Ode to a One Night Stand
John Grey is an Australian born short story writer, poet, playwright, musician, and Providence, RI, resident since the late seventies. He has been published in numerous magazines including Weird Tales, Christian Science Monitor, Greensboro Poetry Review, Poem, Agni, Poet Lore, and Journal Of The American Medical Association as well as the horror anthology “What Fears Become” and the science fiction anthology “Futuredaze.” He has had plays produced in Los Angeles and off-off Broadway in New York. He was the winner of the Rhysling Award for short genre poetry in 1999.
If it’s merely the limbs, the thighs,
that are called for
then the heart goes up in smoke.
out comes the dark underside
fingers that parachute down
on warm fluttering bellies,
genitals that rise up at all costs.
From far ends of our lives,
we expect these tunnels,
these locomotives, to provide,
a method taught to me by hormones
and inky thumbprints on a girlie magazine.
So up folds your body
and into place skewers mine.
And I travel a great distance
from man to man in woman and back again
while you recognize something
in our fleshy burning matter,
evidence of what you’d do
if you were only someone else.
So we face one another on the bed,
a population of two
in a country a thousand miles wide.
You’d think we’d come together
just so as not to be alone.
But we’d rather go where the other is not.
We use our bodies to delude the signposts.