Friday, February 13, 2009

Lip Service


All kisses suck

You’re not doing it correctly
if the lips don’t pucker, a fleshy
forward thrust designed

to extend your reach, but that’s
where the presumption ends.
I don’t have to remind you

that Hollywood has made a mess
of such a perfect thing, an actor’s maw
for instance, wide and gaping

clamped over another actor’s mouth
so that their tongues churn and writhe
like eels in a salivating sea.

That’s not a kiss. It’s a technique
used in resuscitation, leading up to
some medical emergency resolved

but it’s not a kiss. What follows the pucker
should be a short discernible intake
of breath, as if a spaghetti noodle

is slipping from the lip
and if you open your eyes fast enough
to see a smile reshape that mouth

you just kissed, well then
whatever happens next
should tax the limits of description.
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