oh what fun we had

mornings were not a fuss

I knew what I had to do

i’d roll out of bed

crack the shower

& be gone

be in first

ready with coffee

the boss’d say:

you need painkillers?

I’d gracefully decline

with a bright grin

no need

had an early night

& this would be after

a 3 am roll into bed

I figured

tell him the same

as he told me

nothing

& that way

he couldn’t dangle it

in front of me

at my appraisal

the others’d

pour in late

bleary eyed & hanging

i’d make ’em coffee

hand out painkillers

offer water

which only made ’em

hate me more

as they’d been out

to the same places

quit at the same time

the boss’d appear again

look around

make noises

about all young people today

& we’d yeah, yeah, yeah

him back to his door

later time they’d go out

for a liquid lunch

hair of the dog

the ‘get thru’ today’ beers

i’d sit in the empty office

slumped way down in the chair

catch some zeds

& be fresh as they got back

all post beer & poor sandwiches

& now they definitely hated me more

they wanted to be

the loafing around kind of people

hanging out

waiting for the boss

the world

to recognise how special

they were

& what killed most

they had no recognition

understanding

the boss did not care

& if one of them

were to be special

he’d make sure they were promoted

out of his department

so as

not to be a threat to him

they had their revenge

of me in their hate

finding my poems

the ever half finished novel

& joyfully misinterpreting

each line

page

oh what fun we had

They lie

they lie

they lie

everybody lies

they lie

they lie

they lie

& they lie

even you reading this

they lie

they lie

they lie

& they lie

I was wanting to make a list

but that might mean some group

got left out

so

[insert name here] they lie

they lie

they lie

they lie

& you have no right

to believe otherwise

gut struck

You hated my poetry

& I can’t blame you for that

you always believed

I had more in me

you said

these words look easy

on the paper

& it is my job to tell you

there is pain

in wrenching the line free

but you don’t want to hear

the truth in that

or that I once loved you

how you put the knife

all the way into me

& I couldn’t let go

you had to do that

for me

light the way ahead

I struggle to belong

there have been

schools

universities

associations

groups

fraternities

families

& I cant seem

to hold my place

in any of them

this is no tragic loner lament

being oblivious

to the whole thing of it all

yet some days

I wonder

what must it be like

to have your niche

cosy armchair by the fire

place where they remember

you fondly

one of us

one of ours

old alumni

I have burnt bridges

by my identity

not choice

not for me

the coffee klatch

fund raisers

welcome committees

I was pleased to leave

these dead places

& they were pleased

to let me go

we met for a purpose

& when that purpose ended

so did we

Middle of the river

a sunny day

open canoe on a flat river

no wind

wearing shorts

sandals

& a wife beater

got water

spare paddle

& all is good

the world is yours

& then you notice

the sky getting darker

ducks starting to nest

there on the edge in the reeds

going to sleep

as the wind begins to rise

time to turn for home

make a run for it

it is going to rain

the signs are all there

& there you are

in the middle of the river

as the rain strikes

heading for the bank

overhanging trees

to stand

shivering

hoping this will pass soon

knowing

complacency has brought this

to you

complacency helped you fight

the be prepared

for this

as you stand

sheltering

waiting for the world

to turn your way

again

Learned my lesson

riding through your town

first time in a long time

& of course

I can’t help myself but think of you

& my cock aches in memory

the time I wanted

to possess you

be possessed by you

wanting to be in

with you

your arms around me

holding me

hours in bed

times in the woods

as your body pulled me in

memory of your heat

flames me now

though nothing

can make me

ride down your street

call you up

I hurt you

by refusing to commit

& of course you let me go

which was a relief

for both of us

there wasn’t much

we were making together

apart from the love

& there has to be

something more

between the love times

that was a hard lesson

to learn

thank you

more

no matter what it is

people will always want more

want yours

will be jealous

of the coins in your pocket

the smile on your face

will want to take that away

for sure

if you are in the zone

its worth the challenge

an easy sport

& they will deny

even get angry

that you might think

they are that kind of person

so we forget the words

watch what they do

see them work their way

into borrowing

taking

your way of living

dress sense

interests

anything they can

& if by chance

you meet one

not like this

hold onto them

just don’t

take that grace

away from them

Thug life

I was brought in for a meeting

there had been complaints

nice people

do do that kind of thing

excessive use of the f word

saying fuck once

is too much

enough

it seems

& it didn’t matter

I might lose the job

as long as their ears

didn’t hear such vile terms

there was a nice lady

full of rectitude

my boss i’d never seen

& me

I was working with adults

or so I thought

developing therapy skills

& we’d strayed deep

into the emotional stuff

as you must

& this had upset

those that made complaints

we agreed excess

was too much

but they knew

I was unrepentant

would be let go

end of the year

I was deemed a thug

& none of the work mattered

not one inch of pain

melted away

meant a moment of hesitation

their decision was done

& they will never understand

why people like me

say

fuck you, eh?

the greys

take a second

to think

look around

look at the greys

& you have forgotten

your pledge

to wear

be colour

they will pull you in

push you to conform

& you know

you are worth more

you made the solemn promise

to yourself

some long time ago

to wear

be colour

not be pulled in

by the greys

& now you

have to respect

honour the effort

you make daily

not to wear grey

the fawn

the beige

the non colour

that grey life has

it is easy to slide back

there is so much push

to be that way

it is not enough

& still worth

the eagle feather

to be

do colour

live in the light

that is

yours