posted November 22, 2011

The last time I saw you
You were the girl next door and
I was the town Bohemian
I’d pegged you for a beauty queen
And I was right.
But I could not see your real beauty.

The last time I saw you
I wore a fat suit
That was more than a joke
Less than a lark
Intended to be
A slight of hand
A slide on a banana peel
My destiny, not yours
To spend the rest of my life
Walking with care
Not to slip again.

You gave me a voice
You gave me a hand
You ringed me in
You championed me

She did too, but in a different way.

She came in sideways, through the side door
So sweetly goofy
I couldn’t possibly deny her.
Like a puppy who decides who her owner is
She chose me and I let her.

And then she began to work on me.
“That beauty queen, that beauty queen
I do not like that beauty queen.
Look, how our skin turns green
When we stand beside her.
She says she wants to be your friend
But to what end? It can’t be real.
You and I should make a deal
Agree to walk right off the field.”

And so I did. I walked right off,
But she didn’t follow.

This straight I have visited before.
Each time I leap to capture the disc
they cheer, and I feel complete,
(Perhaps the way you did at the beauty contest?)
But presently I live in fear of losing it.
I grip it ever more tightly in my hands.
And what good is a discus unless you toss it?

So I am back on the field.
Now I will play.
Now I will sing with you.
Now I will leave behind the voices
–and let’s face it, they are my own–
that leer at beauty
that do not trust it
That can not see it reflected in themselves.

I should never have been envious of you.
Your beauty was my beauty
As the rose lifts us all up
As we lose ourselves in its gaze.

The Comments

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  1. What a sweet, enigmatic poem.

    I sort of got lost among the characters: the “I”, the “you”, the “she”, and the “beauty queen”.

    I loved the Dr. Seuss allusion to “Green Eggs and Ham”.

    Keep up the good work!

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