Love is a four letter word
& I've been worked into a novel.
There are whole libraries
of letters and bracelets and promise rings
broken in two
(1.Everything you've touched
2. Anything your name clutches)
filed beneath my bed.
Lastnight I went pennypinching
though every million dollar thing
I've been searching
for some sign that the gold standard
has gone wayward-
I won't ever be gilded-
my insides are lined in silver
I won't ever be guilty
of regretting someone who once made my heart hazy.
My eyes always get sort of blurry
when the page is only black and white
Shannon, you brought color to my life
and to my skin.
You were right when you said
no one would love me like you do;
I haven't been hurt last Halloween.
Laura had the most gentle hands,
eyes to remind my Midwestern mind
that the tide is everrising
& a heart each sea could sit in.
Occupancy: 4& even more secrets.
Chris, I never got to explain
that I never had a crush on you,
only straight friends who insisted I did
Thank you for keeping a distance-
Same to Nick, Paul, and Taylor.
Kellie was nineteen.
Older women are irresistible
and even over women are even more irresistible:
You were the sweetest champagne
with an outer rim of rain
& though I have but such small hands,
I carried all that I could
but I am a lamb not a mule,
and the puddles turned to pools-
I am sorry.
This is a lamb without loss.
"light of my life, fire in my loins"
I could never be with someone
who thought Lolita was the height of affection
but I wanted attention.
So I wrote you one hundred poems about someone else-
The banker& the painter & the sailor& the chaser& the shepard& the printer:
I am willing& spilling for all six,
whatever the fix.
Thank you for skipping ahead to the last page so soon.
I have a feeling these dedications are done.