He stood at the door with a forlorn smile
and a hand-drawn mustache—
a comically tragic pastiche wearing
nothing but tennis shorts and socks.
My name is Rodney, might I
I know who you are. You see
my name is Rodney as well.
On the day that she left, Miriam
took his heart and his iPad, but
it wasn’t the end. It turned out
to be just the beginning.
K-Mart had bio-copiers on special,
and now she was printing replacements—
clone after clone, except that none
of them performed as expected,
so she sent all the Rodneys packing
with directions to his place in their
There were Rodneys in the attic
and Rodneys in the cellar. The
laundry was filled with tennis shorts
and socks, and they queued in the
bathroom to paint their mustaches.
The house is over full, I’m afraid.
You’ll have to sleep out the back,
with clones fifteen to twenty.
All the lonely Rodneys missed Miriam.
They moped around the garden consoling
one another with insincere assurances
that the other one wasn’t to blame.
But he was the original, and he knew
the truth—Miriam didn’t print them
to find a new lover. It was for
the pleasure of kicking them out.
Kazuo Ishiguru’s masterpiece Never Let Me Go and an implausible answer to the Eleanor Rigby question.
to G and Y for embarrassing me comprehensively with ‘Steve and Eve’