That woman who exposed her breasts to me
was not the one you prophesied.
Exactly as you’d said, she suddenly
undid her blouse and pulled the front aside,
inviting me under those evergreens
to taste her chalky, freckled flesh
and press my palm inside her open jeans.
I hesitated, trying to refresh
my memory of what else you’d predicted:
Reclined against a tree, yet tense,
she’d guide me to one breast, you’d said. (I licked it,
conspiring with my silence.) In one sense
she matched your dream of my desiring —
nudging me down between her thighs
where, coaxed by her sighs, my mouth searched the spring
my tongue drew moisture from. Her muffled cries
as you’d imagined them, garbled the words
she seemed determined not to keep,
words voiced as sounds shaped to be overheard,
as though like you she felt her body leap
some crevice, then savored the journey down.
You wouldn’t have been disappointed,
had you stepped out, dropping the dressing gown
you’d loosened as you’d told me this, and joined us
enraptured by the woods, just how you’d promised
you would, with one hand on my back,
one fondling her cheek, while you two kissed
for the first time. You might have been distracted
by the pine smell, unmindful how her taste
felt different on your lips from mine.
You might have led her onto me and faced
the two of us entwined, tracing the line
from her to me, while I stared up at you
and she clung to your shoulder. Still,
nothing, nothing that happened could subdue
the indescribably delicious thrill
I won’t ever forget of lying at your side,
spent yet alert, breathlessly heaving,
listening to these things you prophesied,
seduced by all you then had me believing.
“Your Other Woman” appears in John’s latest book of poetry, Have At You Now! from WordTech Communications, which was reviewed here on Burlesque Press by Daniel Wallace. Have At You Now! is available for purchase here.