For Ryan

Ryan, my friend.
You worked a summer
in a hotel restaurant.
You hated it but now
you never think of it at all.
You’re a charmer, a little bit cheeky.
A young boy once greeted by remarks
of: ‘one day you’ll be a heart-breaker’
But everyone’s broken a heart
or two before.

Now you have an office job,
All those years getting that degree,
Majoring in English, if you must know.
Coming home to that girlfriend,
Scared of committing to her,
A boy trapped in a man’s life.
A child expected
You’ll make a good dad
in your own way.

But actually I don’t
know you at all
We never met.
You’re a name on a table
in the restaurant I worked in.
A black marker documenting
a person who was
and all they could have been.
Unfortunately your eulogy
reads no more
of you than you are
“Ryan [who] takes it up the arse”

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