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He might

When she lived in California
mom used to say she missed the seasons
and couldn’t wait to move back east,
that the lack of winter felt like a cheat

He might never be as gritty and grounded
as the Master

Are you ever worthy of the good that comes
to you or should you punish yourself again?
Ardor in study, happiness in company,
powers of expansion and reversal

He might never be as witty and fun
as the Master

The radiance of your being, the sexual ping,
your dark hours, your wild struggles, your joys
How can they, why must they vanish?
All that fine work and savvy

He might never be as lurid and lordly
as the Master

Disaster is a leg monitor that tells
the cops where he is all the time
Disaster is the prison sentence that follows
Disaster is his death in that place

He might never be as callous and dull
as the Master

If a child exasperated her by asking
an intelligent question in class
She’d rage “Don’t be impertinent!”
If late, she’d scowl and say he was “tardy”

He might never be as feisty and cool
as the Master

After it sank, a hundred years after
they’d plunge into the sea in search of ship’s plunder
It’s a daunting place, he said, with lots of the dead
down there, the lost and the dead

He might never be as ferocious and cruel
as the Master

It felt as if for the shortest time
someone was really, really on my side
This loss is something I grind through—
Weepy tales of loyalty, gratitude and devotion

He might never be as joyous and astute
as the Master

Gut grinding anger, injurious plaques,
acids and bile that eats away from within
Her sour stomach caused her to toss at night
in a sort of sexual grieving

He might never be as assured and light
as the Master

This gladiator, this football star, this beast—
his accumulated litany of bruised bones, sprained
ankles and wrists, strained and torn hamstrings,
a fractured orbital bone, all of which he plays through

He might never be as tough and shrewd
as the Master

There will be revenge for that, oh yes
there surely will
You pretended that you were afraid but you weren’t
You were there, you said your lines, and you left

He might never be as adoring and graceful
as the Master

If he could do it right then I can too
When you make a few lines of English sing
you let us hear life’s essential things—
inorganic to organic

He might never be as wicked and wise
as the Master

 

 

 

 

-March 14, 2015-