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Four Poems

Poetry by Sean Patrick Mulroy



crawl inside my shirt

           between my sheets

into my new lover’s mouth

           Stitch him to me with your smoke thread needle.

When he sighs and says                  

                                    I love the way you smell

I know that he means you

                        a secret lush and irresistible.


Sex halo tiger-striped across my neck

           behind my ear

                        or licked across my body

where my man is sure to find you

           fist of ghostly flowers

musky silhouette

           drooling sweaty god of teenage arms         

the chaste mischief of businessmen

           wiped under shirt cuff, coveting

the lust of office gossip

           nostalgia is a hired thug and you

his private knife


at a shotgun wedding

            raining down like rice.




            For a moment, body slips and hums

until you’re only         open.  Only fuck.

                                    You become this. 

Anything will do; a wand, a man, your own stiff fingers.  


            30 seconds. Less. All that fights goes mute, and flesh

is everything.  But you know flesh is always everything, don’t you? 

            Stop trying to forget. 

                        Watch now—you dissolve, a shadow

as you crawl away.  Watch now, from above.

            The searing of the nostrils, burning plastic blessing.

                        Sweet slack jaw welcome him, his hot tongue

in your mouths.

                        A golden moment, you’re an open door. 

                                                            A gasping warm.

            A loosened snare. 

                        Next, yourself, slammed back into raw meat

bound inside your messy hogtied little slaughter. 




Last month I switched back to Old Spice

when the pharmacy was selling it at 2 for 1. 


I wore it for a couple of days, then

looking for a shirt to wear, I grabbed one

off the floor, and traces of the new scent lingered. 


It was like another man was living in my house.


Like in the hotel room when I left my briefs

draped on the doorknob, I could almost feel


his weight beside me in the bed, smooth

halo of chalk around my body.


Once drawn, some lines cannot be crossed.


There are places loneliness can only take you

when you’re patient.  There are ways

that only I will love and hate my body.



            The little man is in my little bed and cradling

his suddenly limp little dick. 

            To rasp, I want to fuck you, and then choke—

this is the first thing he’s done tonight that isn’t boring.

                        I turn on the bedside lamp.

            His wet eyes shimmer in the light.


A lover tumbles from his little mouth.


                        He would be so sad he sighs to know

                                                            that I am here


The little man climbs out of bed.     Puts on his little shoes. 

            It is almost sunrise

when the door closes behind him.


                        I imagine you are somewhere

waking up and stretching


squinting in the early morning light, your body, smooth

            and slender as a glass of chocolate milk

                        poured down the sink 


I realize I am just remembering you as you were

                                    that morning, years ago in Rome—


            naked, wrapping yourself in my cardigan

to roll tobacco mixed together with a little hash


and smoking out the open window

            with your back to me


                        then your long arm reaching towards me

offering me the smoldering joint

                                    with a whispered haze of sweat


my sweater sliding from your back



You were never really mine, but it was wild, once

            to toy with the idea


Now when little men arrive in me, I feel you

                        Taste the cheap tobacco on your breath

The slow pour of your mouth across my neck

            like olive oil poured across the loaf of bread

we broke with dirty hands


                        The white roses I bought you from a cart



                        You would be so sad to know

                                                            that I am here