Ankles: A poem

MOATA TAMAIRA
Last updated 12:31 14/11/2013

The Poet Chatterton - Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tamaki
The Poet Chatterton - Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tāmaki
I've got to be honest. Though I love words I've never been much of a one for poetry. As a child Pam Ayres appealed quite a bit, as did "The Night Before Christmas" but in adulthood, with a couple of notable exceptions*, I have avoided poetry whenever possible. Unless it's put to music and has a bit of a beat behind it because, somehow that makes everything okay.

I mean, what the hell was Bohemian Rhapsody on about? I don't know and I'm sure if it were a poem I'd have gladly passed it by with nary a "no, I won't do the fandango, thanks very much". But chuck a bit of guitar in it and it's a headbanging good time, suddenly.

Which is just my way of saying that I'm aware that my "stance" (if you could call it that) on poetry is pretty much based on nothing but my own laziness. Frankly, poems have a tendency to make you work a bit harder. Get my nuance, they seem to say. My meaning may not be clear... or maybe there just isn't any, I'll never tell.

But sometimes prose just doesn't cut it and so this morning I found myself actually writing a poem. I feel like this is something I should apologise for, but in typical fashion it is very much a straightforward sort of a thing, and probably won't have you questioning the nature of existence or free will. Maybe I'll cover that tomorrow.

Ankles: A poem

I only have ankles in the morning

By "the pm" they have disappeared from view

But where do they go? I'd really like to know

For without them what's a girl with legs to do?

I only have ankles in the morning

By lunchtime they're replaced with marshmallow

Don't want to be rude, but they belong on that Staypuft dude

Soft and ill-defined and wobbling as I go

I only have ankles in the morning

In the afternoon they turn into reservoires

For the water I retain, doesn't want to drain

And congregates just below my calves

I only have ankles in the morning

They are shapely and comparatively thin

But after some time on my feet, they're chubby bits of meat

Sometimes I'm even flabby in my shins

I only have ankles in the morning

I say "hello" with fondness for I know

by the middle of the day, they'll have gone away

and I will not see them again till tomorrow.

---

How do you feel about poetry, generally (not about the above, which obviously is not very good - I mean the proper stuff)?

Do you have any suggestions for a poetry non-ethusiast?

*The exceptions being a bit of Pablo Neruda and some slurpy, salty Hone Tuwhare, but even so, only the short ones.

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