Suitors by John Toivonen

Suitors by John Toivonen

The lighting is best when it’s dim
so we don’t have to see their faces.
The attempt at makeup and surly graces
helps us fathom how this will begin.

Here you are alone with beer and ashtrays,
and not enough joy to celebrate the day.
Who comes asking for rye whiskey neat
but the low-cut beguiling with bloated teats.

“I’m drinking”, “my name”, and the perfume
are notes in a low-grade acidic song,
ambitious enough to do you no wrong
she asks for your hand, your support, your room.

Clown-red on the lips and weekend offers
that promise noon brunches and night shows
make their way from lips for the thousandth time.
She has done her scouting around this mine.

Enough of her pats on the lower back
and she could buy herself a new seat.
Council, Assembly, or Congress, she could meet
your unspoken needs. She could alter the facts.

It’s the way of diving in so many beds
where she tangles up almost anything
that helps her cultivate those perfect smiles.
With her voice, she is available to sing.

The camera shutters open for her eyes
now that she graces a well-lighted place.
Enough minds have memorized her face
that she is ready for a seat of this size.

© 2016 John Toivonen


Follow John

John has published poetry and essays in numerous publications, including Roanoke Review, Midwest Poetry Review, Paterson Literary Review, Blognostics, and The Washington Times. His most recent book of poetry, Song After a Long Campaign, was published by Great Roots Press in 2015.


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