9 to 5 Poetry Project, Poem 16: 5 to 7

Yesterday was Saturday, which in non-retail world usually means a day off. For me, though, it meant a veeeeery boring day at work because we managed to get everything unloaded from the truck on Friday.

Anyway, afterwards I was slightly irresponsible and went out to dinner instead of writing my blog post, and after three (very strong) margaritas, I wasn’t quite in a poetry writing state. I know Hemingway said “write drunk, edit sober,” but I guess I just don’t have his high tolerance for alcohol.

Regardless, yesterday’s poem is coming to you a little late–but better late than never, right?

5 to 7

“Happy hour” doesn’t seem like much
After a six hour shift of doing nothing.
50 cents off a mixed drink, $1 off beer.
I curse my distaste for liquor,
But since mom and dad have got a tab,
I order a margarita—wanted it frozen,
But “We don’t have a blender.”

I guess I can relate—
After shoveling out for kitchen gadgets,
Plates and bowls and knives,
Not much is left over for the finer things.
Three slices of citrus, skewered, balance
Over the alcoholic cocktail,
The way I always have to watch
Motor control after a drink, or two—
Or, in this isolated incident, three.

I never like the way it feels,
Once the room starts twirling,
My brain makes associations,
Clumsy ones like “I’m on a boat”
And irrational ones, back to childhood
Watching “Beyblades” spin violently,
A top dance to the death.

Read an article this morning that drinking
Doesn’t help you sleep.
But in spite of science, I hit the bed
And sleep through the night for once.

Note: This poem, as the title suggests, is about what people so often do once their 9 to 5 is over–go to happy hour and drink too much to combat the stress of their jobs and making ends meet.


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