Melancholy Hyperbole

Poetry about longing.

Impossibly Yours

This might have been a love poem
but a phrase stumbled,
wiped out a whole line. It glanced away,
distracted by a muscular policeman
just as it stepped from the curb,
and found itself sitting in a parking lot
bruised and slightly bloodied,
propped against a rusted Honda.
When strangers offered aid
the poem became surly, churlish;
it had prepared for tenderness
and passion:
dressed in his favorite color,
donned minimal lacy underwear.
Now the words roll away
like oranges across asphalt—
spill under Fords and Subarus,
tumble down the storm drain.
And the poem, shaken, embarrassed,
limps off in the wrong direction,
ankle puffed like a rutabaga,
displaying amazing interplays of red,
blue, and purple.
(He doesn’t like purple.)
Just this morning the poem
whispered seductively, tipped its chin,
reached its slender hand tentatively
toward his sleeve, allowed him
the initiative. Now it’s resigned
to another evening with Ben and Jerry
and, conceivably, a liter or so
of Ernest and Julio.
Ann Howells has had work appear in Calyx, Crannog (Ire), Magma (UK) and Spillway. She edits the journal, Illya’s Honey, which she recently took from print to digital. Her two chapbooks are: Black Crow in Flight (Main Street Rag, 2007) and the Rosebud Diaries (Willet, 2012). Currently she serves as president of the Dallas Poets Community.

Categories: Poetry, Themed, Unfortunately I can't love you

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