The fallacy

The fallacy is this:
If your need is strong enough then
someone will come to soothe your ache, 
your humiliation, the coiled pain, when
the one you love has nothing left for you
His take on our tragedies is rich
and optimistic—he’s 

a mark and a grifter’s pawn
Fragments that design let him
set the wheels apace because wonder is
for him more replete than analytics 
He spins it forth and anticipates 
his constructions in coiled dreams,
designs that both bury and portray  

“Of course I used mayonnaise and 
a lot of it on all the sandwiches, 
all of them— because after the
hurricane these people were starving 
They needed all the fat I could afford to
give them—in and around San Juan 
I served 10,000 meals just like that” 

He knew the effect of a simple, 
direct, coiled sentence placed
like a diamond in a gimcrack of conceit
A man of the most fearful, cautious
and suspicious temper
like frictions that correspond
to our natures piece by piece 

After she tore into his heart
he couldn’t love like that again
Boring business conversations take
place all over this town
The Pope said that when he came
to negotiate I’d take off my hat 
and sit down because if I 

didn’t do it first he would—
and then I’d have to take offense
“Serious occupations of life 
have won for me liberties 
Those who so act this way 
naturally and not out of affectation 
or eccentricity ought in common 

justice to be tolerated”
His statues don’t rest
They portray agitation, vivacity,
a natural, carnal, human insolence
“It’s a special gift to do in 
a few hours what others 
can only do more slowly”

The bar was darkened even 
in a day’s brightness
With her loose fitting dress, short
curly hair, braless, she leaned on the
bar, her head next to her drink
She was New Orleans for me—
a distant, impertinent conceit

Lovers complete one another
That’s what that twinge of regret
means when you leave me
She had a circular way 
of thinking—she’d get there
all right but our routes 
weren’t the same 

The gentle rumble of a train can
lull me more than my bed sometimes
Every transition no matter how kind
leaves something vital behind
I’m so close to my own river
I can’t always hear her 
Because he wanted the snow 

cleared now, Sam went out 
to shovel it himself
Suddenly, he tossed that shovel away 
and called for help because the
tightening in his chest meant
he was in trouble and I see
in my mind how he tosses 

that shovel away and 
I think about Matt by himself
when he knew he was in trouble
and also had to toss his shovel away 
For the record my father’s name
was Arthur, my mother’s was Sheila
Lots of people have those names

-March 17, 2018-