8.05 / May 2013

Two Poems


J loves whiskey
whiskey hates J.
M loves animals.
They have to do
with going out
on a limb
with acting nuts
once in a while.
Yelling their troubles
to the bartender.

‘You’re drunk
and repulsive.’

‘Don’t change
the subject.’

‘I’m going home.’

‘I’m coming
with you.’

Next to his
big maleness
his strong face.

Love has a body M.
Eyes and lips
legs and sex
and stubble
with easiness
ahead of you
his bristling
crew cut
in on you.

but the
short haired
girl seemed
somehow apart
from them.

He had taken her
by the hand and
led herself from herself
he had abandoned
her there with the
bones of the others


He’s going to hate himself tomorrow,
J. loves whiskey whiskey loves J.

He was comfortable, but he couldn’t walk a straight line or keep his balance.
The thought of having to go and search him out

at the one social institution that represented a haven.
All the faces strung down the bar like beads on a necklace.

Drinking your dinner, where had he heard that? From someone old but serviceable
better than some of us, maybe, but not above us.

There, he fell on the ground, whimpering, crying
her hand tight over his mouth to stop the groan.

‘I don’t know why you’re so good to me.’ Planting kisses in her hair.
On his back in the dark, his arms outflung, and waiting

for a moment aimless and lost. She just got quiet and thoughtful.
They waited alone, in gathering dark.

A man walked by and then a couple. They looked just like love.
They were embarrassed.

Wyatt Sparks works at a library and is a bunch of leaves under a table. His work is featured or forthcoming in Redlightbulbs, GAYNG, Untoward, and CBS News Chicago.
8.05 / May 2013