Why Not? – Tessa Foley

Why Not?

Why not be your biro?
And be held between your dryish fingers
On a Tuesday, on the train
When you do your quickest thoughts
Over clues in black and white,
Be rattled on your teeth,
Sit on your diary, on your desk and
Wait for you to use me.

Why not be your fancy shirt?
And be fluttering against your chest expensively,
When you are feeling great at dinner till
You spill black, vein wine on my stitches,
And swipe at me but leave a mark,
Be thrown in to the dark, hanging
Till you’re too fat
To take me out.

Why not be your holiday?
The space that you lie down in,
Be the time that you exhale on windows
With pretty scenes beyond,
When everything goes fast and messy,
Be the place you laugh and sleep the most,
Or the place you wish you hadn’t come,
The plane you missed to Gatwick.

Why not be your wedding ring?
Slide up and off your hand
When it’s time to soap the bowls,
Call out in a cinema when the movie light
Bounces off you and your popcorn,
Be dumped off the bridge over the creek
And dwindle to the silt
When you can’t stand the sight of me.

Why not be your sorry?
The thing that appears when you are weak
And tired and when your skin is bad,
The thing you feel deep in your lap
But can’t quite put your lips to,
I’d make you a torch of embarrassment
And strap you to a lifetime,
Of looking like a fool.


Tessa Foley is a writer whose work has been featured in Agenda and the Fredericksburg Literary Art Review and been recognised in several competitions such as the Verve Poetry Competition and the Bristol Poetry Prize. Her debut poetry collection ‘Chalet Between Thick Ears’ was published and launched by Live Canon in November 2018 http://www.livecanon.co.uk/publications.

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