I am lonely, sad and, worst of all,
I am marooned in a nocturnal world
of precarious employ
and tumbling towards middle age.
But the people I wanted to become
the writers, dilettantes, the “creatives”
they’re still out there, being fulfilled,
counting the beats.
They spend their Monday night in a dusty Newtown flat
which is perhaps not in Newtown
but an equal suburb /
gentrifying and unknowable
At least one booming restaurant critic coined it
I spend mine exploring the back of the couch
with my too-long fingernails
searching for my son’s toothbrush
They drink endless cups of tea
And discuss the idiosyncrasies of their masters supervisors
Maybe get fucked up, brush their teeth with vodka
I finger the alcohol-free beer cans in my fridge
and in this case, my too-long fingernails are of no hindrance
and pour myself a whiskey, neat.
Hours later, marooned in my tumbler
in amber oblivion too far steep’d
At least one phony whiskey critic coined it
I recall how hollow my 20th century
English literature lecturer
Then I recall how Mac Jackson
shiny pate and shaggy mullet
spitting, animated, swaying at the lectern
spoke of Waiting for Godot.
And then, it all makes sense:
the amber lectern, the spitting impecunity,
the vodka teacups, the painful fingering
the dangerous medicines,
the broken heart.