To write about things that have ended a long time ago
By Rogerline Christopher
A lot of my writing is related to loss—in this case, it’s old friends. Though I’ve yet to attend a loved one’s funeral, I find myself grieving people who are still alive.
Our bodies keep score of friendships that came abruptly to an end. It keeps score of the burning agony of childhood friends turned into distant strangers, only seeing snippets of who they become, teasing us with familiar faces of the people we promised to keep in contact with after summer ended. Our bodies keep score of the times we played in the rain with the other neighborhood kids locking the memory in our hearts. They keep score of all the last times for us because we have no idea this is the last time. It’s a body count, a trail of friends we wish we were better to, ones we ignored caught up in our own heartbreak. The process of growing apart has a confusing and brutal beginning but lacks an ending. Friendships are like open wounds.
My work through poems and novels is a dedication to the trial of friendships I allowed to fall apart in the process of realizing who I am, a confession that if they named a place and time I would gladly pick up where we left off. You can see themes like this and more explored in my novel about Faust, a wanderer trying to navigate immortality.
I’ve oversimplified the writing process. I’ve always thought you just write the novel or the play and then get it published. Not even thinking about the multiple drafts it takes to create something and the revising that goes into. I’ve always neglected something like an artist statement so working on it for once forced me to reread old work and what I want my work to convey to people. It was exhausting to do but it also helped me develop a clear image of what I want people to think of when they engage with my work.
Rogerline Christopher is a jack of all traits but a master of none. They’re a poet, a writer and a musician. Rogerline finds themselves writing a mix of speculative fiction and horror with black queer main characters. When not writing you can find them binge watching all the Halloween movies or picking up a new hobby.