Respectfully declining hospitality

(aka rich and penniless)

Respectfully declining hospitality

The beaver chews a log
leaves soggy
dried out in the cabin
smoking wood and salmon
humming birds sip honey
tinker bell ringing on the phone;
farmer’s wife takes my pulse
‘you should eat a banana’
I nod ‘good advice’ and roll a fag.

- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

I need to find
a newspaper
to check out ‘New in Homes’
looking for a place to rent
among the catacombs.

- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

I ran away from winter
out of gridlock, into crowded
blankness, muffled
hitchhiking on the off ramps
stuck out my swollen tongue
cursed at by underpass tramps--
‘get your own damn place to think.’

I snuck into the dressing room
Cherry Blossom Studios
asked the makeup artist
to make me Valentino
but he laughed and rolled his eyes
--‘we don’t condone libido.’
I enlisted at the dating base
clicked on the singles scene
(I don’t mind discrete reminders
like ‘you could use some Listerine’)

I dried out on the wagon
the vodka cured my knees
but it made me vicious
I never knew what dreams were true
I always woke up screaming.

So I begged my professor
a reference letter
a scholastic potpourri
‘please send it by December
addressed to Mr. Gandhi’
(not making love
or war
sounds like
a good idea to me.)

And yesterday
I was cutting up an onion
--tears add flavour to soup--
when you walked in with
a five-course dinner
from a five-star restaurant;

and so
so much
for honest eating,
what could I do but
you in my home?

by dessert
I knew
I had chewed up dignity
I chose your bone.

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