LOVERS MAKE THEMSELVES LARGER CAGES

 

Image result for boston streets at night

Lovers make themselves larger cages.

We, for instance,

Followed quiet roads, to kiss,

To find a place to hide our homeless love

From eyes across the way, or tall windows above.

We took paths we hadn’t taken before,

But found every inch accounted for,

Private or public. The nowhere we sought,

In perfect anonymity, did not exist.

Then we would have really kissed.

But we shouldn’t have been doing this.

Afraid we would get caught:

Anonymity could not be bought.

Visibility and knowledge get inside your head.

We sometimes felt that we were dead.

Today I passed a little side route view

I once took secretly with you.

It didn’t lead to anything new.

Just more civilization. Us, looking around,

Thinking our paradise would never be found.

We were working slaves, stuck in the city.

Profound, the love, but our busy environs were too witty,

Too full of others: a tourist pondering behind a gravestone—

We thought the beautiful old cemetery would find us alone.

A small road would look promising and quiet,

But soon would end up in a riot.

The one thing urban planning misses—

Fortresses for forbidden kisses.

From a parking lot, or the latest rural fair,

We’d look at the moon, and wish we were there—

Though on the moon you can’t breathe.

One quick kiss, and then we’d leave.

Once, under a tree, by a fallen log,

At night, someone came walking their dog.

Once, in a building where no one should have been,

A janitor came to clean.

We wanted to kiss each other so bad.

The non-kissing world drove us mad.

Every fence, path, and stumbling walk

Contained private or public folk,

Who belonged to the world more than we.

They didn’t know you wanted to kiss me,

And after a while, you didn’t. Now I see

Only public places that exist in those places.

And I never see yours—just other faces.

Today I saw the flowers in bloom.

Last night, walking, I saw a television on in a room.

Lovers make themselves larger cages.

Then return home, to death, to boredom, just like lovers from other ages.

 

 

 

 

4 Comments

  1. Mary Angela Douglas said,

    June 12, 2019 at 9:13 pm

    very unique, exceptional poem. in all respects for sure, they are as you say, busy accounting for every inch of space. I wonder if urban planning isnt really a left over euphemism someone stole from an unpublished Orwell novel that hasnt yet been accounted for. The title sounds like Thomas Wyatt. I really like the way your poems seem modern and then all of a sudden they don’t.

  2. Anonymous said,

    June 13, 2019 at 2:29 am

    A Balanchine ballet could have been made on this poem. Or an art film. I felt like it kind of was an art film when I was reading it. The dog on the walk I saw as a St. Bernard.

  3. Anonymous said,

    June 13, 2019 at 7:26 pm

    that quality in your poems of switching back and forth between modernity and the mists of poetic history is quite astonishing. it gives your poems a kind of recognizable signature I don’t think anyone could duplicate. one of the signs of a naturally gifted artist. it reminds me of alternating colors as in lights on one Christmas tree. a mesmerizing effect.

    • Anonymous said,

      June 15, 2019 at 6:24 am

      Well said, well said.


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