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Screen Time

Claudia Vyvyan

Screen time
My screen time has gone up eighty percent
And I’m not quite feeling myself today.

Screen date in bed and I go off camera to change
into my pyjama top,
Nike, Worldview, Technical Division.

Show us then.
I’m not in the mood,
I’m not feeling all too confident in the nude,
I say, expecting an
Okay
And a swift, well-timed, subject change.

Come on,
When we’re together you take your
clothes off all the time.
Well when we’re together I’m usually feeling fine
but

My screen time has gone up eighty percent
And I’m not quite feeling myself today.

And anyway, my stomach aches
I’m tired and
I’m burnt from the sunshine.

After a pushy protest,
Stop being childish
Is all I can say.

But when you’re being childish I still laugh and
play.
This childish is different to that childish –
My laughing isn’t causing you pain

My screen time has gone up eighty percent
And I’m not quite feeling myself today.

You’re scary sometimes
I’m just gonna say,
Just putting it out there
As we’re speaking face to face.

What do you imply?
I’m scary?
I’m mean?

No just sometimes
I can’t really explain.
Then why did you think to say it in the first place?
Just good to be honest in our relationship, in case.
Yes
I’m scary
I’m fierce
I’m proud
I’m a woman to be reckoned with,
I’m a storm with no clouds;
I’m wall for barricade;
A bat with no base;
Thank you for reminding me,
Putting me in my place.
That’s another strike for our happiness by the way.

My screen time has gone up eighty percent
And I’m not quite feeling myself today.
Goodnight screen date,
Don’t test me again,
Because I really don’t want this to end.

Sacrifice

Invite me in – please.
I’ve been waiting out here
For a while now -
Knocking,
Knockin’
Knock.
No answer.
I’m beginning to realise you want me to
Give up,
Give in,
Go home,
Stop trying
To get underneath your skin,
Tilt down those rims
Barricaded with salt water –
A dam for you tears;
Two cents for your thoughts;
At least open the door – please.
I can stand here and talk?
(If that’s safer)

Claudia is an emerging poet and playwright currently studying Education and International Development at the University of Cambridge. Her poetry has also been published in Notes Magazine, and she was shortlisted for the Hope Mill Theatre’s 'Through the Mill’ national playwriting competition with her play Middle, Beginning and End. Her upcoming radio play Don’t Interrupt Me recently won the HATS new writing competition.

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