All Rights Reserved
She was the thief who watched his holy war
on long affairs and marriage long before she
stole his heart on the battleground,
a heart with a no return policy.
He might have held her one last time
the way a miner embraces his gold.
Never saying a word, he walked away,
and she lay there and bled.
Did he know he left her like a church left in ruin
until there was nothing left for her to feel,
her heart barely beating?
Did he think of her?
And him, with his crackling smile?
He was a match stick boyfriend,
a puppet with his sex afire
who made women feel disposable.
She had to know: Would his wood burn,
darken, and quickly turn black?
Would anyone treasure his torched remains?
She had to know because
he had infiltrated her clothes
like the smell from some dump or
that shameful shit river.
Her crown hadn’t slipped around her neck;
she warned him:
stay out of my garden—
unless he wanted what was hidden
under her reckless tongue.
No, you can’t lift my skirt and look under
it as though it is an Astroturf rug, she cried;
she didn’t care he was trying to find his balls.
No, you can’t paddle your canoe into my
my tunnel of love to bury your
fertilized seed for it to burgeon.
She dusted off her dreams,
the photos on the mantel and scattered around
the empty room, the bookcase with that
rule book for loving him.
She jumped off his sated, artistic tilt-awhirl,
but like the tonsils he’d lost, he forgot
that custom-made feeling of her love.
The question, then, was, how could he touch
with the hands that touched her
without telling that woman the truth?