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"When she says her love is dead

You think she needs you"

                         - Lennon-McCartney


Regrets Only


You didn't have to go.

She pressed me.

You didn't have to go.

She had a way of regressing,
of randomly becoming very needy...

And you wanted her to need you.

Like a hook in the jaw.

She had on an extra long
blue nightshirt with the sleeves
pulled up when she asked me.

Lovely blond down on her forearms.

And by complying with her request
there was a slender chance
that she'd want to see more of you.
I should have said no.
Not only no, I should have insisted
she shouldn't do it—.

It wasn't worthy of her.


How could she have fallen for a set-up like that?

And why didn't she call it off when the "couple"
brought another couple?


Beyond psychology.

Beyond meaning.

No, embedded.

She had a job; she wasn't really hot
for a modeling career.

It was—barter.

This photographer would shoot her unclothed
in exchange for a portfolio
which she could show to agencies.

In other words, there was an element of sense.
I can't remember if he was a legitimate
photographer or cunning amateur.
And the "one roll"metamorphosed.
And it was not he in any case
who creeped me quite as much
as his somewhat butch, domineering wife.

As if she and not he was the secret engine?
Whose job it was—

Whose pleasure—

to hand Laura a long-stemmed rose

while the men were reloading

and she was standing there on the stage
naked, and trembling, like a faun,

you wanted to interfere

and also let these creatures, I mean
characters, play out their hand,
see just how far they would go—

you who liked to see Laura's body
whenever it was vestment-free were now revolted
by these lusterless, dour, middle-aged voyeurs
who looked to her for rejuvenation—
That faun-like quality—this side of anorexic—
yet a grown woman, lissome, tall.

Something deceptive about her slenderness
left you unprepared for the fullness of her sex and breasts.

Her body? What about her innocence?

That to her credit was never an issue.
Not with you. But the photographers didn't know
she'd had more sex-partners than you'd had fantasies
peopled with women you'd known.

And she only two years older.

You don't think these hungry-eyed characters
knew that behind her body's lie,
the fake demure virginal shy exterior,
lay a woman who when at all pressed to have sex
"by a fool such as"you, reported the thousand
"fucks"she'd undergone in a voice that
bristled with irritation.
She had no room for a slightly


younger and less experienced person's avid interest.

At least when I was that person.