Margaret Alice Second

(24 January 1961 / South Africa)

Exercises [REVISED]


A young man with sparkling eyes gave me exercises
for my neck, doing it looks awful, forcing my head back
on my neck forming a double chin, looking just like that
famous picture of the murderess Daisy de Melker

Some colleagues laugh at me so I only exercise in the small
kitchenette waiting for the kettle to boil, counting in French
at the same time because numbers are troubling; when the
French CD in my car calls out quatre-vingt dix-huit

I have a small heart attack before realising it means ninety
eight; at home I try exercising while reading - since it was
doing that too often with back bent that caused the problem,
thus it means accomplishing many things at once

But it doesn’t help, every time I eat rusks or a slice of bread,
too often also, the allergic reaction stiffens neck muscles –
so I‘m back where I started, rigid neck when going to bed,
can’t rest my head, in the end I learn more French

Than fixing the muscles in my neck…

Submitted: Thursday, October 10, 2013
Edited: Friday, October 11, 2013
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