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National Poetry Day

As anyone who knows me should proudly attest, I’m a right miserable bastard. In general, I basically hate almost all of the things around me simply because they exist. Which isn’t to say there aren’t exceptions to that rule. There are but I’m still in denial about that. Like those idiots who are convinced that human beings didn’t land on Mars in 1969. My close friends tend to act as mediators between me and the living. Even the things I like I find tiresome or irritating. Case in point being my iPhone. I love having an iPhone and being able to do everything on it like juggle or play fetch with the dog with it but I only really enjoy using it while I’m sitting on the toilet as it distracts me from the terror. If I’m doing something of mild importance such as staring into the middle distance or dancing in front of the mirror and I receive a phone call I become agitated, throw things that break easily and end up having to drink 11 cans of lager. I don’t go on about it though. (Fun fact: human beings landed on Mars in 1969 with less technology in their spaceships than what was in their iPhones.)

Like everyone else on earth, I have a history of depression which is a brilliant topic to bring up during job interviews or over dinner with people you’ve just met. Usually I drop it into conversation when a stranger whom I didn’t know existed until mere minutes ago asks me what I do for a living. For some reason being asked what my job is riles me up more than someone sitting next to me on the bus. Talking about work is the most tedious thing a fully developed homosapien can do so why this has become socially acceptable is completely flummoxing. I was once asked where I worked by someone during the wake at a funeral and I said I was a part time Grim Reaper and they better watch out. To this day I’ve still no idea why they took so much offence by it. If I’d told them where I really worked we would have ended up discussing cliques in job centre waiting areas or extreme poverty. But, you know, I don’t go on about it.

I have a lot of friends and acquaintances who suffer from this disease and while it’s something we can all joke about, it’s not something that should be joked about. As we all know, depression is massively, appallingly, disgustingly, stigmatised and a lot of people simply don’t seek help because of that fact. And, despite my dislike of all things that exist in the universe, this saddens me. In fact it fucks me right off. And not because I was once one of these fearful individuals. I won’t go on about this though.

With that in mind, and with today being National Poetry Day and the theme of the day being light, here’s a villanelle I wrote about this wonderful affliction. There’s an uncharacteristic amount of positivity in it as well so don’t overly concern yourself. I’m still the bringer of all things negative. 

By the bye, this post is exactly 666 words long. So now you know.

Lighter Lands

The time is right for helping hands.
Before the dying of the day,
The mind must strive for lighter lands.

The darkness in the room expands,
And blessed sun in sky is grey;
The time is right for helping hands.

Your idle thoughts are reprimands –
While rolls of mist and fog hold sway,
The mind must strive for lighter lands,

Not furrow deep with grave demands
That pressure you to stop and say:
‘The time is right for helping hands’.

You know no soul who understands
This air of camouflaged decay;
The mind must strive for lighter lands.

Lay siege, it will, its coarse commands
Leave little room to disobey.
The time is right for helping hands,
The mind must strive for lighter lands.

The Tap In The Bathroom

Leaking taps = bastards.

In total I have four taps in the sordid little grief-hole that I call my home, and every one of the gushing little sods leaks when they’re not in use. Apart from repeatedly biting your lip, being asked to help and the Tory Party, there are few things more terminally irritating than a leaking tap. My flat is open plan so when the tap in the kitchen drips it thumps through the whole place like when you get punched in the back of the head, or like that bit in Jurassic Park when the squeaky, dino-obsessed little shit hears the Tyrannosaurus Rex thundering towards him via a distant thud and his tumbler of gin on the car dashboard. I usually have to place things directly under the tap to lessen the impact of water to sink. More often than not I use a sieve and because it’s been repeatedly collecting water it’s turned a bit pink but this gives it a fancy psychedelic tint which is nice for when I have drug addicts visit. 

One evening before I went to bed I put the plug in the sink in the bathroom to see how much water was being wasted. When I awoke the next day I discovered the sink overflowing on to the bathroom floor and had completely wiped out the family of spiders that lived by the toilet, all of whom I had previously named. Davey, Gemma and their family would not have stood a chance against the mini-tsunami that must have overwhelmed them. I often wonder where their sodden, lifeless little bodies ended up. Probably on the soles of my socks then trodden into the carpet which, to be honest, is rarely vacuumed. On the plus side all this unused dripping water is only adding an extra £400 a month to my water bill so you win some, you lose some.

The Tap In The Bathroom

One couldn’t wonder or imagine thus;
That vexatious wave of irascible fuss
Could present itself like a sobering slap;
Conjured by the drip of a tap.

An innocent splash from nozzle to sink
Disrupts my ability to think.
Or accomplish work, or my afternoon nap;
This doleful, soulless drip of a tap.

I neglect or dismiss what’s on my plate –
The burdens, the resolute quandaries of late –
To quietly simmer or mentally flap
At the relentless, obstinate drip of a tap.

Inevitably now, this attrition is done
For it’s clear to me that the tap has won.
Prevailing in its task to intrude and to goad,
But it’s something at least that it gave me this ode.