VOICES FROM THE FIRE: Duane Vorhees

BLOOM’S KAMA SUTRA, new edition

To the garden of harlots I pilgrimage again.

“Hey, Bud.”

The rival queens of the bed compete for attention and agency.

“Pick me, pick me.”

Their perfumes, their costume hyperbole, all tended for effect. Their gloss and glitter lipstick, their soft and tender feel.

“I bet you came to sniff my genitals. As usual.”

I contemplate paradise in every connate petal. The throats, the limbs.

“Why don’t you take me home with you?” The spiked heels, the hiked up miniskirts and stuffed brassieres.

“Oh, Rose, everyone knows you’re already wilting. So take me instead. You won’t regret.”

I blush: Those brash sunflowers are selfing again. Shameless exhibitionists!

“Hey, Bud!”

The blossoms’ bosoms sway like ecstacy while stems swivel and gyrate. The anthor sacs split boldly open, and pistils expose their sticky tips, their fine tiny hairs. Oh, my!

“My nectar is sweet and yours for the tasting.”

Their scents, their scents, they’re engineered to test my feigned reticence.

“I do bouquets.”

Though I confess, after all these years, I savor their style still, I am aware that there is a stigma attached.

But, this time, I choose to cruise the hothouse. Rumor has it that the orchids are in gametophyte.

DESTINIES SHIFT

Like a detective or salesman after a lead,

a jealous extra hungry for of the first lead role,

my destinies shift between control and rolled dice.

Knowing the sea will be not forever ice free

along my chosen route, do I want to free boot

or aspire to engage as a cruise ship boot black

and watch the unsettled play their slots and blackjack

in quest of their elusive holy grail jack pot

while jaded doves adrenalize in the spotlight?

The isolated, stark figure of the light house

confronts the image of the soft-bobbing houseboat

like a cradle rocking itself in its boat slip

moored oh so serenely by its careful slip knot

which is not (not!) a noose. It’s a kind of knot ring.

O, to be barefoot beach boy, heedless of ring worm.

OPPOSING OCTAINES: A DIPTYCH 

And thus have we survived Time’s constriction: 

Our birthright has yielded to castration,  

imagination consigned to fiction, 

the possible straitened since Creation. 

Our regular Sunday crucifixions,  

augmented by dances and cremations, 

reduced by constraints and interdictions  

to meaningless recreations. 

My universe expanding 

from a drop of hydrogen. 

My world blessed by dawns and springs, 

rainbowed by imaginings. 

Any tomorrow has wings. 

:This is why I laugh and sing: 

Ending joins with beginning, 

every closure with an in. 

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