The Box

We had angelic hosts
Above our heads at Christmas
But most of the year
Just a flock of seagulls.

And then, without so much
As a ‘Bye Bye Love’
We were released from captivity
And returned to our captors.

People cried out
What about Uhura?
What happened to Sulu?
What have you done with Chekov?

Even at its most reserved
The ocean still owned the room.





As your face neared
It changed in the dark.
First like Matthew
Then Mark.
A little like Luke
And then, touching, you.

It was like a little death.
Tiny, in fact.
Yet hard enough.
For if the Devil drives
And needs must
Beggars can.




The Monarch

Napkins over our heads
Chin up, chest out
We stood to attention
For a large Monarch.
A small part of our hearts
Up our sleeves.

Then, in formation
For the little goldfinch.
Shoulders back, stomach in
The remains of love
Covering our cages
Held in reserve.




The Path

Not quite a nocturne
Not just yet. But still—
The first sundowner
Had already gone done
And helicopter and aeroplane
Could not be reconciled.
Could they?
How would we know?




The Curse

The wedding sheets
Were strewn with bite-size
Shredded Wheat
But Major Loesser
Remained adamantine
In the name of Sts. Ursula and Gaston
In his plot to destroy Disney.

Narrow lapels
Unfashionable wide
The curse ends there
Or goes on and on
In Parallel Time
For his daughters’ daughters’
Daughters …



[James Dufficy is an Irish/American citizen living in London. He works as a medical editor for the Mac Keith Press. His poems have appeared in Ambit, Blackbox Manifold, and the Gay & Lesbian Review.]

Copyright © 2022 by James Dufficy, all rights reserved. This text may be used and shared in accordance with the fair-use provisions of Copyright law. Archiving, redistribution, or republication of this text on other terms, in any medium, requires the notification of the journal and consent of the author.