She asks which part of her body
I like the most and I say it’s
the softness, the smoothness of her
inner thigh, so as to remind her of
the start of it all, that time she wore
striped stockings that rose a mile high
in that direction. I think it was a fancy-dress,
she must have gone as a pair of legs.
I ask her which part of me, of my body,
she really likes, knowing the answer
will remain unsaid – the male physique having,
in her mind, a bleak future generally,
thirty-downhill. I do not fall outside this rule –
indeed, I probably form the foundation
of her quite compelling observation.
Would my mind fare any better?
I let a sigh begin and end any
exploration of that one. Think of the things
that can swing our heads around a room, like
the silver ball rolling on the roulette table; or the
addict’s wild eyes leaping from corner to corner of
the gaming hall, unaware of his absurdity,
the degree of his self-demeaning.
Has all dignity, all deportment, gone?
Those priceless things that form the first
attraction, which can’t be replaced in their
original roles, despite the accumulation of qualities,
widely acclaimed, some small-town fame.
She did not fall for those, nor the clothes
on my back. The love of another resides
in the other’s eyes, not the tying of a tie;
in the blossom of youth, not the length of a tooth.