While Commuting By Car

The wheel of commuting, with death sniggering in the middle
Routine kills.
Routine drills a large hole
Through your better intentions,
Builds a ring road round
Your brain, shunts your
Schedule into the slow
Lane, snaps your wiper
Blades, splinters your
Mirrors and submerges
Your resentment in
Hallucinogenic rain.

You should complain.

But routine binds you,
Entwines your entrails
In self-serving detail,
Smothers your agony
In weak tea, cackles
At the dregs dripping
From your arse and
Exiles you, limp and
Mumbling to the
Nearest commuter

You seek refuge in
Dates and times,
Celebrate landmarks,
Hire a room and nuzzle
At your approved trophies,
Wash away your whimpering
With canap├ęs and wine swill.
Routinely you forget that
Routine kills you.

At first it merely aggravates.
But when you see no end
The anger finally takes you
And you scream daily at
The world and youth,
Proclaiming that your
Parched and broken face
Is their fate too.

But there's not a single soul
That even wonders if your
Words are false or true.

Only your own blistered
Ears are listening.

Routine kills.
We punctuate our lives
With the occasional thrill,
But forever there he stands,
Timetable in hand,
Sniggering as he
Turns the wheel.

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Poem Study Notes:

This poem was written in around 2002, after a bad day in the office and lengthy delays on the M4.

This was definitely written as catharsis. Before writing this poem the poet was considering abandoning his day job (not the poetry, but the office job which actually earns him money), but after writing this poem he managed to put up with another 12 years before finally leaving and swapping his commute by car for a commute by train ...

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