» Poetry

Two Poems on Love-Play


It was late, & you were

wearing your widow suit,

black of 1870s chic,

loaded with bustle.

I did my best Doc

Holliday—Val’s version, cock-

sure & half-goofy. You

laughed. I laughed. Val

would’ve laughed if he were here

watching me paw at your corset,

pull the strings to tighten it.

Moments like this,

we feel happiest,

field mice exploring

magnificent catacombs

of a dusty closet.

I act out in otherness;

you dress up the same:

not faces of whatever

force invented us,

but what we make

of ourselves

when we’re at play.


Let Me Be Your Dream Dunce

Bright-eyed desperado on a mission for disaster.


Snow-cap climber heading for the peak

 of Mt. Oh-no-one-goes-there-ever.


View-taker who topples over the railing of the boat

 into choppy waters you barely save me from.


Let me let go of rope, map, & stars—


I’ll walk into danger as a fawn

 not fast enough to flee the mountain lion,


tell you philosophies of nothing while we sit

 in your dream-Jacuzzi in our clothes.


Let me be clumsy, cuss, rant, & stub my toe

 on a jag in the earth,

 my forehead once more on the jeweled moon.



Ace Boggess

Ace Boggess is author of three books of poetry, most recently Ultra Deep Field (Brick Road Poetry Press, 2017), and the novel A Song Without a Melody (Hyperborea Publishing, 2016). His fourth poetry collection, I Have Lost the Art of Dreaming It So, is forthcoming from Unsolicited Press. His writing has appeared in Harvard Review, Mid-American Review, River Styx, and many other journals. He received a fellowship from the West Virginia Commission on the Arts. He now lives in Charleston, West Virginia, but spent five years in a West Virginia prison.