Thomas Patrick Levy


Do you have any lurking notions or reservations of any kind?

In the woods near the frozen stream you asked me if we could be lovers. I was young enough. I touched the dough of your side. I concentrated hard on my careful breathing.

I would have said yes. I didn’t know.

I wouldn’t be swollen in this sticky plastic of a sleeping bag, waiting for my lover to change into a web of lingerie, to move towards the bed like a respectful worm.

Have you had honest doubts and prejudices?

Your rockabilly scene is not a secret torn up in your diary but I’m trying anyway. Your microphone is on my neck. On my way to the store the Memphis blues again. We’re in Nashville, my hand hovering over the pearl-ground body of Elvis’s limousine. In the yard, a flesh-bare ’57. I’m losing you in the way that I moved away from home. I’m coming down the street, rolling real slow.

Do you question your ability to be honest with yourself?

I used to write down a notebook in little dreams that I kept near my toilet.

I kept track of you in this way, and in keeping track of you I was able to brush ink over a paragraph which I might have thought.

I kept each one near my notebooks in the garage. I’d rest them on a garbage can, a sawhorse.

I’d rest you there, too, your body spread over a cloud like the outline of a grease stain.

Do you have control?

I can’t breathe when I scream. I can’t knuckle my aches through the steering wheel. I can hear you briefly through the screen of my punches. I’m flickering very slowly.

I’m inside and then I’m behind you, my arms around your stomach. I’m not there, I’m playing tricks, driving the speed limit while I crush the street with the rubber of my knuckles.

Through the windshield I can hear your brief aches. I press my pinky around your belly like a violin. I whisper things.