Safe Word, by Billy O Hanluain

We were quite a pair once, Monday and me.
We’d make Taylor and Burton blush with our rows in bed.
Oh she was a disciplinarian,
a full on contrarian!
She’d prod me out of the
warm folds of the weekend
with her shrill alarm call.
She’d turn to me under the covers
wearing only a negligee of
over crowded buses and
a garter belt of red traffic lights
that always made me arrive
Late. Around her neck a pearled
string of duties and plans to bend
my crooked lines straight.
She had me shower in the dark
throughout the winter but eased up on
her routine in summertime when she’d arrive too
soon with the dawn chorus, a melodious entincement
to obedience.
She has left me alone for weeks
now but oh how I
cursed her admonishments to
“Never tire of beginning again”
She’d spit back at me with ferocious
impatience “Get Up!”
Oh we played rough Monday and me.
Our safe word was “Tuesday”
Whispered once a week in
the trembling midnight hour.

Billy O Hanluain works as an English teacher in Dublin

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