Flamenco at the Thirsty Bear. Jim Gunshinan

About Jim Gunshinan

 • The Artificial Heart
 • Heroes
 • Geography Lessons
 • Blue Cornflowers
 • Living by Water
 • Upon This Rock
 • The Man Dad Brought
    Home from the War
 • Physics
 • Black and White
 • Not the Mom We Were
    Used To
 • Nothing Sacred
• Spring
 • Transformation
 • Please Straighten That Up
 • Up from Depression
 • What the Body Wants
 • Compassion
 • Commute
 • Kiss Me
 • Starter Castles
 • Flamenco at the Thirsty
 • A Nature Poem
 • Portrait of a Woman from
   the Gardens of Egypt in the
   First Century




I want to touch all
the women at Costco
as we go about our shopping
the terry-cloth towels
and the oranges.
The men seem handsome and strong.
Something is happening, rising.
All this fuzzy pleasure
rising behind my eyes and out.
(Does anyone notice?
People seem friendlier.)
And that terrible distance I’ve felt
between my skin and the world
has shrunk down to nothing
so big that it can’t be crossed
with reaching out and touching.

I put it away years ago.
Too dangerous
too delicious, too bad
judgments like rat droppings
all around it; disease.
But there is a freshness
deep down things
even rats, even human beings.
It fills up my skin.
Funny I should feel this in Lent
which means spring.

I’m a peach. A ripe, fuzzy
and I am eating myself.
Tried to give up chocolate
but ate eight-cookies’-worth
of chocolate chip dough
on the day after Ash
Get out, Lent, heavy, denying
dull, repressing, body-hating thing
I was steeped in for too long.

Deep body groove
I know you’re in there.
Think I’ll plant flowers in you
and fruit trees and walk my dog
in you.
Lent images. Spring images.

Gehenna was the Jerusalem town dump
where garbage, the bodies of outlaws
and cast-offs, burned.
Even there, at the edge of the valley
something must grow
an olive tree take root, a fig
or the starry white flowers
of the bean caper bush.

  © Jim Gunshinan, 2013


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