aside For the Asking – Poem by Arthur Martinson

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Arthur Martinson – For the Asking

I will not ask,
“How did you sleep?”, because I was there next to you
all night, despite the fact that I cannot
remember your name as I pour
coffee you might refuse.
I will not ask.

I will not ask,
“Cream and sugar?”, because they are on the table
which, unless you are still too hungover,
you are free to take for yourself.
You grab the cup but still
I will not ask.

I will not ask
“Do you like an Everything bagel?”, because that’s
the only kind that I have to offer.
You take no cream nor sugar and
just stare at the plate but
I will not ask.

I will not ask,
“Butter or cream cheese?”, because I simply put them
both on the table so that you can choose.
I watch you sip your coffee first.
You ignore the bread but
I will not ask.

I will not ask
“Mind if I eat a bit slow? It was a long night!”
I put both the cream and sugar into
my coffee, and I choose butter.
You drink in silence but
I will not ask.

You do not ask
“Can I shower?”, but rise from your chair and just go
to the bathroom, disrobing as you walk.
You look back at me as you grab
yourself; already hard,
you do not ask.

You do not ask
“Can we fuck again?”, but you brace yourself against
the tiles and spread your 19 year old legs.
With the water streaming down your
back, I plunge into you.
You do not ask.

I will not ask
“Can we exchange numbers?”, as you brush your waist length
hair and put back on your clothes from last night.
“I already have a boyfriend.”,
is what you say at last.
I will not cry.

*
Bio: Marti’s poems have appeared on the Estonian Embassy’s facebook page, and in Pink Litter, Riverrun, and Universalist Herald.

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