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One of Several Talking Men

Because my head is a magnet for bullets
I am spending the day indoors. First

I admired the topiary for several hours
and when my eyes began to ache I rang

for lunch. Lunch arrived with injunctions.
I considered my feet. I did not consider

my altitude. Because I stuffed myself
into the reliquary, I am finding movement

difficult. Luckily, I would not dream
of dancing in this outfit. You must be

a foreign exchange student. Allow me
to make an observation. We live beneath

a frugal moon, and only in her bad light
do our women seem consumptive.

Though what do I know. I am, moreover,
a senatorial moment, and if you don’t

forget me, I may do it myself. You could
conceivably think I’ve never known love,

but I suspect that in the war years, when nurses
bandaged my wounds with repetitive flair,

there existed between us if not affection,
at least a sense that the subject could arise.

Award-winning poet of 'The Trees The Trees'. Author of 'The Crying Book'. Published in The New Yorker, Poetry, & more. Former fellow at Emory.