Now, Here as I Am

So, it has happened again, like clockwork—
’always does, one year in every ten—
among labourers I take my luncheon
to stay humble; among the uni(n)formed

here I meet him, sitting at ease before
a spread-thighed feast, kneeling, peeling from skin
a wreath tied ’round a piece of a poor man
one of them has torn; broken and pouring

streams of dusk, weeping pinkest tide on shore
and lip alike as he dives in. Husband!
I call, Shall I join him? Bent on bending,
I conform in contortion, I ignore

caution, and I pose as his victim, more
pathetic—pulsing pathos, gyrations
consummating our chemical wedding—
his acid tongue marries my open door,

slamming it like fog on a rear window.
Hearing a crowd, I holler into them,
Labourers! How should we finish it, then‽
And grunting, the labourers they say, Jerk!

And so, my unknown foreman, he rewards
his brethren’s cheers with compliance; rising
to the occasion, and untightening
his belt, he wets his fingers, thrusts forward,

strokes his staff, and puts in his best effort.
‘Poor is the man whose pleasures depend on
the permission of another,’
songs, I learn justifying love’s hard work,

and firsthand, I come to know how slow your
day can go when food courts you, ripe, pleading
to be eaten; even men often seem
edible, teasing one with their offer

of such unconditional feasting. Sure,
rumour has it there is more to fucking
than all of integrity’s compromising,
but nothing comes for free, neither lunch nor

unity, so in fixed rhythm under
a ravenous noon’s heat, I come seeking,
craving to its uncouth leaking, my keen
mouth’s unclean hunger none can word better.