now, honey – you KNOW it’s not my time

I’m an easy going bloke
but when Death slips off his cloak
dumps his scythe
outside
with a clatter
is all like ‘Death’s here and nothing else matters’
hard-heels it into my hotel room
and then ‘Boom!’
throws his bony arse down on the bed, uninvited
starts bouncing around like he’s utterly fucking delighted
honestly? I’m not the least bit excited
‘Honey?’ I tell him ‘Enough of this shit.
Stop it. Just quit.
Grab your stuff and git.
So you’re the Scourge? The Reaper? The Flail?
Well, good for you, girlfriend. Cheque’s in the mail.
I’m sorry for any disappointment
but next time – okay? – make a motherfucking appointment

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an appointment with death

Well

There I was, waiting at the railway station / swiping my phone for information / when suddenly Death showed up / scattering people and coffee cups / tables collapsing, chairs upended / as the dreadful figure of Death descended / riding on a stormy cloud / that blew away the commuter crowd / and left me standing alone and shaking / (quite an entrance he was undertaking) / And Death slowly turned to me, and pointed, and said / Vincente Lorenzo Fettuccine – You…are…DEAD!

A long and slightly embarrassed pause

What was he waiting for? Applause?

So I tiptoed over to the apparition / hovering in front of the EAT concession / and as bravely and discreetly as I could / whispered nervously into his hood / My name’s not Vincente, it’s Jim / I think you might have confused me with him

Oh God! said Death, rubbing his temple / How could I screw up something so simple? / And the Dark Lord blushed deep in his sockets / handed me his sickle, turned out his pockets / looking for a delivery docket / parchment blowing up & down the concourse / ECGs, doctors’ reports / You sure you’re not supposed to be dead? / Sure I’m sure, I said / Don’t go putting that shit in my head / Sorry he shrugged I’m having a moment / Maybe there’s been some weird postponement / He sighed, took back the sickle / I’m certain I had you down for the hospickle / Hospickle? I said, what are you – three? / Death wagged a phalange at me / Listen! I speak six thousand languages! / Do you know what the Hindi for strangle is? / No? What about the Xhosa for lion? / or the Ayapaneco for Watch out Brian? / I bet all you did was French at school, eh? / Well translate this: Va te faire enculer! / I’m sorry, I said. I take your point! / I’m sorry I got you bent out of joint / You could try, he said, swirling his cape / I think you’ll find I’m in awesome shape

What would you say in that situation? / Mistaken by Death at the railway station?
I didn’t know what else to do / so I thought I’d put my point of view

You gotta admit it’s not everyday / Death comes calling in this hideous way / Don’t say hideous, he said. It’s upsetting / I’m sorry, I said, but I think you’re forgetting / just how bad you look, you’re Top of the Shocks / with your fleshless ribs and your wormy locks / standing there in your cape and crocs / They’re comfortable, he said, so I do a lot of walking / Just shut up for a minute and I’ll do the talking / Honestly, he said, You’d infuriate a saint / I may be immortal but a saint I ‘aint / Just try to clean up your act a little / because otherwise I’ll definitely see you in hos-pit-al

(he made such a fuss of not getting it wrong / I felt quite bad for earlier on)

yet another awkward silence
then gradually, away in the distance, sirens

Look, he said, checking the watch / that was looped around his jugular notch / Try to control your disappointment / but I’ve got a rather urgent appointment / Let’s just chalk this up to experience / Death’ll catch you later…Vince!

and with that he vapourised in a chuckle of thunder / that sounded like a tube going under / and it was only when the concourse was clear / and I was absolutely damn sure he couldn’t hear / that I shouted It’s Jim, you boney-arsed nonce / Try getting it right for once