In poetry at least the imagination must not detach itself from reality…
                                                                          —Wallace Stevens


I want to be in love forever
and not like anyone else

though I also want to
write in a tradition

which may or may not
have been neglected

because you could not
write about your life

and falling in love

happens to people.

These days everyone wants
a piece of the real

and “representational writing”
and “documentary poetics”

describing what appears
in the imaginary mirror

the mind’s eye. It wasn’t ever
the real but how

it looked to us. Tonight
you must be

at least 1000 miles away
reading poems about fucking me

in a motel in Nebraska
which I can confirm

really happened. It made
your poem happen

and this poem can
never escape from it

and neither can we.
I will be selfish

for eternity,
I will never not love you.

Even this poem may be wrong
but at least it spoke

What it says
isn’t important. If you want

to tell people you fucked me
in a motel, I can’t stop you.

If fucking me in a motel
makes you want to write poems,

by all means let’s fuck
in a motel and write poems

we want to read at readings
and publish in journals

so that we can get jobs
and buy more expensive liquor.

Yes, we’re running out of time.
Every year the hangovers get worse.

But more than telling anyone
what really happened

most of all I want to be with you
writing poems

about our feelings not
because they are new but because

everyone has them
and because the poems we like

are emotional. And because
only poetry can make you feel

what I feel when
you are driving without a seatbelt

down a frozen highway
to read poems about fucking me

to strangers who afterwards
will remember only

that I was wearing cowboy boots
and it troubles me

that our words have become
so entwined with our bodies

that to others we are more them
than ourselves. This

is an argument for a context
that doesn’t permit

escape, a motel with no exits.
Words make things happen

you warn me. We are
especially susceptible, having

nothing else
to convey our feelings

but photographs of trees
and of our faces

resolute and dumb
in two dimensions.