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May 20, 2009
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"Relative"

Copyright 2009, 1pen.




Think you’ve got it tough?
Think you’ve got it bad?
I’m married to the most unintegritous cad
Who’ll sleep in just about any box he can find
And it’s not the box of the shipping box kind
While I’ll bet you think that’s not bad at all
But he drinks too, it’s true, till he’s got enough gall
To come home and pretend he has two very large balls.

Oh is that so, Mary Jane, well I bet my life’s worse
It’s the worst sort of worse, why it’s nearly a curse
That’s my life for you, that’s the truth I do swear
It’s a harder life than yours for I live with bears
Not teddies or plushies, but the real live things
I bet you’ll think better now of your cad and his flings.

Neither of you have it bad, none of you have it hard,
I just lost my retirement to a bet in a bar.
I bet you think a gambler isn’t worth your pity or hugs
Since they hang around winos, and gangsters and thugs
It’s a hard living to come by, so much harder than yours
Try losing your future in the presence of whores.

What a bunch of ninnies, I can’t believe my ears
To think that your troubles are bigger than my fears?
Why I haven’t slept in fifty-two days, out of fear that my longings are indeed gay.
My family would certainly make me pay.
Think your troubles are harder than mine, did you say?

Oh please, give it a rest, I’m tired of listening to your cries
While I’m stuck here with celiac, allergic to pies
You try going and finding a single bite to eat
When you can’t eat a single thing made out of wheat.
You trying put those two shoes on your feet!

Girls, girls, now let’s tone down this whole fuss
You certainly don’t have an eye full of puss.
My dog Gus has an eye full of puss.
And it’s made him a rather bad guard dog I believe
Since all our belongings were taken by thieves.

Now, dearie, it’s your turn, do tell us your tale
We bet every cent we have left that you’re hurting as well.
Is your husband a louse, are you secretly gay?
Would you die if you ate some bread the next day?
Is your dog a diseased bum who let in the robber?
Do your mates at the pub treat you like some old farter?
Has your house burned to the ground, is your kid sick in bed?
Do you wish every morning that you simply were dead?
So go on, go on, tell us all on your chest
We’re waiting; we’re listening, so give us your best.

Well girls I must say you all have it bad,
I certainly don’t spend every night with a cad.
My dog is just fine, my house is intact
I’ve never had to deal with that celiac.
I don’t gamble so I’ve never lost to a whore,
In fact, in comparison, I’m probably a bore.

But I have my own troubles, in fact, quite a few
But I don’t think even then I’ve the better of you.
I don’t think I could handle a husband like yours
Or challenge my family, or lose to those whores.
I’d probably feel gutted if my house were the same,
And probably more so were it my dog to blame.

But those aren’t the trials I’ve been asked to face
And I don’t think any single person comes in first place.
I could never handle yours, but I handle mine fine
And it’s probably true that you wouldn’t like mine.

I catch myself anyway from time to time
Asking myself “Why me, why now” in that very same whine.
And then I’m reminded when I hear stories like yours
That they are just that, they are yours, only yours.
They are your fight, your struggle, they’re tailored to you
Same as my fight, and my trials, and my very bad news.

It’s all relative, these bad things, whether they’re yours or they’re mine,
And you can handle each thing and turn out just fine.
Maybe not me, and not them and not anyone else
But would you, do you, want to trade with anyone else?
After spending a bunch of time today with forty-odd kindergarteners you get into a childish rhyming sort of mood. I ended up talking with some grown-ups who were one-upping each other in bad news. This sort of came out after that.
Add a Comment:
 
:icondistortified:
I've been waiting for an excuse to write a critique at some point, a piece that warranted me doing so, or gave me the sensation that I should. You get to be the first. :D

I can see this from a writer's standpoint, and I respect you as one of your own, so I'm not going to lie to: It is very simple. It shows that you spent time with kindergarteners, as the rhyme-scheme is very story-book and basic, despite your expansive vocabulary (Which was flawless as ever, I should mention).

That said, it's worth noting that I was on the verge of tears by the end. Plain and simple, it's one of those things that people need to be reminded of, and you drive the point in well.

I appreciated the variety of 'Woe is me' stories that you produced, as well as the way that you make them seem almost silly, not in any direct line but through the 'tones' of the overall piece. It seems to me that all of them speak in the same voice, though the final speaker seems to be the only one with a differentiation from that.

I'm not sure if that was just in my head, or if it was subconsciously suggested by your choice of words, but the impression was there, so I'm going to give you credit for it.

In summary: As a writer, I understand your sentiment towards the piece. As a reader, I want this framed and hanging on a wall somewhere in my house, like some people do with, say, that 'Footprints' story.
What do you think?
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:iconmarx77:
MARX77 Mar 30, 2013   Photographer
My gosh, Pen!
What a gem of a poet you are!!
Reply
:icon1pen:
1pen Apr 26, 2013  Professional Photographer
Awww, thanks, Khuram. Sorry it took me nearly a month to get to this! I got a bit buried. :blush:
Reply
:icontryin2findmyplace:
tryin2findmyplace Feb 2, 2012  Student Traditional Artist
This is great :D
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:icon1pen:
1pen Feb 2, 2012  Professional Photographer
Thank you! :D
Reply
:iconarwenamidala:
ArwenAmidala Jan 21, 2011  Hobbyist General Artist
... Wow. Just... wow. That really hits home, especially right now.
Reply
:icon1pen:
1pen Feb 27, 2011  Professional Photographer
Thank you, hun. :tighthug:
Reply
:iconarwenamidala:
ArwenAmidala Feb 28, 2011  Hobbyist General Artist
:tighthug:
Reply
:iconscaramouche2802:
I love how this hits the nail right on the head!

:thumbsup:
Reply
:icon1pen:
1pen Dec 26, 2010  Professional Photographer
:giggle: Thank you, Natta! :hug:
Reply
:iconpatrickkillian:
PatrickKillian May 29, 2009  Professional General Artist
Profound...and in it's simplicity, humility, it is all to true in many a home.....don't scrap it....if it was done on the fly it is surely from a higher place....=)
Reply
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