First Love

We must be in some form of pain,

She said.

Think about the movie.

Why do we go there?

Why is it in demand?

Why do we sit there and see it?

Our fears are out there

They are being shown to us.

It is a form of agreement–

Of venting

What we can not say,

Because it is too horrible

Or why would we go.

Jung would love this world

Of dark secret fantasies

Being shared collectively, she thought.

Her partner looked at her bewilderingly.

They were not so far past

The insanity of teenage years

With all its playing out–

The boundaries of dreams and reality.

He had almost become one of a set.

Her words took him to a womb

Of words,

that were foreign to him,

but echoed in the language

of his childhood

Lurking in shadows, best left alone

In the doorway

With the fumes darting

From his father’s breathe,

As they hit his mother

Bruising her arms,

So she walked around the house

In long sleeves even in summer.

Things he didn’t want to think of


He was a man now, and he wondered,

How had she become this stranger

Walking near.

It frightened him

And enhanced his desire……..for distance.

He stuck a stick of gum in his mouth

And hands in pockets.

She grabbed his arm

For a little security

But, his hands were deep in pockets

That had holes in them

Where even the lint wouldn’t stay.

His own finger, for an instant,

Touched his skin

And brought him back

To the reality of him and her

And marmalade on Sunday mornings

But, he knew

He could not marry her.


His arm was tight

And hard to find the entryway.

He didn’t pull away,

But he was not there either.

He was looking at girls

In short dresses

Tight around their butts

And midriffs showing.


She was looking at piercings.

Could there be anything more ugly

Painful to look at?

Why would someone want to

Make themselves be painful

To look at


She was looking at


One could almost feel

The needles sinking

Into the skin.


And she thought,

My life

Is the best painting

That I will ever draw,

Not something

I want drawn    on me,

As a test of my duration for pain.

There is enough pain in the world.

But, that was it–

All the pain in the world

It can not be contained anymore

Like someone who has a meltdown

Where the family secrets

Are brought forward

For a healing that,

Sometimes never comes

Or comes to late.


My own art, she mused,

With its own purpose

And not a blanket

To hide me from alienation

Of the world

Enhanced by someone else’s talent.


At that moment

She heard him say,

“I think I’ll get a tattoo”.


A shockwave

Swallowed her–

An orgasm of fear

And she grew nauseous.

Days past

And they were still together, but

It was over.

The moment was just waiting

In a language

Both of them didn’t know

How to speak,

But the path of its neurons

Already drifted out

In two different directions

Like venus and mars

Or a ship of ancient times

Still thinking that the world

Was flat

And they would soon

Fall off the water’s edge

Into oblivion.

They did not notice

The roundness of things,

And, if they did,

Neither believed

They could say it

To each other.


Forty years later

She was childless,

His son was off to war,

Cancer moved slowly

Through him, and

He remembered her.


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