I admit that I am not

a very sentimental man

or one of the great romantics.


But when I gaze into your eyes,

heart to heart, and soul to soul,

it shatters all preconceptions about love and eternity.


I know that you accept me

for who and what I am – a conflicted man

with many faults and flaws.


It does not matter to you that I hold

contradictory political views, or that my knowledge

of Greek mythology is not what it could be.


You do not think that I am fat,

try to save me with religion, preach to me about politics

scrutinize my vices or criticize my bad habits.


I hold your head in my hands,

stroke your smooth ebony cheeks,

feel the velvety underside of your chin,


run my fingers

under your red collar and scratch behind your ears.

You wag your long black tail.


Let us sit out in the early afternoon sun

and listen to the sounds of birds, and boats on the lake,

me with my book, and you with your bone.


We’ll discuss how, later, we will drive into town.

I will turn the music up loud, and you

will stick your head out the open window,

your long, pink tongue hanging out,

ears flying like banners in the breeze.

(Copyright Michael Gillan Maxwell 2011)

Riding in the Rain