Friday, 19 December 2008

Blemished lemon

She rang the buzzer and told me that someone would run back and change it for a perfect one. I held onto it tightly, intent on taking it home with me, said it was the one I wanted and tried to get her to take the money for my few items. We waited. The queue behind me tutted and sighed. She looked at me a lot, suspicious under her big fringe.

I didn't tell her that I loved the blemishes on the skin rubbed smooth and pale by the sway of branches in a hot breeze and the place where a leaf had curled close as a shield from the sun. I didn't tell her that I liked the change in texture, from glossy wax and pock mark familiar, to the dull rough of sandy island archipelago in a dazzling sea. I didn't tell her that I like that colour there, reminding me of pale office envelopes, smooth brown wrapping paper waiting wide open for the boldness of folds and the clear decisions of tape and string. I didn't tell her that I wanted to draw the patterns on it's skin because they were beautiful.

I carried it home in my coat pocket like a precious find, sat gazing at it from every angle before putting the rest of the shopping away. Now, I look at it across the room as it sits brazen against the satsumas on a dark blue plate. I laid the plate on a cork mat on the closed lid of the piano. It looks like a Matisse still life.