Ode to my laptop (away for repairs)
On most days
you sit there alone
soaking in the hot glare of the western sun,
the yellow on the walls
magnifying its intense warmth.
I have forgotten to draw the curtains.
I have forgotten to cover you
--with the yellow napkin that is your comforter.
I appear to have forgotten you.
I am stuck at my other desk,
trapped in correspondence mode without end
and in an endless waiting for this and that.
I sit there,
anticipating the next disturbance,
faced with long task lists,
stuck till someone else responds,
yet pottering to fill the time between now
and when I can finish them.
I do forget about you.
I forget to break away and read the articles I store in your memory.
I forget to sit with you and watch words flow from my fingers
on to your screen.
And when I remember, I chafe that I am stuck.
I cannot always return to you
the minute I remember.
Sometimes I am mid-task;
sometimes I am a prisoner of the schedule I made.
I forget about you
and that is to forget about me.
That I am more than a generator of email messages
and tweets, and drafts crafted to make people work.
That I want to work with words and images
and not just to arrange events or market programmes
but just because it gives me pleasure.
I forget you and it is as if I have forgotten pleasure.
Photoshopping flower-photos into cards.
Watching slide-shows of holidays past.
Writing blogposts no one will read.
And reading to learn and reflect and write,
in order to remember that once
I learnt to learn, and once I used to teach.
You belong mostly to my other life.
And when I forget you,
I forget that I owe it to myself
to keep that part of me alive.
But now you have been out for repair
a whole week
and I think,
if you were there, I would have written this,
I would have finished reading that,
and my morning labours with you
would have given meaning to my day.
With you, waiting on that desk,
I have the option of other lives.
As ever, when you are gone,
I promise I will never forget or neglect you again.
Never mind whether I will keep that promise.
Just come back today.
June 18, 2018