Had little problem putting down
the Tonka trucks to play dolls with
his sister, or the girl downstairs.
Could weave a story just as spicy
as any on Grandmother's soaps.
Made friends sometimes, but no little girl
ever once tried to give him a kiss.
Never heard how to go about catching girls.
Chased them down playground slopes, in
poor poems, into gay clubs, around boyfriends.
Chased them right up to airplane gates.
The good ones steered clear, could smell
the doubt and fear, sour like month-old milk.
A few stuck, by some chance mix
of charm and luck: either messed up enough
that they didn't care, or their own stench
of missionary zeal and fanciful wish
didn't allow for a meaningful sniff.
Nothing lasted -- crumbled like clods of dried earth.
Hoped for years someone would write
"Women for Dummies". Didn't know
he needed to read "Fix It Yourself and Save".