My Three Ex’s

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It all began a few years ago while waiting in a long queue at the ANZ Bank.

A well-dressed employee would come up to us randomly and thank us for our patience.

I’d say, at the flick of a switch, “I’m a patient man. Just ask my three ex-wives”.

I don’t know where that came from but he chuckled and I chuckled. It was a good line.

Then one day there was a bit of a queue at the library — a glitch in the system or something — and I thought as a spot of entertainment I’d add to the line. I had it all worked out.

I ended up with a relatively new staff member, a sour-faced woman who I’d only met once before, but I wasn’t going to be put off. It was my time.

“Thanks for your patience,” she said blankly’

“That’s okay,” I said. I think she knew what was coming. “I’m a patient man. Just ask my three ex-wives” then I added the new bit, “But you don’t want to listen to them, They’re biased.”

Then she looked me in the face. “Don’t you think, “ she said, “if all three said it independently, there may be some truth in it? You should go away and have a ponder”.

She saw to my request and I went off to have a ponder, unsure who was having who on.”

Before I Met Her

indhhh

Before I met her

I always laughed at cartoons

alone,

was astonished before paintings & poems

privately;

 

but now

five years later

I pass the magazine to her,

the one with the crazy cartoons.

Look at this, I say, & she does and smiles

Span our faces & rumble our bellies

like little laughing Buddhas;

 

Trouble shared is trouble halved,

my mother used to say — but Joy

Works inversely:

It is doubled when spent with another.

 

indhhh

 

All My Poems Are Getting Married

design-clipart-marriage-10

 

For too long they have lead a solitary existence,

Moping in corners of the internet, blushing wallflowers

Stuttering if someone even comes to speak to them.

 

Now all this is changing.

 

I am introducing my poems to each other,

a matchmaker, if you like, partnering one poem

with another of similar makeup, all in

A single manuscript, a mass marriage of poems,

With the publisher’s blessing.

 

Together they will lie next to each other

for the ages. All will be invited. Now all

I have to do is pair up like poems,

Nervous Nellies unused to company

 

* apologies & thanks to Skyhooks

 

Unstable Cliffs

unstable-cliffs-warning-sign-unstable-cliffs-warning-sign-wooden-post-over-cliff-near-ocean-side-102184286

Unstable Cliffs, the sign read. Extreme Danger. Stay Clear.

And I thought of the unstable Cliffs I had known:

The deputy that barked at me when I called in sick,

My cousin’s boyfriend who punched holes in the wall

Whenever he was denied,

And the glue-sniffing Cliff I taught in Year 11 who fell asleep

On the tracks and was run over by a train.

They should have come with warnings too.

Sexual Predator

everythings_eventual

 

“No rest for the innocent”, she sighs —

As she looks out the back door.

 

“Looks like he’s raping her again.

He’s as randy as Harvey Weinstein”.

.

“For fuck’s sake, they’re blackbirds,” I say.

.”How anthropomorphic can you get?

 

And anyway, all things being eventual.

The act might well be consensual.”