“The Eros of Testosteros” by Albert Haley

Albert Haley


I speak of a key that will undo a lock.
We’re not very bright once handed such.
Down there, down there rests his pride and joy.
What’s it worth if it’s not deployed?
So each moves about with it at hand
and a question on the lips:
which lock? We must keep trying.
It is the only way to tell.
It might be hers, hers or titillation,
hers. We insert, we fiddle,
jimmying energetically, to gain entrance.
You know very well how intent
we are. Like thieving ravens in glossy
black coats or boys rapping knuckles
against the shuttered candy
store. Until one night a door swings
wide and we walk into the room.
Spacious cave. Our blind intention
is only to find commodious lodgings
and wonders of the underground felt
through seismic trembles of the groin
and girth. The key, the key, everyone speaks
of the key when it’s really all
about that room. Where we’ll lie down
in green pastures, curl up like a hound
with nose in tail, shudder at the chill
of night, and smile before we nod off
with the thought that we’ve found this
instead of the coffin. How we beat out
ol’ Skull Face again to dream
(greedily, unfaithfully) of how many others
might offer similar amenities for a weary
traveler until the dawn when the cock
again must crow and what makes a man
a man will arise. That’s what we think
about during the act, that’s where the mind
goes. Are you not now sorry you ever asked?

from Rattle #22, Winter 2004

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