Mary McCallum has rounded up a bunch of poets for a regular Tuesday poem spot. I was flattered to be invited but protested that my poems are really just a bit of doggerel I whipped up for Next Magazine back in the day. She is an insistent woman that Mary and I will give up that my verse is ‘not worthy’ and join in. You can read Tuesday poems from Mary, Harvey Molloy, Tim Jones, The Paradoxical Cat and the serial poem from Poet Laureate Cilla McQueen too… a Tuesday fest of words!
Here is one I wrote when feeling all at sea and scared of meeting new people. Yes, me, the garrulous one at every social function with wine glass in hand. I too get terrified…
Do you ever stand there looking
At the bottom of your drink
Thinking ‘Any minute now’
‘I’m going to throw up in the sink’ ?
And this is not a symptom of
Some alcohol abuse
Because what’s filling up your glass
Is only orange juice.
You’re the designated driver
And it’s just as you had feared;
Your party going partner has
You know that you should mingle
But you don’t know where to start
You can barely hear the music for
The thudding of your heart.
Everybody in the room
Is full of bonhomie
And seem oblivious to you
Whilst bonding cheerfully.
So when you find this happening
Do you soldier on alone?
Or slug down half a pint of gin
And take a taxi home.
Thank you for joining the Tuesday Poem, Fifi - it is in fact the only illustrated poem of the bunch. Yes, your poems have a bright, airy exterior, but they always hold reflections of deeper concerns, which is why you had such a following in NEXT. I think your readers are also are thrilled by the apparent effortless of the rhyme scheme which keeps them reading to the end... not knowing how hard it is to get that right. What they love, too, are the divine illustrations, and this one is no exception.
Ah, Fifi - I've been to a few book launches where I've needed that gin (and I don't even drink gin)! Mary is insistent, isn't she - but what a treat with poems across a range of genre, all happening on the page on Tuesday - lovely to be linked with you.
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