For People Who Don’t Understand My Poetry

(NB. I don’t expect people to understand my poetry, I know many of you understand Personal Problems, I think that’s because I write about school, and people we mutually know. Or you understand what it feels like to have no friends, or a boyfriend uninterested in you, or to be called ugly. Or if you know its you I’m talking about. I’ve had stick for writing about myself. The terms ‘expressing oneself’ sound pretentious to me, but I’m doing exactly just that. And I’m not going to apologise for anything I’m doing now. But how do you begin to understand poetry when I compare somebody to a grape?)

Reading into feelings would be like figuring out a jigsaw,
Where there’s 5000 pieces, and 6 are missing,
But you don’t know which.
And what’s worse, you haven’t got the box to work the image from.

I want to strip the sky back sometimes, the wallpaper God put up is getting old
And it may be ever-changing like Harry Potter’s bewitched ceiling in the Great Hall
But I would like, for once, to see the waves and fish shiver across sunset.
Understand me yet?

I want change.

I met a little girl the other day, at a birthday party.
She was as lovely as a grape. (You see where I’m going with this?)
And as innocent as a white feather.
She tried to braid my hair, pretending she could plait, when she was actually twisting,

And she made friends easily, she glued them to her as though they were sequins
And she had long lovely curls,
And she played with balloons all day.
I think there’s a link here. I promise you, I’m not going off on a tangent.

Well I used to be that little girl.

I want to be a child again.
Grapes are sweet, grapes are moreish, one grape isn’t enough.
I need the whole bunch.
And feathers are soft, they are pure,

Whiter than weddings.
Understand me?

When I look back on high school,
I think about how much people felt the need to talk. About themselves, or other people.
I think about how much noise I made, myself.
I think the opinion of me was split,

Into either annoying, weird or funny.
They would intersect at times.
And when people would compare me to Marmite…
…I think those people didn’t know me at all.

People love me, like strawberry jam, like carnations, like parties
People hate me, like mosquitoes, like slush in the road, like blisters.
People are indifferent like weather,
People don’t know me but would like to, others not so much,
The diversity you find is really key here,
And I think this fact is as simple as 2 + 2.

That I am far more complex than a simple spread that you keep at the back of your bread cupboard.
That I’m more than annoying. I’m more than weird. I’m more than funny.

I believe in fame and fairies,
In God and power
And the freedom to laugh and love
And to hang your exes on the washing line to dry,

And you don’t understand this metaphor,
But think about it,
You wear your boyfriend, girlfriend, like a t-shirt, on repeat
And eventually you have to wash it

Then it shrinks, its crumpled,
And the colour and softness isn’t what it was,
Its no longer the most recent thing you bought from Forever 21
Or Burton, or Levi’s, or bloody Banana Republic…

It ends up at the back of the wardrobe
And you return home with new purchases,
Picking people to love is like retail therapy sometimes,
We take shots and with the liquor we snatch its confused kisses

From finding comfort in the arms of somebody else.
You wear your other halves.
And you even try to last for as many years as you can
So you can say, “We’ve been together for 4 years”.

I believe you’ll find a pair of pyjamas one day that you won’t ever want to take off.

For people who don’t understand my poetry,
Surely you’ve cried over spilt milk or thought to yourselves when you read this poetry, “This girl is pathetic”,
Ah teenager, you’re an adult at 26, not 20, not 18.
And 17 year olds do not deserve Mini Coopers.

I can’t wait to see Daddy pay your insurance bill.
But, I like you for being openly rich and admitting it, Dad’s got a great job.
And whatever school tells you, being a Monitor or a Prefect
Is about as useful as having chafed thighs.

In some ways, not all of them, I did better than the prefects.
I’m full of bitterness that I didn’t look dashing in maroon every assembly.
But let’s face it, I rocked those poems I read occasionally on stage.
Made your morning, walking in on Chaka Khan singing “I’m Every Woman” to the stars.

School is positively medieval.
And all that matters in the end is that you’ve loved, and you’re loved.
And that the grade on the paper doesn’t reflect how darling you are,
But that if you did make up a rumour about a girl getting married to her boyfriend

And posted a picture on Instagram of him “proposing” to her,
To which his sister who doesn’t like his girlfriend made an emergency call to him
Saying “What the fuck have you done?”
Then you need a kick up the arse.

Lucy does reaffirm things very well.
But she’s all there.
There’s not another sister I would respect more than her anyway.
I know where I stand.

For people who don’t understand my poetry,
Put yourselves upright and make a line in the sand.

You all own smartphones and I ask, lift your eyes from the static,
Straighten your backs,
And take your bones and drive harder into the curve.
For people who don’t understand my poetry,

Or somebody else’s poetry,
Ask yourself who’s putting the black and blue bruises on your lips,
Who’s causing you to be cruel like this?
Who’s turned YOU into a BITCH?

And when you’ve figured it all out,
When you’re holding your degree in your hand
And you’re past the days of jelly shots and hold burgundy in your hand
Whilst you flip the ribeye steak,

And you tell yourself that your daughter or son will be fine
And your husband or wife will be home on time,
And you know what you want isn’t what you’re necessarily going to get,
Lift the mask off like a skirt

And wear yourself as nature intended.

For people who don’t understand my poetry,
Grow up, be happy.
Do stuff. Smile.
You don’t need to click links to know me.

As for Personal Problems,
There’s plenty more coming.
And I know you might click,
Working out if its you I’m talking about. I’m not. Am I?

Until one day, just one day, and you have to feel this truly,
And not just say it now because you think you mean it, you’ll always be curious,
You don’t give a shit what I or anyone thinks or writes of you.
Then you’re grown.


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