I'm Not Your Audience
by John Grey
I just stumbled out of bed. Look at my hair.
Like yarn after that cat's got through with it.
Smell my breath. It's a skunk's behind.
And I'm scratching myself. My nails
are hitting places that haven't itched in years.
Don't try to sell my head poetry if you don't mind.
Don't read to me from the old masters.
Or the modernists. Be disdainful if you will.
But I don't want to hear of two hundred year old
daffodils. Or suicides from three months ago.
Not before my first coffee at least.
I'm in these rag-tag pajamas. Cocksure
feminists didn't consider that when they
first put pen to paper. Nor did haughty academies
when they robbed the early Romans of their myths.
Scrawny kids, at poetry readings everywhere, are
too self absorbed to realize that I'm rubbing my
eyes, opening my mouth wide to yawn.
World, forgo your poetry. I'm not fully awake yet.
In this state, your awakening's the last thing I need.
John Grey is an Australian poet, US resident. Recently published in That, Dunes Review, Poetry East and North Dakota Quarterly with work upcoming in Qwerty, Thin Air, Dalhousie Review and failbetter.
Pieces Inspired by this Image
'The Hunter of Words'
'The Printed Word'
'A Test of Vows and Faith'