Poem 275 ± March 5, 2016

Mara Buck
A Few Hours

Buy me shrimp
on a clear day when
I can see the blue of
the ocean replicated in
the clean white plate
the waiter brings
as he stumbles to our table.
And let there be wine.
Oh, not an obnoxious
cork-sniffing vintage, only
something soft and cool
that soothingly sits politely
within its twinkling glass.
Please have a simple
violinist silhouetted against
that sea, playing, a bit
of bright Vivaldi.
All these things,
will you do for me?

Let me sit pertly in
a darkened, classy club—maybe
the Carlyle, maybe the Vanguard—
listening to sophisticated stylings
with those who drink too much,
neither to forget nor to remember,
but only because it is there.
My little black dress will
be sexy, yet not tart,
and I will indulge in Campari
while someone else pays the bill.
I will be witty. I will be gay.
I will sparkle.

I yearn to be with people who are glib.
I crave cleverness.
Give me a quip, a pun—
quick-witted banter.
Show me the mettle of your
gray matter.
Surround me with a never-ending
round of crystal martinis
of the mind.

Loosen my tongue with champagne.
Bathe me in kindly
diamond-reflected winks.
Keep the music smoky to match
the innuendo of the other little black dresses
who circle me with embracing cattiness.
Oh, take me back to that place
where all is parties or nothing at all.
Let me glitter, let me astonish, let me flirt,
until the time comes when I must
go home alone, for tomorrow
I must be whatever passes for me.


Mara BuckMara Buck writes, paints, and rants in a self-constructed hideaway in the Maine woods. She has won awards or been short-listed by the Faulkner/Wisdom Society, the Hackney Awards, Carpe Articulum, Maravillosa, The Binnacle. Her work has appeared in Huffington Post, Crack the Spine, Blue Fifth, Pithead Chapel, Writing Raw, Whirlwind, Tishman Review, Maine Review, Apocrypha, Linnet’s Wings, Poets for Living Waters, The Lake, and other journals, as well as in numerous anthologies. A portfolio from her gallery-sized cancer installation was published in Drunken Boat. Paintings are in private collections in Mexico, Canada, and the United States. Her art, poetry, and video appear on the website of the World Trade Center Memorial. Current projects include a novel and a collection of strange stories of Maine.

This poem appeared in Caper Literary Journal and was reprinted in Clarke’s Journal of the Arts.