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She Runs Off With A Poet

Jan Horner
From:   Elizabeth Went West. Turnstone, 1998.


I

I am the woman in those Harlequin ads
who confesses
"I run off with a poet every night"
reading him in bed
getting caught up and carried off
my alarm clock and cocoa off to the side
steaming, watchful.

II

At night he edits every conversation
words cut up all over his bed
papering his dreams
peppering his sex
Mischief-maker, tease
he runs up the bills, runs out of gas
complains about knock in his engine
unpacks his portable
and runs away with himself.

III

Leaving prose, prolix, run-on
shedding clothes, mantles
cluttering landscape as we go
leaving serial bulletins by the wayside
burma-shave white signs
because we want to be read
found scurrilous and disgraceful
with shamelessness blooming
in our hearts and hands
finally having laid down and leaping over
our chairs, houses, spouses for poetry
over the bald prairie high hills
broad seas, to some island of our making
unpacking our pens
writing on sand and bark
but unable to stop writing
home.



Jan Horner's works copyright © to the author.


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