Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Beautiful Loser

You're a beautiful loser
in that red surfer t-shirt
and blue panel van
even the paint smears on your labourer forearms
and your possum-in-the-headlights stare
add wairua to your duckling grace

You cut off those dreadlocks
which you’d cultivated for years
and the other night you told me
as we stood in the club bar melee
maybe you’d been too hasty
I liked the image they gave you
kind of piratical, wild-man, free-man
but you’re still a beautiful loser
though you’ll need to wear a hat now
when the ozone hole stretches

Like the hole in your pocket
the cell phone bill makes
when your wife phones too often
just to talk about nothing
or, What’ll we have for dinner?
because she gets a bit lonely
only talking to your babies
and she’s really in love
with her beautiful loser

So you’re a small-town production
short hair, short expectations, short patience
with politics, religion, social engineers
you suspect the reds and the greens
much like your father in his time
he was a beautiful loser, too
and you don’t want to be like him
but seem to be anyway
with your construction job prospects
loan repayments and family ties

You say you’re overweight
try to resist bar-snack temptation
to me you look plump with good health
but you are how you feel
and we all bear a secret image
of disappointment close to our hearts
and I can say what I like
but you have to believe
that you’re a beautiful loser.


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