05 December, 2009

Hello Songs

I’ve crooned these hello songs to so many, so often.
And after all the second guessing, handcuffed sentiments,

and self-sabotaging behavior, I slice open my surface
like an errant razor across the cheek. Sometimes a woman’s

touch is a compass, sometimes a tire iron to the skull.
It dismantles common sense and whole days go missing.

These curvy ladies with honeyed tongues and stilettos.
With their whispered discontent and ransom notes

penned in the finest cursive. They climb inside me
with flashlights – seek the voice box, the sweet talk

that’s been jailed in my throat for years, the words I stash away
for later enjoyment like a well-rolled joint. All the hello songs

that need to be composed already have, their memorized lyrics
now my reflection: each adjective extraneous, every verb imperfect.

~~ Adrian Potter

First published in The Poet’s Touchstone, Fall 2008