The Offer

Someone will come with an offer when you’re past the point of goods, bads and okays. You won’t know what an okay is. You’ll romanticise, reminisce and wish you could picture in its entirety the sort of offer you’re after, you’d really like to receive.

But there’s no like, no promise, and a person’s words aren’t better on paper, and you can’t justify a decision in writing. An action, an action is all there is. And god would say that too if we were on speaking terms how we used to be, in primary, again in middle school, but the fuckers in my head now are unerasable ex-boyfriends and people I’d rather forget. Excuses and almosts and a yes that is later retracted and hope before there is none.

You’ve never known the number of strikes I operate on, the rules I have for conducting relations. It was cobbled together from the mouths of Sarah Jessica Parker, Obama and one of the Jens and the Afflecks. You teetered, topped up the way computer characters regain juice the longer you leave them.

And you thought words were a tool, corrective, like love poems when you’ve fucked a different person, not the one you should have, or on Valentine’s when you’re trying to staple, cement, your eyelids to the skin of another. Or just shut them – you could sleep then.

You’d like to wrap your guts in a bag or a blanket, tie the top of it, so that it’s ready to boil or burn.


Your decisions aren’t astute and your suits are slightly large and your hands are hot when I shake them which isn’t often since you moved to a city I couldn’t move to because of ties, my job, friends and ties and family and ties here.

This is not a comparision situation where I tot up differences, what’s the same, what I’d change, and how I’d meld you. This is not an either/or, a Chandler/Richard, a Ross or who now?

And She’ll Never Fucking Know That

You can’t change things with single words or poetry strings or scripts or novel length deliberations on governments and the time: now, then, sometime, always. But your naïveté’s nice, and I mean that sincerely, like in the sincerest, complimentary kind of a way I can say it. And you don’t know how much I strain, how much I’ve been straining.

Once, I thought it mattered to say something, like existence was precious and you cupped it like holy water until it ran out and when it did there’d be more just different.

There’s not more and change isn’t a real thing. It’s one of those fallacies they bring you up on so that you don’t shoot yourself with paintball guns, pellets, staplers. Same as the prince to save me, men dying for me, education setting free, ever afters and un-earthly places. Holidays we might actually afford.

My degree has bought me ready meals, Mars bars, my Masters has wasted copious paper bundles – CVs, covering letters, internship requests, funding bids, and ideas, ideas, ideas.

When I was ten I came top of my year, not just for one subject, but everything, and I might’ve missed out on scholarships to schools who’d have advised me better. And maybe I’d be a doctor now, like a proper medical one, and I’d fucking fix somebody in front of you. That’s what healing is, anyway, not just a Biblical story but a credible career.

But I relent. I give it up. Because that many learning years leaves only a few and I earn now what I earned in 2004. Change is not something I’ve known. And we’ll be dead soon.

Your Fucking Boyfriend

Did you brush your hair or is that just the light in here? You don’t take instructions well but who wants to be instructed anyway, really? That’s something that started at home, then school, then in every friendship, relationship, hierachy. I don’t want to be told what to do.

I used to pretend I liked particular movies more than I did to impress somebody, thought that knowing about it was enough to blag a certain interest. But every lie in trade for a little making out is denial, and how low are you willing to slip? Will one day you love what you hate by process of degeneration? All for some boy whose name in ten years or even just four will be less present than Michelle Pfeiffer.

What A Wicked Thing To Say — You Never Felt This Way

When we kiss, there are people watching, but we don’t get a kick of it the way women do in Crash, and men. We’re not the sort to give snatches of our webcam selves. We wouldn’t sell a photograph for money if it could later incriminate us; you don’t need much evidence to destroy teaching careers, marriages, pop stars’ lives.

And these people, watching, are those that could take empires down, having lain in wait for at least eight months, or maybe just four. They’ve cried themselves sleeping, wondering if they’ll get their lottery shot, cash advance, salaried job, finally.

But not everyone gets what they wait for, pay for, pray or wish for. Not everyone gets their fucking wish.

I’m Going To Give All My Secrets Away

I’ll start with my Polly Pocket, my collection of rocks, matchboxes full of the smallest trinkets: acorns, rings, fluff, conkers, receipt notes, scrabble tiles, letters. And then I’ll move on to the unburnable stuff that exists in memory but is thick like a jelly ghost in front of me ready to slime me or stick.

And once you know them too, it’ll be a soulless sort of feeling for me. I’ll be an inch lighter. Like my debts you’ll have a responsibility, same as feeding me, making me sleep. And you won’t be ready, prepared, the way no one is for anything really. It’s only a bullshit blag.

You’ll wake next to mistakes of mine, luggage without shrinkage, stuff you’re sure we gave away. But nothing ever goes, and especially what you’re rid of first, you’ll want back. But eBay’s an unexpected soiled, an almost but sun altered or sat on. A hair in the spine of a book ready to slip out when you get to page 154.



I’m implicit, implicated, undeniably entwined, constantly erroneously eroded.

I watch your boat like you’re Pacey and this is Dawson’s Creek and I’m too late to run, and even if I did, your impulses aren’t thick, your eyes quick. The last time you made a decision was 2002, and even then it was only which box set to buy; VHS was an option.

I’ve made unconventional choices but not unconventional enough. I won’t wear a rosary when it’s fashionable to in case the implications are true even though I don’t think they are now. I’m hard-wired with a certainty there’s a man on the roof surveilling me, checking I don’t expose myself in public, that I’m fucking who I should which is nobody because I’m not married and even then it’s pretty questionable and Bible study’s more important. “Read it in a year,” they said.

It’s simple what I want. The undoing of shirts. Zips stopping to work. Incantation. The promise of guilt free spirituality, which is not in support of wrong doing, but evidence of the fact morality’s standalone, slipping, ebbed.

If I knew what was good for me, I’d read. And the Bible would say stop what you’re doing, listen when a man’s talking, feed periods to the wolves and die in the desert if you’re pure and deny the devil or, at least, Richard Dawkins.


Not What You Think

This wasn’t a mistake until you made it one and you had every clue, knew solutions, like bleach, were exonerating. Instead, you patched clothes, reattached arms to old dolls and hoped the tears would mend. They didn’t mend.

Instead, you’re an uncertain park walker, unsure if the castle’s open, if the coffee truck is trustworthy, whether to keep dogs on a leash.

You’re my revelation daily, a well structured sentence or Bible verse revealing a truth or jam smacking me so that I stand up or sit down at a person’s request. This is the opportune moment to ask for your money so I’m asking for it. And this, my collection plate, is a beg or a preach or a charity video designed to make you feel the guilt that I’ve taught you to feel.

Voicemail Can’t Make You Love Me

I hung up because reception was bad and your dad was in the next room grading papers, kissing students, whatever he does but I don’t see because I don’t see it.

Your voicemail flashed and I deleted the text telling me you’d left messages, one two three, and I marked five papers, each more absent than the last and a student came in and asked me what a comment meant and I said, “It’s a tick,” when actually it was your name and a heart and an arrow through it.

You wrote every book in my office and the mantelpiece photos are you but not you because no-one can see, and when they see, if they see, I’m a skinable fuck.