For Men Who Can't Cry
Sworn off in favor of more wholesome
emotions, like anger, or frustration.
You’re surprised to find the sadness
sitting on the counter one morning.
Someone must have forgot to put it away.
Like a dry ache and a swift decline
of a 99-cent donation. No thanks.
You won’t consider it. My father,
practiced in the art of compartmentalization:
a pair of yard shoes, a pair of good shoes,
your favorite shoes. Simple. His father’s
funeral, his mother’s subsequent funeral,
the death of several, childhood dogs.
You thought for sure the crushed embers
in your sternum would yield something
salty and wet. A bag of golf balls
at the center of your intestines—
sadness you could label as such.
Taught to bet on losses, another chip
added to the pot. Shaking out the night
sweats, the worst part being the desire.
A tight neck and bowed head, each time,
coming up dry.