Sooner

I’m dying to go to the loo.
I’m dying for some crisps.
I’m dying to see that film.
I’m dying for a drink.

I often think of him
surrounded by other ghosts
with empty bladders, fistfuls of Pringles,
bums on cinema seats, sipping large Cokes,
when all he wanted
was to get home a little sooner.

© Carl Burkitt 2020

Urinals

Standing at the urinals,
the peripheral vision man sneaked a look
and whispered Congratulations.
For a fleeting moment I forgot he was a colleague
referring to some good news
I’d announced earlier that day
and just looked down in the joy of a human
simply celebrating another human.

© Carl Burkitt 2020

Cubicle

Whenever I see a parent enter
a baby changing cubicle,
they always leave with the same baby.
If there was an adult changing cubicle
I would use public loos most mornings.
I wouldn’t make wholesale changes,
just enough to see myself the way you do.

© Carl Burkitt 2020

Bus Stop

My living room window
is the most HD screen I have.
There’s rarely any repeats on,
except the man at the bus stop
I watch on a Tuesday afternoon.
Every week at 11am he sits down
and talks to people on the hard, red seat.
I can never hear him, but I see him.
He stays for about an hour with a tote bag
and then walks back from where he came,
never stepping foot on a bus.
It’s my favourite series of events.

© Carl Burkitt 2020

Moon

I was once asked
how do you know you have a forehead?
It made sense at the time.
Context is a powerful thing.
A grown man once asked me
can moons get married?
It wasn’t a grown man, it was a toddler,
but if all things go well he will one day
be a grown man who once asked me
can moons get married?
I often daydream about him saying that
when a job interviewer says
do you have any questions for us?

© Carl Burkitt 2020

Curls

How do curly hairs know how to be curly?
Do they have roots like Turkey Twizzlers?
Is the bit between my skull and head skin
a farm of pigs in a row sticking their bums to the sky?
My eyebrows don’t curl.
My armpit hairs are as straight
as a punk rocker’s Mohawk
when I reach to the curly nest on my head.
Sometimes I sit and wonder
what kind of bird would live in my hair.
I wonder if they’d want to fly away
before they’d even learned to walk.

© Carl Burkitt 2020

Unlikeable

You are unlikeable,
you put me off my food.
You put the hurt in yoghurt.
You put the rot in carrot,
the cum in cucumber,
the fuck in focaccia.
A picnic with you
wouldn’t be worth the cramp.
If you invited me to lunch
I’d pretend a love one had died.
Probably not,
but just know I wouldn’t enjoy it.

© Carl Burkitt 2020