DS Maolalai – 3 poems

We tried to do it perfectly

 

 

We tried to do it perfectly;

packed the car

with sandwiches, with flasks of tea,

biscuits,

a sleeping bag

and a bottle of wine.

then we struck

west,

with no destination in mind.

 

We had wanted

to get lost on the backroads

and find somewhere to visit

people don’t go often

but it was hours

before we were even out of Dublin

and Ireland

has been signposted to death.

 

You drank wine

while I was driving

and played with the radio

and got bored pretty quick.

4 hours in

and we were looking at the coast,

all the way to America,

with nowhere to go

but backwards.

 

We’d tried to do it perfectly;

once there was a hawk in a field

and once rainshower

and the country spread around us,

green and glistening

as a dropped bottle.

 

You tossed a can at the sea

and complained that you needed the toilet.

I sat

with my ass on the front of the car,

eating a sandwich

trying to remember

the last time I’d been excited

by home.

 

 

🍃

 

 

The prince of milky bedsheets

 

 

You say

you are

in love again.

she

is a writer

of course

for magazines,

18

of course,

and pretty hellish

wealthy.

 

Parents with car factories in germany

and business interests

stretching all the way france.

 

You,

of course

are a traitor to your friends

for wanting

this,

for accepting it,

the price of new love.

you accept

our mockery.

one does.

and gossip

which comes

with young bodies,

trotting like a puppy

on a walk to the shop.

our scorn

is a price

for the prince

of milky bedsheets.

 

All you want

is all

that anyone wants,

for someone

to be in love with

until,

like the river

shearing into a shoreline

or the twist

of the ungrateful snake,

life whips around

and bites,

less miserable

than you are.

 

 

🍃

 

 

On me every day

 

 

My wallet

(fake snakeskin)

with its tinderscrap of receipts

and its plectrumbone

of exempt debit cards.

a blood donation slip.

a drivers license

cradled with age.

10 Canadian dollars, 20 American dollars

15 euros

(all I can spend).

2 durex condoms (real snakeskin)

and 4 coffeeshop loyalty cards,

2 stamps apiece.

a crumpled photo of Melissa

smiling by some shrubbery,

her eyes back home.

 

 

🍃

 

 

DS Maolalai recently returned to Ireland after four years away, now spending his days working maintenance dispatch for a bank and his nights looking out the window and wishing he had a view. His first collection, Love is Breaking Plates in the Garden, was published in 2016 by the Encircle Press. He has twice been nominated for the Pushcart Prize.

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