Monday, 24 June 2019 10:27

£77 per hour

Written by
in Poetry
£77 per hour

£77 per hour

by Becky Bone

nine thousand two hundred and fifty
pounds per year (1 year = 20 weeks)

four hundred and sixty two pounds and fifty pence per week
divided by
6 hours contact time per week

£77 per hour

I was pretty good at maths natural like got a C at GCSE without trying no revision
Zoom you chased the day away
remember we sang in maths us The Band
me drums her vocals she lead guitar remember Kurt commits suicide
singing that song from the seventies miming instruments with our bodies Michael looks different
you both wrote don’t forget the band in my leaving book
that rests between other memorabilia in a decorative Ikea make it yourself cardboard box
on top of my wardrobe
I haven’t forgotten

C grade was well good in my school
I got a C in english
journaling for ten minutes of each hour I don’t wanna wait for our lives to be over
mine filled with lists
lists of stuff I wanted
TLC cd Levi 501s United Colors of Benetton bag Michael’s face keeps changing
lists of friends I needed if you like a lot of chocolate on your biscuit join our
lists of boys I loved or said I loved roaming incognito across the boy-obsessed playing field
The president of America admits affair with his intern
there are
drawings of a yin-yang symbol a Pepsi can various types of shoes Forever Friends bears
a fat spliff accompanied with the slogan ‘Soaked With Dope’
Four Weddings star arrested in car with Sunset Strip prostitute
there are
before and after make-over drawings of character creations like Vanessa Wilks from Manchester and a woman with big head small body OJ Not Guilty
there’s an unhealthy obsession with East 17 Alright alright everything’s gonna be alright
and stickers from Smash Hits Magazine of
Jim Carrey Jarvis Cocker PJ and Duncan Dieter Brummer R Kelly
A princess dies following a chase by paparazzi through a Paris tunnel
there’s plagiarism
(I innocently copied a Purple Ronnie poem from a greetings card to which my teacher wrote
Did you make this up? Merit if you did) I got a merit Girl Power
there’s boredom
Well I am sitting here bored and not knowing what to write. Oh yeah. I want a pair of shoes. I love shoes.
there’s drama
Last night me Sarah and Katie went to find Jason. He was saying things about Katie but it was a lie.
there’s suspense
Tonight me and Sarah are going with Sofie to see Robert W. He wants to see Sofie but we don’t know why.
there’s joy
I’m quite happy at the moment as I’ve got some new shoes.
there’s this
I feel really weird at the moment as if I’m really angry or something. I feel like screaming really loud but I don’t know why. Something’s really bugging me! Oh well!!!!

I got a C in all my subjects Education, Education, Education
except french if the teacher pops a test I know I’m in a mess
I sat next to that girl who fancied Grant from Eastenders
we all cussed her for it
coz we all fancied Joe Wicks who covered his room in tin foil and newspaper clippings
Allo Tony I think we might use a video replay here
a man gets slapped in the face by a fat man painted orange
I got an E
but who needs a second language anyway football doesn’t come home
and when I’m older I ain’t gonna go on holiday to france

art was my thing
I got a C
everyone’s given a thing but the thing is there’s probably more than one thing
Michael settles child abuse case out of court by paying millions to the alleged victim’s family
that defines everyone but once people know what your thing is you sort of get labelled
pigeonholed and believe that’s the only thing
Mr Soft won’t you tell me why the world in which you’re living is so strange
there was a documentary on about school in the nineties
Michael performs Earth Song at The Brits but Jarvis Cocker appears bends over mimes a fart lifts his top up and is chased off stage
some kids attended nineties style art lessons
all they did was draw still lifes and that’s exactly what we did
no ideas no concepts
but I learnt how to draw a very life like bowl of fruit with a violin propped up against a
fabric draped mannequin torso and in the same year
Tracey Emin made her bed
I made a ceramic Doc Martin
but I never went back to collect it when I left

If I was studying maths, I’d have access to various software packages like Maple and Matlab.
If I was studying biomedicine, I’d have access to state-of-the-art facilities.
If I was studying computing, I’d have access to air-conditioned computing laboratories.

£77 per hour
I have access to the library
I bought my own notepad and pen

years spent thinking you missed out on something have you dreamed of writing that novel
do something about it learn the tools
is this it build your craft
at least you’re thinking find your voice
telling yourself unlock the writer within
mind opening
£77 per hour
value for money?
£77 per hour
space to think?
paid £1.50 for an hours bus journey and thought the whole time

if I’d a gone uni age 18 in the year 2000 won’t it be strange when we’re all fully grown
the maximum I’d a paid woulda been 3000
1000 per year millennium bug disaster warning
if my parent’s means were tested I’d a paid nothing student debt to hit £57,000 for the poorest
but who knows what’s best or what to do at
18 25 32 37 50 61 it’s you it’s me it could be you
we do what we do at the time in the moment just because
we make a change because something has to change or we go stale like a sliced loaf
fed to the ducks
but that’s not allowed anymore because ducks are wheat intolerant

expectations are bastards
to compare levels of distress and illness among students in UK alarmingly high
the thing you’re expecting to
but what would you expect for
£77 per hour

books included
theatre tickets
regular meetings with your personal tutor (you forget their name)
canapes for fifteen
I don’t know
a summer term
a plumber
exceptional teaching whatever that is (remember it’s £77 per hour per person)
average possibly good cocaine
a guaranteed book deal
clean toilets
a therapist
you’re not sure
a guaranteed well paid job at the end
printing and photocopying included
a really good fuck
being fucked over

Read 4444 times Last modified on Monday, 24 June 2019 13:51
Becky Bone

Becky Bone is a mature student, studying a Creative Writing and English BA at Birkbeck University. She works part-time with children as a creative arts facilitator.