from Twisted Princesses
Saturday Night Sniffles
Saturday Night I sought the fever
but all I found were the sniffles.
It wasn't your fault.
You were wonderful,
I was delirious,
whacked out on cold medicine and your smile.
I was looking forward to Saturday,
the poetry we could make.
But first we heard the professionals.
As we listened.
I understood why they're as paid
as my dues aren't.
To the poets and the language of your body.
Without touching you I imagined how you felt.
Your breasts straining under thin cotton
stretching your longsleeved
green and white ywca tshirt
The firm curve of your jeans.
Red white and blue panties peeking out.
I felt each time you trembled and didn't know it,
I felt the abandon when you laughed out loud
at the words.
I watched the windowshades of your soul roll
up and open so fast
the spring rod kept spinning for a minute.
I wanted to write a poem that could do that.
I want you to blush when you hear it.
Dinner was fine,
3-2 beer and sloppy hamburgers.
You were still glowing,
growing brighter when I
suggested your place for poetry,
with a quick stop at the liquor mart on the way.
You called me a functioning alcoholic
and asked my last name.
I told you and I blamed it
on my Irish and Cherokee heritage.
Then it was Van Gogh's ear and Rachmoninoff,
until you said, "Enough Ginsberg!"
and we laughed and agreed
he just went too far, sometimes.
Then you read to me of breasts,
and the beloved, and death.
I couldn't take my eyes off you.
I listened to your lips
and the language of your body.
The words dripped from your tongue
like sweat from the small of your arched back
should have been dripping on the mattress.
Your nipples pressed against thin cotton,
through your pink "I have issues" tanktop.
I asked you where I could
get a shirt written in braille.
What I wanted to say was
nothing at all.
I wanted to touch you,
whisper poetry in your ear,
inhale the scent of your hair.
But I had the sniffles,
I couldn't speak my soul through a kleenex.
So we played cribbage
when we were too drunk to sightread.
Laughing and talking through my snotty nose
till we couldn't keep our eyes open.
I went through a whole box of tissues
and a six pack of red stripe.
I'm looking forward to next time,
The poetry we can make,
When I throw my words through your window
And the shades snap up.
And you can see your soul
Reflected in my eyes.
I'll feel you tremble without you knowing it.
I'll feel the abandon when you cry out loud...
At my touch.
Sometime after I'm over
the Saturday night sniffles.