Gemma feels resentment,
it’s the world’s cockroaches,
she can’t get rid of them;
she’s one of them!
The world and the cockroaches.
The insecticides and the parasites.
They live with her in a neighborhood,
welcomed by cans of cheap cider and cigarette butts,
sitting and squatting,
on the pavement,
short of payment,
waiting for an apartment.
Gemma sees them on her way in and out,
under the bent roof of a historic victorian building,
made up of ten steep floors,
smelly stairs all the way up to the last floor.
On the left of a narrow corridor,
a door showcases a cubicle occupied by flies,
they dance surrounding the traces of human decay.
On the right the last door leads,
to Gemma’s bedsit,
an unromantic sleeps,
on antique carpet under the cracked windows,
a shower cubicle dreaming of hot water.
In a boxed kitchen are fatigued cups,
the cupboard is trying to close its doors.
Under the roof of Cinderella’s castle,
Gemma is a sleeping beauty.
The Prince rings the bell,
she woke up too late,
the fairytale that she craves,
to fit her foot in and wear,
a princess’s shoe.
Running late for the next chapter of her life,
she can’t catch the missed opportunities,
she is oppressed by their absence.
Last night she was pissed,
this morning she is pissed off,
at the alarm,
the lifeline isn’t speaking loudly enough.
Gemma shouts: “How am I supposed to make it on time without an ally?!”.
A white face in cold water is wearing a Nike jumper,
holding a black coffee cup, wearing a pair of Levis jeans,
and the latest trainers in vogue,
gloss over the self love deficit.
Long hair covers the fear and the weakness,
carried by Gemma in her hoodie,
hidden behind a pair of black Ray Bans,
the sunglasses reflect her shadow side.
Gemma doesn’t care about herself,
she takes care of appearances,
in the scene of underclass,
she knows it brings respect to have class.
At first glance she appears tough, a rebel,
close to entering her late twenties,
far from retiring in the late seventies.
A teenageer from the hood,
studies left to seek,
the next shiny object,
she polishes them,
to find the holy grail.
One hour left.
Gemma won’t be late,
she wants to make it on time,
ashamed of sabotaging her future,
tired of destructing
her self-esteem and self-destructive jobs.
Jumping on a crowded bus,
a packed train exited on a sprint,
and she didn’t make it.
In the changing room,
Gemma is pissed off at the clock.
One day Gemma will make it on time,
even if she’s pissed off because she doesn’t know,
how to turn back the clock.
A supervisor with the look of an alligator,
hands over a last warning,
one more morning misfortune,
and Gemma will be cutting the newspaper ads,
looking for another waitressing job.
Gemma spends the day standing,
fake smiling, fast walking,
free flowing her mind is thinking,
how it would be nice,
to make it somewhere else.
The shift ends,
the dead end routine continues.
Carrying the weight of food burdens,
a need of oxygen,
suffocated in between the pages,
of the tasteless menu,
she eats every day in exchange for her work,
spoon after spoon she swallows her ego.
The drinkers stroll in the park,
her friends talk about why she is pissed off,
and about their unfounded dreams.
Gemma is angry at her friends,
why don’t they understand,
their routine is not the same.
She hasn’t seen a miracle,
has stopped believing in God.
Fearful of not being good enough,
she is upset, give up, blame,
the parents who didn’t push her to make it,
the high school professor who was too busy,
counting quotas and ticking boxes,
to see the bright side of Gemma.
Stuck in the past Gemma missed out on the present,
the supervisor, the crocodile, the snake bite,
was counting the warnings.
And the next morning Gemma’s clock didn’t work,
the box of her dismissal form ticked,
she is out of work.
One month later no degree,
she is busy on the pavement,
waiting for an apartment,
Many chances given,
taken for granted.
Gemma hasn’t seen the problem,
is being pissed off at herself.
She walked into a youth hostel,
hosted by Vanessa,
the owner used to be pissed off,
she handed Gemma her hand,
to write a new chapter,
about a younger version of herself.
Inspired by the angry eyes of Gemma,
she reads the potential,
and the bright side of Gemma.
Gemma trained by Vanessa,
is hosting and channeling her anger into helping others,
the right hand of Vanessa,
Gemma is proud of herself,
instead of being pissed off.
Gemma met a guardian angel,
she found renewed hope,
in the human race.
She understood the purpose of her pain,
the source of the anger under her mask,
a carapace to protect vulnerability and absurdity.
Gemma stopped drinking black coffee,
she makes cups of tea,
for souls in despair.
With a sense of purpose,
she tells her stories.
To rebel teengers,
who are pissed off,
Gemma is a guardian angel,
for those who are still pissed off.
Gemma made it on time and found her life path and she’s grateful for it.