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Amanita Muscaria, or, It Is Easier to Be a Cryptid Than a Girl

Updated: Jun 11, 2021

IMAGE: Surreal collage interpreting the text

For Louise

We’re so much older than the waxwork days of June, after exams, sitting beside the muttering swathes of wheat and dreaming of where we are now. Girls of separate cities and good fairtrade coffee. This grown-up being. What of wilderness? Back to where the self is a revolving door. Back to the dead and discount beaches, Errington Woods in the pissing rain. The mushrooms in autumn. We could wear them like hats. Scurry into the rain together with our faces shadowed: inkcap and fly agaric and shaggy parasol. Of course, we could be anything: earthstar or puffball, jelly ear or elf cup. We could be carrying the romantic notion that a girl is as monstrous in her new city as she is in her hometown, howling and sharp-toothed and poisonous. Newcastle's street lights pulsating with their own weirdness. It’d be much the same anywhere. Oh, to be a deer in Animal Crossing who eats fresh peaches, oh to turn my inkcap brim into the shade and drip black ichor. I’ll catch a train soon, come and see you, with ink running down our chins and mushrooms to keep out the rain.

Writing by KYM DEYN

Artwork ‘This World and that’  by CLAIR MEYRICK

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