Dirty Laundry

54…
equals 21
the scent of Aramis, in sloaney co-op living
where pigeons squat in damp up rising
and boyfriends come
…. and go
Inexperienced girls trade secrets
in the same fashion as chain store bargains
picked up on the high street of slashed hopes
Threads that will later be left strewn, in walk-in closets
dirty laundry
hung over maidens of insecurity

54…
equals alcohol fuelled happenings
high octane couplings
stumbles through a bare bulbed hallway
in the wee hours
to a dank bathroom
where best friend and boy friend betray
soap on a grope against the locked door
unaware of this accidental voyeur
whose tears dripped in competition
with washerless taps
silently she returned to a single bed
with a heart deafeningly shattered by a million cracks

54…
equals 2
all of me
divided by you
grand sash windows
minus the view

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Screwed up

Don’t give me your paper smiles
full of cuts
sharp edges
self-sealed
down
I’m likely to file them away
under a ton of junk mail
forget them
let them fade
over time
yellow with age
curl
around the edges
The adhesive that held them
slowly coming unstuck
I don’t want to read
between those laughter lines
where the spittle dried
and lips screwed up
so don’t give me your paper smiles
just keep your mouth shut

*With special thanks to Stuart West – a hull based artist whose original artwork “Paper Smile” (Acrylic Paint, Ink Pencil on Jiffy bag), inspired me in the writing of this piece.