come in come in

Come in come in they say

so you go in & sit

waiting

for there is always something needed

doing first

before they’d get to you

the washing drying

a myriad of executions

until

can I get you something?

& you know better

than to ask for booze

as to elicit a frown of disapproval

so you say

what are you having?

If it is to be coffee

it will be the dull instant kind

no misunderstanding why it is cheap

there at the discount supermarket

& if booze

oh yes I’ll have the same

& a measure will be given

passed to the lips to be sipped

appreciated molecule by molecule

to want more is to indicate alcoholism

or worse gluttony

& you hear later they wonder

why you don’t visit more

a place to sit

these things happen

when not paying attention

I had bad dreams

for days afterwards

fighting demons

until I understood

where I’d gone wrong

not paying real attention

to the people walking by

looking right on in

knowing exactly where I was

tho’ covered by camo

deep in amongst the trees

then came aches in my legs

low voices whispering

unkind in the night

this once precious space

was mine no more

whether a wrong coven

ditched disbelievers

had gotten in to sully

the signs were there

time to say adios

thank you & goodbye

find another place

where I could just sit

let the world

whir on

by

just between you & me

bad places

good learning

never sit with your back

to the door

middle of a public space

don’t corner somebody

meaner than you

if he has no friends

she has no friends

you will not be a friend

you can’t trust

a strangers scales

a person with a nickname

especially if its honest john

a call for a fair fight

a one time only

borrower of money

tools your time

just because she says

she is using contraception

that doesn’t mean

you don’t need to

if the police say

just between you & me

I know you didn’t do this

you don’t need a lawyer

or their lips are moving

remember

they are trained to lie

to trap you into guilt

& you are not always

the smartest kid in the room

Girl with a black eye

saturday afternoon

sitting at the bar

waiting

& his girl walks in

sits next to me

says he’ll be here in a while

& I notice then

she has a big black eye

I raise an eyebrow

she misinterprets this

points at a beer tap

one of those please

so I buy her a beer

as every man in the place

leers wild at me

even the barman jeers

as he puts her drink down

was it him?

no she says all quiet

but he’s not convinced

neither is anybody else

& I don’t mind fighting

for the things I’ve done

said I was gonna do

but this looks like

I’m heading for a kicking

so I order more drinks

soften the bruises to soothe

just then he pops his head in

we still going fishing?

I call him in

order him up a drink

say to the barkeep

this is her man

look after him eh?

I need to step outside

for a minute or two

peace to come

the problem with lover fights

is how

they throw stuff at you

in gobbets

huge arcs of flame

wanting to strike

find the wounded niche

where the scold can take hold

& they find me walking

I tell myself

them too

I’ll sit & listen to whatever you got

but start this screaming throwing stuff

& I’m gone

but they never believe

until

the room is empty

I’ve had them chase me down the street

throwing clothes out of windows

doing the c’mere come back

so I can hurt you more tango

calling me chickenshit for running away

but after that first corner

I can’t hear them anymore

I find a quiet bar

& wait for peace to come