Wednesday, August 10, 2022


I had always been a good boy,
but, by fourteen, I was beginning to imagine
what it would never get me.

The game I wanted desperately to play 
seemed to have rules you had to break 
in order to win,

and I didn’t even know the rules.
The book Mother and Dad had given me
didn’t explain them,

neither did the Playboys hidden
under my mattress. But I knew
who could: 

Bond, James Bond, 
martini in hand. Like me, always stirred—
unlike me, never shaken.

What I needed was 
Sex Ed. 007, the book 
I would study harder than 

the chess column in Boy’s Life,
the one that would teach me how to
make girls—no, women—

drop their panties at the sound of my name, 
the one that would also tell me 
what to do next.

The chess game I wanted to learn was the one 
I watched Steve McQueen and Fay Dunaway play.  
Someday, after all the golf and polo and flying 

and dune buggy racing had bored me to 
thievery, I would be the one having my way 
with her, sending my man round in the Rolls 

to deliver a farewell, the one leaving her 
in the cemetery with a tear in her eye
as I jetted off, high above, far away.

David E. Poston's work has appeared recently in Typehouse Literary Magazine, The Main Street Rag, North Carolina Literary Review, and Pembroke Magazine. He is a frequent book reviewer for Pedestal Magazine and a co-editor of Kakalak.

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