Begin by looking happy,
tilt your mouth up at the sides
til it grins, not unlike
the Joker in Batman Returns.
Next, say nice things
to anyone you meet;
don’t grumble into your craw
about it not being fair.
for sanity’s sake, don’t think!
Let moments flit by your head like butterflies,
though they look more like killer bees.
And definitely do not attempt
to understand or analyse anything;
just leave it, a well-made bed
with tight corners.
Always say yes to everything,
just lie and paste a smile on your face;
no need to cause a scene,
it’ll be over soon.
And don’t spoil a nice family dinner, at Easter say,
by shouting over the spuds
about rights and prejudice;
speaking out makes everyone uncomfortable.
And when you wake screaming
from another bad dream,
just forget about it, don’t follow your gut feeling
that something’s just not right.
And definitely never ever talk
about the things that bubble in you,
that reek of something wrong;
better just to leave them find their own way out.
As I said,
begin by looking happy.