"How can you be thinking of her while you're with me?" Richard erupts into a scream. "Philipa doesn't know you like I do!" And he runs off a stream of information about myself that he's collected and remembered over the years: that I'm 28 although I pretend I'm 26 sometimes; that I'm a teacher; how I go jogging in the morning to clear my head, and because I'm too lazy to go to the gym anymore; that I keep saying I would love to have children, but I haven't done it yet, and haven't even made my mind up about with who; how the last thing I stole was a wine glass from a party he had taken me to because I wanted a drink for the walk home. And he continues until I turn away from my reflection and pull him close to me, holding his struggling arms down until he relaxes again, and I feel his body turn limp and malleable. I feel him give up. I tell him I'll leave Philipa, I will, I promise, I tell him, stroking his hair. And I can see my dull eyes in the mirror over the back of Richard's shaking head, 'liar,' they shout at me. Because Richard had once asked what my favourite possession was, and I had answered, 'A ring that belongs to my mother,' but all I thought of was Philipa: Philipa was my favourite possession, I knew.
TEXT by Ailish McAlpine-Green + IMAGES by Lindsay Mcbirnie