collect call

you called from denver to say you’d fallen in love with
a woman who had eyes like mine
who could break
a board in half just by staring at it

you said this thief of my eyes
was a karate master who couldn’t pay her rent
so once in awhile she stayed over at your house
when she needed to avoid her landlord
since she was misunderstood and sexy

but you slept on the couch because
her ego was bigger than her work ethic
and you never had sex with her just kissed
and i thought this is why i never moved to denver
because those mountains are rocky but those streams run dry

and i thought what kind of come-on line is this
telling me from 600 miles away that a woman with karate chops and big brown eyes
was making you reconsider a few things about a few things
while all i could do was put the phone down and pull another
shot of espresso for a middle-aged professor who
was trying to coffee-shop his way back into his 20s

so while he was telling me that his wife was away for the weekend
at her parent’s lake house on truman
and he was having a party with free drinks
and there’d be some players from the chiefs there
i was nodding my head but not listening
because kimberly had just walked in and she was tall and red
and made me forget how to talk which meant i liked her

but then i heard your voice coming from on top of the dishwasher
where i’d set you down so
i picked you back up and you were talking about how the karate kid
wanted to get a dog and you were wrapping up a box of milkbones
to give her as a goodbye gift
because you were moving back to kansas city

then you asked me what i thought about getting a dog
and i said somewhere out there under a pile of dirt is this
bone i buried but hell if that bone didn’t seem to have a life of its own
and you said well what would you do if that bone dusted itself off
and came looking for you
and i said just like any good dog would
i’d put the damn thing in my mouth

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