These two have been in the oven a long time.
That old wall-eyed professor, he approves of everyone;
Thinks anyone is worth the time of day.
What can he know? No, find the
Razor-tongued, vitriolic man,
Whose students run in tears from his office,
And try to please him. Be sure not to smile
At anything cute. Don't laugh unless you see
The corners of his mouth begin to move.
Look for the greed in every generosity.
Obtain the dental records of that horse's sires
To the third and fourth generation. It's tricky
You have to look like you don't want his approval
Or he's sure to withhold it. Show how every action
Defeats its avowed end. How the sentimental
Is laced with cruelty. Set yourself ready to sneer
Because you never know
When an opportunity might arise, and then
You might sneer at the same thing
And find yourselves comrades.
The blessing! So suppose you do that,
Your reward will be someday
To run in tears from that office yourself
With cruelties tailored expressly for you:
And armed with those, and the skills you have learned,
One day you may have an office of your own.
Some One Time
Rose-white; the track of a thrush,
A dotted line against the clouds:
The softness of your vulva
In my fingers.
Folding the sky into
An origami of moisture;
The sweetness of your wetness,
The curved lines of pubic hairs
Barely felt, like the lines on the back
Of a drawn-on napkin; a braille
Of wanting. You came
The hard lozenges under my tongue
Of nipples that have woken
After long slumber. It is painful
And so folded in
With suffering past and to come,
That grief overcomes even delight,
And suddenly I go slack, and bury my head
In your shoulder.
"It's okay," you say,
Using my own words against me.
And you are right. The sky
Is stitched, and unstitched,
Day and night, the clouds fold
And unfold; the labia kiss my fingertips;
If nothing is forever, it is only so that
Some one thing can be in some one time.
And all his tribe:
Your sweet-and-sour taste
Lingers on my lips.
The thrush comes to
A momentary halt: its thin branch
Sways once, black,
Against the white sky.