Everyone I have ever slept with – nos 1 to 27 – Version 2


I’m planning to perform this as part of a collection on remembering & forgetting.

This is a re-write of an earlier piece, feedback would be much appreciated.

1.I remember everyone I have ever slept with, even though I may have forgotten many if their names

2. I remember the first time and afterwards, a shame faced entry into a sitting room where everyone knew our business.

3. I remember the last time with R, with nothing left to say, we took refuge under the duvet on a wet September day.

4.I remember sharing a bed with B, she carefully placed pillows down the centre line, a demarcation of distance, of decency & decorum.

5.I remember the man who would knock on my door at midnight and fool that i was, i would always let him in.

6. I remember spooning against A, his aubergine skin against mine, so dark it made my Irish whiteness glow in the soft light of my bedroom.

7. I remember summer afternoons with J, lolling on a grubby mattress on the floor, we stuck our feet out of the window to cool ourselves and waved them at passers-by.

8.I remember another J, in a tent where we pressed our hands against each other’s mouths so that we would not wake the other campers

9.I remember, drunk on cava and sun, sharing a bed with my mother, we talked and giggled until the children, over-tired and fractious, told us to shut up and go to sleep.

10.I remember the stone cold dyke, sprawled across my pillows, fully dressed as she watched me through half closed, calculating eyes.

11. I remember sleeping with A in a tipi and waking to find snowflakes drifting across our sleeping bag.

12. I remember a caravan in Norfolk and a small child pretending to be asleep while waiting for Christmas morning.

13.I remember dozing with the un-named Greenham women while we waited for morning and yet another eviction.

14. I remember Ns’ bed, so dipped and broken that we rolled together into an inevitable embrace, blaming fate & bad carpentry

15.I remember sleeping with an almost famous comedian who insisted on leaning his double base case at the foot of my bed. It loomed over us all night.

16.I remember New Year’s Eve 1999, D threw pillows at my head when I talked in my sleep.

17.I remember Ms’ home-made bed – 6 feet off the floor , we slept like over-sized birds in a wooden nest

18.I remember an un-named man who woke me to tell me that my cats were staring at him.

19.I remember sharing a bed with my sister, we slept top to tail, whispering and watching the flames die down in the bedroom grate.

20.I remember another R, we would listen to the shipping forecast late at night and he, claiming to be a sailor, would tell me tales of the sea, in retrospect, I see that many of these stories were fictions.

21.I remember M who in my freezing flat, wore his badly darned yellow jumper as some defence against the cold.

22.I remember a cat, who while i slept, gave birth to 3 tabby kittens.

23.I remember A who swore me to secrecy.

24.I remember the night I lured a model home and the look of disbelief on the faces of those left in the club who watched us leave the club

25.I remember the husky dog, as the night went on she would move herself further and further up the bed, until, finally, her head would rest on a pillow, face staring into mine.

26. I remember small bear, wearer of tiny knitted trousers to stop his sawdust innards leaking into my bed.

27.I remember staggering home from a dentist, mouth full of blood and H who lay on top of the blanket, patting my hand until the pain killers kicked in

All, many, some of these may be true, un-true, mis-remembered.

About cathi rae

50ish teacher & aspiring writer and parent of a stroppy teenager and carer for a confused bedlington terrier and a small selection of horses who fail to shar emy dressage ambitions. Interested in contemporary fiction but find myself returning to PG Wodehouse when the chips are down View all posts by cathi rae

4 responses to “Everyone I have ever slept with – nos 1 to 27 – Version 2

  • Stephen Wright

    Re 24. I’d end this at “…watched us leave.” No need to add ” …the club.” Some of these really sing out and because they are so good, those that aren’t quite on the button, only 2 or 3 of them, weaken the piece. I’d pay good money to hear the others though.

    • cathi rae

      give me the numbers of the ones you feel weaken it – i am happy to cut further
      thanks for this

      • Stephen Wright

        OK, here goes…13, mainly because 14 is so, so good, 16 and 21 as well do not meet the high quality of the others – in my Uriah Heap ish opinion.

  • Maria Smith (@mariaAsmith)

    Its powerful, the audience will sit up and listen. A few nit picks,
    Typo in 1. change ‘if’ to ‘of’

    17. I would change to ‘I remember M – the home-made bed – 6 feet off the floor , we slept like over-sized birds in a wooden nest’

    Agree with Stephen re 24

    I also think you need to play around with the last line. A change of wording to strengthen it up for final impact, being that it is spoken word.

    Perhaps,

    Some, many, maybe all, may be true. Maybe un-true or maybe mis-remembered.
    Or
    I remember…maybe. Are they true? Or maybe un-true, or mis-remembered?

    Good stuff!

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