after a while you won’t be able to turn on the wim wenders film paris texas just because it is streaming on demand and it is friday evening and you are living alone because he who has bale coloured hair and sensitive skin is interstate working for the man. you won’t be able to simply watch movies that too heavily dramatise male loneliness or men’s charming loserdom because you will be fairly familiar with the concept by now not that it wasn’t once charming to you too, you know you still can get around five easy pieces the film starring jack Nicholson a star on the precipice screaming for more of it more of life which some women found sexually attractive, not you however but you could relate to jack nicholson in the way that stars inspire false likeness by dramatising fantasies ordinary people have of themselves primarily the fantasy that one is proximate to the edge at all times. susan sontag said real celebrities don’t play other characters they play themselves and they are coated with a sheen like velvet forgive the misquote who doesn’t want to be coated in short tufted silk warm somehow and dewy both like waking up when it’s dark out still, turning on the bedside table lamp whose light traces on all skin and body types flatteringly, outside bed the morning is prickly and you reach across and envelop the hot form of him there there there velvet and there it is jack nicholson screaming.

where are all the female homer simpsons a great woman once said. look around baby you think to yourself look around there are female losers everywhere that’s the point you are drowning in female losers. who wants to be homer simpson anyway when you could be patty bouvier anyway when did feminism get so up itself the point the point is that women too are stars of auteur films but auteur films are now plain life like floundering women with a sheen of volatility and velvet which some may find sexually attractive just only with a better functioning welfare state such that the patty bouviers of this world could mind themselves without having too to go all i’m clawing my way out of this dump forthwith! lisa simpson whose dogged righteousness was nonetheless another source of personal fantasy, the fantasy of discipline and conviction.

many women you know are afraid of becoming old women who walk around glaring at the leaves on trees with one tit hanging out if you add to this a natural predisposition for hard drinking or shadows or hard brows folding onto themselves, a distaste for the cult of excellence, there goes your chance of female prime ministership, whoosh. there was that woman you knew who said ‘frankly’ without adjusting her voice to indicate that she was aware that in this world ‘frankly’ is used only in ironic contexts and no-one despised her for it frankly, she was steely nerved and got what she wanted thank you but did she also fear that animal inside her? the fantasy of the beast within that glint of it feral women share me too baby me too you were laughing just yesterday about that, you were always looking for females to not become but perhaps acquire females with a wolfish charisma like tangled hair and other such clichés that’s where you went wrong. when they did the beastly thing you dropped them like kittens in a dam lapping tiny tongues the slosh of it too cold at your ankles squatting over you shoved them under and held tight come baby come sit on my lap you with your moral candour or so you would have them believe oh what big teeth you have clawing away from those girls forthwith.

i am writing about the time i broke up with a friend for her actions, a wolfish girl she was covered in sheen and volatility, she behaved as nature had intended. i dropped her via email and she never emailed back.

ELENA SAVAGE is an Australian lyric essayist and poet. Her debut essay collection BLUEBERRIES is forthcoming with Text Publishing in 2019. Her work has been published widely in literary journals and magazines, most recently: Chart Collective, Literary Hub, Cordite Poetry Review, and The Best of The Lifted Brow: Volume Two. Her Chapbook YELLOW CITY was a co-winner of The Atlas Review Chapbook Series 2018. She is a former editor and sometimes contributor at The Lifted Brow. She lives between Melbourne and Athens