My Vision
The new medicine I am taking for my vision
Will, they say, make my eyes turn mauve;
My lashes, they tell me, will be more sensuous.
But the pills make my heart jump about,
A pigeon hidden in its cage of bone.

My love Boris (he tells me he's from Uzbekistan)
Will like that. He likes to knock me about
With his silver snake-headed cane
Then kiss the places when the dark begins to show
Under my simple flowered hoop skirt.
At the end of our show,
He will smoke a Hav-a-Tampa,
Sip lager dark as blood
Sing Stephen Foster songs
("Odd Black Joe" is his favorite),
Singing into his recorder.

The pills I am taking, will, I hope,
Make me more loving,
More able to sense the unspoken passions of men,
More sensitive to their silent hungers.
Boris is svelte, kind, greedy,
Eats lady-fingers before he goes to bed,
Is a bit of a pig in bed
After an exhausting day tending the queen.

Sometimes he has me float jasmine-scented candles
In his tub, drop goldfish to nibble on his pectorals,
His fingers and the unmentionables.
I think our relationship is on the mend.
But he says I still smile too much,
Says it makes me look "fatuous."

I like a touch of mint in my morning tea;
Last year there was a declaration of war.
They closed the Bourse for a week or so.
There were twelve or thirteen parades.
The soldiers, the footmen, the flyboys,
The acting secretary of war --- all were there.
I complained to the keeper of the keys, but to no avail.

After confession I prayed for the bombers,
Amnesty for the bodies everywhere,
For the babes that had been beaten in the woods.
I am still taking my pills,
The ones that will make me more seductive.

Boris will be here for dinner:
He will expect me to lie down after the pie.
He may commit fellatio, then again
He may fall asleep or,
As he is so fond of doing,
Blow bubbles into a bottle of
Blanc des Millénaires,
Making bubbles with his
Pretty prim little mouth
Using a cinnamon-striped straw.

I think he is still acting the boy.
He says the queen says
We are all dying.

--- Leslie Seamans
Elf's-head silver cane courtesy of
C. Wesley Cowan Historic Americana at

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