Poets write about sex because it is a part of life. This past week I revisited EE Cummings work “She being Brand… (XIX)” and discovered Billy Collins piece “Taking off Emily Dickinson’s Clothes.” Cummings captured me again with his metaphorical humor, and Collins described an encounter so intensely sensual that I actually felt a twinge of angered jealousy over the prospect of someone doing that to a woman I love. That is just good poetry.
I also studied some of Keat’s intense use of assonance and alliteration to bring rhythm to his poetry, and my own following poem is an exercise to duplicate that flow of rhythm using assonance and soft rhyme along with 21st century, very plain English.
The poem below is about my rather late “coming of age” and I hope that you will find the rhythm in it that I intended. The first half is boring and was intended to be that. It describes a boring year. The second half comes much more alive when things seemed to change. Thank you for visiting and I apologize in advance if the subject matter is not to your taste…..
Fourteen, as a year, was pretty much a waste.
My hovering face just filled a nothingness space.
From dawn to dusk, all my days were the same,
routine was a must, with so little to gain.
A paper route took my evenings by score,
And then again on early Sunday morns.
School seemed to be my only change of sorts,
I think you can see that it too fell way short
of keeping my interest on any single day.
finding life’s zest always sloughing away.
I jumped into public from a parochial school,
Where classes had been tougher, as a general rule.
So I sat in those chairs without much to learn,
Never really aware of life’s continual churn.
And I laughed at all the other boy’s remarks,
the sexual tones caught my feigning a lark.
Because I didn’t know what they were speaking of,
having never been visited by that goddess of love.
Although mine was late, I certainly should say
I’m glad for the wait and that it came that way.
For one day in our boring Civics class lecture,
the teacher announced he had a great pleasure.
For three days in a row we would avoid his voice,
by watching some movie of his insistent choice.
I don’t remember that film, not really well,
only black and white and boring as hell.
But the movie is moot, if you read on and see,
it’s that the lights went off in room two -oh- three.
In the back of the class sat Barbara and I,
her tight little jeans suddenly caught my eye.
With the click of that flicker and in the dim lights,
I scrunched my chair closer as quietly as mice.
As a lioness in prey, so very sure and slow,
I sent my hand her way and just grabbed ahold.
I studied her mug to see if she’d notice
my hand on her rump and if she’d be pissed.
But she just stared straight ahead and I suddenly found,
hands are good for more than passing papers around.
How could she not know? My hand was there firmly!
Had she no tail feelings? Was this something wom’nly?
So for 45 minutes my arm stayed a’stretched,
all the time wondering if she’d have thought me a letch.
But the bell rang clear and she just got up to leave,
and I sat there amazed as this thing washed over me.
I had to sit there another five minutes or so,
the problem under my zipper wouldn’t let me go.
The teacher asked me if I was alright,
I told him my eyes needed to adjust to the light.
The next day I ran to that class to prepare,
I grabbed her seat, pulled it closer to my chair.
And then she came in, her book bag in tow,
looked down at her chair and smiled with a glow.
She used her knee to push it next to me,
and sat down with a wink, I could suddenly see
that life at fourteen could be so much more
than what I had thought it ever was before.
I didn’t know it then but my whole life had changed,
always to be indebted to women in tight jeans.
Occasionally others will come to ask,
if I ever had a most favorite class.
And I’m really not trying to avoid being crass,
I just surely don’t know which answer to pass.
Because Creative Writing was an absolute blast.
But it might have been Civics when I learned about ass.
Both are amazing fun, so it’s really just a coin toss….
Heads — or tails?
|I like to have a martini,
Two at the very most.
After three I’m under the table,
After four I’m under my host.