The day I was supposed to ignore

The soundless ring of the alarm,

The burnt toast, the broken elevator,

That unplanned tube strike

That made me curse loudly, forgetting

That trains are manned by people,

Not robots that live to serve me.

I could have written off technology

My brain knew to deal in numbers

And I could have assumed a coincidence.

But it was people, it’s always people,

And there was an inkling in my mind

Telling me the probabilities

Didn’t add up right, that maybe

That day was supposed to be something.

It was a day I was supposed to ignore,

But not the way I did. Not by shrugging

And borrowing the neighbour’s car,

Even though I hadn’t driven in so long.

I kept on trying to salvage it

Despite the heavy traffic,

Despite the impossibility to ever

Make my meetings on time. I tried

To contradict fate, with hands on the wheel

And the phone tucked in my shoulder.

I never saw it coming.

It was the day I was supposed to ignore,

To skip over, to opt out of.

And because I didn’t, I’ll spend

The rest of my life having

A day I’m desperately trying to forget.

Unfortunately rephrased

People have a morbid kind of passion
For all the negativity in the world.
They especially seem to adore putting
An ‘unfortunate’ label to everything.
But how often is it really the correct one?

I may have quite a few quirks.
Unfortunately, this makes friends hard to come by.
But maybe it is fortunate instead,
Because every one of my friends
Are people who I can truly count on,
Not having to worry that I should seed out
Those who would disappear when the going gets tough.

I am quite shy and quiet.
Unfortunately, this makes my ideas hard to hear.
But maybe it is fortunate instead,
Because all those who listen
Are genuinely interested
In what I have to say.

I’ve been called childish and naive.
Unfortunately, this makes me easy to take advantage of.
But maybe it is fortunate instead,
Because with every person
Who steps over me for their success
I get a little wiser, a little tougher,
A little less likely to fall for the same trap.

Unfortunately, I didn’t always get the things I wanted.
Fortunately, this lead me to the things I needed.
Unfortunately, I often lost my way.
Fortunately, this made me keep rediscovering myself.
Unfortunately, I was not too good at the things I did.
Fortunately, this allowed me to commit to them,
And know that I truly deserved it when I succeeded.

‘Unfortunately’ and ‘fortunately’
Are just two sides of the same coin,
A coin so small it can flip over
With a single harder exhale from you.
It’s just a little bit of rephrasing
That all writers should be
Intimately familiar with.
So how about, every once in a while,
We all choose to listen instead
To the fortune withing the ‘unfortunately’,
And the possibilities of an ‘impossible’?

Romantic Misunderstandings

I showed up at your door with a bucket of flour,
And needed an hour to pick it out of my hair.
I don’t understand why you would get so mad –
I told you I could only find it in white,
Even though you go on and on about
How it should have been rosy.

I don’t understand you at all lately.
I’ve had the whole day figured out,
Filled with things you always say you want.
After cleaning up, I took you to a movie,
‘Pirates of the Caribbean’. You grumbled,
Saying you’d have rather watched romance,
And then sat down in the chair.
I tried to stop you, explain,
I even had to push you out of the seat
But you got so mad you screamed
And security came to kick us out.
You slapped me and stormed away,
Even though all I did was try to move you
On the aisle at the Caribbean movie.

Though I suppose it’s better like this.
I really didn’t fancy having to taste
The paints that I bought for you.
I tried them first and it was terrible.
I suppose you don’t absolutely have to eat them
But they tickle so badly I had to swallow.
Can’t imagine why anybody would ever want
To have someone painting their palate.

And at least I get to escape that awful sunburn
From the trip I had to plan to the desert
Something tells me you’d have complained too
That the sand was too white or too yellow
Instead of the chocolate you wanted…
As if I have any saying in the way
The world decided to create sand dunes.

I’m just sorry I didn’t wait for tomorrow
And wanted to surprise you from the day before.
It looks like I still won’t be able to say
That I have a girlfriend on Valentine’s Day.
Thirteen really seem to be unlucky for me
But maybe next year…

(PS: for any of you out there
Who haven’t yet decided on a gift,
Let’s not follow this poor fool’s example.
Get your girlfriends bouquets of flowers instead,
Lilies, orĀ roses better. And for the artsy ones,
Don’t ask them to eat their painting palettes.
And finish off with chocolate cake for dessert.
If you didn’t figure it out in time, however,
You might want to check that the deposit
Is refundable on that Carribean isle trip.

Good luck and a beautiful Valentine’s tomorrow!)