dangers of a warm bed

by Gabriel Ricard

If I never know how to drive a motorcycle
into the middle of a drug store curiously
trapped in the 1920’s,
that’s okay, baby,
that’s okay.

I didn’t want the good shit anyway.
I didn’t want to stand taller
than the seasons that loathe dishonest weddings,
the Associate Editors who think there’s electricity
in the coins that travel listlessly between their knuckles
or the mailboxes that know when I’ve taped pennies
from Broadway on the envelope.

I didn’t want to put my hand on your waist,
completely by accident,
of course,
and not care if I was as charming
as someone once said about someone I wish I was.

If I don’t wait for the angels or flying saucers,
that’s fine, sweetheart,
that’s whatever it has to be.

One of us is humoring the other.
One of us is paying a traveling poet’s debts.
One or both of us has a kiss that rubs the heartstrings like warm beer.

Read some good stuff on slipstreams.
Think we might have a whole new market
cornered and breathing hard on what two people can do
with their shared memories and conflicting visions.

You’re like a statue that can wipe its own tears away.
But doesn’t.
I’m like an advertisement that wants to ask for ten more seconds.
But can’t.

Our friends think we’re perfect for each other.
I’ve never been so slighted in all my life,
though I’ve also never been so sweetly assaulted
as the time you left leeches in the bathtub.

Leave it to you
to remember that I’ve chosen to die
instead of paying attention.

I still don’t know
what you mean
when you say
I’m spiritually disturbed.

I still don’t know why Japanese lanterns
and good weed make you dance so slowly,
your hands rise and think for themselves in the thick air,
that I fall asleep. And wake up impersonating a rational man
in an irrational jacket with teeth marks on my tongue.

So many,
I don’t even try to explain what I didn’t do.

You tell my friends I'm working,
and they believe you. And this leads me to think
that I need new friends.

Or that they’re sleeping with you, too.

if someone doesn’t come to the light,
then you’re damn sure going to bring the light to them.

Worked on me,
didn’t it, honey?


Posted on 03/29/2012
Copyright © 2022 Gabriel Ricard

Member Comments on this Poem
Posted by Vikki Owens on 03/30/12 at 08:34 PM

outstanding! too many good lines to quote! i LOVE this!

Posted by Chris Sorrenti on 04/09/12 at 02:32 PM

I agree with Vikki...another feather in your poetic cap!

Posted by Elizabeth Shaw on 04/10/12 at 05:55 AM

and how could one not jump in! nice ...

Posted by Philip F De Pinto on 04/10/12 at 12:29 PM

the beauty of hands is that they are not bound but are free to write, write odes such as this which are open as flood gates and rush their waters not to dampen our ankles but hug.

Posted by Joan Serratelli on 04/10/12 at 04:05 PM

Great work. Love your "train of thought' dissertation on life. Like always, great work

Posted by LK Barrett on 04/10/12 at 10:23 PM

...why inherently suspicious of a lover who won't accept our own jaundiced self-appraisal? one more ride for the happier righteous than the righteously happy. Thank you for always knowing how to nail that angst. Great write, as always. lk

Posted by Frankie Sanchez on 04/10/12 at 10:30 PM

yes. "impersonating a rational man". for all the love you give me, i recognize that i haven't been reading nearly enough of your stuff. i'm a sinner. forgive me. i love this.

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