An eye for an eye

Deleted myself today.
Wrote ‘love you’ without saying who.
Not who to… (which was you) …only ‘I’ went astray.
I should have seen then we were through.

Maybe I’d known that to press every key,
would have been to admit my defeat,
and I’d hoped by omission I’d keep myself free –
so left the phrase incomplete.

Who knows?

But somewhere, our messages crossed on the line
and a chime from my inbox announced your reply.
Four fatal words, ‘luv u 2 sugapie’,
summarised all we had lost.

I’ll never explain my silent farewell,
since I know that you’d not understand
why I dragged those nauseous words to the trash,
along with the future you’d planned.

I erased your name and address from my contacts
and swept your books from my shelf;
relieved, truth be told, your detestable syntax
had freed me to refind myself.

I returned as ‘u’ disappeared
and I found myself undeleted.
I logged in again to the site where we’d paired,
and thus the process repeated…

Middle-aged gent with own hair, distinguished;
seeks female companion, long legs and large bust.
Essential you have respect for Queen’s English;
fine spelling and grammar a must.

ALA

Sleep

I envy those with strength of will to tackle it cold turkey;
not like us who squander life nine minutes at a time
then mount the wagon wearily and wash the comedown off
without a high or hangover to show for hours lost.

The weak among us satisfy our cravings far too quickly
and sip the inexhaustible supply throughout the day,
then come around, annoyed, to find that we’ve gone under
forgetting that the blessing is in waking up at all.

One day, we won’t.
We’ll overdoze on mother nature’s sedative –
and how we’ll crave nine minutes then,
but not to sleep: to live.

Almost is enough

It’s quite alright to live a life of ‘almost’
if you tried.
To stretch for stars but barely scratch the sky
if you tried.

There’s nothing wrong in coming second place
if you tried:
the victory’s in finishing the race,
if you tried.

Pay no heed to critics,
to nitpickers and cynics
if you did your best
but didn’t lift the cup.

If you pushed beyond your limits
with your focus on the finish
then you passed the stiffest test
that life throws up.

It’s quite alright to live a life of almost
if you tried.

But not if all you’ve done
is almost tried.

Am I dying already?

Do I already own the clothes I’ll die in?
The songs I won’t hear from my casket?
What of the mourners who’ll claim to have known me
– who among them have I met?

Has the picture they’ll put on my coffin been taken?
My hearse had its first set of tyres?
The crem been paid the price of the gas
that will light up my funeral pyre?

Do my cupboards contain the groceries
from which I’ll make my last meal?
Is a chain of events already unfolding
through which my fate is now sealed?

Silt

You can’t put out water with fire,
burn off the sea in a day,
outswim a tide of helplessness:
life doesn’t work that way.

You need to find out what’s holding you back
if you’re going to achieve your desires,
so scoop up the ocean in buckets
and throw some more wood on the pyre.

Stoke the furnace to boil off the water
until all that’s left is the silt.
Then, when you see what the obstacles are
your life can perhaps be rebuilt.

Dust to dust

The new me is an older me.
The old me once was young. Young me has no future though
the future’s just begun.

The present me is a fallacy,
a link upon a chain
from fertilised to fertile ground —
again, again, again.