Entertainment by Mr If 

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Published by Philistine Press

Artwork by engelvleugels

© Mr If, 2010

This book contains adult content.  


Iím like Jesus   
Good clean fun   
Iím not gay  
To my love (I think) 
Not on Facebook, not on Twitter   
Iím no Casanova    
I am not a bad person  
My poems   
Someone like me 
A revelation      
Iím a hypocrite 
Iím a bad poet   
Not sure     
A tragedy of epic proportions 
The one   
Honesty is the new bullshit    
Me and the rest of society 
No fucker understands   
Fuck is not my favourite word   
Patriarchy in the UK 
The book of dreams    
It turns out    
Nothing on me   
The joys of not having a phone  
A note to my readers  



I donít want people to think Iím miserable,

Just because Iím miserable.

I donít want people to say, stop complaining,

There are people starving and living on the streets,

While youíre sitting on your couch,

Eating your beans on toast

Like youíre the Earl of fucking Wessex. 

I want people to say, this fuckerís got a point.

Letís not discriminate.

He has as much right to be unhappy

As anyone else.  

Iím like Jesus

Iím like Jesus,

I love everyone in the world equally,

And Christ, I wish I didnít.

Itís like an affliction,

This all-consuming love for other people.

I think it might kill me. 


Iím like Jesus,

I love my enemies.

What an idiot. 

Iíll never tell anyone this,

But anyone,

Anyone could use me as a doormat,

Any time.

Iíd still love them at the end of it. 


Iím like Jesus,

Iíd love to be consumed with fear and hatred,

But I havenít got the willpower. 

I see people walking down the street,

All ages, colours, creeds, abilities,

I love them all, 

Even the ones I know in my heart of hearts

Are probably total fuckwits. 


Iím like Jesus. 

Crucify me, for fuckís sake. 

Crucify me now.  

Good clean fun

She was a mother of three.  Her husband was at work and her kids were downstairs.  It was like a scene from Confessions of a Window Cleaner. 

She instructed her brood, ďStay in the living room while I take this man up to the bathroom and show him my pipes.Ē 

She had one of those Carry On laughs Ė somehow both repressed and liberated.  It made me wonder if our culture would ever move away from treating women like objects. 

She stood with her back to me, leaning against the wall, her face buried in the towel rail, her skirt hitched up to her waist. 

When we were done, she giggled like a naughty schoolchild and said, ďI canít believe I just showed you my bottom.Ē 

I kissed her, clutching onto her hands. Sheíd made my day, and Iíd made hers.

That afternoon in the bathroom, we were just two people having a good old-fashioned laugh, knowing in our hearts we had not done anything wrong. 


I did it doggy style with my friend Tonyís pregnant wife, Fiona.  I ran my fingers over her spherical belly and felt their kid kick.  We had to stop halfway through so she could go to the bathroom.  I sat her down and held her hand while she went for a shit.  It was the most beautiful thing I had ever seen, like watching a butterfly flap its wings. For a brief moment, I wished Iíd been that babyís father, but I knew I wasnít. 

Iím not gay 

ďIím not gay,Ē he said, which was funny, because Iíd just sucked his cock while he watched Match of The Day.

The football was his cover story. His wife went out with the girls on a Saturday night while he stayed in watching the football.  So we had to have the football on, because he liked the football, and because he knew his wife would ask him about it later, because she loved him and liked to take an interest in his leisure activities. 

ďIím not gay, either,Ē I said.  ďI only have sex with straight men.  Funny, isnít it?  Two guys, naked in bed, and neither of them are gay.Ē

ďTwo guys watching the football,Ē he said. 

ďI donít like football,Ē I said.  ďI canít fucking stand it.Ē 

ďDo you fancy a beer?Ē he said.

ďI donít drink,Ē I said. 

I rested my head on his chest and held him close while Chelsea scored.

He didnít say, but I could tell he was pleased we didnít have much in common. 



To my love (I think)

If I had the money,

If I had the strength,

If I had the organisational skills,

And if you actually wanted me to,

I would take you away from all these people

Who just want a piece of you,

And who donít appreciate you for who you really are. 


If I had the time,

If I had all those things people say you need to be committed to another person,

If I could be sure that I loved you,

And if you actually cared about me,

I would take you away from everything. 

I would take you away from your husband and your children. 

You would never see them again, and you would be happy. 

Youíd find it difficult at first, but eventually youíd realise,

You donít need them.  All you need is me. 

If I was enough for you, that is. 


If there werenít all these self help gurus

Telling you to say goodbye to Mr If,

Say hello to Mr You (or whatever it is they say),

If I could somehow come up with a convincing argument against them,

In favour of embracing uncertainty and disillusionment,

Instead of pretending it isnít there,

If I could be sure of who I am, or who you are, or who anyone is,

If I could sure that itís you I would like to rescue,

And not one of the millions of other trapped souls,

Who I may love more than you,

And who may love me more than you do,

If I could be sure that I love you at all,

Or if you love me,

Then what? 

Then what? 

Then what? 




Still still worrying,

Worrying about everything,

People are out to kill me, 

And put me out of my misery.


I donít want to die,

I want to keep on worrying,

Batting worst case scenarios back and forth,

Until the world ends, eventually.   


Still still Iím worrying,

Worrying about everything.

Iím too busy to worry about the planet,

Or the economy, or wars,

Or majority world dept,

Iím too busy worrying about losing my teeth,

Or being attacked in the street. 

Too busy worrying about people finding out

About all the horrible things Iíve done. 

I worry about people finding out who I really am. 


But mainly Iím just worrying,

Worrying about nothing,

Nothing at all, except that bad things are going to happen, 

I donít know what they are,

But if I worry enough,

If I worry about them enough,

If I worry and worry and worry about them enough,

Perhaps Iíll be properly prepared to deal with them, one day.



Not on Facebook, not on Twitter

Not on Facebook,

Not on Twitter,

Havenít got a computer,

Havenít got a phone,

Thatís not what I do for entertainment. 


Donít go to pubs,

Donít go to clubs,

Donít go to restaurants,

Donít go the cinema,

Or the theatre,

Or to gigs.

Perhaps in another life, I would like to do these things,

But thatís not what I do for entertainment. 


Not on Facebook,

Not on Twitter,

Sometimes I send emails from the library,

But rarely check for replies.


Donít read books,

Donít read newspapers,

Donít read magazines,

I try to stay away from TV as much as possible. 


I listen to music,

It soothes me. 

Music helps to pass the time,

Itís always around, in the background, like distant voices,  

But thatís not what I do for entertainment. 


Not on Facebook,

Not on Twitter,

I donít download pornography,

Or watch videos of people being tortured and killed,

Like some people do. 


Donít drink alcohol,

Donít take drugs,

Donít binge on burgers,

Donít go to the gym,

Donít play or watch sports,

Donít go to church,

Donít go to any classes,

I try to learn as little as possible in life. 


Not on Facebook,

Not on Twitter,

I write poems in a dusty old notebook,

Like the screaming Luddite that I am,

And I donít care if no one ever reads them. 

I write them for my own entertainment,

Not for yours, fucker. 


Iím no Casanova

I'm no Casanova.

I know I like to write about

Sleeping with other peopleís wives and husbands,

But there arenít that many of them,

And anyway, accumulating notches on a bedpost

Isnít the point. 


Iím no Casanova. 

Iím five foot four.

I have an average-sized cock,

And no real stamina. 

I feel awkward naked. 

Iím too skinny, and have misshapen nipples. 

Theyíre like a pair of melted starfish

On a deserted beach. 


I suspect that Iíve chosen

To have sex with other peopleís wives and husbands

Because they find it thrilling doing something dangerous. 

If there was no cheating involved,

No rules to break, no forbidden lust,

There would just be me,

And that wouldnít be enough. 


Iím no Casanova. 

Iím not horny enough. 

Half the time Iím not in the mood.

Iíd prefer to sit on my own in bed with the curtain drawn,

With my Looney Tunes box set,

Wishing I was a child again.   


I am not a bad person

I have fantasised about being the last man alive, and having every single woman in the world waiting patiently outside my door.  Iíll come out each morning, and pick five or six of the best-looking ones to impregnate, in a variety of inventive positions.  In the evenings Iíll go out and pick the ones I think look like nice people, and Iíll take them inside just for food and conversation. 

I have fantasised about gathering together all the people with hateful views; people who hate other people for no reason; people who kill, torture and rape; people who want to bring back the death penalty.  Iíll line them all up against the wall and machine-gun the fuckers.   

These are just idle thoughts, created for my own entertainment.  I refuse to believe that I am a bad person, and I make no apology. 


I have problems with work, 

Like some people have problems with drinking,

Like some people have problems with sexual partners,

Like some people have problems with depression. 

Iíve quit every job Iíve ever had,

And Iím not sorry.


I have problems with work because Iím lazy. 

Iím hated.  I am the enemy.

I just donít see the point of working.

It never seems like anything is being achieved. 

Weíre just shuffling money from one account to another,

Like mental patients weaving baskets from the ones weíve just unravelled.


If I could be bothered,

I might campaign to get laziness classified as a disability,

If only to piss off the Daily Express readership.

But itís not laziness, really,

Itís something else.

I donít know what it is. 


You probably think this is a joke,

But I went to university. 

I studied poetry and history,

And I loved it. 

I really applied myself. 

It felt like I was doing something worthwhile,

Working towards a future of some kind.

It was nothing like working in a job,

Where thereís no end to it,

You just carry on working for its own sake,

Until you die, retire or quit. 


People say I should train to do something fulfilling,

Something that makes a difference to peopleís lives,

But I donít want to. 

Iíd mess it up. 

Iím not reliable or sensible enough. 

Iím smart Ė too smart, maybe. 

I couldnít be a teacher. 

I wouldnít be able to resist the temptation to inform my students

At every available opportunity,

Education never got me anywhere,

Except a series of dead end jobs,

And a series of dead end dole queues. 


My poems 

Iíve tried to write sonnets. 

Iím no stranger to iambic pentameter,

But it takes too long to cram all those syllables in, 

And the end results arenít very good. 

My best poems are the ones I make up on the spot,

Like this one. 

This took me roughly the same amount of time to write

As itís taking you to read. 

You might think itís flimsy, and a load of bollocks,

But itís the best I can do,

And I think itís quite good,

So fuck you. 

Someone like me 

I'm not the object of anyone's affection,

Iím not the subject of anyoneís fantasies. 

You can fantasise all you like,

Youíll always end up with someone like me. 


Iím not the object of anyoneís desires,

Or the man of anyoneís dreams,

Not even my own. 

I fantasise about being someone else,

With a superior body,

A superior mind,

A superior moral code,

Or at least the necessary charm it takes

To create the impression of these qualities,

So I can fuck whoever I like,

Instead of taking advantage of people

When they are most vulnerable.    



Most of my friends don't live for pleasure,

Which makes them sound like saints, somehow.

They work and work, and rip their hair out. 

Why do they do it? 

What's in it for them? 

What's in it for other people? 


My friends don't live for pleasure,

They live for spending money. 

For houses, cars, clothes, TVs. 

They work for twenty-five days holiday a year.

They work so they can fly off to the Seychelles

For one week out of fifty two,

And stress the rest of the time.   



They would shudder at the thought of living for the moment,

Or for enjoying themselves.

Somehow such a lifestyle would be beneath them,

Like that's the sort of thing children do. 


They would never admit this,

But they are no better than me,

Somewhere inside, they must know,

They are no less selfish than I am.   

The crucial difference

Is that they are selfish in an acceptable way. 


I will never say any of these things to their faces,

Because I am two faced, and because I like them,

And don't want to hurt them, because they are my friends. 

I like writing poems under this ridiculous pseudonym, "Mr If"

Because I like the thought that my friends will read this one day,

Having no idea who wrote this,

And might see my point,

And think, "Hey, this Mr If seems like a real insightful guy. 

I would like to be friends with someone like that.

Perhaps I could learn something from him." 


If you are one of my friends,

And you are reading this,

I know you don't know who I am,

But I want you to know,

I have nothing to teach you. 

I like you, but I also like writing bitchy poems about you,

And I'm probably having sex with your partner,

While you are too busy working,

And ripping your hair out,

And spending money

To notice. 

A revelation

I know what women want.

They donít want to fuck men with rippling muscles,

Athletic bodies, six packs and massive cocks.   

They just think they do. 


I know what men want. 

They donít want to fuck skinny girls

With fake tits and airbrushed arses. 

Theyíve just been suckered

By Loaded, FHM and fucking Nuts. 


I fucked my friend Martinís girlfriend, Annabelle,

While he was at the football. 

She had tan lines round her waist,

And little red dimples under her breasts where the bra had dug in. 

She had a spot on her arse,

A big red, angry volcano, with a tiny white cap,

Just waiting to be squeezed. 

She was a real woman. 


I bet Martin never appreciates these details. 

I bet Martin will be the father of her children. 

I know what Annabelle wants,

And I know what Martin wants. 

But I cannot help either of them,

I can only help myself. 


You see, I have these revelations,

But Iím just another freeloader,  

And I know that I am the shallowest one of all.


I'm a hypocrite

If I said Iím a hypocrite,

A cunt and a hypocrite,

Would you think better or worse of me? 

Would you appreciate my honesty? 


Sometimes I try to justify the things I do,

But I canít, really. 

I use other peopleís partners

Because itís fun screwing people over. 

Iím not giving people what they want,

Iím not giving them anything their partners couldnít give them ten times better. 

Iím not trying to promote free love, or any such platitude.    

Iím just a hypocrite,

A cunt and a hypocrite. 

Does that make things better, I wonder? 


I could say, this is what people do. They sneak around,

They break the rules, not because they think the rules shouldnít be there,

But because they are there.

They tell the most outrageous lies, and get a kick out of telling them. 

It gives them a rare opportunity to be genuinely creative. 


Hearts get broken because of all this.

Lives are destroyed. 

Kids are administered scars that may never fully heal. 


And I donít give a fuck.

Now that Iíve admitted that,

Will it make me a better person? 

Even though Iím not sorry, Iím not sorry at all,

Perhaps this acknowledgement that Iíve done something wrong,

That Iíve done lots of things wrong,

Makes some small difference.

Or does it just make things worse?

I am here on this earth to spread love, not hatred. 

I do not hate any man woman or child.    


Iím a hypocrite,

A cunt and a hypocrite. 

But I still want people to like me

For ďwho I amĒ. 



Where exactly does Catholic guilt come from?  They donít teach it in the schools or churches.  No one ever says, ďYou will grow up to feel guilty, not about things you do wrong, but about things you do right.  Basically everything.Ē  No one says that, but itís still there, this feeling of not being good enough for God, long after youíve stopped believing in His existence.  (You even continue to spell ďHisĒ with a capital H.) 

Think about it.  This is a faith that allows you to commit any kind of crime, indulge in any variety of depravity, and then repent, and all will be forgiven.  Itís funny how Catholics never forgive themselves for anything. 


Iím a bad poet 

OK, I'll admit,

Iím a bad poet. 

But there are worse things I could be. 

I could be a terrorist, or a racist, or a Tory,

Or just a complete dickhead. 

But no, Iím just a bad poet. 

Get over it.  I have. 


If I have any literary ambition,

Itís to get even worse.

I would like people to say,

ďMr If has turned bad poetry into an art form. 

Just imagine what his next collection will be like. 

Will it be even worse than this one?Ē 


I would like poetry fans to have drunken arguments

Over who is the worst poet, Purple Ronnie or me. 

I will win, hands down, because Iím not doing this for ironic effect. 

I really am this shit.    

Not sure

She does things with me that she will not do with her partner, or even with her other lovers.  She lets me stick my tongue up her arsehole and come all over her face.  Sheíll happily let out a massive fart when I cuddle her under the sheets. 

ďDo you do that in front of him?Ē Iíll ask. 

ďNo,Ē sheíll tell me.  ďIím different when Iím with you.  I feel like I can be myself.Ē 

When she cuddles him, she tells him that she loves him, and that heís the best fuck sheís ever had. 

Iím not sure whoís the winner here.  


Iím her lover

But I donít love her. 

Sheís my lover,

But she doesnít love me. 

She loves that other guy,

The one she sleeps with at night,

And watches Coronation Street with,

And eats beans on toast in her pyjamas with,

That bloke, who she calls her boyfriend,

But is neither a friend nor a boy. 


Weíve got these definitions

All wrong. 



A tragedy of epic proportions 

You don't love me for who I am, she says.

You donít love me for what I look like either. 

You just love me because I love you. 

Itís a straight swap.  The ultimate barter. 

Whatís more, she says,

I donít love you for what you look like.

And I donít love you for who you are. 

I just love you because you love me.


I agree. 

Itís a real chicken and egg scenario. 



The one 

I love her,

Because she is the same as me,

And thatís why sheíll never be mine.

Sheís too interested in other people

To really be interested in me.


I love him,

Because he is the same as me,

And thatís why he will never be mine,

Because heís still too interested in women. 


We all know there isnít one person for everyone.

Itís a ridiculous concept,

But somehow we still cling to it for dear life. 

Donít think Iím not immune from this deadly delusion.

The more people I meet,

The more people I sleep with,

The more I wish I could just be with one person,

Just one person. 

Is that too much to ask? 


Honesty is the new bullshit 

Donít listen to these gentlemen who say youíve got beautiful eyes.  You have got beautiful eyes, but thatís still an aesthetic statement.  These men are just as shallow as the dribbling meathead sitting staring at your tits on the bus, who makes you feel like a whore for wearing that particular dress on that particular day. 

Pay no attention to these polite types whoíll only give you compliments.  Itís a socially acceptable form of lying.  Iím not saying thereís anything wrong with you.  You are a beautiful person, as far as I can see.  I will make my intentions perfectly clear.  Iíd like to crawl into your pants, and stay there for a while.  It seems like a nice place. 

Iím not saying Iím any better than the gentlemen.  Iím just a little bit more honest Ė although, itís probably best if I warn you not to believe a single word I say.  

Me and the rest of society

Sitting on the bus to work in silence.  Itís the kind of silence that follows a particularly insulting remark directed at a loved one.  There are things we would all like to say, but we refuse to.  It isnít worth it.  I want to slam my hand against the mud-flecked window, and shout and scream that none of us is doing anything worthwhile, that none of us ever does anything worthwhile.  I would like to suggest that instead of going to work today, we all get together and try to make the world a better place, just for one day.  But I donít say any of these things, because I am a coward, and because I donít really mean any of it.  Iíll give it till the end of the week, then Iíll quit.  You canít say I havenít given work a chance. 



No fucker understands 

What the fuck is poetry anyway?

Entertainment for the educated,

Desperately trying to appear superior

By understanding shit other fuckers donít.  

I wonder how many acclaimed collections are out there

That no fucker understands,

Not even the fucker

What wrote them.  

Fuck is not my favourite word

You say, ďFuck is your favourite wordĒ Ė accusingly, like Iím a bad person Ė ironically, because you just said ďfuckĒ yourself. 

Fuck is not my favourite word.  Itís too commonplace.  It has too many uses on a day-to-day basis to ever be considered special.  Itís just there, like people are just there. 

My favourite word is haberdashery.  Iím not really interested in haberdasheries.  Iím interested in fucking, but not haberdasheries.  I just like the way the word sounds Ė the music of it, the poetry of it.  Iíve been trying to squeeze it into a piece of writing for ages.  I hope this isnít a wasted opportunity.  



Patriarchy in the UK 

As soon as we're over with this notion of ownership,

Men owning women, women owning men,

People who have sex with other people whilst theyíre owned by someone else

Getting labelled as the worst kind of thief,

Maybe then we can get a grip on this hot jacket spud we call love. 


Wealthy white folks like to sneer at ďinferiorĒ cultures,

With their patriarchies, polygamies, women-into-slaveries, 

But they still want men to own women, and women to own men,

Like people are flatscreens, or trouser presses.


I told her all this

While we climbed into our clothes,

And before hubby came home, she escorted me out the door,

For what I expected to be the final time. 



The book of dreams 

I was sitting in the park, writing my poems, when a voice beside me whispered, ďWhat are you writing?Ē 

I turned to see a little old man sitting next to me, with a little old beard.  We were like Miss Muffet and the spider. 

ďPoems,Ē I said. 

The little old man smiled, like he understood.  ďPoetry,Ē he said, ďis like a dream to me.  There is something about great poetry that connects with the subconscious, reaching out to something deep within us. Donít you agree?Ē 

I said, ďTo me, poetry is like vomit.  Itís not a pleasant business, but itís better out than in.  And when it comes out, even though itís ugly and it stinks, it makes me feel a little bit better.Ē 

ďSo, you agree with me?Ē said the man.  ďPoetry is something that comes from deep inside.Ē 

ďYouíre right,Ē I said. 

ďAre you working on a collection?Ē he said. 

I said, ďYes.  Iím thinking of calling it The Book of Vomit, but maybe Iíll call it The Book of Dreams 

The man disappeared, and I woke up.



It turns out 

It turns out thereís nothing you can do when things go wrong.

I thought there was such a thing as hope,

But I have been proven consistently wrong. 

I used to think there were achievable solutions to lifeís little problems,  

But it turns out whatever you do to fix things,

Just fucks it all up a million times more. 

Itís a real comfort to know I donít need to try anymore,

Or worry about anything ever again.   


Nothing on me

Youíve got nothing on me,

The cops have got nothing on me,

My friends have got nothing on me,

My parents have got nothing on me,

The government have got nothing on me,

Even Iíve got nothing on me. 

None of the people listed above know who I am,

And I suspect none of them know who anyone is,

But I donít really care about that last part,

Because I only really care about myself,

Whoever I am. 



The joys of not having a phone 

I went over to my friend Harveyís house at eight oíclock in the morning with a pair of cardboard coffee cups Iíd bought from town.

ďWhat are you doing here?Ē he said.

ďI was in the area,Ē I said.  ďJust thought Iíd pop round.  I bought you a coffee.Ē

ďWhat did you do that for?Ē he said.  ďWeíve got a kettle right here.Ē 

ďThis is a cinnamon latte,Ē I said.  ďYou canít make a proper cinnamon latte at home.Ē

ďI donít like cinnamon,Ē he said.

I stood like an injured kitten on the doorstep.

ďIím sorry,Ē he said.  ďIím really sorry.  I appreciate the gesture.  Youíd better come in.Ē 

I stepped into Harveyís spotless, immaculate house.  I removed my shoes straight away before I contaminated anything.

Harveyís wife, Jacqueline, was sitting at the breakfast table. 

He introduced me to her, and offered me a seat. 

ďI have to go to work now,Ē he said.  ďYou really should call ahead next time.  People donít just turn up out of the blue anymore.  They drop you a line or a text.Ē 

ďI havenít got a phone,Ē I said. 

ďOh yeah,Ē said Harvey, ďI forgot.Ē 

Harvey left.  I sat with Jacqueline.  We drank our cinnamon lattes. 

ďSo, what do you do?Ē Jacqueline asked.

ďI donít do anything,Ē I said.  ďWhat about you?Ē 

ďI donít do anything either,Ē she said.  ďThatís to say, Iím a housewife.  Isnít that funny?  I bet you thought such things didnít exist anymore.Ē

ďNo,Ē I said.  ďIíve met a good few housewives.  Do you like it?Ē

ďItís OK,Ē she said. 

ďPeople probably think youíre lazy and a freeloader,Ē I said.  ďThatís what they say about me.Ē 

ďSo weíve both got nothing to do for the rest of the day,Ē she said. 

ďWhat about the housework?Ē I said.

She said, ďWe have a cleaner.Ē 

ďPerfect,Ē I said.  ďThese would be ideal circumstances for an extramarital affair, wouldnít you say?Ē

We laughed and laughed. 

Later we had sex on their Persian rug, in their Jacuzzi, and in their four-poster bed.  She tasted faintly of cinnamon.

She said goodbye to me at the door, like I was her husband leaving for work, not caring what the neighbours thought. 

ďCall me,Ē she whispered. 

ďI canít call you,Ē I said.  ďI havenít got a phone.Ē 

ďThatís right,Ē she said.  ďSorry.  I forgot.Ē 


A note to my readers 

You may think you know something about me because youíve read these poems.  Iíd just like to say, you donít know anything about me.   Youíll never know my name, or what I look like.   You know nothing about what Iím like in real life.   You can think whatever you want.   I would like to say I donít give a fuck what anyone thinks, but thatís not true.  I want people to read these words over and over until they are dizzy, until they are sick.

Iíd like to see these poems get studied in universities, with lecturers asking questions like, Who is this Mr If, really?  Is he a recluse, or is he the alter ego of a more well-known poet?  Andrew Motion, perhaps, or Michael Rosen. 

Itís so frustrating, they will say.  We donít even know the colour of this manís skin, his nation of birth, or what his father did for a living.   How can we place these poems within a cultural or socio-economic context?

What do these poems really mean?  Of course itís obvious what they mean, but what do they really mean?   Are they actually poems at all, or just words?

Does any of this really matter?




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