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By James Prenatt
I’d like to say that I’ve tried everything,
but I’m sure there’s other ways to win your heart.
Aren’t I obvious enough?
I used to stutter when you called my name,
but now I can speak a bit clearer,
only if my hand is up every time
you let silence stir over the class
people will look at me funny
and when they peak over my shoulder at the big red A they’ll say,
it’s just because she wore those tight jeans
or my one shirt low enough to show that I care about you.
I shake the voodoo doll of you,
love me goddamn it, love me.
I stick needles in the wife doll and take her ring off.
Only I guess the spell reversed because now I’ve got these pins in my eyes
as I sleep without you each night,
again forgetting that you have a family
you kiss goodbye and hello each morning,
each day. Most importantly:
you already have a little girl.
I try to find your cologne so I can wear it when you’re not around,
that scent of pine and brown, going gray hair.
I tell the cashier it’s for my boyfriend.
I drink Lipton tea without sugar in front of you. To stir up inspiration, like you said.
I pretend to make your coffee in the morning,
that as you complain it got lukewarm too quickly, I heat it up
by pursing my lips and blowing.
I’ve been signing your last name, Mrs…
pretending I am the paper you scribble notes on,
the dogeared pages of your favorite book,
that I set your alarm each night before you read to me,
that you want me too.