You Never Do

Daniele Nunziata

Even God had a day off.

Even machines need a day off.

Even the moon, once a month,

takes an evening off.

But you never do.


Do you remember that week

when we first saw Rome?

I would trade in the sum of

the Sistine Chapel and the


just for you to find some



Your wrists ache, and your knee

is displaced, and you haven’t slept

for nights and days.

How it must hurt to hurl around that

responsibility. The unforgiving pressure

on your unrelenting bones,

and your tired, olive hands,

and your mind drained from worry.

I implore you daily to take a day off.

But you never do.

Daniele Nunziata is a Lecturer in English Literature at the University of Oxford. His first book was released in 2020, and he has had poems published in numerous international journals. He has performed at Slam events in the UK and has delivered his poetry live on BBC Radio. He received a Commendation from the SciPo Poetry Competition 2020.