Poetic License
Poetic License
Summary: Waite and Roubani end up in a conversation about stranger aspects of poetry.
Date: MD042
Related Logs: None

Mess Hall

Roubani is settled at a table in the mess hall, dressed in his blues. Not part of the rest of the rowdy bunch at his table, a few empty chairs separate him from them while he sits finishing some food and reading a book. The Ensign has one hell of a black eye on the right side, and a narrow strip across the bridge of his nose holds a break in place. His lower lip is swollen and looks like it met his teeth in a dark alley.

Having retrieved a plate of food, Waite wanders over to find a mug of coffee or maybe tea. Once the beverage has been claimed, she turns to scan the mess for a place to sit. Spotting an open seat, she walks over and motions to Roubani, "Hey, Ensign. Mind if I sit here?" She notes his condition and winces, "Oh, frak. What happened?"

"No, sir." Roubani replies, as to her sitting there. His voice is as matter-of-fact as it's ever been. "I ran into a very aggressive door. How are you, sir?"

Waite sinks into the chair, her eyes widening slowly, "A door did that to you?" Blinking, she shakes her head twice and settles in to eating, "We should string the door up by it's toenails… Me?" She shrugs slightly, "Okay. It's been a bit on the quiet side, I guess. No aggressive doors to dodge, anyway."

"Mmmhmm." Roubani makes a rather noncommittal sound, looking down at his plate as he spears a few elbows of macaroni. His food's all been meticulously separated so the colours don't touch. "Not getting ready for your shore leave, sir?"

Waite shrugs as she toys with her food a little, "Yeah, sorta. I mean… It'll be nice to get off the ship for a while, but…" Looking up, she adds, "I was hoping that my folks could come out and meet us but dad got a new assignment, so that ended that idea." Looking up, she finally spears some of the macaroni and takes a bite. Chewing, she swallows and inclines her chin, "How about you?"

"I suppose…whatever you're meant to do on shore leave," Roubani says, with a touch of awkwardness in his voice. "I'm not entirely sure, sir."

Waite tilts her head a little to one side, curiosity fresh in her gaze, "Well… You are supposed to do whatever it is you do to let off steam, I guess. Do stuff that you can't do aboard ship." Licking a bit of sauce from her fork, she tucks it back into the food, spearing bits of this and that. Unlike the man opposite her, she does not seem concerned about keeping colors seperate. "Some folk get drunk. Some find partners. Some go shopping…" Another shrug and she lifts the fork. "I guess we'll have to see what is available to do. What would you want to do?" Finally winding down, she takes the bite and chews while listening.

"Um." Roubani absently licks the corner of his bottom lip, where the ugly split is trying to crust over. "I don't know. There isn't anything I need. The rest is just excess." He glances at the book pages as though there might be an answer written there. But it's all maths. His attention goes back to his food. "What…do you want to do?"

Waite considers that through several bites of food, though her gaze travels the extent of injuries on the man's face. Finally, she shrugs, "I'm not big on getting plastered and hate shopping. So… Have to see what is available, I guess. If there's a pool, I'd love to swim. But, I sort of doubt it. The station is supposed to have some great views."

Roubani takes a careful bite of macaroni while she talks, closing his hand to politely cover his mouth as he chews. "Oh. Yes, the Cephissus cluster. That's the name of it, wasn't it?"

Waite tilts her head to one side and thinks before nodding. She does not speak until she swallows, however, "Yes, I believe so. It is supposed to be really pretty. That I'd like to see." Turning her tray around, she begins spearing the green beans she has selected. "We use it as a 'landmark' of sorts while navigating but I've not seen it up close. It will give a 'face' to a 'name' in a sense. I guess."

"Humanising star clusters, sir," Roubani says, half-question and half-statement. His smile is extremely slight. "You sound like something of a closet poetess."

Waite pauses, a chuckle beginning, though it ends up a sparkle in her eyes rather than a vocalization. Slowly a blush begins and she spears a few more green beans. "Maybe so. But, I'd rather think of them as friendly guiding lights than uncaring things. Even when I know full well what they are. Sometimes reality is a bit cold." Looking at the fork she realizes that she has speared too many of the vegetables and she lifts a spoon to push about half of them off the tines. "What about you?"

Roubani in the meantime is gathering up a few bits of macaroni. Each bite of his seems to have the same number of elbows on the fork - three. "What about me, what, sir?"

Waite looks up as the green beans on the fork are reduced to a managable number, "Huh? Oh. Right. Are you a poet, Ensign?" Lifting the fork, she takes that bite and waits to hear the answer.

Both Roubani's dark brows make a slight lift "Me? No, sir."

Waite grins at that instant denial, "No? Are you absolutely positive?"

Roubani's eyes flicker left and then back to her, as if checking on something written in the air there. "Mmmhmm. Quite."

Waite grins at that, but only after swallowing. "Okay. As long as you are sure. But, you do like poetry, right?" Although there is mirth in her gaze, she is not teasing or mocking. She is curious.

Roubani opens his mouth to answer and then hesitates. "I don't know. I can't say I've ever read much. I suppose it should be difficult to dislike it, given its very nature."

Waite finishes her veggies, then pushes the tray to one side. Lifting the mug, she takes a sip of the liquid. "I can loan you a book, if you want. Most of them are okay. Some are amazing. Some are… not so good. But, I think you'll like them, Ensign. Actually?" She eyes you for a moment, then her smile returns, "I'd like your opinion about some. They are supposed to describe particle movement."

"Poetry. About…particle movement?" Roubani looks like he's not sure whether that's amusing or bewildering. "That's rather a feat. It might be easier to describe the taste of the colour blue."

Waite snickers, because she can't help it. It is a commiseratory sound, rather than derogatory. "According to one poet, blue tastes…" She looks up, making sure that she can see his reaction, "… like blueberries served on a plate made of the sky and dusted with ice and sugar. Not sure I understand that one, but…" Again, she shrugs, "It was a pretty image."

Roubani smiles slightly. It moves the swollen corner of his mouth, though doesn't reach his eyes. "Lexical-gustatory synesthesia. What would ROYGBIV be without it?"

Soft laughter rises and she shakes her head, "Yes, well. I think it comes from poets not making as much money as physicists. Since they don't get fresh fruit as often, they make up for it in abserdity." Another sip is claimed before she continues, "Though it does help encourage dialogue."

Roubani eats his three pieces of macaroni while she answers. "Are you suggesting that poetry is an inevitable byproduct of scurvy, sir?"

Waite's eyes go wide and she lifts a hand to cover her mouth while the other sets her mug down. Helpless snickering is hidden, at least and she lifts a napkin in time to keep from spraying everyone nearby with tea. Turning away from you, she manages to catch the tea, though some drips from her hand before she can wipe it off. "No." That single word is strained, as though she is trying to speak rather than choke. "Not at all." Gradually her voice eases toward it's normal sound, "Just that hungry people write about what they want."

Roubani smiles, very slightly. It's almost embarassed at having made her laugh. "Yes, I suppose that makes sense." He looks down, collecting three more pieces of pasta onto his fork. "Do you write it yourself, sir?"

Waite clears her throat several times before she coughs violently. Must have inhailed some of that tea. Or, she is masking laughter, "Yeah, I do. Songs, mostly." Turning back slowly, she mops up the rest of the tea and folds the napkin carefully before placing it on the empty tray. "Which means… I guess… That I cheat. Ballodic form is the easiest of all to use."

Roubani's eyes stay down as he selects his food. The pieces not only have to be three at a time, but relatively uniform in size. "Why is that?"

Waite's fingers close over the mug and she shrugs, "Why which?" Lifting it, she takes a slower, more cautious sip.

Roubani continues picking through the macaroni. "Why is it easiest, sir."

Waite says, "Oh. Well…" She sets the mug down, as though now wary of holding it while speaking. "Because songs… Ballads… Tend to use a set pattern of rhyme. ABBA or ABAB, or… Whatever. They have a flow to them, so most are written in iambic pentameter with a set meter and pulse. So they can be sung more easily than the other forms.""

"Ah, I see." Roubani offers that same fleeting smile. His eyes happen to flicker past Waite's head to one of the clocks on the walls, and he clears his throat. "Perhaps you might show me sometime, Lieutenant. I've got to get to some work right now."

Waite returns the smile, her eyes sparkling a bit. Lifting her gaze, she turns to look up at the clock. Nodding, she begins to rise, "Sure, Ensign. I'd love to." Looking back, she gathers her tray, napkin and mug. "Yeah, I've gotta head back as well. Catch you later."

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