Rejection in the Age of Twitter, by Melanie Branton

Bovver-boot bruised, your heart winces:
you’ve been given a good kicking
with your own unanswered DMs.

You’ve conditioned yourself to salivate
at the sight of the bell icon,
yet, unaddressed, unfranked,
the grey envelope never turns blue,
a litmus test he’s failed, but,
reluctant to accept the results,
you enter him for endless resits.

That blue bird promised to take your heart
on a water speed record-breaking ride,
but your target was too ambitious:
flipped over and smashed,
your hopes now lie submerged
in a cold, cold lake.

And you know you ought to put yourself on mute,
untag him, unfollow, but how can you when, at your age,
all the men in the world left worth having form
a dramatis personae of fewer than 140 characters?

Melanie Branton writes and performs poetry.

Her poems have been published in a number of print and online journals, including Algebra of Owls, Amaryllis, Clear Poetry, Clockwise Cat, The High Window, Ink, Sweat and Tears, The Interpreter’s House, Light, Lighten Up Online, Message In A Bottle, Monkey Kettle, Obsessed With Pipework, Prole, Snakeskin, South and The Spectator.

She has performed headline or feature slots at (amongst others): Cafe La Dada, Bath; The Berkeley Square Poetry Revue, Bristol; Can Openers, Bristol; Hammer and Tongue, Bristol; Milk, Bristol; Raising The Bar, Bristol; Satellite of Love, Bristol; Cheddar Poetry Night; Taking the Mic, Exeter; Pucker Poets, Plymouth; Rhymewarp, Plymouth; The Front Room, Portsmouth; Hammer and Tongue, Southampton; Ooh Beehive!, Swindon; Poetry Island, Torquay; Stanza Extravaganza, Torquay; Word Mustard, Weston-super-Mare.

She came second in the 2014 Bristol Poetry Festival Open Slam and won the 2015 Bristol regional final of the Hammer and Tongue slam.


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