling away from Who I Am because I slap-dashed
down to impress someone else, many someone elses,
most of whom would look at my crudely drawn face and
neither know nor care if it resembled me in the slightest.

But if I were to let these cuttings peel away my collage
would be empty, so I take my Prit-Stick and glue the
corners back down just to make sure I have something
to show the teacher when they ask me who I am.