Tuesday 5/08/2007 12:15:00 AM

I could tell how old he was by the way he talked. Taking naps between each stare. The parachute in his grin. The anchor in his heart. I could say I knew her. Because I did. The itch in her ear when language betrayed. The numb of conversations stuck in wet cement.

We can choose the moment we'll admit how real it is. Feigning powers we only wish we had. We can choose them like we do whimpering puppies inside the cages of the pound. Admiring the irises of stars long dead before we ever found out they existed.

At the mercy of a universe bigger than we could ever hope to guess. On the shoulder of a world that never lets us see it weep. We remain. The skin it sheds. Tucking its dirty pillows under our tired heads. Chasing the run in its pantyhose. Hypnotized by the click of its heels as it paces.

Dusty bins under its bed. The abortion of our youth in discarded condoms.

We go through the ritual. The decision ejaculating within. Volcanoes spewing men. I am proof enough. A woman is anything she wants. I am a trial. I am a conviction. I'd rather not be found innocent.

I don't wonder anymore. But I still suspect. There are stages where they linger. Balloons slowly losing air. The timid coughs of seduction not the crutches they were then.

We don't choose. But may be chosen.

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