Issue #6


In the atmosphere,

I linger.  I am not patient. 

Manifestations of my effect are never far away in time or distance.  Sometimes, you might bare witness to my work.  Most likely, this will make you feel



morally obligated to react. 

On a Friday evening, as you pass a fight between a man and a woman - his face inches from hers and his fingers clenched.  One hand on the wall behind her head - his weight dangerously close to hers.  You’re not afraid of me then.  But you are concerned for what I might do next.

Screeching tyres.  Car Horns.  This is me.  Raised voices.  Scattering glass.  This is me.

Sometimes you will feel me creeping along the length of your finger tips or through the nerves in your teeth. 


You might try to restrain me. 

Sometimes, you will be successful in being ‘Reasonable’.

There will be one time.  It might have happened already.  You might still be waiting for it.  When it happens the first time, the effect I have will scare you, take you by surprise.  You’ll rise out of yourself and watch me as I engulf your physical being.  Do not fight it.  It could happen very suddenly.  There will be no time to escape.  In your chest fireworks fly.  Not the kind set off at charity events or May balls. 

Fireworks set off by teenage boys in busy streets. 

Feet trampling over your ribcage, desperately running from the soaring, sparking missiles.

Your eyes will burn involuntarily.  The seeds of red chillies pushed against the sockets.  Tears may fall.  This could be the cause of some embarrassment depending on when I have taken you.

Something close to you; a glass; a door; a mirror, might urgently scream at you to be thrown, kicked, destroyed and you will oblige.  For me, I prefer the one’s that choose a photo frame, or maybe a mobile phone.  The aftermath of destruction is more satisfying with items which have some personal resonance.  And when I visit you that one time, probably Thursday afternoon or Friday evening, don’t be surprised if I visit again thereafter.  In fact, you should get used to having me around more often.

I am better than some of the others.

Lyndsey Hannam

In an ideal world Lyndsey Hannam is about to graduate with a BA in English Language and Literature and pursue a career in publishing. Or else embark on a happy, bohemian future simply reading all the books that have been recommended to her during her time at Sheffield.