Another Poem About Another Man

This cannot do, this cannot do
Feet like claws displaced on these brick roads
Head like a ringing telephone nightmare with
Trawling passages and rats scurrying by these canals

I am a popped helium balloon released for temporary exhilaration
Disintegrated into turbulent waters and eaten up by
A mother turtle. There are worms where I sit. This boy
Rattled something inside, I mean he set off nuclear bombs

So this is where he cut through. A perfect Japanese knife slice
Effortless so you can tell it is new

My Eden nonchalance lost to pinpricks on lungs
Hashtag attraction, hashtag what the fuck is attraction
And I am writing poems about a man again
My cheap infatuation given like name cards in a college career fair
(but this is different! Fuck.)

It is now all lavender and soft padded hands on my spine
Did he know what he was doing with those mismatched socks
And songs about reckless decisions?
This cannot do, this cannot do.


Artwork by Suzanne Valadon, “Casting of the Net” 1914.