Monday, February 15, 2016

Valentine poems for married people

The New Yorker posted these Valentine poems the other day. They're hilarious and real. You may even find reflections of your own life within these lines, unless you're the type who moves on when the sugary first burst of love wears off.

Valentine's Day Poems for Married People
Source: The New Yorker


Winter.
It’s been dark for, like, five hours,
And yet the children are still awake,
And I am only a little drunk.
What you call yelling I call making a point.
* * *

Our love is like the padlocks on the Pont des Arts, in Paris—
Thousands of locks, symbols of unbreakable love.
Isn’t that beautiful?
Apparently, though, all those locks are too heavy for the bridge.
Did you hear this?
I read it somewhere.
The locks are weighing the bridge down.
So you know what they’re going to do?
They’re taking them off with bolt cutters and throwing them out.
Isn’t that beautiful, too?
So now the people aren’t locked together anymore.
They’re free to maybe see other people.
I thought that was interesting.
* * *

When we have children,
They will watch no television.
No screens.
We will be different from those other parents,
And we will take pride in our being better.
Fast-forward seven years,
And it’s Sunday morning,
6 A.M.
Do you know who our friend is?
SpongeBob SquarePants, that’s who.
And, yes, you can have Mentos for breakfast.
* * *

I was almost feeling fondness for you
As you gave me a shoulder massage at the sink—
What a small, lovely surprise.
And then you grabbed my boobs and made a “wha-wha” noise.
In an instant, I felt disgust and sadness and regret.
* * *

The kids are finally down
And you are looking at me in that way,
But not really looking at me.
Tease.
Or are you just spacing out?
Yup, you’re spacing out.
You have unzipped your skirt,
And your baggy underpants ride way, way up on your hips.
How old are those, anyway?
You pull on some sweatpants and a T-shirt and a sweater and a fleece and I am not able to make out any contour of your body at all.
I think you are sending me a signal in the way that married couples send each other signals.
And, just so we’re clear, you’re signalling, “I’m going to call my sister and order sushi. You should do something, too.”
* * *


Of course the wheels on the bus go round and round.
And the wipers go swish, swish, swish.
But here’s something:
The daddy on the bus says, “This is not what I signed up for.”
And maybe the driver on the bus doesn’t go beep, beep, beep.
Maybe he just hits the guy in the crosswalk because he feels like it.
Sing that verse, why don’t you?
* * *

I’m dreaming.
But it’s so real.
A man—is it you?
Nope.
It’s Rob, Casey’s husband,
The one with the Italian accent.
We’re on the beach and he’s chasing me and I’m laughing.
He’s so tanned and fit.
And then . . .
A terrible smell,
Like death.
I’m blinking and awake and your nasty-ass breath is hot on my face.
You son of a bitch.
You God-damned son of a bitch.
Rob, come back.
* * *

We are in the bedroom in our underpants.
Let’s turn the lights down.
No, further.
“Off,” I guess, is the technical term.
Maybe try a towel under the door, where that sliver of light is coming in?
What if we just cuddle, and by cuddle I mean not actually touching—
Each of us at the far edge of our own side of the bed—
Then close our eyes for the next seven hours or so?
I like you.
* * *

I have heard that some couples watch the whole movie in a single sitting.
Food for thought.
* * *

In France, cinq à sept was once sacrosanct,
A euphemism for rendezvous,
For the thing that men and women do.
But we are not in France.
We are here, in Montclair.
And it is well past seven.
And I promised to be home at six.
And, yes, that’s booze on my breath.
The guys and I had one . . . fine, three drinks after work.
I have forgotten the milk.
And the bread and the pasta and the pull-ups.
And the allergy medicine at CVS.
Why are you dressed up?
Wait. Today is Valentine’s Day?

* * *

3 comments:

Roy said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Roy said...

I should say, unfortunately this is funny. :) Or perhaps fortunately--having lived with someone long enough to see the humor.

asha said...

I'm glad you liked them. I see myself in them too and, must admit, I found a certain comfort seeing my character defects displayed on such common and venerable ground. And they are hilarious. :)