Only to have my faith and peace trashed
And crumpled up
And thrown back on to the path.
Only to have my faith and peace trashed
I can’t even go into Walmart
Without some extraterrestrial type
Looking or saying something
That jumps on my amygdala,
And bugs me for hours.
And I can’t go into Walgreens
Without passing a surly associate
Who doesn’t want to be there,
Without hearing a song from the seventies
That brings back feelings
Of being trapped in an elevator
(With an associate from Walgreens)
And I can’t go into Starbucks
Without knowing I’m being ripped off,
But nevertheless hand over the bucks
To the grumpy barista,
And take the gruesome coffee
As finally I’ve made up my mind
To look at last
For a Keurig machine
So I don’t have to put myself through this bitter hell
And I can’t go to a restaurant
Without some dopey brat
As her intellectually challenged
Laugh and look around
To see if we’re enjoying their kids
As much as they are.
Yet I reserve my tears for the movies,
The cinema that died
Such a long time ago.
It’s not just Britney
Texting throughout the film
Or the grossly overweight pensioners
Jamming popcorn into their mouths.
It’s what these actors
Have done to our people,
Brought a darkness instead of light
Into their lives.
Spewed propaganda in between takes,
Because they can.
The joy and happiness
We often found,
In years gone by,
When fantasy was the escape
We wanted, and needed, at times.
Now there is no escape,
Or even a reality,
It’s now all one and the same.
Another Friday night, I walked into the pub,
To meet my Dad who was cradling
A pint of Heavy,
And using his other hand
To prop up the bar,
With his eyes fixed on the Glasgow sawdust.
His swaying difficult to discern
But I could see it.
“Time to go home I said”
Looking up, “Hello son, want a pint”
And I had to decide,
Whether to stay and swallow a few,
Or to put his arm around my shoulder
And walk him home through the night time headlights,
And the rain,
And watch my Mum scream and throw a tantrum,
Which is more hellish than watching my Dad
So I ordered a pint and a Glenfiddich
With a splash of water,
And when my Dad looked at me
And lifted his pint,
He said “Cheers”
And how many beers
We had after that
I can’t remember,
And when I got home,
And how I got home
I can’t remember
So the night was a success
What it’s like
Trying to get out of a locked room
When the key is missing
Your voices make little difference,
The wind has the power to defeat
And take away all this dire screaming
But leave blisters and scars on your feet.
You can dress in vaginal outfits,
Give a finger to every young cop
Throw water bottles
At barking Alsatians,
There is nothing to say you must stop.
Urinate on the stars and stripes if you want,
Wipe your feet or your ass on the flag,
Smash up a Starbucks
(But don’t expect to get served),
Smash up banks
(Who financed your candidate),
And shout down the scum who you hate.
But it won’t make any difference
I can assure you,
The bed in the attic’s still there,
The food stamps will keep on arriving,
And the wind will still blow in your hair.
The streets will be cleared in the morning
As sad bitter people disperse,
To the buses and trains and planes waiting,
And the undertaker driving the hearse.
A split second moment
That meant nothing to anyone
With an iPhone,
If he imagines,
A snap of the moon with a minuscule shutter,
Will capture the enormity of this
It won’t, of course,
But it lets God know
And if I hadn’t seen her glow
We’d never have existed.
When you shove me in the back
With your tiny fingers,
You move me forward
A random muscly guy turned,
Lit a little by the beer and disco lights,
Asked me, What happened to your face?
Teen boys in stained white suits
Hard faced girls
Giggled into cupped hands.
Not the first time
Someone had mocked me.
Had stolen my peace of mind
Thriving on a hateful slur.
That evening soaking up scotch
I searched for a little self love.
Any time it appeared
It was stung by the slur
When i woke up
In the morning
They had left me,
The odd number
In the dead disco
Alone with my blackout
In a tight corner.