My Sliding Doors Moment

Not ‘the last train to Clarkesville’.

Nor ‘the midnight train to Georgia’

Not even ‘the downtown train’ that Tom Waits

and Rod Stewart rode on vinyl

but that old steam train that took me all the way

from the monastery where I was sequestered

to be a priest, on the verge of making my final vows

to a life in the ‘real world’. where I met the woman who would be my wife.

and the mother of my three kids,

a career as a teacher, a writer, and the grandfather of six more kids,

the apples of my life,

a sliding doors moment:

the most momentous train ride I ever made.

Love on the Spectrum

I watched ‘Love on the Spectrum’ last night

about young autistic people

mostly in their twenties,

take part in the thrilling game

of Speed Dating;

& I thought how cool it’d be

if senior citizens,

marooned in singlehood

could be brought together for a night of fun,

under the one roof,

speed dating, meeting other single men and women

in a similar age group;

what a boost it would give to their lives,

what a night of fun

and who knows what good things might come of it,

what magical pairings

Which Animal Are You ?

Perhaps I am a porcupine.

I am prickly by nature

& when I forget to shave

I have a prickly kiss,

Like most porcupines

I live alone

except when I cohabit

with other porcupines

in which case, I’ve been told,

we live in a prickle.

When my quills are quivering

people steer clear of the thornbush

that is me.

*what animal are you like?

*want to add a little poem about yourself as that animal?

Die Hard

I always draw the short straw.

She gets the drumstick.

I should be quicker

more assertive.

Less of a bozo.

That’s the trouble when you share.

In our circle

old courtesies die hard.

The lady goes first.

The Case

You can bring the case in if you like, she says.

It may not want to come in, he says.

It’s a suitcase, she says. They don’t have a voice.

This one does, he says.

He goes out the door, to the car, where he lifts the lid of the boot. He looks at the suitcase for a few minutes.

What are you doing? she says. Talking to it?

Listening. It doesn’t want to come in.

Why not?

You know why not. Things deteriorate. We argue, say things that no one should say to another. I storm out, or you tell me to leave. It’s almost routine.

They look at each other, They have been here so many times before.

So what does the suitcase say? she asks.

It’s staying. In the boot , he says. It’s adamant about that.

How can a suitcase be adamant?

I’m ready for a quick getaway, it says.

Suit yourself.

That’s a bad joke, he says.

So you coming in?

I suppose so, just as soon as I close the boot.

No !

I’m sorry I said NO

to you

& you

& you

all those times

diminishing yr world

I could have done better

withholding affection is a crime

against the human heart

Tricky

toadstool

You’re tricky, she says, which is sort of ironic ‘coz she’s tricky too; and my best buddy can be very tricky and we’ve come to blows on more than one occasion over our mutual trickiness which is even more tricky seeing he’s in a wheelchair though he gives as much as he gets and tonight we’re over a friend’s place for a fuck-you covid meal and although there are a few tricky moments we manage to get on over pizzas, two bottles of red, Bailey’s Irish Cream and a few espressos which just goes to show what a resilient species we humans are

Please Don’t Call This Love

man-couple-people-woman-343

I’m not yr punching bag

Not yr piñata

So give me a break

what is it you are after

 

I’m not yr pincushion

Not yr whipping boy

so why are you so intent

on stifling my joy

 

Yr not my parole officer

you are not my judge

so don’t cross examine me

& please don’t call this love.

 

 

 

 

 

 

A Quiet Place

Whitby_harbour

We’ve come to a quiet place

a harbor

beyond the squalls and storms

of yesterday

where nerves frayed

we tore each other’s hearts

away

a quiet place

a harbour

to berth our frail vessels

a good place to stay

 

  • photo courtesy of Wikimedia Commons

Here’s Another Nice Mess You’ve Gotten Yourself Into

371px-Laurel_&_Hardy_reading_The_New_Movie

after deserting me for a few days

my editor has a change of heart

and decides to return.

Yay! I say to myself.

Says he’s been reading my posts, and how I’ve been floundering without him.

You’ve pulled three posts in two days, he says. You’re sinking.

I know, I say, hanging my head in shame.

Look, he says. It’s no good fighting it. We’re a team. Conjoined twins if you like.

Like Laurel and Hardy? I suggest.

He smiles.

Same arrangement? I say.

Yes, he says. You write. I clean up the mess.