Work Room

by Mathew Paust

She's the only one here

besides me--

had always preferred to work alone,

until it got down to

the linguistic surgery.

Indispensable, she--

guards the door from other sensibilities,

manages with fearless acuity

the constant inner jabber of

compartmentalized conceits.

I am the poet, though, make no mistake--

yes, she scans the words, smiles at some, on others turns her back,

may change her mind—

yes I want her pleasure, yes mine comes first, yes her

indifference devastates.