I don’t need you to hold me, but you have to keep me warm.

“It is a nice jacket, very cool, Sandra Dee.”

“Yeah, I’ve got chills, they’re multiplying. I kept it on while I was waiting for you, just to show it off. It has so many pockets, I don’t even need a purse! It makes me feel mad with power- not to be weighed down by a bag. I realized on Saturday: this is why society won’t give women pockets- it makes it harder for us to run.”

“Yeah, I’m cold, wouldn’t it be nice if only I had my blue Cardigan…but someone stole it.”

“I’m not giving it back. It’s mine now. Well, it’s still yours, but I’m keeping it, permanently. I told you, I get it in the divorce.”

“Fine. Well, where did we get it? I will have to buy another one.”

“I think C&A? Not sure. I am sort of accumulating a collection of men’s sweaters at this point.”

“Oh…?”

“Well, not quite, it’s just two at the moment, but it was three for while. I mean, I was good, I gave one of them back. The other guy hasn’t realized I still have his cashmere sweater. I forgot a belt at the nice one’s place, not sure what that means.”

“So, it’s, like, your thing.”

“Yeah, it’s like a tax, or whatever. The VAT. Not that anyone is paying for the arrangement, but, like, I guess that’s the catch…you come into my apartment, you must sacrifice an article of cashmere to me.”

“Seems fair.”

“Yeah it’s a trade off- you don’t have to hold me, but you need to keep me warm.”

You’ll have a Boston accent in no time.

I walked myself home from the date, alone.

Past the silhouettes of a couple breaking up
beneath the metal staircase at the construction site.
Backlit by the street-lamps on the square,
Snippets of her exasperation reverberating against the steel. 
Cold air and echoes of argument. 

I’ve done the whole flustered-but-adoring-academic routine before.
Perfected the art.
I could write a thesis on it.

I’m not interested in kissing a smoker.
I’m am somewhat interested in kissing you.
You seem awfully charming after a few cocktails,
And so on. 

And ho! Barkeep!
A salve, good sir, for the anxious polyglot!
Shaking like an over-caffeinated leaflet.



Today Academia informed me that someone in Rome cited me, or cited someone by my name.
My long Italian name which I am, it turns out, mispronouncing. Sure, I could be reasonable and assume it’s just a shared name. But it’s not so unreasonable that at last, one if the many PhD candidates I have nursed through their dissertations, went ahead and gave me some credit where it’s due.

The hill I will die on is that I am not walking up that fucking hill with you.

Sunday, 12:59 p.m.

I think I can see it, the end.
There exists an illusion we face towards the exit, wherein the tunnel seems longer for a moment,
Stretching out towards the light.
Where we can slow down, hold our breath, and decide.

I say this every Sunday. The I’m done mantra.
But, it’s usually a ritual reserved for the evening, and it’s barely the afternoon.
My patience is creeping in, cutting off your time.

Monday, 6:13 a.m.

You make me pray for awful things, for the will to stop loving.
I won’t let you sap all compassion from me.

What a lazy and romantic poisoning.
You’re a grumpy patch of weeds.

“Have a nice week. Have a nice life, I guess. Be good.”

I will, respectively,
Do precisely that,
Do my absolute best,
And do no such thing.

Christ, the man brought me a flower. Not flowers, a flower, a living breathing thing begging to be a metaphor.


God, I must be so convenient for you.

I want to be careful.
No,- I want to be adored.
I am absolutely incapable of being careful, and relentlessly capable of care.
You are broken, I don’t want to fix you.
But I will.
Fuck it, I —- you.

Okay, I don’t, but I do, well I don’t, but I will.
I don’t want to, but, you know, and, anyways, what was I saying? I…
I don’t. I don’t, you know, —- you, but,
I am absolutely on the precipice of —ing you.

And you absolutely don’t deserve it.

Honestly, I hate you. I tell myself every Sunday I will stop-
Stop talking to you,
Quit making myself miserable.

When I can, I spend the evening exploring all the gorgeous things
In this city who are worth adoring.
Those that are young, and eager, and secretly reading all my writing.
(Hey, baby)

And yet, come Monday, somehow,
I have let you back in.

You son of a bitch, you brought me a flower.
Not flowers.
Not some thing I can appreciate and let shrivel up by Wednesday
Like ten bucks of affection gone dry.

No, you,
You fucking asshole
Brought me a beautiful thing which I will surely destroy.

I was raised by a borderline wood nymph, and yet
Inherited nothing close to a green thumb,
I am reckless with plants
I am preposterously incapable.

Give me a man at his lowest depths and lord
Can I resurrect him with my tongue alone.

But give me a plant and watch it be
Smothered, drowned by my keen attention.

I am nothing if not
an affectionate thunderstorm.

And God, this poor blossom,
This orchid, doomed,
I’ve named it. I’ve named her,
Eurydice.
For I, as Orpheus, shall do my best to keep her from dying.

I do nothing but kill things.

God save her from me.

My friend warned me that she will shed her petals in the coming weeks
As the city turns cold and retreats.

“Well, I will say, ‘here is Eurydice, my stick who imagines she is a flower.'”

My friend warns me, further, that the stem will also die,
but there will be leaves, and promises
A hefty requirement of patience
A relentless necessity of due diligence.

Eurydice, soon stumped and longing for sun
Perched at a north-facing window
On the corner of my dining room table
Dormant.
Indirectly sunlit.
Gorgeous,
Not dead yet.

Some thing I must nurse back in to existence,
A thing I must watch die
And sleep
And be reborn
And not once acknowledge as an analogy for anything in my life.

Olfactory Conundrums of a Hum-drum Existence

My shoulders smell like your sweat.

I should soap up,

Should wash you out.

I’m sacred enough

I’m decently dirty.

Latex and lubricant scented everything,

All my corners, how you’ve kissed them clean.

What a thing to bend to,

Each joint angled toward a lustful embrace with your mouth.

I don’t even know you,

And you know so little of the world or the ways of women,

Yet.

Yet, you.

Skilled, some natural talent,

Gorgeous and you don’t know it yet.

“This is like a second g-spot for you, your lower back”

(I showed you how to hold me like he does. You learned well.)

You lift me into your arms,

Precisely, like some tiny, precious thing.

Press me me against the wall, a flower betwixt pages in a bible.

My moans escape into the courtyard and echo throughout the evening,

My everything captive to you for so long as you please.

So tall.

I could have used you,

Back when I had to hang the curtains.

I could use you.

So tell,

Tell me,

Should I keep you?

“Wow”

“What?”

“Beautiful. You. You’re beautiful.”

Operation Over-Under

It would seem that I’m an insatiable minx,
Suggestively bruised,
“Did I give you that scratch?”

Just a bit of sweat
Between acquaintances. A bit
of latex, and
little left
to the imagination
I’m having a delightful time,
Save for the occasional sore throat.

Though, perhaps I should practice
more subtlety,
Lest my reputation precede me.
She makes a grand entrance,
a cacophony.
Rumor has it,
The girl goes down easy.

I’ve nothing to apologize for,
He tells me I’m a good girl,
Tells me he wants more.