Coulda said that he wore the same clothes seven grey weekdays in a row,

the 80s polar fleece, pilled, no elbows, flogged from the dollar box outside the Salvo’s.

Coulda notified that his penchant for uppercuts kept trippin him up,

that he gave his high school principal a new setta dentals

Coulda said he laid tarmac with a chaingang every Friday

for his PD. Didn’t even know what them two letters stood for, just something the judge said he had to do with the crust of the dregs.

Coulda mentioned he’s on perpetual detention,

That every clown who can speak English good’s gotta be a teacher out to get him,

so he throws out right hooks like confetti

to keep the future outta his face.


And he coulda warned us of his stiff driftwood limbs,

His cliff chin, bleached afro

his boxer’s posture stiff as a statue.

The police scanner in the hatchback rego’d to his nana

its chipped bonnet the raw snout of angry Staffy cross.

He just come on the course for some free gumboots, Red Bands, the good ones

and a cuppa tea and to bum a rollie

coz dole day’s always light years away, it’s the light on overcast Thursdays.


Coulda said it all when he enrolled.

Instead we let him write himself off,

watched a bad day’s dad-dissed stiff bitten fingertips chrysalis into a fist,

emerge as a kinghit, sugary instant coffee spilled and a narc knocked on its back,

called 111, filed Form 8(a), ticked the right box, got it stamped, signed, and filed

and on the same form applied for Post-It notes and white-out

and had him in the outbox by knock-off.