• dermoto 23w

    The harder the break, the freer the flow. ©Dermot O’Shea 2017

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    The Shower Drain

    I had to clean the shower drain,
    to claw at scraggly strands of pain
    and hurt, down through that
    gunk-filled tube of bile and slime
    that stinks and shines,
    a cesspool shrine to soggy, rancid
    split-end dreams,
    not yours, just mine.

    I had to scrub the microwave,
    those taunting unexploded popcorn kernels standing brazenly,
    saluting bygone days of me and you
    and Netflix goosebump chills,
    your lips, your tongue, the way it filled
    my ignoramus, slack-jawed, grinning

    I had to empty out the
    vacuum cleaner bag, a bobby pin
    brigade blockade of clips and quips and smiles flashed just before the
    camouflage returned, a curtain drop of stern refusal to allow me win
    that joke, that round, your heart.

    I had to change the fitted sheet
    that clung around our
    white and checkered no man’s land
    where once you lay, your porcelain feet curled up to mine
    all night and day,
    a shriek of ice and glee,
    but now just twilight canyon creases carving scars across a cotton sea
    of ghost-ship kisses.

    I had to write this poem,
    the waves of white hot shame
    and punctured ego, me to blame,
    placebo feelings of a place beyond
    the status quo of one-night stands
    and pain,
    and dusted off hands
    and pain,
    and scraggly strands of pain,
    slowly filling the shower drain.