Friday, May 19, 2006

Post Secret

Post Secret is a fascinating journal of life. It is deeply moving and tender, portraying the vast landscape of the human heart.

Instead of just telling you about it, I've written a story instead. Hope you like it. And congratulations to the person/s behind this remarkable repository of social history.

Secret Publishing.

The tiny corner of her postcard, split apart and curled upwards to meet her and she cursed it as she pressed her thumb hard against it to stick it back down. She smoothed out the paper until it had adhered properly.

"It has to be perfect", she said to herself. "It has to say exactly what I feel".

The corner of the card remained in place and so she turned attention to other parts of her 10cm x 15cm creation.

She had taken a picture from a magazine to represent the image she wanted to convey on this card. She didn't want anyone to know who this was about. It was a huge risk exposing this truth to the world, but she did need somewhere to vent and this was an opportunity too good to pass up.

Post Secret. A blog on the internet where people could send in their deepest, most intimate secrets anonymously. It was a brilliant concept and a fascinating insight into the human condition. Relationships, love, lust, greed, desire, friendship, hatred, anger, grief, relief... it was all there. Cass loved reading it and had for a long time wanted to contribute her own dark secret.

So, here was her chance. She had bitten the bullet a few days earlier and had secretly gathered her bundle of craft supplies together with the view of finding a quiet space and time where she could construct her postcard. She smiled at the irony of crafting her secret in secret only to then have it published for all the world to see. There was something cathartic about the idea though, as if by confessing this sin, she could somehow be absolved of the guilt of it.

With pieces of torn newspaper with isolated words, glue, card stock, markers, glitter, a few magazines from which to take images, scissors, a postage stamp and with a sense of guilty pleasure, she sat one sunny Saturday afternoon alone in her kitchen and began the crafting process. This monster inside her had resided there, in her heart, for the past 20 years. She was tired. Tired of carrying painful longings, secret dreams of possibilities never obtained, tired of having to be so under control with this thing. She needed to get it out, to clear it from her subconsciousness and set it free.

She started with the image of a woman and a man sitting across from each other. They were smiling and drinking what was apparently coffee gauging from the advertisement the image had come from. The two people in the image looked at each other with laughter in their eyes. They looked like they were good friends.

Cass took some glue and smeared a rough shape around the couple. She then sprinkled on the glitter and shook off the excess revealing a gaudy, glittery heart. She wanted it to look a little like a school-girls effort, with tacky, glittery heart-shapes. This thing inside her was like that - childish and foolish. She let the glittery glue dry and then choosing, carefully, the words in newsprint, she snipped and glued the following message to the card.

"I have always, always loved only you".

That was all it said. She didn't need to say more. This was her guilty secret, the one she could no longer contain inside her.

She sat back and contemplated her card. A lone tear trickled down her cheek as the pain of having kept this underneath her skin for so long leaked through. She composed herself and put the card into an envelope. She addressed it and put the stamp on it.

She decided it was best to post it straight away so she packed up everything on the table quickly and was about to head out the door when the phone rang. Sighing, she went to answer it, the postcard grasped in her hand.

"Hi" said the deep, velvet voice on the other end of the line.

Cass's heart skipped a beat but with her many long years of practise, she quickly regained control over her messy heart. "Hello Tom!", she said brightly with a smile in her voice.

She looked down at the card and the silent tear again broke ranks and retraced its path down her cheek. He was her best friend's husband.

Life could be so unfair sometimes.


© M. Pitman 2006

1 comment:

saussie said...

I love reading Post Secret too, Mitch.

Those cards certainly get the mind's cogs whirring away.