Issue #8


Sometimes rejection is just as difficult to give as it is to receive.
Sometimes it clings to Velcro hands like a piece of wool.
And the wool gets caught up in the teeth of the Velcro,
so much so that it’s impossible to stick two pieces of Velcro together because the wool is tangled in between.
Sometimes it’s like that damp smell that is sometimes there
when the radiator doesn’t work properly
so towels don’t dry.
And it needs to be diffused but there’s no air freshener.
Useless hands wave the smell in vain attempts to scatter it
but the ratio of air to smell is too unbalanced
so the smell remains.
Besides, Velcro hands don’t wave very well
due to the lack of dexterity
so the smell gets caught up in the fibres of the wool
which just makes things worse.
And it’s like the smell and the wool will never go away.
It seems as though the severity of the situation would be so much less
had the hands not been made of Velcro.
Or if one of the hands was made of skin
and muscle
and bone
and veins
and arteries
and the other Velcro,
so the regular hand could at least use regular fingernails on regular fingers
to pick at the wool
and make a legitimate attempt to divorce wool from Velcro.
But what of the smell?
Perhaps if the nose was sliced off,
cut up,
and stored in a well sealed Tupperware box,
the problem would be solved.
But surely the eyes and ears and mouth would then have to be severed and stored accordingly,
in which case the hands would be useless anyway,
Velcro or no Velcro.
And the featureless face would curse the spite of the nose.
So maybe it has to be supposed
that if Velcro hands hold Velcro hands,
wool will get caught up in the teeth,
and the fibres of the wool will become ragged and worn.
Perhaps some parts of the wool will fall from the Velcro’s grasp,
or perhaps the wool will just slither out one day unexpectedly,
or get caught on another piece of Velcro.

Hannah O’Brien