From across the room
Eyeballed me on the 10 inch screen,
It’s tracery of veins
A network of canals, the orange-red sphere
the red planet
With a bright yellow centre.
Now, said the ophthalmologist,
Pointing out the dark smudges across its surface
Let’s look for signs of cataracts
And macular degeneration.
She eyed my eyeball closely.
I sat forward and awaited the verdict.
* photo courtesy of Wikimedia Commons
You wear me out.
You really do.
With your constant tap, tap, tapping.
Can’t you give it a rest?
Try other keys?
What about the ‘Q’?
Or the ‘Z’ or the ‘T’?
Not a wear mark upon them.
And what about the ‘B’?
My poor little ‘A’ is totally erased.
And ‘E’ and ‘C’ are not far behind.
Consider the other keys.
Pay them some mind..
I know my mother wouldn’t have approved
but my bus was late
I was idle
and this bloke on a bike
“to give his bum a rest”,
a privilege he did not extend
to his mouth.
I learnt about his five year bouts
with ‘the Mike Tyson of cancers’,
& this pugnacity encompassed drug pushers,
wife beaters, power utility scammers.
He wore black like Johnny Cash,
had two brassy skeleton rings
& he strutted around like a rooster.
Still he kept me amused till the bus
came along and took me away.
I waved as he sparred with the bus shelter.
From a corner of my mind it came
a timid little mouse called Shame
no one suspected no one but I
yet I saw it clearly with its ruby eyes
looking all around , urging a retreat
its grey fur twitched , its tiny heart beat
you can’t be seen with her like that —
the thought pounced on me like a black cat
& so , it implored me to do as it bid
& though no one knew , to my shame I did
- illustration from Wikimedia Commons
* picture courtesy of Wikimedia Commons
Come to me, says the garbage truck to his love,
Waiting on the edge of the road for him,
You’re late, she says, looking at her watch.
I’ve been here since early morning.
Never mind, he says. It’ll be worth it
Grabbing her firmly around the waist,
Clutching her with his cold metallic hands,
You could have warmed them first, she says
Never mind the temperature, feel the grip,
he answers. Come into these loving arms,
Now. Doesn’t that feel good?
Wasn’t that worth the wait?
I bet you say that to all the bins, she says
As he gently places her back on the sidewalk.
See you next Thursday, he calls back.
I wish there were a place called Mojos
Where you could go to replenish
Your creative juices, to kick start that poem
Or story that won’t budge, where, in short,
You could go to get your mojo back
Should you lose it, and then I find there is!!!
It’s just around the corner, down the road a piece,
where ‘it’s local and foreign, hard and soft,
obscure and obvious, friendly and furious’
& it’s open ‘seventeen days a week’! I just knew
There had to be a place like that, a place like ‘Cheers’
But where creatives go. I just hope they still run
flights there, and I can get in.