The characters of Xena, Gabrielle, Mel and Janice are the property of RenPic.
The following may contain traces of coarse language, lesbian sex, alcohol, violence, and blank verse. If you find any of these distasteful, please seek out safer ground.
This is a companion piece, of sorts, to Covington.

by Lela Kaunitz


Trouble with
a capital T
Mel Pappas, you're insane.
She's trouble with a capital T,
and that cigar!

So what if she swaggers when she walks
And it makes your knees go weak?
That's no reason to go lovesick and stupid
Over some Yankee vagabond.

So what if her rolling her sleeves up
Makes you want to swoon in her arms?
You're Southern, born and bred.
You'd swoon at the drop of a hat.

She Never She's missing
Like the arm that soldier lost in the war.
I'm woken like a shock
Expecting her there
Where she never slept.
Out of my sleepy mouth.
My neck's prickling
Like an angry dog.

Her Sleeping Breath Her hands
  Curl like puppets
    with no puppeteer

A lock of hair
  Bronze in moonlight
  Copper in sunlight
  in her sleeping breath.

Her lips
pouting for a kiss
till I recall

She's naked.
  A bedsheet for decorum.
I'd blushed
  stripping bourbon-sour khakis
From that wonder.

Her body.
  Angles of light and shadow
Hint at curves.
I had not lingered -
Decency, Melinda -
where my hands had brushed.

Where my eyes linger now.

Sunlight Sunlight has no manners.

I squint at the brightness
Fumble my glasses
Pull the drapes closed.

Janice is hungover
And prone to cursing.

The Art of the Bow Tie "Dance with me?"

She's made an effort,
Rented tux,
but -
oh Janice -
"Where'd you learn to tie a bow tie?"

Red cheeks,
No translation needed.

I used to do my daddy's tie.
My daddy was tall.

On bent knee
before her
I'm blushing.

The heels of my hands
Brush softness.

Nothing else
comes close
to this.

Her skin
through starched shirt-front

Her tie is neat.
I'm a mess.

Dancing slow
with the girl of my dreams.

Janice's Tears When we make love
Janice weeps in my arms
Release brings tears.

No tears now.
Lip split and bleeding.
Gun at her head.
No tears here.
She's stone,
My Janice.

Jan 1-6, 1999

Return to The Bard's Corner