• Image by Gary E. Porter
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The slim, suntanned legs

of the woman in front of me in the checkout line

fill me with yearning

to provide her with health insurance

and a sporty little car with personalized plates.

The way her dark hair

falls straight to her slender waist

makes me ache

to pay for a washer/dryer combo

and yearly ski trips to Aspen, not to mention

her weekly visits to the spa

and nail salon.

And the delicate rise of her breasts

under her thin blouse

kindles my desire

to purchase a blue minivan with a car seat,

and soon another car seat, and eventually

piano lessons and braces

for two teenage girls who will hate me.

Finally, her full, pouting lips

make me long to take out a second mortgage

in order to put both kids through college

at first- or second-tier institutions,

then cover their wedding expenses

and help out financially with the grandchildren

as generously as possible before I die

and leave them everything.

But now the cashier rings her up

and she walks out of my life forever,

leaving me alone

with my beer and toilet paper and frozen pizzas.

George Bilgere’s most recent book of poems is The White Museum, chosen by Alicia Ostriker for the 2010 Autumn House Poetry Series. He received a Pushcart Prize in 2009 and won the May Swenson Poetry Award in 2006 for Haywire (Utah State University Press). His poems are heard frequently on Garrison Keillor’s Writer’s Almanac, and he has appeared as a guest on A Prairie Home Companion. He teaches at John Carroll University in Cleveland, Ohio. “Desire” is printed by permission of the author.

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Comments

nan shartel Aug. 9, 2012 @ 8:46 a.m.

this is exactly the kind of poetry that's suited to and will be read and enjoyed by people in this day and age...poetry doesn't have to be unpopular or die with poets like this around

Yippee!!!

kudos reader!

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