“To Women Named Emily” by C. Joseph Jordan

C. Joseph Jordan


What kind of men am I? This question floats
through my mind now and then. It is different
than, What kind of man am I? What kind of
men am I? I suspect that I am one of those men
who will live his life to discover at the age of
forty that he has been teaching senior English to

Catholic kids for the last fifteen years. One of
those men who end up married to women
named Emily, who were pretty in college and now
are a little heavyset, and somewhat grumpy.
One of those men, you know the sort, who tried
right after school to hit Paris, and Athens, and

Florence, but discovered that he was really more
comfortable in Portland or Seattle. One of
those men who has seen most of the movies,
read most of the books, who tries hard to be a
good papa, and still ends up feeling, sort of, like
he’s failed. I am men of Irish descent who have

had to quit drinking because it’s bad for their
heart. I am men who will guess one day that
they should’ve married a thin girl named
Sophia, and moved to Madrid with her. I am
men who vote every November, but usually
write in Mickey Mouse. I am very sleepy men.

from Rattle #25, Summer 2006
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