portion of the artwork for Athena Nilssen's poetry

Oh Leary, nothing’s so dreary
as a garden without orange sunshine.

Athena Nilssen

I have to hang up the phone now. I am going to cry. And this is America, too.
Think of it all in retrospect. The setting cream Mata Hari and the pretty Irish boy.
I’m his devotchka, his potted noose, his hotel room faucets and ice bucket.
I ran out into the rain in nylon stockings.
He must have watched the seams disappear as I turned onto 125th.
Oh, dreary, my sorority self perched on the foyer bureau.

I light a borrowed cigarette, telling him, lean closer

I have so much to teach you.
And like some April fool he dropped his saintly drawers.
They chanted Annuit Coeptis in a basement in France.
He waved a Presidential goodbye.
A witness to the wilderness he saw the upper lystratum in the blue flag of a sky.

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FRiGG: A Magazine of Fiction and Poetry | Issue 38 | Fall 2012