Valentine’s Day

Julia Molloy

Infuriatingly intangible
and inescapable when I sit down
in the soft, fleshy armchair that demands
reading. I’ve decided that books aren’t books
without love. Some form of it anyway.

The worst is when the new craze is to lap
up the latest “heart-breaking romance that
will have you in tears” –
(never cried at a book or a film, resolved never to either);
a craze about this thing I can’t see.

There’s one thing that we all know about love
– it’s hard, it’s often wrong, but we’re told to carry
on anyway, headlong into the burnt
oblivion that is, for some reason,
cherished in novels, above everything else.

And when that dreaded day comes along, with
its sympathetic sentiments (never
kept) or its anonymous anonymous writers (we
always know who they are), I stay far far away,
and dream up a loveless story.

Of course, that will never happen, for as
long as humanity populates earth.
We’ll stay surrounded by the hazy cloud
that infects us all and makes us hunger for
the one that we will never let go.

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