I dry my hair, dress myself, paint my nails –
start again. I strip my nails back to the base colour and re-paint them
a slightly different shade. I’m a better person when I’m busy.
I cure the nail varnish for eight minutes longer than necessary;
under the UV light I inspect the creases
of my knuckles for crumbs.
After this I will work for ten hours before I go home,
have a bath, read a book, go to bed, go to sleep,
on an empty stomach.
Charley Barnes is a Worcester-based writer who has recently gained her Doctorate in Creative Writing. Charley’s short story collection, The Women You Were Warned About, was published in May 2017, and her debut poetry pamphlet, A Z-hearted Guide to Heartache, has just been published by V. Press.