Venus Doesn’t Glitter When She Stands Next to You
And she knows it.
So she keeps a mercurial distance, arranging and re-arranging
her crown of coreopsis before the powder room vanity—
where Mother Earth chain-smokes and chats with a pock-marked cousin
(you know, the pasty one who always follows her around)—
a grand entrance planned for quasi-twilight when (she knows) you’ll slip away
to another soiree just getting started on the other side of town.
Where does she get the energy? Pluto asks.
Mars, already bored without you, issues a trademark barb:
I’ve heard she’s a fiend: coke, meth, diet pills …
Nonsense, blurts tipsy Jupiter. Jealous gossip amongst the lesser stars.
It’s like this all night.
With poor Venus in her polished rhinestones
vying to be their diamond center.
-from Michael Montlack's collection Cool Limbo forthcoming from New York Quarterly Books. Check it out here.
Michael Montlack is the author of the poetry collection Cool Limbo (New York Quarterly Books, 2011) and the editor of the Lambda-nominated essay anthology My Diva: 65 Gay Men on the Women Who Inspire Them (University of Wisconsin, 2009). He splits his time between New York City, where he teaches at Berkeley College, and San Francisco. Currently he is at work on his first novel.