He barely looked up over his newspaper but I felt his willingness
to know the improbable
things in life, the sliding of a phone number under three dollar bills change,
and the walking away with certainty that the improbable just turned probable.
I felt his willingness to know the improbability of a garden
later that afternoon, a bottle of wine on the table, blocking the two people.
The improbability of Can you move that bottle? I can’t see your face.
There, that’s better. There you are.
The improbability of that butterfly landing on the bougainvillea bush and the sun
dropping down for the day so the two faces are lying faces at the moment
when that butterfly lands on the red flower bract
and coddles its wings against the petal, the brilliance of its red blinding
as making love for the first time, that first skin against skin battle,
the loss of sight that accompanies it.
They aren’t telling the same stories they were telling that morning in a restaurant.
The faces are softer now, sunlight has wore them down, and they are smiling.
The two faces are telling beautiful untrue things.
That’s what a lie is: the telling of beautiful untrue things.
The butterfly is improbable,
but as I drop his change I know that we’ve already seen that butterfly.
That nothing can ever be proved,
the mathematics of two bodies coming together, inexplicable and unsolved.
That the only beautiful things are the things that do not concern us.
This is out of our hands, this no longer concerns us.
He is bound come sit next to me, to kiss me in a backyard garden
with the words What are the improbable things? heavy objects
knocking about in my chest.
This is no longer improbable but inevitable.
Things either last too long or not long enough.
This will not last long enough.
It is a sad madrigal, this tale.
I said I wanted to go out and screw the world
but that was another lie, another beautiful untrue thing.
I found him where I knew he would be,
poking at his eggs, sipping his coffee
at the exact moment I knew he would be there,
10:18 am, Friday April 23.
and I gave him all I got.
I didn’t want to screw the world.
I wanted the world to love me one man at a time.