By Myrna Stone
Sweet Nothings

You’re lickerish, he whispers, my own lickspot,
my slick licklog of love
, confirming how I besot

the man all over again, forty-one years into it,
and prompt a whacked-out loquaciousness fit

only for bedtime ears. “You know what you’re
saying, don’t you?” I ask. Who cares? I adore

every inch of you
, he says, you’re my bright spot,
my nightspot, my crockpot of love! What crackpot

listens to this sort of drivel? Yet under his sexed-
up rhetoric is a tender psyche profoundly vexed

by our communicational schism. You’re taking
on truly mythic proportions
, he groans, making

light of my thirty-pound weight gain, my droll
ensemble, my dietary woes, let my lips patrol

your perimeter, my tart little French kumquat!

What right-headed woman wouldn’t take a swat

at this twaddle? I’ll tickle your fancy, I’ll troll
for you
, he vows. Such plucky talk, such bull!

“What you need is a shrink, and a Rorschach,”
I say, “before I capitulate.” Watch me, I’ll knock

it out, I’ll nail it! Anything for you, my sugar pit
he spits, he jives, until the waiter puts a stop to it.

- From The Casanova Chronicles