Courtship Rituals of Psychopaths

You went barhopping
with a paralyzed porno star
who bragged about his experiences with
mosquitoes, about how he always had
to wave them away during
the most intimate scenes –
great laughter when he spoke
of his threesome
with a moth and firefly!
The real reason he met you
was to woo lice from your hair
when you were wasted.

* * * * * * * *

You were drunk
curled up
in front of the wrong door
like a sleeping dog.
When I lifted you,
You woke
Just for a moment
And laughed.
That brief laugh was
the prettiest superpower
you had left.
It floated away
faster than my love.

* * * * * * * *

At the Punjabi deli, we
picked numbers for lotto.
I picked nine, because that’s
the number of times
I’ve woken up
to point my middle finger at
your sleeping face.
You picked sixteen because
that’s the number of men
you say you’ve slept with –
I’m sure there’s more,
but anyway.
When you said you’d marry me
if we won, and buy me a Porshe,
I didn’t believe it,
but smiled
trying to remember
the name of the ventriloquist
I slept with to get even.

* * * * * * * *

You rang my doorbell
to say you had unprotected sex
with a superhero –
then laughed and said it was just a joke,
wiping the joke from your lips
in that way you have
with your hands.

* * * * * * * *

Your spirit rides in
the back of a cab from
Brooklyn to Manhattan,
its driver grumbling about
how spirits pay bad tips.
Even though I don’t believe in spirits,
your spirit gets out of the cab,
passes my sleeping doorman,
and floats all the way up the stairwell
until it reaches my apartment.
Your spirit slips under my door,
even though it’s drunk
and doesn’t exist.
It slides into my bedroom as
effortlessly as Houdini,
and lies beside me
even though it doesn’t
remember my name.
Of course your spirit is invisible,
but wears lingerie for angels.
It puts an arm around me,
but I don’t wake up
because I’m dreaming about the
last day you were real.