The Brooklyn Rail

MAY 2020

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MAY 2020 Issue



Hickey I did not leave there
And where did I last
on whose neck

Hickey that did not happen
Mistake I did not make
Fuck me it wasn’t me

Eye taking notes
Eye taking note of
Hickeys eye cannot look away from
red cluster around which green
I satellite

Pity the young man rising
already older by the end of the hour

Sundays he pays for the pleasure
like a gentleman

I Don’t Know Why, It Makes Me Sad

I don’t know why
it makes me sad
to meet a man
in the last stall
of the sixth floor
men’s room, on a
Saturday, so no one
is around. No hello
but our cocks out
and the goodbad
smell of him, whiff
of piss. I don’t
know why it makes
me sad, his dirty
t-shirt and his ring,
the labored grunt
before he cums.
I don’t know how
(it makes me sad)
when it is over
he tucks himself
back into his life

Poem in Which Nothing Bad Ever Happens

It’s however you would imagine it.
You specifically, whoever you are.
Whatever the precise conditions,
they are met. However you would
arrange the world, like a god or a
child, you can. It will last however
long as you can imagine it without
something going wrong. Not very.

Craigslist Ode

To the young doctor, balding in Stuy Town,
and the straight boy from my school
I could never find on Facebook.
To the boy from the other college downtown,
with the good abs and the bad skin,
to the married guy in real estate who insisted
the sheets be fresh and liked to look into my eyes
the whole time he touched me. To that.
To the first one to reach for his wallet after,
somebody’s father, and the first to tell me
a childhood secret. To the famous journalist
with the big dick I fell in love with,
and the baseball cap through the peephole
who said “this isn’t going to work”
when I opened the door. To the guy
who held me down but wouldn’t touch my dick,
to the redheaded bro in Murray Hill
whose dick smelled so awful. To my crush
from Hebrew class, to his name appearing
like a blessing in my inbox. To the guys
who used their real emails, bless them,
the guys whose girlfriends were out of town
or didn’t give head or wouldn’t wait up.
To the guys who’d never done this before.
To the liars. To the one who was older
than he said he was, to the one whose pictures
were old, to the one who tasted the way
old people smell but I did it anyway.
To the men who came from Queens
and Long Island and Jersey just to see me.
To the hairy guy with the yoga body,
the one with the muscles, the college wrestler
with the cute little dick. To the first one I took
money from, who was from Ireland,
and the second, who was from India,
to the guy on my block I felt bad for,
to the variety of religious undergarments
draped over my bookcase with care.
To the Looney Tunes boxers,
to the hemp necklace, to the fat gold ring,
to the appendectomy scar, to the old burn,
to the birthmark shaped like a country,
to the country it was shaped like,
to the gum removed and then stuck
to the windowsill, to these details
belonging to no one, to my ugly men
and my beautiful, all of them, the ones
unremembered even in metonymy,
my each and every who could have hurt me.


Jameson Fitzpatrick

Jameson Fitzpatrick is the author of the poetry collection Pricks in the Tapestry (Birds, LLC, 2020) and the chapbooks Mr. & (Indolent Books, 2018) and Morrisroe: Erasures (89plus/LUMA Publications, 2014)


The Brooklyn Rail

MAY 2020

All Issues