Casey Bailey

Multiple Choice

(From Casey's Verve Poetry Press collection Adjusted)

Find a new place to hang this noose. 
Stop killing those who already killed themselves 
like they haven't suffered enough already, 
carried enough already, 
died enough already. 

To label somebody a coward  
when they are no longer here 
to represent themselves, 
has to be the worst cocktail 
of cowardice and hypocrisy
I have tasted. 

 

Maybe he did it because he 
had lost all hope in this life.
Maybe she did it because her only hope  
was that another life would follow. 
I always thought the most difficult 
multiple choice questions 
are the ones where you feel like all 
of the answers could be right. 

 

Gravity is pulling us all down 
just because bricks fall faster 
than feathers, 
doesn't mean they're weaker, 
they just carry more weight.

 

A man who looked young
but aged, with a face
like distressed furniture,
told me that the greatest 
misconception about suicidal people, 
is the thought that they want to die. 

Nobody desires death, 
the issue is, that not everybody 
wants to live, either. 

 

The most difficult multiple choice questions 
are not the ones where you feel like all 
of the answers could be right. 
The most difficult multiple choice questions 
are the ones where you feel like none 
of the answers can be right, 
but you must choose one anyway. 

Casey Bailey is a poet, spoken word performer, author, facilitator, rapper and secondary school senior leader, born and raised in Nechells, Birmingham. ​

 

Adjusted, his upcoming first full collection, received editing input from Raymond Antrobus. Casey tells his jounrey growing up in Birmingham – the drugs, the weapons, the lost friends, the lost hope - and his tumultuous 2017, in which he lost his mother and became a father. Adjusted looks at how Casey was forced to deal with extreme loss and joy at the same time.

Follow Casey on Twitter and Instagram

Preorder Adjusted from Verve.