Nina Parmenter


The Ballad of the Amazon Man

He came like a shipment of comfort and joy,
he came bearing parcels for me,
oh, the Amazon man was a god in a van—
he had hair like the sound of the sea.

He brought me my stories, he brought me my songs,
he brought me my rice-cookers three,
and whenever he called, a big smile would be scrawled
on each box, for he loved only me.

One day, as I sat with a screen full of deals
and my eye on an order or three,
why, who should I spy but my Amazon guy,
with that hair like the sound of the sea?

He was visiting Jackie from over the road!
So I lurked by the curtains to see.
Well, my heart turned to rocks when I spotted the box—
Jackie’s package was smiling at me!

The next day, my Judas returned to my porch
saying, “Sign, if you would, on line three.”
I said, “Oh, that’s a pain—just come in from the rain
for a moment—I’m struggling to see.”

With a flick of my fingers, I bolted the door,
and he looked, disconcerted, at me—
for there, open wide, with a smile on its side,
lay a casket with ratchet straps three.

So now there’s no man in a heavenly van,
no next-day deliveries for me,
no smile and no box—I make do with these locks
of that hair like the sound of the sea.

Nina Parmenter lives in Wiltshire, UK with her husband and two boys. Her work has appeared in Snakeskin, Light, The New Verse News, Lighten Up Online, and Ink, Sweat & Tears. She has worked in marketing ever since she realized that people were prepared to pay her to do so. In her spare time, she enjoys breathing, coffee, and innuendo.