I asked my dead father,
who lived I knew not where,
to forgive me,
even as I’d never asked for David’s,
for not once had I ever sinned against him.
My pain was swallowed up in the light of his presence,
the sting of the death of Mother’s memory, gone—
all because of the light of his love.
I’d seen what I’d been allowed to see,
heard what I’d been allowed to hear.
The artist in David had painted a pretty picture,
the pianist, in Mother,
this score that had underscored the strange play
that was my life—
a life that had been a Hallmark greeting card,
personalized in cursive,
tea-stained at the edges,
protected in a pretty envelope.
The Protestants had “True Love Waits” rings,
the Mormons, CTR, for “Choose the Right.”
They were purity rings, & nothing more.
Purity rings & purity balls,
with chastity placed on a girl’s
Orgasms were something mysterious—
often by the inexperienced.