DraftsMy assailant waited outside, called me a faggot, and walked the other direction. I wrote several drafts about it. None got it right. Drafts are like underwear. You change them but they still get dirty. I wanted to say that no ass kick would limit where I went. Instead I talked about flowers and loving the lavender ones best. I tossed that bouquet to say what I wanted to say. Without flinching. This draft may be another failure-- I edge toward the precise. I hear it cry in the distance. ***
You SaidOver coffee you said you hated the night, that ghosts come out then. Ghosts do come out—or they just might. They can be a delight. Some are animals, some human. Over coffee you said you hated the night when the dead hide in plain sight. What would you do? Cage them in a pen? Ghosts do come out—or they just might kiss behind a rose bush. They don’t bite. I used to be scared too--dead mouths might open. Over coffee you said you hated the night, fretting when the moon takes flight-- darkness breaks a truce with the sun. Ghosts do come out—or they just might share your secrets, me impolite, visible to everyone. Over coffee you said you hated the night. Ghosts do come out—or they just might. ***
PleasureYou think of pleasure as an overstuffed grocery bag. You add one more item— the bag tears as you walk back to your car. You always sought pleasure, doted on the sweetness of sleep—and drifted off during a history class about Henry VIII whose love of pleasure made him rancid. Some people collect model cars. You collect pleasure, polish it, feed it, clean up after it. Even though you know it deserts you, forgets your name, finds another. ***
Kenneth Pobo has nine books and twenty-one chapbooks published. He teaches English and creative writing at Widener University. His most recent book is Dindi Expecting Snow from Duck Lake Books in 2019.
Read More on Bengaluru Review: Can poetry narrate death? Perceiving the world like a child A delicacy of language describing small town lives