THE COLD WAR

We parted on strange, ambiguous terms;

Our love is dead, but still beautiful, with lively worms.

No goodbyes. The vindicated heart stirs the vengeful mind.

We were as cruel in the end—as in the start, we were kind.

She asked for poems, and I complied.

I made poems for her only, and to the rest of the world I died.

She secured a vow, in what up until then had been payment by me

To the world—what can we do but obey the world?—in poetry.

I made poems which before were in the shadow of a hill

But now in the sunshine shining in the brightness of her will.

She couldn’t write back, and could I now take those words back

I would, but they weren’t hers, so them and mine would be the lack.

Myself, my poems and her became one for a heart

Feeding urgent, reckless love; the alienating injury of my selfish art

Was overwhelming to her simple effort at living

And when she began to pull away, I was like my art. Unforgiving.

That is, not forgiving itself, in its effort at perfection;

I loved her as I loved poetry and myself—but acceptance means rejection,

Since replacement and death are necessary to excitement and creation;

My love and my poetry were true: all that I could think and feel—

But she was fickle; not a poet, she had the advantage; she was real,

And so she became testy and began to drift away.

And now? Our love is like the end of this strange, stormy day,

Windy, deep clouds looming, all stormy above, but dry—

Hateful peace, a Cold War, because every soldier is a spy.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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