The milkman’s wares were spoiled this morning
but I didn’t say anything because what can he do?
I try not to shoot the messenger,
but my whole life is messengers, it seems –
the sticky webs of secretaries I’m put through just to reach Richard;
the doctor who phoned to say my father was dead.
Each of us only a medium,
a cog oiling itself against umpteen brothers.
With that slant, life seems less disappointing.
The girls who sassed me in high school are only pockets of meanness,
channels for some mighty practical joke.
The man at the bank who pats my behind
is mere victim to the lusty ego men can’t help.
The whore splayed out on Robert’s desk
when he thought I was at home with the linens
is only a puppet, a pornographic mannequin,
and the blankness on Robert’s face
just an emissary of an indifferent God.