Perched on a tree branch
Singing his heart out
Singing from the heart
Without worry about the music critics’ opinion
Without worry about whether the fans will like it as much as last year’s
Without worry about fans getting bullied by music snobs for being too mainstream
Songbird oh songbird
Sing your heart out
Sing from your heart
Bring us joy
Just watch out for predators!
Weekday night, your usual routine. Pick out the outfit for work tomorrow, prepare breakfast and lunch. For breakfast, you decide to fry two slices of bacon medallions. Once that’s done, you leave the medallions in the frying pan on the stove to cool down, before you put them away later.
So you potter about a bit, watch a bit of TV, then you go back to the kitchen to take care of the breakfast. You walk to the stove and—there is only a single bacon medallion in the frying pan. The other one has disappeared.
Without a trace.
(Does bacon even leave a trace?)
You sigh. You suppose you’ll have to replace the missing medallion with something else.
In the living room, your cat is unassumingly licking her paws. It was a good hunt.
You’re walking down the street with your nieces and they’re all
excited because you’re on your way to the funfair. Out the corner of your eye
you see a figure walking in towards you in the opposite direction but take no
special notice. The girls are chatting cheerfully about their school and
friends. The figure is getting closer. It’s a tall man in a long black coat.
Then, just as he’s passing you, he takes out a stick and pokes you in the eye
You wake up to your cat touching your eye with her paw,
demanding her bloody breakfast.
I wake up every
morning with you on my mind
I go through my
day thinking of you
I picture us
walking in the park hand-in-hand in the afternoon
And make dinner
I go to sleep
whispering your name
All day, every
day, everything is you
You look at me but
you don’t see me
I see you laughing
with your friends
And dating other
You say hi
sometimes but nothing more
Six months later, during some major decluttering, she finds the
poem tucked among other papers.
She looks it with confusion, thinking: bloody hell, I was really
hung up on this guy, huh? I barely remember his face, what even is his name
The poem sparks no joy.
A figure approaches her. She feels the presence of someone
drawing closer, she registers subconsciously a dark grey jacket and a pair of
jeans. Her hands are working mechanically on the task in front of her; her mind
is elsewhere, drifting away to landscapes and oceans beyond.
The door of a dryer next to her opens, almost hitting her.
“Oh, sorry,” the dark grey jacket says. She turns.
She sees his eyes before she sees him.
She falls into his eyes. She’s swimming in his eyes, immersed in
the shades of brown and green, caressed in their depth. His eyes... She’s floating in his eyes, to the worlds unknown, to oceans
and landscapes, to realms of golden and amber and caramel and—
He smiles apologetically. “I hope I didn’t hit you.”
“No, it’s okay,” she says.
She folds the last of her clothes, puts them in her bag, zips
the bag and hangs it over her shoulder. He’s still smiling.
“See you some other time,” she says to him.
And with this, she walks out of the launderette.
You usually bring your lunch to work but today you have to go
out to get something to eat. Consequence of you being too lazy to go shopping
last night and thus having no food at home to prepare for lunch. So come lunch
break, you go to the supermarket down the road from your workplace, because you
know they do meal deals. You get there, pick your sandwich and drink and snack
and as you walk towards the checkouts, you hear shouts. Turns out an angry
customer is having a go at the security guard.
Well, that’s something new, you think. You pay at the
self-checkout, while two shop assistants watch the angry customer with
fascination. The man is red-faced and repeats the same phrases. “Give me your
boss’s number! I want to speak to your boss!” He looks like he’s quite serious
The security guard remains calm. You have seen him here before,
you always shop here when you don’t bring your own lunch, the name on the
security guard’s badge says Femi, the two shops assistants are Mark and Amir,
but anyway, you don’t have time to ponder, the precious lunch break time is
running out. You complete your purchase.
The angry man is still demanding the phone number of the
security guard’s boss. The guard says, okay then, follow me here. He moves
towards the store’s entrance.
As you walk out of the shop and pass the security guard, you
lean to him and say: “Tell him your boss is Nick Fury.”
You are startled out of your nap.
The echo of a sharp crack is still ringing in your ears as you
lift yourself up on your elbows. Was that… surely it couldn’t have been—a
gunshot? How, where?
You get out of bed and look out of the window. It’s evening, the
street is lit with new energy saving lamps the council installed a couple of
months ago. Apart from a guy in a black coat and a baseball cap, there’s not a
soul on the street. A suspicious
character? This is a quiet neighbourhood, mostly, but you don’t let that
hoodwink you. You remember you heard shouting from outside earlier, as you were
dozing off. But you just dismissed it as another disagreement between the
couple next door. The husband is a sanctimonious clown and the wife, though
most of the time quite pleasant, is petite but lethal. It used to amuse you
until it got boring. But their arguments never went beyond yells and a few
swear words. Not even a smashed plate. And this was a bang.
You exit your bedroom into the hall. It’s quiet and dark
everywhere, except there is light leaking from under the living room door. You
turn the handle and enter.
Your nephew Adam is lounging on the sofa, his long legs hanging
from the arm, a huge bowl of popcorn on the coffee table. A few kernels litter
the laminated floor. The TV’s on, he’s re-watching the Avengers again. Your cat Felix sits on the coffee table in a
loaf-of-bread position and fixes his green eyes on you.
“Oh, hi, you’re up?” Adam says with a mouth full of popcorn.
“Puny gods,” goes Hulk’s voice from the screen.
“I thought a heard a bang, it woke me up,” you say. “Maybe I
just dreamt it.”
“Oh that,” Adam licks his fingers, “Felix here knocked down the