Swimming with the Tiger
by Alan Gann

Every June
I read the inaugural issue
of The Dallas Review
and think about Bob.
We were on two sides of this ink—
his first time and mine—
and like all the best adventures
began full of self-delusion
and someone else’s faith.

It wasn’t June
but I dance as if it were
when Bob built a river
of online words and again
chose a few of mine
to drift downstream.

And it was a June Monday
when the poem of the day
began Tyger Tyger, Burning Bright—
and I found the poem I had to write
inviting the wild back inside.
It still hurts and I miss her every day.

Should have been spring
but was late solstice twilight
when I met the juggler
wandering along the beach
and added sex to the spinning mix
of words and images—
willed readers to wade
through tidal pools
hoping for a glimpse of arousal
or embarrassing loss
of swimsuit and affection.

And perhaps in some future year
I’ll misremember when Michelle
elbowed me in the ribs
and celebrate my inability to refuse.

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