We are pleased to offer our Poets Read series in honor of National Poetry Month 2019 and will run it throughout the month of April.
Every day in April, our website and our YouTube channel will feature the voice of a poet whose work has appeared in our pages over the past year. On Sundays, we will offer two poets for your enjoyment.
Today’s poem is Mattress Etiquette by Remi Recchia and it appeared in the Summer 2018 issue of Gyroscope Review.
by Remi Recchia
1. Your skin will stick with sweat. It will not smell good. If you’re good enough friends, you and she will laugh when your rough elbow patch scratches her ribcage. No one’s ribcage is perfect. Hers will be marked with the following: stretch marks, soft hair, no visible bones. Do not underestimate the beauty of fat alone.
2. White warmth can melt into the woman as many times as you’d like, but they must melt into the woman. A mattress, soft or hard or adorned in feathers, is not a woman.
3. If a man asks you if you have Done It, you may tell him. If the same man asks her if she has Done It, you’d better hope she lies. This is different than if he asks her if you have Done Her.
4. Stained mattress pad caving in, off-brand pillows flattening thin—her pink and your slick will coat everything. Don’t let the duvet get too heavy.
5. Leave everything pink, rubber, or silicone on the internet. If you are a true man, you will not need any supplements.
6. If you find yourself writing poetry into her bones, resist and desist. This isn’t the Thought Police, exactly, but there is a time and place for poetry, and high undulations under a loud groan should take precedence. Your body is utilitarian; her womb is black and wanting.
7. And if you do: kiss her ears. Make sure no inch of her face, beautiful cheekbones, clever tongue goes un-worshipped. Her collarbone is only labeled as such because God couldn’t think of a word for smooth, delicate, felt, and naked all at once. Her deepness will cling to you. Her soft hips will rely on you for firm protection. Her eyes will change color in the light, but do not be deceived: you are staring in to the face of a woman. Her heart is no chameleon. You are golden in her shadow.
About the Poet: Remi Recchia is a Ph.D. candidate in Creative Writing at Oklahoma State University. His work has appeared in Barzakh Magazine, Pittsburgh Poetry Review, Front Porch, Gravel, Glass: A Journal of Poetry, and Haverthorn Press, among others. He holds an MFA in Poetry from Bowling Green State University. You can follow him on Twitter at https://twitter.com/steambbcrywolf.