Poem of the Week

Each week we feature a poem by one of our authors. Take a few moments to enjoy it. And then, if you'd like to pass it along to a friend who could use a pause-poésie in their day, click on the "share this poem" link below.

What Love Intended

Let's be clear: I wanted you
to love me from the start.

You were fine and slender as a boy
at the piano must be.
A doctor's son in our paper
mill town wasn't supposed to have
friends like me with my
department store clothes and blood
shot father, but you did.

                                     Six grades and one month–
long kiss later, we were convinced we were
what love intended, we had the front seat, back seat and rear
of your station wagon, my mother's couch,
your mother's closet,

                                     (two winters climing
through the narrow window
of the cottage where we undressed one another of family and school
and other selves.
                           Weren't we two
people, each day a different story
than by night?
                       How much did we invent
to have ourselves more
or less what we wanted
to be
                       before we became
five-hour fights with sex in the dark
to forget what needs we couldn't
             When we divided up
our better part of four years, how
could I not love you
even then, half of what I was?

Beginning again, you step out
of the man like second-
hand skin, emerge a woman
I never knew, my ex-boy
             How do I hold
our past, divded, with you
in your Liverpool home and me
on the far side of the country you left, single, lonely
as the sky at night when there are
no stars to place us, wondering
if it's true

that we are the people we are,
there is no keeping us together.

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