6 Jul 2011

The wrong time

The big man came in
Not slow but still looking as though formed of concrete
They were both champs and the smaller one
Started to duck and weave

The first was usually a measuring game
Feel the other out
Time it right
Then come out swinging from the 2nd onwards
Unless we’re talking about Hagler/Hearns
Those two fought the first like it was the fifteenth

Arms were up
A few jabs tapped
Side to side
On the back foot
This went on

Both neutral
The odd flurry
Frequent slips
Stoppages and

This went on
Until it became clear nothing was going to happen
And though frustrated at the lack of contact
Cheated almost
I felt good at least I hadn’t paid to watch the thing live

Our champ swung the overhead right
Time and again
Like the uppercut had never been invented
I kept thinking of Iron Mike and how he’d work his way inside
From the bell
To the end of the story

Their champ just stood
Grappled and raised his eyebrows
As though waiting for a bus that was never

I knew the feeling
It was the start of the week
I was sick with a cold
Sick with hatred for the world
Sick with self confidence

I practiced my breathing
Managed 45 sit-ups
Distracting at least my body for a time
If not my mind
I made vows I knew I’d break before sunset
Lies I tell myself

To help me fall asleep each night
I thought about writing and then thought
And realised I never – hardly
Write at home anymore
Alone or outside
In the old dark corners of coffeeshops
My refuge all those years ago

It’s always at the job now, I thought
Trying to hide it
Disguise the real work as theirs
Stopping and starting
It’s not the right time to do it – I thought

But there you go
Let’s go
Carry on
Come on
Arms are up
A few jabs tapped
Side to side
On the back foot
This goes on

Bar the odd flurry
Frequent slips
Stoppages and

This goes on
Until it becomes clear nothing is ever going to