Act 1 [Melodeclamation piece]

by Margot

Act 1  [Melodeclamation piece] 



It’s not even a story, to be fair, just a normal kind of - 

 

Oops, I live here now, innit. 

 

There’s no reason really to  even go there, cuz you ain’t gonna find anything interesting. No reason, no drama, nothing worth mentioning in your Insta story. Maybe one day I’ll make a TV show about it. It will go something like: 

 

Ladies, gentlemen and other genders, welcome to the Great Migration Show, where Margot - formerly known as Małgorzata - reveals her reasons for leaving Poland. 

 

Part one: A Lesbian Affair. 

 

Is it still a lesbian matter is the star of the show wasn’t even sure if she liked girls in the first place? I mean, at 18 it’s hard to be sure about anything, let alone things like a mega-crush on an androgynus-looking friend, who has left Białystok for England one day. 

 

And BTW, don’t try dissing the city of Białystok, yeah, 

cuz it’s the main one there in the region mate, 

FYI the one that hasn’t been demoted 

in the great administrational conflict, 

reform let’s party like it’s 1999, 

unlike 

other settlements scattered like crumbs, 

Białystok towering is loud and proud, so shut your mouth, 

 just because you’re living in the big London town 

doesn’t mean you can cast judgements on geographic locations you simply know nothing about.

 

Anyway, as I was saying, what do you know about yourself at 18? The rejections hurt.

 

It was the first chance to take her life in her hands and leave Białystok (ain’t nothing wrong with the place, y’hear!). 

 

It was the first chance to take her life in her hands, unmitigated by her mentally ill mother and hardworking father 

 

Oh, he was hardworking, alright, working hard to intimidate her sensitivity,

sitting on the sofa in front of the TV, 

in his underwear, playing with his testicles -

that’s the level of mindless familiarity that is hard to bear for an artistic 18 year old, 

let’s face it, hardly inspiring sight, 

nothing to write home about. 

 

The late night calls on the landline - the phone’s cord stretched to its limits between the hall and the bedroom, sliding door shut, yet with huge gaps between the edge of the door and the carpeted floor [she didn’t choose the colour] and the paper thin walls of a 39m2 box in a social block studded with invigilate neighbours, old women - dog walkers whose antennae pick up the faintest whisper of softly unfolding blossom of the first serious conversation featuring feelings and attempts at naming the status quo between our star and the androgenus… lover [god, how things have moved on], some words spoken out loud [ever so quietly] for the first time, micro-movements of hands, gazes over the first ever beer with raspberry syrup in a place where nobody asked for the IDs. It was nice that.   

 

Until that old one with a mohair beret and a plastic bag scrunched up under her garb, stuffed with unidentified objects, what’s that all about? How many times is it normal to circle the grass bit by the bins, like it’s some kind of an outlet for existential first aid kits and pass the sale by date sweets.




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Until that one, the Bin Shopping Queen with meticulously applied lipstick pearly pink, with a fat dotted dog that was gonna be a miniature poodle but turned out to be a cheap Russian scam, much larger in fact than anticipated by anyone, most of all her - 

 

The Human Bear, 

who once upon a time wished for a child, 

but the male rejection stuck in her heart like a shard, 

so she settled for a cute pup

It could have been perfect but 

Was swapped at birth or spent too much time amidst the ambiguous Western goods 

of compromised quality, 

brought to you painstakingly 

on a longer detour via Azerbaijans, Kazakhstans, deep taigas, tundras and meanders of the Eastern barons in charge to the market underneath the arch. 

Truly international stuff. 



Now, for the last time - 

 

Things were going well until that old one, picked up the latest intel on the budding love, and released it to the aether guarded perversely by a whole army of them, some worse - more wrinkly and with uglier dogs. Rumours spread like wildfire, which engulfed both parents like a pair of potatoes thrown into the fire - essentially perfectly lovely when cooled down a tad. However, bursting with heat of wrath right now. Keep your distance! 

 

Good luck

 

With only 39m2 worth of floor to move around. Nowhere was far enough from the lava of accusations, overspill of expectations, family shame. And all she’s been thinking about was:

 

How a man who spends his life between shifts, 

clad in a skimpy pair of briefs 

and a wife-beater, 

how does he get to call the shots? 

Talk about family shame, for real! 

 

And her little cousin - camp as Christmas - will join priesthood in a few years time, raising zero suspicions amid uncles and aunts. 

 

How’s that fair?! 

 

Speaking of queer raves, on 25th of December 2003, after 3 months of separation, letters sent across borders, our anti-hero here, enrolls successfully onto a Polish Philology degree course - next best thing after an epic fail with the exam for the prestigious acting school in the capital - 

 

Damn them! Rigged, the whole thing anyway. 

 

The process of ‘straightening’ in the eyes of the parents went extremely well, so much so that the permit to visit her ‘friend’ in England was granted in the shape of a coach ticket. 31 hours from the departure she arrived at Victoria Coach Station.

 

Wow. I’m free. 

(And terrified)

 

But don’t panic, child, remember the training, the breathing, the spatial awareness. Take it all in. Your greatest acting challenge begins.  



Margot

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