Mary Mackey





L. Tells All

I wanted a man
but they were in 
short supply
so when this big white
swan followed me home
and announced 
“I Am Zeus, Lord of All Creation,”
I crooked my finger at him
and said
“come here, Bird Boy,
let’s give it a try.”

at first
I have to admit
it was fun
his soft breast
the excited squawk
the way he beat his wings
frantically 
like an umpire gone bad
but basically
it was an act of
desperation

we had nothing in common
his feathers made me sneeze
I was afraid to fly
he was married
(of course
they all are)
and we even had religious differences

what can I say?

and then there were his other
women
Io, Europa, Semele 
(not to mention the
sluttish little pens he picked up
in the park)

we started to have
terrible fights
I called him an overstuffed
pillow and threw seed
in his face
he threatened to migrate
the usual stuff

by spring
we’d both had enough

one night
while we were sitting 
in a Greek restaurant 
I told the old cob I’d always
be his friend 
but I just couldn’t handle
interspecies love
 
(I lied, of course
the truth was  
I’d already started to see 
a duck 
on the side)