POEMS


Chlorine

It was just past 7am when I woke with a head full of allergies, or sinus headache pain, or maybe just a fornlorning for what I wasn’t quite sure, but regardless stumbled from my daughter’s vacant bedroom where I’d been driven by my wife’s snoring around 230am

It was another eggless Easter morning since my wife’s conversion, void of any Messianic evidence while I lamented missing my 5am call to catch the remains of an early South Swell

When I didn’t spot my wife Kelly from the hallway view but saw the bedroom light was lit I called out: “Cookie” and she responded from behind the blind spot in the living room: “Hi Cooks,” underscoring the fact that we’ve innumerable pet names for one another, and shamelessly, with total spontaneity, and full Metal Jacket abandon, serve then up liberally

Through the dark curtain of my sleep deprived middle-aged hangover I clawed my way into the kitchen and poured a cup of coffee, a substance I’d sworn off several months prior but somehow became re-addicted to more recently and made way my into the living room where Kelly sat in a horizontal recline

She was wearing her extra thick and equally expensive egg shell white terry cloth robe and the sun played a shimmering reflective sonata on her rich brown hair.  She looked up from her Vanity Fair and said “Honey, your tummy is getting flatter, maybe it’s the swimming.”  I responded with a shrug and thought: “Tell that to the damn scale,” and relived my trauma from twenty four hours prior at the Saturday morning Weight Watcher’s meeting when Robin, the hired scale-hand, told me in a hushed voice I was up 2.2 pounds from the week prior, but replied “Thank you baby,” and looked at my shirtless profile in the reflection of the picture window before settling into one of the white antique Adirondack chairs adjacent to our overstuffed white shabby chic couch which sits defiled by the paws and teeth of our two rescue Dachshunds 

I looked at my wife with a face that wanted to say, but couldn’t find the guts to utter: “Please don’t make me go to your parents Easter brunch at the club, I slept like hell last night,” but sorely mumbled:”I can’t talk,” and she said: “Thank you for saying so.”

I sat feebly holding the hot cup of coffee in both hands sipping the freshly ground brew like a lost, but found, Sherpa-less Himalayan hiker with frostbite extremities and began to think of the lean men in the chlorinated pool water that swim past me each day with lightning speed while wearing tight bathing caps and matching bun hugger Speedos displaying taught buttocks, proud bulges, and chiseled abs… all attributes much greater than I could boast and concluded maybe I ought go for a swim before our south of the Orange Border trek, or possibly slit my wrists instead 

After I finished my swim and dressed, I noticed on my way out past the showers a green-tattered towel hanging from a hook and could hear a man from behind the slightly mildewed shower curtain humming a show tune and thought: “someday, maybe my towel will be worn and my stomach will more resemble a washboard than a used Uniroyal,” but ventured no thoughts of taught cheeks or a matching package