Page 1

Aker Magazine

Issue One


I’m a procrastinator. I‘m a writing-the-essay-at-3am-the-day-i

kind of depression that ends you up in hospital and loses you fr

ything at all. The kind of depression that feels like being burie

of leaving my room. It all seemed like too much effort. I was

wanted to so with my life. I was told by mothers, magazines,

“just do what you’re passionate about” “you just have to FOL

that passionate about anything and my dreams were bizarre m

those entrepreneurial kids who starts a t-shirt company on fif

years old that they want to be a doctor or lawyer or primary s tired working. I enrolled in and then quit several degrees. I

thought that I had to know exactly what I wanted to do before

slower and then kind of just stopped. It all seemed to big and to

cause I had so little motivation to do anything at all, I just wan

attempt, I scared into myself a thunderously powerful desire to

know what to do with it because now I had two quite contradict

A) the newly developed desire to live. Like, really, truly, fully li

B) the remaining fear of starting any course of action that was

what I was so afraid of. Boredom, maybe? Or normalcy? T


it’s-due kind of girl. When I was 18 I was swamped by the

riends. The kind of depression that stops you from doing an-

ed alive. I reached a point where I was completely incapable

s young, just out of school and had no fucking idea what I

, teachers and TV shows: “you can do anything you want”

LLOW YOUR DREAMS!” but to be honest, I wasn’t really

medleys of skulls and fairies and tiny birds. I wasn’t one of

fty bucks, or one of those driven dudes who knows at five

school teacher. I was kind of a floater. Kind of a dreamer. I was sad and slow and unmotivated. I was crippled by the

e I began it. And so I never really began. I got slower and

o hard to tackle. I didn’t even leave the house. And then, be-

nted to die. So in a big, catastrophic cluster-fuck of a suicide

o live. It was huge and scary and powerful and I didn’t quite

tory emotions —

ive. And

sn’t “following my dream”. In hindsight, I’m not quite sure

The horror of just-being-average? Anyway, it was crippling.

Her body is a monster. Cow-heavy, she is flesh hel

the strange wet silkiness of eyes and the protection

her, the travel of blood and the intestines, the pulsin

riosity of her face after sleep, with its oils and crust

the night’s biology. On the TV, she watches a doc

something real. He pushes himself into silicone, the

about the mysterious desires of plastic. Held with th

her insides clean, retouches the lipstick. This is lo

talking her through the intricacies of character and dully on her forehead like a stain.


ld by an architecture of cartilage, muscle and bone,

n of hair, nails and skin. Alien things move inside

ng of abject shapes and liquids. And there is the cu-

ted rheum and breath of decay, a grotesque echo of

cumentary about a man who imagines a doll into

e symmetry of her baby gaze suggesting something

he intimacy of necks and wrists, he carefully wipes

ove. On the couch, he shares his favourite movies,

d plot as the bright images from the screen reflect

In an ocean town, a girl with lips stitched as tight as the fibres woven through with the bite of salt and

and mucosa, she heaves up words that slip back do and algebra, the townsfolk chase the ones that get

stones and burying them sea deep. In the main drag

row bleaches in the sun; the smell of sulfur and a st the runaways shouting paragraphs and plot endings

in the town square and circled by a silent mob, pluc

of the wolf shapes made by her words, only tightens

her into fragments, leaving the smell of burnt pape

scraps and distribute them like a communion, lost f

der the thresholds of their homes as a memory, a wa


s a fist. The thread is worm thick and tarmac black, iron. Inside her mouth, pushing against the palate

own her throat like eels. In streets as neat as trellis loose, weighting them down in hessian sacks with

g, under neon signs and mannequin stares, a corpse

trange sweetness. No one speaks, listening only for down alleyways and behind doors. The girl, caged

cks at her hair like a penance. But the crowd, tired

s around the cage. As mute as walls, they disappear

r and a slick of dark ink. Scouring, they gather the

fingernails and whisper thin bones, to be buried un-



CASSANDRA ATHERTON It starts with boysenberry swirls behind my eyelids. Twirling like curls of paper ribbon. I can smell vanilla. Not that cheap scent that clings to teenage girls’ wrists, but pure vanilla. Long brown stalks of vanilla, tall and slender. Standing upright in a glass tumbler. In your very seventies kitchen. I hear the sound you make in the back of your throat.

Almost a

growl. Bear. Bare. And then your tongue is looped through my belly ring. Its pointed, pink tip darting in and out of the silver circle. I arch my back. Strong, pale fingers splayed on either side of your neck. You nip at the small silver ball. Rotating it with your lips. I hear it grind across your teeth. A dull clink. You plunge your tongue into my belly button. Spasm. My hips convulse. You pull my belly ring with your teeth. Small tugs at first. Playful. Petulant. Piqued. You pull harder until it tears

THE FROG PRINCE bone to my belly and it is red. A red snail trail. A long red ribbon. It becomes a river of blood flowing between my breasts. You drink from me. Red tinged teeth. I try to move but you are too heavy. The small silver ball begins to grow until I begin to choke on blood and metal. My belly button becomes a gaping wound at which you pry with your fingers. My blood collects under your nails and stains your hands vermilion. You stare at your hands and then at me and leave.

The silver ball shoots from my

mouth, through the roof in your bedroom and over the tops of the trees in your backyard. The corners of my mouth are cracked and weeping. I prop myself up on your bed, trying not to let the blood trickle onto the icy sheets. I don’t know how to get up without using my hands. And they are covered in blood and clutching at the hole in my stomach. Fever.

Issue 1 17 07 13  
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