I may stumble


so you think YOU can sink ME?
have you not seen my battle scars?
did you not spot the gaps between these
stained and chipped teeth, and spy
the pointed tips of my hidden set?

even as I lay bloodied in war torn fields I always
sharpened them with bark from wizened trees

Yes, I may stumble often, and often fall down.
If you cut me I will do what all mortals do
but when you think you have destroyed me
I will be recuperating, reinforcing my castle

if you come at me with ice
it will tear holes in my soft flesh
but will quickly melt away to nothing
leaving you as unarmed as
you believed me to be me

if you return to cut me with a blade
I will take it, I will sharpen it
and then I will push it deep into your heart

nobody will see the scarlet stain
all they will see is a former tyrant
whose marbles have all rolled away

and I will smile benevolently
on a failed little hitler who
misjudged her intended victim

©Jane Paterson Basil


25 thoughts on “I may stumble

    1. Thank you! A silly, malicious woman has crossed my path, thinking that she can do to me what she has done to others. She blew it bigtime in round one, but I don’t think she has the intelligence to realise it. She definitely hasn’t seen my armory.

      Liked by 1 person

        1. I don’t always have the energy for battle, but this will be an easy one if she chooses to challenge me. She hasn’t got the required intelligence. It surprises me that she has got away with it for so long, but I suppose most people would use traditional methods if they had the courage to stand up to her at all.

          Liked by 1 person

    1. I try not to be, but sometimes people get to me, and I had a heavy weekend. If I had heard what my neighbour heard, my reaction would have been to see that she was ok, rather than try to get her into trouble with the landlord – not that it worked for her anyway – the house supervisor finally saw her true colours.

      Liked by 1 person

  1. ‘even as I lay bloodied in war torn fields I always
    sharpened them with bark from wizened trees’
    Love this – what an image! Makes me think of Hilary Mantell – there’s a bit in Wolf Hall I loved when she’s describing boggarts and sprites in the woods. Deliciously dark.
    I’ve met cruel women who’ve gone through their entire lives unchallenged – I used to work with one – a ‘friend’ supposedly. She could be generous and could be cruel, manipulative too. I wasn’t strong enough to fight her and had to move across the country to escape her. Twelve years free and my heart’s glad for it.
    Good luck with you future battles 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. It’s shocking that you had to uproot to get away from a so-called “friend”. She must have really been something. It sounds like you have an interesting story there, if you can ever bring yourself to write it. But you’ve probably already recycled bits of the experience. It’s what we do, isn’t it – we write from a combination of experience and imagination.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Well, I moved across the country with husband for work, but also happened to ‘accidentally’ drop my phone in a bucket of water and lost her number. She was messed up person and I allowed her to control me – partly my own fault, I’m sure, though I was not the only one she manipulated. Weirdly, I havn’t used her as source material, though she’s a prime candidate. Used lots of other stuff from my own life, though, from a love of history to feelings I remember as a teen – all been useful

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          1. It’s very ecological when you think about it – recycling past experience into present fiction.
            I watched a (dreadful) film ages ago that had one good line in it. A character that was a best selling crime author said ‘Writers are nothing but liars and thieves.’ Spot on 🙂

            Liked by 1 person

              1. I think it was ‘Tamara Drew’ starring Gemma Arterton. She maybe gorgeous, but she was awful in that. If you haven’t seen it, please don’t bother. I don’t want to be responsible for wasting your life away 🙂

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                    1. I’m pretty tough. When I saw Honey I Shrunk the Kids, they didn’t think I would recover, but I was out of hospital within a week!
                      It was touch and go after Police Academy though. I’d never have pulled through if they hadn’t given me Dustin Hoffman films intrevenously.

                      Liked by 1 person

                    2. Oh, lord – Police Academy. How the hell did that film have so many sequels? If there’s a piece of celluloid that could kill (at least the soul) it’s that one. Honey I Shrunk the Kids is bearable – if a child is watching it and you yourself can leave the room while it’s on 🙂 There was a film I watched which actually had Meryl Streep in, which made me want to punch the TV – she was a baker in it, all twee sponges and cup cakes. It was soooo smug and middle class and everyone was so whiny and they didn’t have any real problems at all. It was supposed to be screwball and charming – it wasn’t 🙂

                      Liked by 1 person

                    3. I like Merryl Streep, but she’s not above playing the odd vomit-inducing part.
                      I have aguilty secret. I used to be married to someone who found Police Acedemy funny! I must post the story of that man one day.

                      Liked by 1 person

    1. It’s not that bad. I’m just over-sensitive because of the situation that gave her the chance to put the boot in. I can be compassionate towards anyone except people who show no compassion themselves. I have no time for anyone who has that flaw. If we could eradicate mass stupidity and mercilessness the world would be a happy and healthy place.

      Liked by 1 person

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