Tricky

Not ‘selfish’, she says. more ‘difficult to get on with’.

Ahhh, I say, that’s code for ‘tricky’.

I know I am. My best mate is too.

Human beans are ‘tricky’ all around.

They don’t grow straight. They grow with all sorts

of genetic quirks; there’s always something askew,

that rubs people up the wrong way, that chafes.

How people live together, I don’t know.

Sometimes I have trouble just living with me.

I’m not a one trick pony, but I am tricky.

pic courtesy of Pinterest

Okay, I looked but I didn’t stare

On a road trip the other day

we got talking about birth defects you don’t see

any more

like hunchbacks, birth marks, cleft palates

though Simon

whose father was Lord Mayor of Mars had one

and spoke with a lisp.

Then at this café in the mountains

we were served

by a barista

with a raspberry stain on his left cheek

the shape of Africa.

Is that a birth mark, I asked him. We were just talking about them.

Yes, it is, he smiled.

It was just another feature on his face, like his nose.

or a mole

It was nothing special.

Yet it had a strange sort of beauty.

He poured me the greatest cup of coffee.

I was glad that I had asked him, that I didn’t wuss out.

It’s okay to be curious.

The Lop-Sided Moon

                                             

The bus shelter at the end of our street

grinds its teeth at night.

Sometimes I sit with it, hold its hand, listen to its tale

of drunks and suicides,

of lycanthropes baying at the full moon,

of lost Lotharios weeping in their fists

I talk to it too about my problems

Of the jig-saw days when pieces don’t fit

Of the times when your heart races

Like a wildebeest on the veldt

But latches onto nothing.

After a while we both settle

and I head off home

beneath a lopsided moon.

sketch courtesy of Yofukuro on Pinterest: Yofukuro is a Japanese artistic duo, the brothers Selichi and Daisel Terazono

Spiral Staircase

My extension cord is kinky.

It winds around itself, gets tangled up in knots.

What can you do?

Iron them out?

I have kinks too.

The world would be a straighter, sadder place were it not

for kinks.

Our quirks, our oddities, the little handbag we carry around our talents in.

How we’re wired, the way we spin, the bands we listen to.

Kinks.

They’re in me and you.

Those pairs of long thin strands coiled like the banisters of a spiral staircase.

Our DNA.

You don’t want to untangle them.





post courtesy of dykeanddean.com on Pinterest

Eyeballs of Yr Brain

Some people say I should write

More about people

Social issues

Than, say, red pencil sharpeners

Or cats with no eyes

But I reckon you’ve got to run

With what you’ve got,

Whatever grabs the eyeballs

Of yr brain,

the sad, empty chairs of the Nail Salon, for instance,

plushed as if for royalty,

the little commas at the end of sentences wriggling

like tadpoles,

that lop-sided moon like a broken smile,

Whatever,

You’re there to celebrate its otherness,

How it shines out in a tawdry world,

What brings it, and you,

In the words of Trent Reznor,

‘Closer to God’

That’s My Problem

I don’t look odd enough.

That’s my problem.

I’m a little too symmetrical.

Take Tom Cruise, for instance.

I read an article once that suggested that his charisma comes

from his asymmetric face.

I do have one pupil not quite in alignment with the other when I look down a little.

But that’s it.

And anyway no one notices.

I’m showing signs of age but that’s not oddness.

I do have a scar on my left cheek which hints at a seedy past — a knife fight perhaps —– which I’m happy to go with — but sadly it’s only where a skin cancer was cut out.

I’m sure if I looked odder

I’d be in more demand.

It’s just my luck to be born symmetrical and boring.

*pic courtesy of Wiki Commons

Fridays circa 5p.m.

There’s nothing I like better doing

than sitting here in a quiet corner

of the pub

with my Mongolian beanie on

waiting for my mates to rock up

while I have a quiet read.

I know it smacks of vanity

when I pull out my iPhone

and scroll through my posts,

reading what I said, what others said,

how many likes I got.

I like what I wrote and how I say it:

the long, slouching sentences,

the laconic phrases

[Hey! I’m an Ausssie]

the odd syntax here and there

[ like the first line of this post ].

One should be as comfortable in one’s voice

as in the clothes one’s wearing.

I like the merry banter of patrons in the bar too,

the warm embrace of companionship

as I like to gather my poems around me

like boon companions

until my real friends, my flesh and blood friends,

turn up

The Cat with No Eyes

photo-1533738363-b7f9aef128ce

Was photographed

on a bus seat with sunglasses

smoking a cigarette,

on a pedestal wearing a tiny

camouflage boonie hat,

floating on a little pillow in a

wading pool with flowers

behind its ears,

& in ninety other poses —

and because it had no eyes

that cat from Abu Ghraib

they put pebbles in the sockets

of its mummified head

which looked out at the world

with a blank stare..

 

[ based on a New Yorker story on Sabrina Harriman: the woman

behind the camera at Abu Ghraib]

 

 

 

 

Strange Brew

cauldronpng

 

I love

The vivacity of verbs

The hulk of hard nouns

The ribaldry and racket of the non-standard

The irruption of oddities

The salty tang of sentences

A strange brew of language

Found from ‘Trainspotting’ to ‘A Clockwork Orange’

To the poetry and plays

of C J Dennis.

The vernacular.