Friday, August 31, 2007

As Promised

"The 30-something man sunbathing in a speedo in Mellon Park" poem. I've been told that my poems tend to throw an unexpectant twist at the reader somewhere in the middle or at the end. The truth is, the twists are unexpected to me as well. I tend to start out a poem based on a small event or image, often from my real life, and the true nature of the poem only unfolds itself to me through the writing process.

That being said, this poem goes a lot of places. A lot of intimate places that I'm not sure I originally wanted it to go. As presented here, this poem is very rough and needs a lot of revision to clarify its purpose.

So, now that I've done all but apologize for this poem, (I will never apologize for my work, no matter how crazy it may seem) I leave you to enjoy "Stranger in the Park."

You lay there in Mellon Park in your black Speedo,
your skin burning to a brilliant shade of flamingo pink.
I watch you from the picnic table where I write,
wonder your age and sexual orientation.
Not because I am interested in you, but because I
have never seen a 30-something man sunbathe in a Speedo before.
I fantasize about replacing you with my own man, his legs
stiff, straight out in front of him, his eyes blissfully closed.
I would lean over him with my bare knees digging into the dirt,
press him into the earth, run my tongue over his lips.
I can’t, so I watch.

You are sitting up now, your legs pulled to chest,
your head cocked to the left.
I think you almost catch me. I look away.
When I glance up again you lay back, pull your shorts
up your toned legs, over your nearly naked hips in a way
that would make me blush had I never seen a man dress before.
I look down at my legal pad, watch you out of the corner
of my eye slide your shirt over your head, fold you towel
into threes, stuff it into your backpack.
You leave with your back turned to me; I don’t have a chance
to transpose Mark’s face onto yours, to miss your presence like I miss his.

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