Good day, mate?

You don't know me but I hope you're getting something from this blog. I've written a poem that, somewhat embarrassingly, was inspired by a plot on that popular Australian sitcom, Neighbours. (This is why it is important that we should never meet - this sort of inspiration is no short of shaming.)

Yes, it's the gay story line. Now, I would never advocate watching this fairly ropey emulation of life, with its all-too-evident living-room walls made from flats and frankly terrible studio lighting - not to mention the wooden acting and that farce which is the script. But i have actually been moved by Neighbours. I am officially embarrassed. The plot with a high school kid called Chris, devoid of the regular camp stereotype, coming to terms with his sexuality is one of their better and more socially relevant issues. On such a conservative soap it can only be a step in the right direction. And, I grudgingly admit, that their (or rather, the actor's) portrayal of Chris' anxieties actually persuaded me to feel something. This, I think we can all agree, is nothing short of remarkable for a show based around such usual dramas as where's my missing parakeet? or shall we get married in a garage? It's not quite Eastenders, do you know what I mean?

For a few moments that horrid, stinging sensation of fear and shame welled up in me as it had done years ago. I had completely forgotten that homosexulity was even a problem any more. I forgot that at one point everything related back to that; everything you said or did was significant. Or worse, would belie your true and shameful nature. If anyone's reading this who feels like that, don't worry, it does get better. Just the fact that I haven't felt like that for years should be testament to this.

So yes, I am embarrassed that something so shoddy can make you feel something so deep, gut-wrenchingly profound. But anyone who has been in love and welled up at the sight of their ex lover's T-shirt on the rails in H & M will understand, I'm sure. This is something that justifies embarrassment, being who you are, does not.


There’s a lump in my throat
My mind keeps drifting back
To when I was fourteen
And all these things still mattered
Soft and hidden
Like the text book that I hid behind
Or the songs that I tried not to like
That walk I forced out
And tried to avoid
But worse
The sordid, inner verse
The unrelenting dialogue of shame
A series of sorry images you just wish would go away
‘I’m not,’ I’d say at night in bed, ‘I’m not.’
But that didn’t change my life’s internal thread
I see it
Sometimes in others, younger
Older sometimes than fourteen
Twenty-three perhaps?
But they’re not out yet
They’re not really getting seen
My eyes go red
And sting for them
It’s not fair for them, I know
It isn’t fair for anyone
This, I guess, I know


izidrag said...

I like this one alot Hen.

Henry Fry said...

Cheers mate! You've got Ramsey Street to thank for it!