The Thirteen Ghosts

“To Let”, “To Let”, but they’d never let me go.

The haunted house is not really their home.

My dreams and nightmares are not really my own.

They’d never leave me, but hey, I’m never alone.

Small wonder I’m ever alone, small chance I’ll never feel grown.

Plenty of years to figure out I need people,

Plenty of time and people will never need me.

So I talk to the wraith. He knows without me he’s gone.

He sucks the life out of me but I’ve heard how cruel this planet can be.

And I’m too immature and way to corruptible, see?

Hell yeah, you only live once; nobody knows that like death.

But the elements insist I must live.

They say I must leave the company of myself and me.

Such ignorant elements, we’re way more than that.

I’ve got Joey though, and he’ll be wherever I go.

Even the Phantom of the Opera’s got nothing on him.

He’s mean to me with such style and finesse

that I can only hope to ape him at best.

And the rest is history, let’s say. And I apologise

to that one girl, especially. My manner could have been better.

You were my school and my test, and I failed miserably.

Now guess who’s here to comfort me.

Joey’s brother, Joey. Smartass Joey.

Imagine Hitler had a sense of humour, or Chris Rock a sense of evil?

Mull it around. That’s Joey’s brother, Joey.

He tells me what to say around people who don’t know me.

And the words pour out, and then the laughter rolls out,

The victim concedes but Joey will still knock his lights out.

And he listens only to one Joey with the weird ideas.

Ofttimes they roam the netherworld with an army of clowns

looking for people to murder or a village to pillage.

But there’s one who tells me to apologise, insists I try to love.

And what am I if I don’t listen to a white sheet with holes in it?

What’s to lose? Don’t threaten me with lonely, I’ve been it.

So this is me pretending to have a heart.

I hope you’re happy now, saint Joey the Compassionate.

This is where irony strikes.

You have plans and the plans have you by the neck.

And Joey the Pessimist paints a picture of my life.

I just shake my head at his terrible art.

If he must shatter my dreams, he’d best learn to hold a brush.

This is when I high-five Joey the Delusional.

There was a time when I was the second smartest kid I knew.

The smartest was Joey, Joey the genius.

Prepubescent me shouted, “Show me where he is!”

I couldn’t stand competition, plus I’d watched Jet Li’s ‘The One’.

I haven’t seen him since; him and my ability to be coherent.

Joey says he’s in the future, plotting to return and be ‘The One’.

So now I wander these lands with an empty space in my head.

Sometimes I’m the center of attention, courtesy of Joey the Significant.

Other times he’s too busy being self important and I’m left with Joey the Insignificant.

So I’m left begging Joey the invisible to help me disappear.

Then it’s me, my ghosts and an entire planet out to get us.

Well, they vanish when I need money, all except Joey the Broke.

Oh, and Vitruvius from the Lego Movie. “WOOOOOO…”

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How To Kill a Poet

Broken bones, heartbreaking poems,

And heartbroken poets trying to break bone.

They said things that almost broke my funny bone

But I yet smiled. Tragedies are a joke.

They painted the world dark red, and gave us tears to drink,

Stuffed rocks of salt down our throats and filled our IVs with ink,

Flipped the world upside down so New Zealand was old,

And preached such venom to grammar, she woke from her coma.

Bold or stupid.

And still they wrote, still they spoke, these new chiefs.

Shouted in the streets till the avenues would lose sleep,

Till the skyscrapers peered down from the blue sheets,

For this day, they’d see crowned the new king of loose leaf.

When the ink ran out, they filled their pens with blood,

And when the paper was filled they tore at the walls.

Oh what a colourful day for their sorrowful ways.

Yet still I felt joy. The end was at hand.

Then a low rumble was heard, and a bright light from the right

I said, stay humble my heart, and walked away to the left

And like flies to a lamp, they ran for the light

creepy headlightsIf only they weren’t about their rights, if only they had left.

My job there was done. Yet another for the shelves.

How to kill a poet, let them kill themselves.