Clutter

By Sharlene Gandhi

To my right:

A clock that is half an hour ahead of real time, thinking it will be able to get me out of bed earlier, only to then realise that my mind could be rewired faster than its cogs could

A couple of frames, photos inside of friends that I see once in a blue moon and whose names sometimes escape me

Two piggy banks, the amount of money in each unknown, unspecified. One has the words ‘Student Funds’ brandished on it, which, five years ago, was rather cute. Today, I laugh at the thought of my hefty loan sitting inside it.

To my left:

More photographs

Friends. Nights out. Postcards. Birthday Dinners. Surprises. Family. The Pyramids. Beaches.

Why did I choose these ones?

Why not keep photos of

Late nights spent working until words become a blur

Me, alone in a corner with my favourite book

Places I don’t remember, but appreciate the sheer beauty of

?

In my wardrobe:

I hate it.

I try to arrange the clothes by colour, by occasion, by how much I love them

It all shouts at me whichever way I try to tame it

Even the clothes I once loved appear ugly

To the point where I rotate the same three outfits.

I compensate by buying a new shirt.

On my desk:

There’s a letter from 2014 on my pinboard. Not from a friend or relative in a faraway land, just a reminder

I should really get round to that

Two laptops, a row of mugs bought by various friends as gifts because I’m ‘a coffee person’

A stack of untouched notebooks most likely bought by the same friends because coffee and notebooks go hand-in-hand

A printer that isn’t hooked up to either one of the laptops

A little plate that reads ‘Do what makes you happy’

If I could really do what made me happy, I don’t know where I would start.

I see it all and think ‘clutter’

I see it all and think ‘memories’

Where is the line

What do I keep and what do I ‘keep’

‘Moving on’, ‘fresh starts’, ‘new beginnings’

I try to slowly put things into boxes

For charity shops

Car-boot sales

eBay

I put the boxes in a corner. I’ll get to them later, send them where they need to be sent.

***

In front of me there are three boxes

On top of the boxes, books, my glasses case, a nightlight, the bag I take to work with pills, make-up and a half-full water bottle inside.

I see it all and think ‘clutter’

I put the boxes in a corner. I’ll get to them later. Send them where they need to be sent.