Saturday, 16 June 2012

By much too much

This one was written in 2005, I think for the Pier Pressure competition (now in abeyance). It was published in Streetwise 65, Christmas 2006, p. 17.


Bought in accordance with chocolate protocol
(bought on a day when a target's been met),
bought at my turn to buy eats for the meeting and
bought for the lunch that I haven't had yet,

bought in a shortage of metal and paper so
bought using plastic with four digits keyed,
bought two together (the credit card minimum
makes an excuse if you tax me with greed) --

CHOCOLATE FUDGE! And before I start minuting
matters arising and library plan,
heartened because others say they don't want any,
I get as much of it down as I can.

Chocolate fudge! and my biro is stickier
minuting, eating is not quite complete --
put to one side as the meeting is weightier,
nibbled more rarely for surfeit of sweet.

Chocolate fudge. Choc fudge. See, my line grows more slow;
I'd write what's left all spondees if I could
fit contractual obligation into any metre.
It is a sad decline for such a food.

The chocolate protocol referred to is a set of rules I have. I allow myself to buy chocolate, for consumption at a time to be determined by the diet, on calendar days when I have achieved one or more of a set of targets. At the moment I don't seem to be meeting any of them, so the protocol must be said to have been emptied of its power. Clare generously supplies me with chocolate not purchased by me -- a consequence not a cause of that loss.