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Stockholm Syndrome

The year comes to its close as it always does but it’s been unlike any other, as we’re so tired of hearing. I sit outside on the black iron steps that lead up to my flat, chewing the sleeves of my big jumper in the dark. The cold pinches at me where a person could be. If I think hard enough, I could be on a fire escape of a New York town house. I wonder if it’s this quiet there too. I see stars behind tendrils of thin cloud; a barren, unlit rooftop bar awkwardly exposed, like an overgrown teen ahead of his peers; and a static crane – a protruding beacon of gentrifying grotesqueness – looming over rubble and flattened land. All new and abandoned places look the same to me; indirect signs of life without the warmth of a beating heart. The Peckham Palms sign glows like a surrogate moon in its green neon buzz; the colour that tastes like a Toxic Waste. There’s no skyline but it’s the place I start each day if I choose to leave the house within my limited means. Everything I need is in th

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