Of course, my timepiece was made out of scissors
and you cut the hands with still
You knew I was hankering for a pale rose or a nose-
gay to stitch along a minor work of Pliny*
at, say, dusk?
Of course, silly me, my recollection sulked like some
ruined manor of the loved, the lost—
nowhere to despair itself, no sycophant
to read the thing.
But I should have known that
in the biblio
the tomes were tasseled open,
the air assiduous and stern.
You had read both versions
of some accidental classic,
finding both unsatisfactory,
a view that was itself
Of course, you hadn’t really read them,
because another page in another book
was eared, spotted with your breath.
Of course, it had been rank,
rank as the foul air from the jaws of Dracule,
whom women found, if I may, irresistible.
* The Elder, Gaius Plinius Secundus.