Just a quick reminder to those who are unsure or, on
reading this believe I write from experience: my poetry
comes from imagined fiction – I make stuff up – I am
not planning on buying a motorbike or having fights with
my wife (although I am surely ripe for a mid-life crisis)

On a hotel room
An unsteady squint strains at these reeking walls,
Tar-stained from the puffing of road-warrior nightjars
Who drank deep on drams of their superior’s wishes
And tormented their second-best wives
With lies that they both sensed the taste of
On tongues which waggled a tarantella dance around
The sharp bull horns of cheating, his bright fighter’s
Cape of platitudes furling around him as her doubts, fears
Of betrayal stamped the ground and snorted a steamy
Spittle that shook the doors of their marriage.

Another night death-gripping the bedcovers with her
Suspicions. Another knocking his rocks against
Bell-ringing glass and sucking the brown burn
Of bitterness drowning as it washed resentment
From teeth electrified by edge against edge grinding.
He has no reserve of desire to drag
Doing The Right Thing along with him. There are
True selves to find in motorbike trips and
Many destinies thwarted by coming home on
Time and painting the bedroom walls white.

He claims, by example, better use for tomorrow can be found by
Hung-over vikings who arrive red-eyed amongst
The enslaved and clocked and desk-bound.
His warrior clothes strewn with a confetti of
A fixed agenda torn to shreds stuck on
With cock-sure machismo spirit. The gaunt evidence
Written for posterity across the deepening creases
Of his buffalo-tongue face betrays the wear and
Fraying as his identity and purpose tear away from him
Into the tragic pile of Things He Could Have Done.

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