Love-Seat by Arrest

Ricardo Maldonado

Wednesday’s shower was of two minds: Prohibition-era scald
and glacial

we incur lapsed payment for the lease when the egg cartons cohere
in spare arrangement—

quick yolk replenishing linoleum tile,
replete with wet investments (knit-wear, tartan beefsteaks in a surplus),

that manhood quits in private and in films with apologias of the dying

and retreads by fire escape where small amounts of smokers cease appeased
by spirit switch in the space of habitation—

miner-chested, courage tapering mid-week over Formica and black leather.

The units stand irresolute at still and are caressed by pigeon shit,
could seize the city and riposte negotiations with the asphalt and the living

who approach with liberal measures of inside-time, civic fealty and the charm
of insect bite and influenza

as we ready the body for the young to desert (with its insipid dental habits),

and demise enters the apartment else we would conquer it
with panic and runners attire of orange elastene.

Ricardo Alberto Maldonado was born and raised in Puerto Rico. His poems and translations have appeared in Boston Review, DIAGRAM, Sidebrow, and Guernica. A recipient of fellowships from the New York Foundation for the Arts and Queer/Arts/Mentorship, he is the Managing Director of the 92Y Unterberg Poetry Center.