Seventeen

CHEYENNE BARDOS

Do I look back now
with hope or remorse?
Am I still as naïve?
Did youth take its course
through empty paddocks
and failed license tests?


If I take a break, 
solemnly,
like a director would
before his dailies;


CUT TO A SWIMMING POOL IN THE NIGHT:


Warped legs and pruned finger pads
afloat like teenage lily pads 
with cuts on our legs
from climbing the fence.
This was the height of it 
and that’s what we thought.
                   

CUT TO A DIM KITCHEN LIGHT:


Two wobbly, naked bodies
A stomach still shy and sucked in. 
Have you ever had your mother call you,
asking where you’ve been?
“I’m eating pizza, naked” 
“I’m at Bronte’s house about to go to sleep”


CUT TO A WHITE SONATA IN FLIGHT:
CUT TO SCHOOL TIES PULLED TIGHT:
CUT TO SKIRTS AN INCH TOO HIGH:
CUT TO ALCOHOL’S FIRST BITE:
CUT TO A CHEMIST NEXT MORNING LIGHT:


Was rent due today?
Can it stay unpaid?
Can my car fill up on its own?
Am I still as naïve?
Am I just too lazy?
Did responsibility come knocking at the door?
Does she leave when ignored?
Do I decide now, or later
when the bills are heavier
and it’s a nine to fiver
and the food in the sink plug
stares at me
whilst I nurse a screaming baby
with my cracked, bleeding nipple?
Will I be a cripple
with a walking stick 
and a forehead full of wrinkles,
pruned and widowed?
This director’s cut
doesn’t know where to go.
Half of its reel is still a storyboard


FADE TO BLACK




︎ Cheyenne is a third year Commerce/Media (PR and Advertising) student who writes to empower herself. Writing gives her a space to explore her femininity and her experiences growing up as a Filipino-Australian in country NSW. She mainly shares her writing on her Instagram (cheyennebardos).︎