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Author: Gregor Mackenzie

The only place I thought I truly belonged was my imagination

There I could paint myself the walls with what I wanted to see

I could be exactly whoever, or whatever, I wanted to be

There were no teachers telling me to buckle down

Or playground bullies trying to take me to the pound

As I would be snapped out of my beautiful blissful daydream haze by the brutal taste of the ground

Salt and gravel in my mouth as my ears began to ring and the sky began to spin

My heartbeat loud, banging inside my head "hear me roar, hear me sing!"

Igniting a riot in me that could only be soothed by stepping into my world of dream

Where I could touch the sky and skip from cloud to cloud

Slide down the startrails and surf on the Chemtrails

I didn't have to shrink myself into the mould that I was being so aggressively pushed into

Like play-dough being carved into a plastic shape by a child

Curled, squelched and squeezed

Manipulated, warped, mangled

By all of this I never found comfort – I just felt strangled

You see my childhood daydreamland was the only place I could understand

And I liked it like that

I didn't want to take my head out of the clouds

Or come down from being away with the fairies

I wanted to stay there

Where I felt things were fair, things were right, things were safe

I didn't want to come down to earth

Sometimes I think I never really did

I carved out a life for myself where I could slot the vivid imagination I had into ridgid lines of reality

I found my footing within the safety net of fantasy

In records by the likes of Lana Del Rey, Lorde and Britney

In freezing cold playgrounds at midnight and at the bottom of a bottle of stolen whiskey

I thought I knew everything at the time I was fifteen

I figured out I knew nothing by the time I reached nineteen

Now I know some things,

Like boys tend respect you more if you have a beard

Whiskey never stops tasting like the fear of being caught

And it probably isn't actually that great being Britney Spears

When it comes to belonging I've learned that you should never change yourself in order to do so

Because if you're doing that then you're not belonging

You're just telling yourself that you are

And doesn't that mean you’re not actually belonging anyway?

If I say something to my younger self I'd say keep on dreaming

Because it's going to be the thing that saves you.

And never stop being away with the fairies, they can be very good advisers.

Written in response to Scotland, You’re No Mine(this link will open in a new window) by Hannah Lavery.