The Working Man

I remember that salty first kiss I gave him so many years ago,
Two children, same age and so naïve.
It was the kind that sits on your tongue in its chamber
Lurking in the lavish dismay of minutes passing on your coffee table.
It was like oysters picked in the springs of the fishermen’s lives,
It was like rings of mercury bitter in the satisfaction
Swooped around a planet, my waist or head,
It was as sandy boxes kids now play in,
The graveyards of their pet beetles,
An embarrassment, it was.

He giggled,
More girl than man at me
As I whispered: Let’s kiss.
Even, then, you were goofy, my kind of goofy.
The man who at six foot just about a head taller than me
Whose hands quaked at the thought of undressing.
Even then you oozed of bitter regret
From the years, the scars that showed their rears out
Of whitened beaten brows of your porcelain tin.
Fear not.
You are among like kin
And when in the shower I bathed,
The droplets like paste to stick to tape.
You should know my skin dries so fast in winter,
But oblivious, thinking after love making you’d vanished,
Coast cleared to the breath of silence
In the hollow creaks of the empty house,
I schlepped about by myself.

Almost singing and talking to air as I do
The curtains sway to my finger tips
Grazing the color white on gray.
Living in my mother’s house and out of luck
I turned off the water,
But you are my kind of goofy and slip, I do.

Nearly pissing myself with fright
At the pure thought and sight of you there with a towel.
“Stalker, villain, peeping tom!”
I scream!
“Were you truly there all along!?”

As if to say that what was done was a bigger crime
Than making love in my childhood room.
There you wrapped me up,
You cocooned me,
Laughed and I internally cried, happy.
You, working man, got me
And there now you are,
Years passed,
Body sweaty from bills paid
From the money earned by the body’s labor.

You are my kind of goofy
When you still put your hair
In that messed up Mohawk when washing.
Oh, how you are my kind of silly when in the kitchen,
You think I am not looking,
You shake that rump to a song you can’t even understand.

Mom, one day, you’ll forgive me.
I married, lovingly, the working man.

Rose Mae

About Ijagun Poetry Journal

Ijagun Poetry Journal is a quarterly journal that provides a platform from which we can tell our own stories in the authenticity of their multiplicity through the poetic medium. We don’t want to hear these stories from our master “griots” alone; we want to hear from those mastering their art, too. Hence, we aim at publishing new and emerging poets. We also welcome the works of established poets in order to encourage the poetic genius of those mastering poetic art. We prize original works that conform to, break or reinvent conventions. Again, we accept reviews and critical essays on poetry. We also accept powerful art works and photographs that make us appreciate the "poetry" in everything.
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