[Poetry] “A Score Is…”

A “score” is a girl.
It’s a rite of passage.
It’s a way of cutting notches
to get your belt to fit
‘round a waist still slim
and supple with youth.
It’s a method of bending the truth
to advantage, or even breaking it.
It’s the oldest goal, an animal need
made intelligent through manmade strategy.
It’s a war where the only weapons are one’s body.
It is agony.  It is…a girl.
With a name.
And a number, at 2AM;
a body, like yours—
all muscles and viscera,
nerve endings firing,
hormones lying, tying
her to you with bonds like steel wire.
It’s confusing love with desire,
but learning that, in harsher light,
when she is not a body
but instead a complexity,
an abnormality of the human order—
all needs and wants and disorder—
the difference.
It’s deciding to move on
to matches easier won,
and better played, never minding
the mess made when you make
cat’s cradles of heart-strings with
“no strings attached,”
with acts made for attaching,
and not just capture.
It’s an electric exchange
of touch and taste and temptation—
less of fine balance and more of a fall–
with only nets to catch the field,
to entangle and snare her
and cut notches into skin like bedposts,
or belt-loops.
It is a conquest to tarnish, over time.
It is collapsing under the weight of lost belief:
that those words meant something;
that whispers and warm breath–
and what made a body sing–
were more than just tokens
in a game where the rules consist of denying
that she was a body…
and not just a body.
She was-is a girl.
It’s easy to forget,
in the heat of the moment
where your lips are loose
and I-love-yous are just chips to be cashed,
a gambit rehashed,
to close out a match…or blow it out.
But, in the dark of denial,
you may leave…but she remains:
not a number,
not a score,
but a broken body,
and more than a body:
a person.
A human.
A heart.
A girl.




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