Neil Hilborn – OCD


I am a words person. I just love it when people are ‘good with words’. In my opinion, words can truly touch the soul, and I don’t always agree with the ‘fact’ that actions say more than words. Sometimes words can touch me like nothing else can, but I must admit that I have never been touched by a poem as much as I have been by my latest discovery. I’m just going to let words speak for themselves here…

Ik ben een ‘woordenmens’. Ik vind het helemaal geweldig als mensen “goed zijn met woorden”. Naar mijn mening kunnen woorden doordringen tot in de diepste, donkerste krochten van je ziel, en ik ben het er niet altijd mee eens dat ‘daden meer zeggen dan woorden’. Soms raken woorden me meer dan eender wat, maar ik moet toegeven dat er nog nooit een tekst of gedicht is geweest dat me ZO hard raakte dan mijn laatste ontdekking…


The first time I saw her…
Everything in my head went quiet.
All the tics, all the constantly refreshing images just disappeared.
When you have Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder, you don’t really get quiet moments.
Even in bed, I’m thinking:
Did I lock the doors? Yes.
Did I wash my hands? Yes.
Did I lock the doors? Yes.
Did I wash my hands? Yes.
But when I saw her, the only thing I could think about was the hairpin curve of her lips..
Or the eyelash on her cheek—
the eyelash on her cheek—
the eyelash on her cheek.
I knew I had to talk to her.
I asked her out six times in thirty seconds.
She said yes after the third one, but none of them felt right, so I had to keep going.
On our first date, I spent more time organizing my meal by color than I did eating it, or fucking talking to her…
But she loved it.
She loved that I had to kiss her goodbye sixteen times or twenty-four times if it was Wednesday.
She loved that it took me forever to walk home because there are lots of cracks on our sidewalk.
When we moved in together, she said she felt safe, like no one would ever rob us because I definitely locked the door eighteen times.
I’d always watch her mouth when she talked—
when she talked—
when she talked—
when she talked
when she talked;
when she said she loved me, her mouth would curl up at the edges.
At night, she’d lay in bed and watch me turn all the lights off.. And on, and off, and on, and off, and on, and off, and on, and off, and on, and off, and on, and off, and on, and off, and on, and off, and on, and off, and on, and off, and on, and off.
She’d close her eyes and imagine that the days and nights were passing in front of her.
Some mornings I’d start kissing her goodbye but she’d just leave cause I was
just making her late for work…
When I stopped in front of a crack in the sidewalk, she just kept walking…
When she said she loved me her mouth was a straight line.
She told me that I was taking up too much of her time.
Last week she started sleeping at her mother’s place.
She told me that she shouldn’t have let me get so attached to her; that this whole thing was a mistake, but…
How can it be a mistake that I don’t have to wash my hands after I touched her?
Love is not a mistake, and it’s killing me that she can run away from this and I just can’t.
I can’t – I can’t go out and find someone new because I always think of her.
Usually, when I obsess over things, I see germs sneaking into my skin.
I see myself crushed by an endless succession of cars…
And she was the first beautiful thing I ever got stuck on.
I want to wake up every morning thinking about the way she holds her steering wheel..
How she turns shower knobs like she’s opening a safe.
How she blows out candles—
blows out candles—
blows out candles—
blows out candles—
blows out candles—
blows out…
Now, I just think about who else is kissing her.
I can’t breathe because he only kisses her once — he doesn’t care if it’s perfect!
I want her back so bad…
I leave the door unlocked.
I leave the lights on.

“OCD” by Neil Hilborn


The brilliant bag

Every now and then I like to visit thrift stores. The collection there is rarely really mind-blowing, but if you visit regularly and aren’t afraid of some digging, you might just find some real gems. My local thriftstore is my favourite place to find second-hand books and vinyl records, but during my last visit, something else caught my eye…

Af en toe breng ik een bezoek aan De Kringloopwinkel. Echt overweldigend is de collectie er niet, maar als je regelmatig even langsgaat en niet bang bent van wat graven en zoeken, kan je er echte pareltjes vinden. De Kringloop bij mij in de buurt is mijn favoriete plek voor het ontdekken van tweedehands boeken en vinyl platen, maar tijdens mijn laatste bezoek vond ik ook iets anders…1-IMG_5400

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