You come at me with your faded grin,
with your black, dirtied snowed curls,
and you ask me to make a series of ticks,
of pragmatic answers, of rights and wrongs,
of 1s, 2s, 3s, 4s, and 5s,
to determine how my eyes judge you,
how my brains see you,
how my entrails feel about you.
You come at me with your bound-up neck,
with your fuzzy grey Zegna garnishes,
and you ask me to believe that love is a package of ticks,
of SWOT analyses, of same-same glittery bribes,
of Fris, Sat’days, and Sundays,
and not of princesses and peas,
not of princes and frogs,
not of caresses and tease.
I come at you with my faded acquiescence,
with my dry-iced deferred pistachio stare,
and I grouse a thousand hidden wedded pricks,
of TV dinners, of bedside movie theatres,
of sleep before the clock strikes 12,
of ringed side-by-side mannequins,
prepping for war so quiet so stealth,
in the sun-up ruins.
I come at you with a practised cheer,
with my camouflaged, rouged, creamed masquerade,
and I whimper up your 360-degree review,
with an itemised receipt of my surrender,
to the vacuuming of my reveries,
to the crystallisation of my mirages,
to the scrubbing white of my dusk,
to the hollowing of my bedraggled soul.