poem #37

socks
 
LOVE AND SOCKS
 
My fiancé relishes his nudity: no undies, no wife beaters,
no Brooks Brothers khakis, and no sneakers,
which would be fine if he wore no argyle socks
to boot, so to speak. They cling to his feet
like twin leeches with diamond blood patterns
imprinted on their black skins. Starkly, they offset
(and seem to consume) his calves, knees, thighs,
crotch, and torso, too, which are a paler
shade of ecru. He’s thirty but looks eighty 
in those socks. I say, “Take them off.”
He tells me the feet et la tête
(he’s a Francophile, God bless him)
are responsible for ninety percent
of human heat loss. Sans socks, he’d be cold.
The claim is absurd, but I can’t get in a word
edgewise, can’t get him to see that practicalities
don’t have to dictate reality, anyways,
that it’d be better for my eyes, sex drive,
and therefore him if he’d peel his socks
down his shins and roll them off his toes. 
He rubs cock-first against my denim-clad buttock
as if to prove his virility in this state of temperate harmony
he’s created by wearing only nasty socks. My feet are bare.
I feel like I’m trampling over miniature tumbleweeds
of dust and lint wherever I walk.
“The wedding’s off,” I tell him.
“You never sweep the floors.” 
 
– Kirstin O’Connor
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