An Open Letter to an Ex Lover who is Stationed in Iraq

Feb. 27, 2007

You weren’t my first
service man, but you
were my last. One day

you called to tell
me they’d measured
you for new fatigues, and the boys

who’d already been regailed
you with tales of what it is
like to look for bombs under
thick black robes in dry heat,
to parachute behind
enemy lines.

I was always a woman
sure to go to any man
who is certain
to leave me. Arriving
with a date of departure
is better than awkward

lingering. You are all blurring
together, all you boys
who came once greedily
into my mouth in airport
bathrooms, hissed vulgarities

about patriotic duty, the boys
who called to ask if I expected
them to propose

in some teary farewell scene
and then paused when I laughed
and reality checked. You’re running
together and I can’t be sure
who was who, and when a
can’t be identified, there is
a tomb for your ashes here.

2 Comments

Filed under lust and love, Musings, poetry, Uncategorized

2 responses to “An Open Letter to an Ex Lover who is Stationed in Iraq

  1. This poem is visceral. I could feel the lust, the fleeting sense of time, the longing to connect and to not need to connect. The honesty really touched me.

  2. yes, this is indeed a good one. and i love that your page is searchable!

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