Optimism

optimism

My sister can’t understand my obsession with men
those filthy, inconvenient sleep-stealers
bringing with them a tide of hangovers
and bladder infections. They’re flattering,
but that’s about it. My boyfriend, in particular,
she can’t stand – the one who points at skyscrapers and says
You know who built those? Men!
The city lights twinkling like gaudy love
like the way his eyes flicker when he makes me smile
despite myself. My sister can’t believe my weakness
and neither can I – why tolerate a snoring old guy
night after night when my own life contains clean towels –
a kitchen pantry stocked with essentials
and all my electronics plugged in to charge.
Honestly, I can’t. I’m like Mother-fucking-Teresa!
he yelled this evening, spread out on his couch
with his penis flopped out below his beer belly.
Another night on grubby sheets, seasoned
with flakes of convenience-store pastry;
his flatulence a built-in alarm.
But I maintain he’ll surprise everyone yet,
even my sister. He will, I tell her. You’ll see.

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