maybe?, Ticking Tockers & hangover by Charlotte Smee
the woman in the wrong is me, maybe?
I just think that, um, ah, maybe
I’m blunting my own spears with leaden maybes
patching up your hairline scratches with fluffy cotton maybe,
I mean, you know, it takes longer for me, maybe
to get out of the spinning circular circus of maybe
that you’ve never even noticed. or maybe
you have, in the back of your brain, soft maybe
seeping into your office, wasting your time, maybe
flittering around you, whispering you “it’s me, Maybe,
stop listening, she doesn’t know what she says,” and maybe
you listen to Maybe – but you don’t listen to me. maybe.
and then you grow to expect Maybe
her submissive, palatable, pale pink, frilly maybes
tiny eyelets of lace peeking out from snowy breasts, maybe
she’s butterfly kissing your ass; with dignity, of course. and it may be
that you prefer a woman dressed in Maybe,
bound tight in her own learned anxiety, but not too tight, maybe
it fits just right. and you know what? maybe
she is comfortable in her soft pastel tones, maybe
she likes it. and yet, I could never fit in Maybe’s
dresses. the woman in the wrong cannot be Maybe
pale pink never suited her, and maybe
sometimes she gets so frustrated that it streaks down her face and maybe
that’s okay. there is pink in red-faced Maybe
who realises she might be the wrong woman, maybe
you thought she was padding you with maybes
so you could tell her she was wrong, and maybe
when you spoke, and she pushed you up, Maybe
was listening for your Maybe,
watching you, bound tight in a suit of grey Maybe,
he cuts you into shape, speaking lines of “oh, maybe,
I can skip dinner tonight, stop writing that poem, maybe,
keep clacking away at endless, hopeless maybes,
in the hope that millions will come my way,” hm. maybe?
don’t you think it’s foolish to pin your hopes on a wisp of maybe?
maybe you’re the man in the wrong for expecting Maybe,
cloud-shaped pillow maybe, to pad your ego with. and just maybe,
maybe I’m not too sensitive. maybe you’re just a dickhead.
There is an art to being late,
it should never take you by surprise
Time’s ticking fingers will not wait.
Time-fingers flick quicker, as you create
a finger-painted face, for ever-watching eyes
there is an art to being late.
Practice being punctual, pretend to calculate
arrival times, train schedules, finish that text, arrange your office supplies
click clack; time won’t ever wait.
Run from those tockers, tumble into a blind date;
just miss your cheap psychologist, skip breakfast, forget lunch and this week’s exercise
There is an art to being late.
Late to my mother’s wedding, fate’s
meddling hand had no part in it. Stop, realise –
that Time’s a ticking fucker, she won’t wait
for anyone, not even you. As I fixate
on passing minutes, the hour flies –
there is an art to being late,
ticking, tocking time will never wait.
into cracks of
a beef patty, bacon
inhaled, onions sizzle and pop
h e a l me