If I'd Known Then What I Know Now

by Peter Wild

She had the kind of face you see in magazines but not fashion magazines or glamour magazines, no, she had the kind of face you see in magazines that feature articles about sad prostitutes killed by cannibal maniacs who filled drains with chopped up body parts. There was something about her, perhaps something in her eyes that said she was predestined for tragedy. She obviously felt the same way about me. "You look sad," she said, apropos of nothing – or not nothing, apropos of my staring perhaps, her dark pupils a wishing well of hopelessness sucking me in, the siren, the minx, the sinkhole. If I’d known then what I know now – that her studied intensity was just a pose, balanced like a stork upon one leg atop a pile of sun faded Kierkegaard hardbacks – would I have done anything differently? No: I’ve always been a sucker for that kind of girl.


Peter Wild lives and writes in the UK. He edits Bookmunch.