The Minstrel of Maxwell
Once a minstrel, I,
Like Cleopatra’s lover,
Aspired for you Sunday night,
But you—invisible, air,
Alternating merciless and bastard—
Neither considered me nor arrived.
Now I am left with old tea and oranges,
Watching love stories from the 1950s
On my plastic TV.
You have defeated me and my sad songs.
I suppose I should be like Popeye
And declare that I am unvanquished;
I suppose I should talk of phoenixes and the advantages
Of other sublime nymphs and lovers.
I won’t, indubitably.
I shall wait on Wednesday—
Hoping to ask a dance,
But I, brain-handcuffed by a rent-a-cop at the mall,
Shall say nothing.
A light, loud Strauss will play,
And I shall take a chair by the wall,
Wishing for nirvana or a cup of Maxwell coffee.