June 23, 2016


I let three years of your jolly lolly stick jokes
crease my lips, cause bottles to gurgle
and stick in my throat, sick of living in a bubble
of marriage, plated by gold circles of eternity.
That one about taking me to Mars, across
the Galaxy (aka Milky Way), because I so loved
to be sweet-talked, bent my skin like
a Curly Wurly. The only true compliment
would be a mint upon my pillow in a hotel
on our anniversary.

Habits exposed themselves like drag queens,
marooned themselves on toilet lids, wet
dreams, Spring collection magazines
where the pages stuck together.
And the routines. Supermarket Tuesday
for Asda’s fresh bananas, weekly dramas
over the binmen’s refusal to lift torn refuse sacks.
Your hideous black nails wagging in their faces,
and squeaky voice, like tasteless helium,
deserve to be thrown in the crusher with them.

Not every woman seeks a powerful substitute
for the weak frogs they marry, but I’ll kiss my Prince
records and dream of adultery when you’re at work,
flirt with a psychiatrist and get recklessly drunk.
I’ll cut your ties in shreds, clench, distressed
that love has turned grey as a one-trick pony,
and squeeze grapes for a feeling of phoney empowerment
I once had over you. Now sour, impotent.
The bus which brings you home need never at all,
until you find me betamaxing myself up

with the thin, flimsy black cassette tape
of our wedding video.

Stephen Watt

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