Monday, January 24, 2011

To a stranger nice and fine

by E. Wong Martin

Booze: what you are to me,
and a body-tight shirt, perhaps,
or even the stubborn dirt
under my fingernails,
and all other things sweet
that lovers fail to see—
But not now, not yet,
for you are still a stranger,
a beautiful one, and you don’t
even know it. You are all these,
but I will tell it to your face,
a beautiful one, in the future
a beautiful one, I pray

It sucks that I couldn’t go
any closer to you on our “first”
meeting, because booze
and blaring music (a.k.a. noise),
and smoke and drunken
sleep were not in my favor.
But it was so nice meeting you,
though the meeting was not
so nice. And notwithstanding
(what a wonderful complex word!)
that you could break my heart
with a single touch, I dreamt
that you held me, carried me,
to the heights of nostalgia,
nudity and nonchalance, all those
wonderful complex words
in the vocabulary of an occasional

But the lights are back on,
the party's ended, now I’m sober
and a little somber, too. Yet,
the fermentations in my gut
haven’t stopped to fuel what
could have been just a dream
of utter intimacy with a fine stranger
with a smile for everyone. How much
does it cost, anyway? I would buy it
and keep it in my pocket, together
with either sunshine or sweet rain,
depending on the season of (what
could be called) love. And I sing
like Joni Mitchell sometimes, too,
like today, I could drink a case of

Although this early I know
I could not have you so easily,
as you are trapped by this wall
erected by some stupid
love of yours for some stupid
(son of a/b*tch), or so I heard.
But nonetheless, I am thankful
for the little moments spent
on one night: me, you,
my brusqueness, your finesse.
My sleepiness, your wakefulness.
Looking back, I was just a boy,
standing weak in front of
draft beer and cocktails. But you,
you are fine in the nicest way,
and nice in the finest.

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