Home > Poetry, Writing > You Bastard, You

You Bastard, You

(Note: This is an old poem. It’s very Plath, in my opinion. Tomorrow, I think, we’ll have a fun picture-puppy post.)

I remember you
with your faraway eyes
and untouchable smile. Always
a trick up your sleeve, a circus in your soul,
and a magician in your fingertips.

You were a jester
mistaken for a king, a lesson-giver
who took without warning, who sung
everyone else’s song, only to steal
and soothe his own. The lies
you told were infinite, a snake
that ate itself
only to choke, reflexively
expelling poison. Oh, it was never
clear in the moment, and the hindsight
hurts like a hurricane, but
at least it sheds the truth, at last.

Yes, I remember you
for what you were, for the man
you pretended to be. Dark, jaguar cruel,
you were cunning to the core,
content to play along the edges, love,
only to snatch the prize with a laugh.

I was the fool, but you
were the Wise Man who knew better.
Playing with the fire of hearts, singeing
your fingers on the soul, scorching
little lessons that only taught you
that you wanted more.

I was not the only student.
You were not the only teacher.
And in my hand, I hold the book
that could undo you, unravel
that five-by-five life
you etched out so carefully.

You, you bastard, you.
You lithe little liar, you indefinite jailer
of promises unkept –
look at the mess
you’ve made of me, darling.
If I were half the villain you are
I would expose your ink-stained secret,
I would chuck your desire like an open heart,
and I’d have your head on a platter,
and somewhere Salome would be smiling,
if only to kiss the mouth of Judas
one last fatal time.

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Categories: Poetry, Writing
  1. March 19, 2011 at 4:45 pm

    It is so tough dealing with charismatic people who lack integrity. They hook into one’s heart even though there are 1000 reasons why they no longer deserve that access. I must admit, I have a blanket policy of shunning charismatic people. I just don’t trust them. This sometimes hurts their feelings and leads to some awkward moments. But I just feel like the type is so disappointing…that charismatic people often just coast on their gifts and lack basic integrity. It’s an ongoing struggle for me to try to be nicer to such folk, but it takes a while.

    • Ali
      March 21, 2011 at 1:59 pm

      …wait, is that your fancy way of saying you don’t think I’m charismatic? *wink*

      • March 22, 2011 at 3:31 pm

        Very clever, Ali to put me in such a lovely lose-lose situation 😉 If I tell you you are charismatic, then by my comment, I should be shunning you. If I tell you you’re not charismatic, you may shun me. Check and mate!

        Since I’m strangely drawn to reading all your posts and updates when I should be preparing for my 4pm meeting (ok, many other times as well), I must confess that I find you very charismatic. Now I have to shun you, though. So sad! haha

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