'You probably don't deserve a seat at my dinner table' / Molly Stephenson

'You probably don't deserve a seat at my dinner table' / Molly Stephenson

Slipping from crocodiles to serpents Molly Stephenson’s ‘You probably don’t deserve a seat at my dinner table’ employs a poetics of paradox. Fabric is “loose[ly]” yet, “delicately woven”, “drugs” are taken directly after a cup of “English breakfast”. The jagged howls of “foul insecurity” that scratch and carve lines into Stephenson’s (literal!) "tableu" are constantly glazed over by the numbing “stench” that pervades her poetic ambience. As the imaginary conflates with reality, Stephenson’s words become blurred.  The reader can only momentarily glance through the fog to see  the image of “you”, before the (seemingly?) self- inflicted impairment plunges them back again into a landscape of hypersensitivity. The ambiguity lingers,  is Stephenson addressing “you” directly?  Do we impair ourselves? Or are we camouflaged, casually eating Stephenson’s birthday cake without even a second thought. 

 

 

You probably don’t deserve a seat at my dinner table

 

 

2pm

Rough, sketchy emails of alliterations

And dry drafts

Paragraphs returned

7am.-

 

You probably didn’t deserve a seat at my dinner table.

 

Dirty, greasy and mousey,

Wankery kimchi! And

Strange chronological vinyls, and

Greasy! Oh you

Greasy, scrawny, slimy crocodile.

 

Did you give yourself those jewels? Or

Did you rip them off your pray with your rotten tusks

Once you were finished with

Your meal.

 

You probably didn’t deserve a seat at my dinner table.

 

Those crafts , oh you soared them right

My dear,

Right into the thick, infested mud you

Fool.

Ratty, sprinkled, 

What a pathetic attempt at growing

a credible moustache.

 

The night seemed new, keyword-

*seemed

Beaming, baby yellow and gentle,

Drugs and English breakfast, 

Delicious 

Smooth melting spheres,

 

But

,

 

Still 

Pathetic ,

With a stale stench of foul insecurity,

Desperation, you were so hungry

for dinner?

 

You probably didn’t deserve a seat at my dinner table.

 

Still

I do think of you 

Aching, sort of

Your delicate letters and numbing sounds 

Authentic, and warm,

so warm

 

Sucking helium left me besotted,

Blurred, not exactly warm and fuzzy

I must say, more forcing impairment upon myself,

I suppose,

Shaggy, easy, welcome,

Cool silk strings

Loosened

That’s foul! Reminds me of

Church

The sweet smell of aniseed

stick figures,

two sides, 

mesmorising, convenient,

 

Oh! And please, my dear,

Let’s not forget -

 

You had a slice of my homemade chocolate cake –

(it was my birthday by the way)

 

But

,

 

You only just remembered 

You only like chocolate cake when its given

to you

 

You probably didn’t deserve a seat at my dinner table/

 

Did you

 

Your embrace was sincere, warm

gentle mouth,

your rain delicately tapping on my skin,

the sound of horses

Once, twice,

What do you want?

Camoflaugued , 

Scheming, slimy serpent,

Hit the ball! Do you see what you’re getting?

Yourself ? Into?

 

 

 

 

 

I no longer yearn

Clear, quiet 

The smell of crushed garlic

and ted waiting for me in the kitchen

No dependency, 

Reliance.

Gates are open without a pin,

W\without destruction.

 

Heat radiates through

 

I am reminded of purity – please sit and eat with

me.

 

No fabric is worn down, 

Loosely, too delicately woven, 

 

You remind me, of

Who I 

Am.

 

You deserve a seat at my dinner table.

 

-

Don’t ya.

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