Three Poems by Ace Boggess
News, Not Unexpected
Romantic partners don’t like each other. Not really.
Not in the I-want-to-be-trapped-inside-with-you-
for-months kind of way. They prefer a comfortable companion
& to be left alone for hours to work, plan, fantasize,
or roll the bones in an alley. News from China:
once the virus unclenched its fist, divorce rates spiked,
according to the internet, as reliable as marriage.
We’ll see it here: sad guitars removed from basements;
undergarments packed for a trip to elsewise.
Home is where the hate is. The spider dangling in a corner,
legs continuously knitting, draws ire from the dog, awake
because the mistress lounges, wondering What was I thinking?
about her husband playing games on his phone,
forgetting to press mute so the house sounds
like a pinball machine’s insides—a circle Dante
never thought of, lucky he lost his love early,
then traipsed through hell in search of her
rather than learn they both were there already.
Second Day, Post-Lockdown
Staying home as much as I can.
A sequel coming: Return
of the Virus, Revenge
of the Virus, The Virus Strikes Back.
Yesterday was Star Wars Day,
so you get the joke.
Could as easily have said
The Virus II—the Virus Lives,
The Virus—a New Beginning, or
The Virus Takes Manhattan.
Watching a lot of bad movies
lately, & worrying
about family, friends, possible hexes
placed by their religions
or inability to sit still for long.
Worrying over my life, too,
fears of having wasted it.
I’d like to step out
of basement shadows &
romance the body, anybody’s
body, if only I had antibodies.
For now, I’m staying in,
shouting into emptiness,
Love me! The virus does,
waits to embrace me in Virus—
the Final Nightmare; Virus III—
Season of the Witch.
Tell me one broken thing
repaired with tenderness
instead of force.
Wounded hawk? Restraints.
Beloved pet? The needle waits.
Ceramic vase by glue or gold?
What brutality we show
piecing together shards.