Her breasts lead her thighs to a chair.
A stretch of fabric strains when she breathes
And she breathes. Her eyes roll up to scan
The line of our faces bolted to the wall.
And we watch her lips part but say nothing.
Her shirt says "Hello, Fuckers" in red.
Blessed beast astride tips eyes me this morning,
Split-eyed, green seamed in from the night to the safe day
Long teeth sheathed in whiskered lips and cheeks
And antenna tail up and asshole airing.
It does not matter
What I build
I am hours
Things into things
I am between
The smelling of it
After I leave
I drink enough
Part and part
And back to it.
The browns of the bartendress
Bare-armed tonight in a tan vest
Pulling a swollen Guinness over
A dark oak bar were good for me.
We took a cheap hotel room,
Ate at Arthur Treacher's across
The divided highway, and she
Dressed in garters and posed.
Soon after, she cried and cried.
I was not enjoying tawdry enough.
They imitate my twitches as if
I meant to nod and blink to them.
Will they push their bellies out
At me as I grow older and fatter
Or limp along with my sore foot?
Packets of vinegar chips on the beach
Is a molecule of thirty-one letters and six spaces
That squeezes juice from the glands in my mouth
And harnesses gray teams together.
At opposite ends of the pub tonight
We have two competing mounds
In the holy-fuck-look-at-that-hair contest.
Their cornermen splash their mouths
With colored drinks and listen for
Grunt spaces and wait for the ten count.
Out of my own thin intentional misery
I build petty pains for her,
Arguments she would punch through and trump
If she weren't so soft,
That I would unbuild with a grin
If I weren't so bereft
And so confident of her softness.
I feed her eggs
In the morning
And go off
Late for work
Where I do nothing
So much as get
Out of there and then
The thumping home
Of doors banging and
Clothes on the floor.
When I first loved her I threw coins at her window
And she couldn't hear them because she's half deaf.
She plays the accordion, you know.
I built a secret ice man in the freezer compartment,
Ice cube welded to ice cube with the cold that binds
Your skin to metal in winter.
He stands in the dark, a soldier or scarecrow or talisman
With no face, hard and patient and square-shouldered,
You could swallow him in a girly drink
And twirl a paper parasol.
I have a cold and sing like One-
Eyed Johnson in the shower,
While you drool on the sheets
And dream of remarkable blackberries.
The cat on the floor
Walks from you to me to me
And talks about food and food.
When I sleep, who knows?