untitled poem


Untitled Poem
Alan Dugan

Why feel guilty because the death of a lover causes lust?
It is only an animal urge to perpetuate the species,
but if I do not inhibit my imagination and dreams
I can see your skull smiling up at me from underground
and your bones loosely arranged in the missionary position.
This is not an incapacitating vision except at night,
and not a will of constancy, nor an irrevocable trust,
so I take on a woman with a mouth like an open wound.
I would do almost anything to avoid your teeth in the dirt.
She is desirable, loving, and definite, but when I feel her up
I hesitate: I still feel the site of your absence. It is
as large as the silence of your invitational smile
or the vacancy open in the cage of your ribs. Fuck that,
I say. Why be guilty for this guilt? It’s only birth control.
Therefore I extend my hands tongue and prick to you
through her as substitutions for the rest of my body
in hopes that you’ll be born again as her daughter
before I have to join you as your permanent husband,
but I know you: you want me to come, come as I am,
right now, without her, and to bring along a son.
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