That's No Way to Win a Fight
Last night I dreamt of blood
Not dainty little drips from a cut finger
But gouts, great lumps of blood, like offal awaiting the chef.
Clots in the corners of a room
An evisceration, a meditation on guts
Why? Hard to say
But for the metaphors you used for love
Adoration as war, a hostage-taking
Love as a zero-sum game
Your passion, your surrender to me, though I asked for none
And then a take-no-prisoners rage, burning all the bridges
That led from me to you.
These are my mother’s instructions on loving
Plagiarized from the classics; and similar to yours
she adjured me to come back
with my shield or on it
To kill if I would be killed,
And in the worst of cases
To be bloody if I must,
but to remain always unbowed.