One thing that I’ve commented before is that the path down to the swamp never actually leaves you, it’s always there, waiting for you to look the other way so that it can sneak up on you. I’ve also commented before now that there is a price for being a Mish, which is being a Mish. This is an incredibly arrogant statement obviously, but then I am. A friend of mine had a dream a little while back of me sinking into a black tarry mass of goop, which amused me somewhat for entirely my own reasons.
I tend to connect my initial sinking into the swamp with Blue Eyes breaking my heart – something that seemed to me to be akin to having taken a dive into solid black and have it ooze and fill up the gaping hole in my chest. Of course when we’re talking about the Swamp then it isn’t even close to fair to pin that on Blue Eyes, these past couple of years have been a lot about me looking at other factors, we’ll call the main one Being Axed and the secondary one Diving Alone. The names are self-explanatory and if you know me and my interests you can work out what I mean, if you can’t then you don’t know me well enough and I prolly wouldn’t tell you anyway.

I think I managed to pull myself back into shape pretty well after Blue Eyes, I’m not finished dealing with Being Axed though I’m in a much more stable position about it, Diving Alone I haven’t touched. I put it on a back burner when I was eighteen and it hasn’t gone on the front one since.

Back to the arrogance. As a Mish I’m incredibly priveleged and unbelievably lucky. I get to be in positions that other people never seem to be in, I am so trusted and so loved and so… I’m not sure I know the words to adequately describe it. But I’m damn lucky. As a Mish I feel like I’m in the most precarious of positions, if I misstep then I could really (and do) hurt somebody, but theres no one to take advice from, I don’t know anybody else who ends up in these positions. As a Mish people tell me all kinds of things and I’m left trying to keep my mouth shut and wondering why people trust me. The worst is being told things that hurt me, and keeping my mouth shut. Listening and listening and wanting to plunge something sharp into my stomache and twist. Thats the privelege and the payment covered I think.

So, I’m sinking into this black, tarry mass, trying to keep my mouth closed and my nose pinched for as long as I can. It’s been pulling me swampwards the tar lately. The little whispers in the swamp which I got so good at ignoring but which get reinforced by things like the night before my English GCSE or Briery Street, they’re getting louder and louder and it becomes very easy to believe that I inflict myself on people, that I push my way into those eggshells where I’m not wanted. That no one is inviting me to be a Mish and no one wanting me to pay for it. Little whispery voices that tell me I’m not wanted, not needed, and not welcome anywhere.

I’ve never been sinking swampwards before and been so aware of the parralell processing. I could list absolutely everyone I know and give you a run down of exactly what I had done to offend them and make them despise me and I know it’s not true, I really do…except that I’m having to hold up specific examples in order to convince myself. What’s worst of all is that it feels true.
This isn’t quite like the Swamp as I’ve come to know it. I’m not quite sure about these voices of mine, only that I spent most of the day yesterday really trying not to listen.

Sinking into a black morass of horrible little voices is not my idea of fun. But what’s worst is this idea that I will listen to anything, I guess I will, if people want to tell me their deep dark secrets then they can do so, people ought to know how bad I am at keeping secrets by now after all. What I won’t listen to is my nearest and dearest being slagged off for no reason. Sure, everyone does stupid things and frankly a good bitch is good for the soul but I’m a Mish not an angel. I’m way too up my own arse at the moment (entirely deliberately – it got Sappho and Plath published after all) to make payment properly and I don’t want to be stupid enough (as I was last night) to ask any of my nearest and dearest to stop talking/confiding/bitching in/at me.

I am not going to stop being a Mish, no matter what this Swamp wants but I get the feeling I might be a bit sharp with people who want to fill me full of their own particular poisons.

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