Obviously, I picked this poem because of the title. And because it says in such eloquent detail how stories like Romeo and Juliet can’t be fully appreciated until we’re old enough to look on our teenage selves with wisdom. But, hey, we probably wouldn’t go back to it if we weren’t introduced to it in the first place, when we were young, star-crossed lovers.
Again, Tania, thank you. Wish I could’ve used it.
They hold no loyalties to the star-crossed lovers,
their books resting lightly in their hands, pencils tapping,
urging me to gallop apace so the two can put themselves
out of their misery.
It’s nothing but a lust story;
he saw her work those curves in some circle dance,
and that was it.
I press: is it possible? Is it remotely
conceivable that they loved?
Hey, we go to parties
and check each other out. We know nothing
about love. But we’d never die for looks
like those morons.
They all nod in agreement, and I fear
the slow, dreadful flowering of the remaining scenes,
the doodling, the glaring out of windows, my own
growing conviction that Romeo would have played the
had he lived three more days.
The class genius stares
at his neighbor’s blonde ponytail, then blurts,
So who’s this Tie-balt?
To her melodious laughter.
I can only look down and smile, remembering my own
when I allowed my mind to sculpt itself
around a startling green eye, or a lock of hair hanging
a boy’s forehead.
I wish I could tell them, it’s all true—
all of it. We know nothing about love for a long, long
I wish I could tell them how I rode my bike a mile
out of the way to catch a glimpse of Teddy at his
hoop; how I hid my perfect trig scores from Kevin;
how for David, I ringed my eyes with so much smoky
how for no love at all I took a little
of my life