The Poetry of
Jack Scott

An Expensive Date

You’re an expensive date
high in your gilded tower. For your perfection’s silken hours
I must toil long in cotton fields,
one of many prices
I must pay for my desire.

Ah, semantics:
do I merely want to fuck you
or make love where none exists,
or both at once?
Tongue-tied passion, this,
impaled upon the tip of tangled mind.

You are as irresistible as breathing.
You make my liver quiver,
and syncopate my pulse.
I clench my breath
and sphincters
at your approach.

I live, I love, cannot avoid it,
lovers, hand in hand,
those words.
I walk and talk,
I breathe the air,
and gulp the water;
it is much like you: necessity.
I swim in it, I surf and snorkel,
I dive and play with fishes,
at least would like to.
I can’t resist you
though that thought’s
too often
your reluctant surrogate.

It seems a bribe’s in order,
so I will tender it from my store of volumes,
unwritten on my shelves.
If I don’t now begin
to write this book of you
how long might I procrastinate
by endlessly composing titles?
I’ll call it simply “You”
to get it swiftly underway,
then follow with the dedication
acknowledgements and credits,
Preface, Foreword, Epilogue-
all substitutes for actual writing. r

How do I love thee, I begin,
let me count the way. (I jest.)
At once, I’m stuck in lust,
imagining your cunt,
while staring at my pencil,
rigor mortised writer’s block.

I now know what writers know
about the pencil’s other end,
the manuscript’s unwriter,
I’m now a member of the club
who knows that books aren’t written.
We should be called rewriters.

Will this be biography
of us, or only
my imagined future memoirs?
That will depend on whether
you will play the role I’m writing
in this play of ours, for you.

So I continue on and on,
through all our ups and downs,
but always on the level.
Though I may exaggerate,
I would never lie,
at least to you my love,
so you must believe me.

So now, I’m done, I’ve finished it,
it’s ready to present
in exchange for your affection,
this gift of midnight oil
and shadowed days,
this heartfelt conjuration,
I’ve had it bound,
so be impressed, I beg you.

You take it in your hands,
accept it,
thank me with a smile,
then riffle pages
as if to see
if banknotes flutter out.

Is this the smile I’ve longed for,
worked toward for so long?
Now it seems a billboard,
wide and not too deep
with cow fields just beyond,
real cows in them.

I could point out
the parts of speech,
define vocabulary,
parse every sentence
ending with the epilogue,
bookend echo of the prologue,
sandwiching typography
if that would profit you
or lighten me.

God save us from you
who make us tell
the meaning of
a poem or a joke
when you don’t get it.
I’ve done my job,
that should be the end of it.
Why should I dumb myself,
because you refuse to smarten?
God help me big time
if this ever need be done
for a book-length book.

You held it like a brick,
my opus one, my baby.
My offering was, to you,
as a block of cheese,
to nibble on
while in conversation
with your more cultivated friends.

One of a kind,
this rarest volume,
though meant for you
and given,
an unsought gift,
is not lost to me
and never will be
no matter your disposal,
for it remains eidetic
in my memory,
so I guess I’m stuck with it
once I get free of you.

I bit my tongue,
held all this back
without a word,
I fear I’ve used them up,
while staring at you ,
a butterfly,
and wishing for a pin.
Dried between some pages,
of maybe Elle, Vogue or Ms.?
Victoria Who? What is her married name?
Or would I keep you in a jar?

One more thing in closing,
another lesson learned
from this exercise in love:
my life would be much easier
if I would love a real whore.

L47 ®Copyright 2013 Jack Scott. All rights reserved.