MAP #297-2A Residual Love Poems

What the heck, here are some poems which didn't make it into
yesterday's Valentine's Day/Love Poems supplement.


1.  A Valen Tines Poem by Neil Meili
2.  When He Says You Never Write Any Good Poems About Me
    by Lyn Lifshin
3.  Love Me Now by Ingeborg Carsten-Miller
4.  My Inter Vivos Valentine by John B. Lee
5.  Summer Wine by Agnes Meadows

1.  A Valen Tines Poem  by Neil Meili

The beauty of the rose always
outweighs the pain
of the thorn

In this same spirit I would pray
the valens be forgiven
their tines

Only when we bleed can we see
what lives within
the heart

©  Neil Meili
2.  When He Says You Never Write Any Good Poems About Me
    by Lyn Lifshin

I think by "good" he means "sex." Poems
about stopping on back roads in the car with
a bigger front seat, not even waiting for
a road off a road but pulling velvet and denim
off like roast skin from a turkey. I don't tell
him, maybe I should but the poems dripping
love juice and pubic hair were written when
I wasn't getting any. A virgin after eight years,

my mind was never not on erotic movies in
my head where even the music was the in and
out of bodies. I had time in the raised ranch
to dream a man would emerge from the trees,
fantasize slow afternoons behind chiffon drapes
in the bed of white silk until it ripped. Years my
arms ached for more than the tiger cats and
the buff kitten. If a man wrote me from some

coast I opened on paper to him, came on to
strangers and convicts on the page. Those sheets
always felt safe enough to let them know their
words got me wet, even my hair was horny. I
wrote about what wasn't there, what left a hole
I was terrified I'd drown in. "Writing like a hippie
but living like a nun," a magazine quoted me
and probably I said it. It was the way those in

the concentration camp talked of food, of seeing
light, the moon, were famished for the smell of
bread. Fantasized chicken, apples, beef, all the things
they'd never thought much about when they had
more than they could devour as, baby, I do now

© Lyn Lifshin
3.  Love Me Now by Ingeborg Carsten-Miller




© 1997 Ingeborg Carsten-Miller
from "Ingeborg in Beltsville-1997"
4.  My Inter Vivos Valentine by John B. Lee

thus far
in the overwhelmingly ancient loneliness of all this light
lost in vacant blue and cloudless curved interiors
of this lovely over-arching February atmosphere
I am thinking of you
my inter vivos Valentine
I am watching pure-white, shadow-latticed snow
while silent winter wind chimes of my soul
are whispering 'June becomes July' into an 'unlistening'
I am here among the littlest liquid intimate ecstacies
of melt and memory
that shape us
and make the courtly caressing elegant
ladida of caring from life for life, as
I look now to the weed-locked deeps
the still half-buried wheel
that will not turn
for want of hands
the birdless heart-broken branches of leafless limbs
aching to breathe and be maple
chestnut, Chinese elm and an all-coniferous hush
like gently rocking ships in dock that will not sail

and know
that we are water made
and from that second solitude
the seed-laced womb of Eve
both less and more
than any wear-away from futile immortality of stone.

©  John B. Lee
5.  Summer Wine by Agnes Meadows
(February 2004) 

She held him as if he were a door that she could enter to find
As if he were a mirror in which the reality of her reflection could
be seen again
And burnished to excellence,
Her face a symphony of jubilation,
So brimming with joy any second she threatened to lift skyward,
Even breathing become superfluous.

He touched her face as if she would disappear without his touching,
Storing the memory of her features in his fingertips,
Aware that time was running out,
But not of the February wind that rattled his bones,
Nor of the un-stopped buses that filed wearily past,
Nor of the church clock chiming another quarter hour closer to

And then they kissed,
A private duet orchestrated for all to see,
Too elated to bother with discretion,
Passion's percussion compressed into that small space where lips met
Pure jazz, pure late-night syncopation,
Until they stepped back, dizzy in the eye of love.

To look at them you would think they were sixteen,
That they had never known love before,
That this was the first time, so entangled, so unmindful, so glad of
each other.
But they were both 60 if a day,
And drinking the very best of the summer wine.

© 2004 Agnes Meadows
Grateful thanks to all contributors.

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Much love,