Pictures of You

Love handles formed from a gluttonous affection
for a woman I once thought my soulmate
before I learned a soulmate consisted of more
than the same green eyes and the same Irish heritage
as the same woman I loved since last century;
she also needed a heart. Though she had giant breasts,
I saw she boasted little else inside her chest
when the flatulence of her friends bum-rushed the room,
shoved out the airs she wore for me, impregnated her womb
with vulgarities I could never nurse. I fled that night
but not before I murdered her affection for me
with a confession of love–a scheme I plagiarized
from one of those wolves she loved. She reacted expectedly;
she still hates me today. For once, we were mutual.

Yet fall begets nostalgia, nostalgia begets withdrawal,
withdrawal begets craving for ancient addictions,
desires to return to the past, to orchestrate
tragic evenings a little more melodically. But
I am no magician able to create life from vacuums,
able to vanish monsters behind curtains,
able to transfigure prats into princesses.
My only recourse is to pillage the memories
of pearls and sculpt new teeth, new feet, a sturdier spine,
to plow every crevice until only dust remains,
then to flick a match atop the remains and watch
all the shit–each photograph, each card, each letter–
burn. There will be no resurrection this time.
But I will save the puppets for future performances.

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