Monday, 9 December 2019


by Mary McCarthy

I found some things called love 
were best avoided 
like the sweet faced liar 
who robs you blind 
and leaves you behind 
as a used tissue 
or the one you pick up 
like a bad rash 
that blisters and torments 
and never heals 
or the handsome stranger 
who puts his mark on you 
deep and obvious 
as a cattle brand 
I would not be caught by love 
in crooked definitions 
not kept in a closed room 
or on a short leash 
not loved in teaspoons 
or inch by inch 
not with a blueprint                     
or by the book 
not with requirements 
to recite a catechism 
or rehearse a script 
but wait for you to come to me 
with an open hand 
and no great expectations 
I would be perfection 
or carry your salvation 
or do more than meet you here 
in the open 
where we both can stand 

* * * * *

Mary McCarthy has always been a writer but spent most of her working life as a Registered Nurse. Her work has appeared in many print and online journals, including Third Wednesday, Earth's Daughters, the Ekphrastic Review, and Verse Virtual. Her electronic chapbook, Things I Was Told Not to Think About, is available as a free download from Praxis magazine.

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