Do you remember the chip shop? - C. M. Perry

White pill shatters,
on rosewood floor.
A child with a rattle,
he shakes his film canister.
Even film
is out of date.

Another shot of gin
before we hit the road.
He empties the rattle,
into his hand, his mouth,
- pupils already dilated.
The clock ticks backwards.

One too few, two too many.
chewing gum for the jaw
I don't know why,
the cracker is dry 
on my tongue.

Do you remember
the chip shop,
on the Beach
in Kawhia?

A speed bump
in the road
- swallowed, swimming.
Road signs 
come to meet us,
from up above the fever.

He's twenty six,
bearded, old,
to her young and leggy
- just fifteen.
The speedo says one thirty.
We call its bluff.

in rainbow on the windscreen
- no one else sees. 
Nails in fur.
what will mum think,
if it's still there in the morning?

At the beach,
the roar is suffocating.
He nearly drowned
on New Years eve.
A click of camera phones.
Let's go home.

Fabricated love
keeps me up,
above the sound of the fan.
The clock ticks forward 
in an illicit cell.
Morning is coming.

On resolution
three twenty by four eighty,
in early 21st century pixelation,
that god awful fish and chip type
illuminated by cellular lights
- unremarkable.

A picture worth
three bottles,
five pills,
and a one-seventy dollar fine
- just to prove
we were there.

I don't remember the chip shop.

Last Words - C. M. Perry

You bite my ankle,
laugh and run away.
I thought you didn’t like me.
What’s his name?
No one knows.

He’s missing.

In black biro,
you tickle bad poetry
and do equations on my arm.
You don’t say a word.

You were reckless.

Swinging from the ceiling,
hair in your eyes, noodle legs
wrapped carelessly around the rafters.
It's your first detention;
red eyes.

Headlines say you’re a lesson to others.

Help me turn the desks around?
I’m going to jump out the window.
I’ll hide his bag
in the ceiling.
Don’t tell.

Your parents are still looking.

You say I look good in daisies,
pretty dresses, and
ask me to eat lunch with you.
But I say, 
I don’t know your friends.

August the tenth.

Cold hands hide my eyes.
Guess who?
I guess wrong.
I love you,
a messy scrawl on a get well soon card.

I didn’t get better.

You’re alive! you shout, picking me up.
You smell like chocolate,
two years and 12 more inches.
Over your shoulder I mouth,
Who is this?

I’m drunk.

Rings on red fingers
- flowers and gold paint.
I like them, you say,
but they’re stuck.
Do they suit me?

I’ll never see them again.

I’m a giant on your shoulders.
Visit me? 
We’ll go clubbing,
drink coffee,
and draw pictures in the sand.

I don’t believe in an afterlife.

Wet laces and hangovers,
at 7am,
searching for an earring in the frost.
A broken clock 
ticks around your neck.

Everyone’s given up.

You text lonely letters,
sending videos with
wine stained lips,
Silence in the background.

I wish you’d worn a life jacket.

Pixelated eyes,
silver in half light.
Slow blinking and
a promise to write me a song 
when I visit.

Your last adventure.

Let’s get detention together
every now and again,
and drink ice cream
in the tripping tree.

Hundreds of people came to the memorial.

I wore floral, not black, 
sharing salty cake 
with the people you said 
I was cool enough to sit with.
I wish I’d listened,

I waited too long.

and maybe, somehow
you wouldn’t have said,

See you in the sunshine.

Contributor's Note

My therapist says I have trust issues.


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