Would you bring my boxer shorts, mate?
You mean the ones with ‘The Most Perfect Man in the World’ emblazoned on the butt?
Yes, those, he chuckles.
I go into his room.
A half eaten meal, a stubbie with some beer in it, the radio still on.
A damp towel on the bed.
Signs of a quick exit.
A bit like the Marie Celeste.
Ahhh, I say as I fumble through his drawers.
A few minutes later I head off to The Remand Centre
Where TMPM has just been charged
For a cold case murder
18 years ago.
Beside me are the boxer shorts, neatly folded,
Irony side up.
I want a holiday from Blame.
I’m sorry I ever knew its name.
It should be sent up in flames.
I know its nasty little game.
From small beginnings it sneakily came
into our lives. Could not be tamed.
No love affair can be sustained
In the endless barrage of Blame.
So let us now both abstain.
I want a holiday from Blame.
A holiday from Blame.
Won’t you come with me?
We can start again.
There’s an ad on some Word Press posts saying,
‘Don’t Cover Up Your Dark Spots’ and I thought,
Whoa, isn’t that what we’re supposed to do?
Keep our sins and prejudices in the attic,
not flaunt them, like dirty washing ; to hide
our inner trolls. I know what the ad means. I’m not stupid.
I just got carried away by the metaphor, that’s all.
And anyway I almost put up a post yesterday
Revealing a darker, nasty side of me but my therapist
Urged me not to put it up, that there are dark spots,
She said, that are best concealed.
Summer-times I grow feral
Shed my suit of civility
& head into the backyard
Where I pee like an animal
But that saccadic screech
From the crab apple tree
& razor-winged birds flashing by
Threatening life and limb
& certain other appendages
Send me scurrying back
Where I l lift the lid & pee inside
Like polite people do.
What is it about the mouth?
About putting things in it?
I don’t mean food or sexual organs.
I mean items that carry far less charge
Like food or birds.
I wrote a surrealist poem called ‘A Bird Flew in my Mouth’
But could find no appropriate illustration online.
Ditto for ‘What’s Feet Got to do With It?’
About putting one’s foot in one’s mouth.
Two fine poems I cannot post because I can’t find
An appropriate illustration even one I’m willing to pay for.
I approached a few street artists but they weren’t up to it.
I paid them 5 bucks for their efforts.
They were happy with that but I wasn’t.
Let’s be up front. I can’t draw and I can’t post these poems
Without illustrations because who’s going to read them ?
so I’ll just have to write about them:
The poems I have written but can’t post.
Proceed With Caution, the sign said
But I proceeded anyway
& came upon a cat
On the cold hillside
Damp with dew
Helmeted in cling wrap
& wished the hell I hadn’t
“You won’t even know it’s there,” said the surgeon.
“My brother-in-law sure did,” I replied referring to the incident in the ICU which I witnessed.
AS he was coming out of his sleep, he became aware of the tube down his throat and began struggling with it so violently that he had to be held down while he was put back to sleep. He stayed that way for three days.
“You won’t even be aware of it,” the surgeon said, “and if you are you won’t remember.”
I decided to go with that. In the end you have to put your faith in something.
Still, some days later as I was wheeled into the operating theatre, the last conscious thought was of that tube down my throat.
Many hours later as I slowly awoke, I remember the doctor saying, “the breathing tube is out now, you can speak.”
“What breathing tube?” I asked.
The thing is, if you don’t know something has happened to you, has it really happened?
* inspired by Billy Mac’s ‘A Daughter’s Love’ from his ‘Superman can’t find a phone booth’ blog
Perhaps I’m missing out, I thought, but the more he banged on about his lathes, routers and table saws, whipping out his mobile snaps of bench tops, bread boards, dodgy cricket bats and the blocky blokes around him in the Men’s Shed, I thought not and when he finally asked me what I did and I said chirpily, I write poetry, conversation shut down like a roller door.
He was having an off day.
No reports came in.
The odds were heavily against it,
Astronomical, in fact,
But there you were,
Blue moons, black swans, a win
In a billion dollar lottery.
But it didn’t help his mood.
Perhaps he should stop wearing black.
Lighten up a little.
Wear something trendier.
T-shirt, chinos, loafers perhaps?
He had become something of a cliché.
What would his boss say?
Would he be let go? Demoted to Accounts?
He was not a pen pusher
But a man of action.
His shoulders slumped.
His scythe dropped.
He let out a sigh.
No one had died on his watch
Creativity is a terrible thing,
When it gets you in its clutches.
It won’t let you sleep, rest.
It jerks you awake,
Kicks you out of bed,
And before you know it
You’re at the keyboard
At 3 a.m.
Belting out a poem
Belting through the bleariness
To get it down
Then head back to bed
Where it starts again
The brain twitch, the jerk,
The plummet into wakefulness.
You don’t even make a living out of it
But it’s the way you’re living
The gift, equal curse
But when that sweet chariot swoops you up,
Oh the rush, the voltage,
You’d trade your grandmother for it
Were she still around.