Boyfriend Bonfire

Bitter poem. About love, lust, loss.
Quick. 150+ words, 15 minutes, first draft.
Ready, set, go!


It would never work, see,
because I’d have to burn books—

which I do not do.

(Charles Frasier, Cold Mountain.
Naomi Klein, No Logo.
Anita Diamont, The Red Tent.
William Irwin, The Simpson’s and Philosophy.
Sei Shonagon, The Pillow Book.)

Or I’d have to burn albums—

which I do not do.

(Sonic Youth, Sister.
Talking Heads, Stop Making Sense.
Paul Desmond, Take Ten.
Sun Volt, Trace.)

And it wouldn’t work
to have you here,
or You here
or yOu here
or YOU,

because even when I had yoU,
I coveted our silver shard of hope like
something lost before it even began,
my love spread across your body
like iridescent mourning
from the fool on the hill.

It would never work
because I breathe
in dreams,
drown in words,

bury myself deep in the marrow
of charred affirmation
where I settle the ash long enough to
make house with, to
drive home
the loneliness of solitude
the longitude of lassitude
the soggy grey of heartache.

It would never work, see,
because the lit match cannot suffuse
a weary heart
and besides,
I’d have to find a way to
be unafraid again—

which I cannot do.

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