Shelling Peas

by Simon Maddrell

Shelling peas, the English professor
      (might have) said,

       is repetitive, but very easy

              but the literal act
                    is not a metaphor.

I must stop stealing acorns
      from a blind pig, my tapas
      just doesn’t taste as good.

The metaphysical detective
      (might have) said,

       Have you ever tried to get fish into a barrel?

              She wonders how many shots
                    it takes to make it empty.

              Did you ever take candy from a baby?

              She wonders whether
                    their eyes were shut
                    and ears unplugged.

The philosophical lumberjack
      (might have) said,

        Have you ever fallen off a log?

              Wondering what really
                    is the point?

The Trini mama knows
      that shelling peas is
      the answer to everything,
      especially the boiling
      affairs of love


              the pain of being unknown
                    when he doesn’t know
              the pain of do not care
                    even when he does
              dumped from one to the other
                    frozen over everywhen.

Shelling peas, the English professor
      (might have) added,

       is especially easy or intuitive 

              as if they are the same thing.

My African mother says
      I’m an expert, though
      I only found that out by
      sitting, watching & listening.

The psychic cook
      (might have) said,

       It isn’t sacrificing boredom
       using tinned peas.

              She predicted that making
                    pie was not so easy
                    without dried peas.

What I know 
      is that rituals of connection
      are lost with frozen peas.


[Simon Maddrell was born in Douglas, Isle of Man in 1965 and brought up in Bolton, Lancashire. He has lived in London, UK since 1999. Driven by his Queer Manx identity, Simon seeks to discover truths using words that move, scuba diving and cycling.]