Monday 25th May



Peaceful, too peaceful, the cafe where I write is closed!
Lights on, nobody home, cheery in it’s exclusion of poets.
I glance, contain tiny explosions, panic, keep walking,
fake purpose, stride like a man who knows where he’s going,
through desolate streets, the sight of other loners disturbs me.
Sad lost poets drifting, a fellowship of hungry pen clutchers
searching for a corner seat. The dazed & downmouthed, harbouring
desperation for a fix, coming down from the termination of
clandestine rendezvous with muses.
Only ‘one’ cafe’s open, the ‘wrong one’, wrong tea, wrong mugs,
wrong ambience, wrong effusive clientèle & ‘no’ porridge served up
in cardboard with that little pot of honey & the Black plastic
spoon you have to wipe with recycled napkins before to slip it
in your mouth. She knows I’ll decline the little bag of dried fruit
every time she asks & yet she asks me every morning. The familiarity
of the ritual reassures me. I’m a visitor with pinhole vision,
stumbling around a planet, Mickey Mouse still crazy dancing on
the fronts of T-shirts drenched in sweat. She knows exactly what
she’s doing, restrains a smile. I glance around the room to see if
anyone’s claimed ‘my’ table, feel the panic rise, the thrill, the
chase for that spot before anyone gets it. The triumphant surge of
power as I slip a tray onto the table, the come down, the extraction
of the paraphernalia from the bag, laying everything in place,
peripheral vision, checking out the positions of the muses.
Note the mood of the music we’re being fed this morning, always
a little different, always a little the same. Makes me wonder what
algorithm selected it. The foot taps unconscious, feel-good gets into
the heads the coffee huggers queueing for more.
Now I’m dazed & shaking, find myself back in the car before time,
alone, staring through fly spattered glass, trying to recreate
the ritual of a ‘normal morning’. I’m coming to pieces, every muscle
primed to twitch & flick, locked into the groove of the pen.
I oscillate, vibrate, start to shake, frustration, shake it off,
it comes back stronger, a cyclone dog chasing it’s tail.
The note book languishes next to the ink pen in the dark at the bottom
of my bag, wondering what the hell is wrong. Cell phone primed with
electric poetry ready to be transferred, legitimised on paper.
I sit in stunned silence waiting for the phone to ring, numb,
without focus until the call, an interview with a European newspaper,
& I’m relieved when it comes. We’ve made it across the desert
& I have purpose again.


3 thoughts on “Monday 25th May

  1. I feel for you. The suggestions of pushing myself out of my comfort zone. I try, it always ends the same the heart races, the mind clouds, becomes otherworldly and the panic rises. Those old using feelings again, it’s hard to bare. I still do it though in hope that one day it will be different, that the panic won’t come and everything will be ok. What is the comfort like outside of my comfort zone? Once you’ve been a creature of habit it’s hard to be anything else.

  2. Wow, I envy you, really.
    While you´re trying to find the way to handle your life outside the comfort zone, I´m just trying to find the way to get in there and stay there without panic.
    Once I get in there it feels like life has nothing more to offer, I feel like an old dying on the deathbed who is waiting for The Final Count Down.
    This is why I have more than one profession, this is why I always need to try new hobbies and this is why I leave things sooner or later, unless they are evolving in some way.
    I really admire people like my mother, who was able to have the same profession for more than 40 years, or MJ, who could sing the Billy Jean I don´t know how many thousand times. I would have grown tired of it halfway, no matter what muse would have chased those tones and words out of me.
    But who knows…
    Sometimes I wonder how good I would have been if I had the time, those 10 000 hours, and the patience to spend it on a single thing. But my fate forced me to have a need to try out what earth life has to offer instead.
    Is it bad?
    Sometimes I can see its beautiful patterns like formations of mismatched and odd things, yet in an order that undeniably form one unit, like colorful pictures in a kaleidoscope. It is like magic, as when you slowly spinning it around. And it’s for your eyes only.
    Oh, yeah 😀

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