Love/Sick


Whenever I touch you
there is a heat I can’t ignore,
inflaming feelings destined to ignite us.
There’s tingling in my skin,
and I go red from head to floor.
Is it love?
Or is it contact dermatitis?

My weakness is for you;
I nearly swoon at your sweet face.
My heart misses a beat each time I see ya.
Its rhythm is disturbed
and all my stress seems out of place.
Is it love?
or is it arrhythmia?

You learn to cook gourmet
and then you really go to town,
and after the dessert you pop the question.
My stomach does ballet
and there’s a stirring farther down.
Is it love?
Or is it indigestion?

I tried to play it safe,
and we were strict about consent.
I’m breathless from your bedside operation.
I said I’d die for you;
perhaps you don’t know what I meant.
Is it love?
Or is it lung donation?

There’s nothing I can do;
I am so helpless in your hands.
I’ll stay right here and nobody can thwart us.
I’ve fallen hard for you
and something’s stiffened in my pants.
Is it love?
Or is it rigor mortis?

Your heavy breathing’s clear
from undulations of your chest.
My organ is inside you; now I’m onto ya!
Deep down I’m really dirty;
something’s writhing through my flesh.
Is it love?
Yes! That was hypochondria.

I thought of this idea and wrote most of the first three stanzas while pondering contact dermatitis one day a few months ago. In my head it has a tune, and as usual, it’s hard to read it without the tune, so there may be inconsistencies in rhythm (apart from the weirdly-stressed ‘arrhyth’mia’ which was intentional) that I don’t notice; I swear they sound okay in the tune. Maybe I’ll chip the rust off my robot choir and demonstrate; people have been asking if I’ll ever release that, and I said I’d try to get it presentable over Easter weekend.

Poetry month has been pretty easy so far; to think I sometimes had trouble publishing a thing a week! So far, though, I’ve only been finishing off existing ideas; this should get more difficult pretty soon. Still, I think it is made easier by the fact that, knowing I have to write a poem a day, I’ve lowered the bar quite a bit. This means more bad ideas can get through, but the good ideas are often hanging onto their coat tails, so rejecting them too quickly is counterproductive. If the initial filter is too fine, it’ll just get blocked up, with all the good stuff behind it, and it becomes a writer’s block. Down with bars and filters and blocks and mixed metaphors! Now I’m imagining bad ideas as tea leaves, and I’m going to have some tea, because that’s what the deadline elves would tempt Douglas Adams to do.

Tomorrow is TableTop Day, so if you like playing non-video games, find an event near you and go play some. If you’re anywhere near CERN, I can recommend the CERN games club event, though I won’t be there this year. I’ll go to an event in Vienna, and I suppose I’ll end up writing a poem about games. If I can’t think of a better idea, there’s always potential for a ‘Monopoly’ parody of Worm Quartet’s ‘Monotony‘ song.

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  1. Things | Creative Output
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