The Paleontologist’s Blind Date

You have such lovely bones, he says,
holding my face in his hands,

and although I can almost feel
the stone and the sand

sifting away, his fingers
like the softest of brushes,

I realize after this touch
he would know me

years from now, even
in the dark, even

without my skin.
Thank you, I smile—

then I close the door
and never call him again.

– Philip Memmer


This reminds me of Browning’s My Last Duchess, in the conjunction of the narrator being a person who’s very different from the poet, and in the understated menace, the threat of violence to women.
You can read Philip Memmer’s bio on his site here and at the Poetry Foundation (one of my favourite places for poetry) here.

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