Poems Unwritten But Said Anyway
This appeared as my contribution to "The Bulletin Board" column of the St. Paul Pioneer Press in the late eighties: "Only in a gay bar would you hear one man say to another, 'If you call me Tanya one more time, I'm going to smash you in the knees."
I began saying the following in the early eighties:
"There goes a butch member
of the male gender."
And that reminds me of another
oral poem that's stayed with me:
And who is the driver
but Miss Polly Pure?
The story that goes with that poem is long and long ago. Suffice to say that a bus ride called decadence has come to mean a bus ride taken a distance that is usually walked and especially when one or both endpoints of the bus ride is a bar.
And Miss Polly Pure is a wonderful, matronly busdriver, blond to grey bun in her hair and all. Every time I say, "a busride called decadence," I can picture her.
How can I forget "Winter" as an oral poem?
It's one of the first times I realized I had written poetry. It's also among the handful of very, very, very brief poems of my own. I guess for the sake of the prudish, I can put it here with asterisks.
"Persephone, you c * * * *."
I could explain that one but I just don't want to.
Where else but in a gay bar could you hear one man say to another, "If you call me Tonya one more time, I'll bash you in the knees"?