poem in which I wish I had children

the cracks in the ceiling
are getting longer
just as I’m getting used to them

these 24-hour sleeping pills
I’ve forgotten more
than I ever knew

like the boy on the bus said
you should have went on this side
because there’s a duck

then he laughed so perfectly
like I missed a nimbus
for every tumbler I’ve wasted

my explanations are convincing enough—
from slow-running planets
through to overly luminous teeth

but in truth, the flight deck’s burning
and I’ve always attended to my own
oxygen mask first

Ian Cartland


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