Joshua Marie Wilkinson

Poem about Sex

The sky is lovely and appalling.

Meanwhile, oceanic glistering out
of the soundhole of our
near-dead payphone. Whose
song is this? And
what’s to be slashed into
a guiding line of piss
in the sedge as the wet crows
lift up into more rain.

I want to get on top of you.
Or under you. Basically, either one
would do. Any mood continues
its feral opposite which
sings through the tips of my fingers.
Doing it seems to contain
not doing it. At least until
it’s done through.



Your Publisher Sent Me Your Recent Book

But I set the book
back on the shelf without
even reading a single one
of its poems, hoping
as I had been that
the acknowledgments
in the back might have at least listed
a minor catalog of the poet’s
indiscretions, and that my own
suspended ego would discover its
name there as well
as the others with whom I might
develop and begin to nurse
a rivalrous hatred for.

So you’d kept your husband
protected from any
listing, your own mind vouchsafed
with crude secrets, and hurtful ones. I
think this is the means of keeping pain
alive in the subject. I think this might be
the way I keep myself hot and aglow
and angry in the lack of being mentioned.
Look at me, nursing old me. Would it
be funny if it were somebody else?
Yet, it is. It was us, formerly.
Thoroughly vanquished, etcetera.

Now then, back to my petty
hallucinations, summoning memory
like an old servant, appearing again
with the same exact menu as before, at best
sufficiently rearranged so as to
effect that initial sheen
of newness to me once more.