Roger Pfingston



In the garden this morning

thinking it’s almost sexy

the way lilies flop over

like that in their final days—

I stepped on bloody              

feathers where something

had just fed, hawk or cat,

unexpected as today’s walk

past the campus greenhouse

where dark figures twisted

in blurred union, doing who

knows what under the guise

of botany. Turning home,

troubled by indecision—

a cold beer or Dairy Queen—

I considered going back

to see for myself. Took,

instead, the short cut to DQ,

walked a while with trees

of heaven, their leaves

dusted with alley grime,

enough to make a lily faint,

before I found my calm

in a small fruit Blizzard.



Half a century and still

   he lingers over me,

the smooth and soft,


   he says, such as when

I throw the covers back

  on any given morning,


toes pointed yoga neat,

   he says, as he burrows in—

crevice, hollow, dip


and rise—lips wet

   with praise, my heart

where my voice should be.

Roger Pfingston has poems in recent issues of Apple Valley Review, Rhino, and Hartskill Review. New work will appear in Drunken Boat and I-70 Review. A poem recently published in Poetry East will be featured in Ted Kooser’s weekly column, American Life in Poetry, in December of this year. His chapbook, A Day Marked for Telling, is available from Finishing Line Press.



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