a poem for wives


YOU CAN’T KNOCK A MEASLY 40P OFF FOR ME?

he leans over the counter …

ME? A REGULAR PAYING CUSTOMER?

he reaches across it …

I PAY YOUR WAGE YOU KNOW,

he grabs my arm,

YOU UNGRATEFUL LITTLE …


this is someone’s husband.

this could be your husband.


oh, I’m sure

he’s a consistent enough provider.

always good with the kids.

never hit you. never even raised his voice to you.

and I bet he says all the right

left-wing platitudes when prompted


but this

is what he’s doing

when he says he’s

nipping the shop for a paper:

pushing around

minimum wage taxpayers

who can’t answer back.


does it shock you to learn

that your wonderful husband

has this volcano of frustration

hovering just under the surface

of his domesticated façade?


you, my dear

must be shit in bed.

or maybe he doesn’t like those kids you spawned with him.

it’s possible he’d be a psychopath if you hadn’t tamed him.

perhaps you just don’t have the penis he secretly craves.


my dear,

I know him

better than you do.

I see the real him

every day,

my dear, and it’s not pretty


and when he’s done demeaning me

I smile weakly,

apologise for no reason

and send him back to you


the volcano quashed

his delicate ego safely validated

that frustration vented


so he doesn’t take it out

on you or your kids.

you’re welcome, my dear.


and don’t be jealous

of this emotional affair

for believe me,

I can never give him

the discount he so desperately craves.

it eludes him

almost as much as

your penis does.


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