That Damned Couch.

Your couch never felt so comforting, I thought
While you were mumbling something
About the perfect Way of scrambling
Some nice fluffy eggs, and I was stretching over
The arm of your sofa, the one
With the manly musky odour that borders
On unbearable, but I bear it because I care for you.

So I reached over the drool and fiddled
With the litter of your torn-open disposable cameras,
Trying to summon a flash that finally finds me:
It blinds me and sends me back

To when I crawled up to your doorstep fresh
Off the plane, impossibly ashamed with a boiled egg
Just about the size of my brain, listening
To Julia Jacklin’s ‘Comfort’ in a not-fully-captioned crisis.
But I knew you would never make me dwell upon my vices
Or atone for all my sins – you waited at the doorstep,
Promptly welcomed me in.

There was Callum in his corner and that old furry caterpillar
Couch of course, summoning its well-worn vagabond inhabitant.
I asked you if you thought I should shave off this newfound
Entanglement, but you just smiled and told me that:

“A naked chin is like a half-formed grin:
Awkward and hesitant,”

Or maybe you didn’t,
But that’s what I felt in your yeah-nah-yeah she’ll-be-right
Affectation – the cement that soothes all abrasions.

For at the core of what we are, beyond aesthetic differences
And all the fermentation, we’re not far
From the jars you hide on the bottom shelves of the basement,
Each sour note requires patience, and each new anaerobic arrival
A celebration.

So thank you. Thank you for lending
A rope down the well, for taking me dancing
Or diving into that salty brew when you didn’t need to.

You’ve always made me smile despite yourself,
Despite your own hurting.
But please know you never have to do that alone:
I love you like a brother and on your couch I’m home.

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