Friday, April 9, 2010

Poetry Friday: A Man Alone

A Man Alone

I hated breaking up and I hated
Being left, finding myself in an apartment
With an extra set of silverware and a ghost,
Impatient to be gone. Then to summon up
Who I was before the bed was full with woman.
To shift the street-mind from getting to
To slowing down and window shop. In the bar down the street,
To let my eyes simplify again, and make no judgments,
And breathe in the smoke that drifts
Through one body then another,
And find myself close enough
To whisper into a woman's just-washed hair
And inhale that ten thousand year old scent.
To memorize a phone number.
To learn to say goodnight at her door.
To keep my hands in my pockets, like a boy.
To open the heart, only a little at a time.

Stephen Orlen

You can find more of Orlen's work at the Poetry Foundation
Or, read more about him here.

Poetry Friday is being hosted by good folks over at Paper Tigers.  Be sure to check it out!


Andrea Murphy said...

Makes me want to sing like Sophie Tucker. "Some of these daaaaaays, you're gonna miss me honey . . . "

I'm Jet . . . said...

I think in your past life you were a torch singer, no?

Mur said...

Nice one, Jet. Heartbreaking and hopeful all at once.

Marjorie said...

Thank you for highlighting this very poignant poem.