The War Poet

There is an urgency, and cynicism, in your disposition,

in the way palms cup – hips with

the weight of everything that was not us atop your shoulders.

 

It stays strange how slickened bodies rhyme

as though couplets; in some thoughtless or thoughtful sonnet

and yet still empty stays my love

and Cox, and Nesbitt, and Oliver

 

this Pacific shares your home, and Atlantic

and these palms could gain no purchase

in your day; my hour

and time is no gift for these fingertips

 

no, just flesh, sin, puckered lips –

such a gift of self-destruction

And falling apart by touch

these entangled souls.

 

and the days where these letters met silence

and the times when these cupped palms remained empty

and the hours between these dampened sheets;

and the immeasurable breaking of this ecstasy;

 

this vulgar love and loss

the keen imagination

the Sun in this lust

this knowledge that our love is borrowed.

 

And the story of our skin remains somebody else’s

and this exotic and slanted curve.

 

And that the names of these heroines still rhyme.

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