The guitar sat on the floor by the wall
of a base housing apartment in Victorville
where we were visiting my boyfriend’s friends
whom I’d met once at a backyard party,
and now we were going to Disneyland.
Three months we hadn’t done it yet,
he a Vietnam vet and I a straight-A virgin
who insisted we would not do anything.
But he French-kissed me on the jungle ride,
groped my breasts on the Matterhorn.
No, I said. He replied, Why not?
Come on. While we ate corndogs for supper
and oohed at the flashing fireworks,
I pushed his roving hands away
as they played with the buttons on my blouse.
Back at the house, we started drinking wine,
squirting it out of a leather boda bag.
I planned to play some songs for them,
but stage fright made me hesitate
while the six-string waited in its case.
Time passed in a red-wine blur.
I hadn’t mastered drinking yet. The friends
giggled behind the bedroom door.
He turned out the lights and invited me
into his flannel-lined sleeping pouch.
Zipped together, skin to skin,
he promised me it wouldn’t hurt.
He said that I would be his wife.
Half passed out, I let him in
as the guitar sat silent by the wall.
Sue Fagalde Lick
Review by Claire Scott
A lovely poem about initiation. I really like the guitar and the slight shift between line 1 and the last line. The word “silent” is terrific. In between is the story and the reader like the girl is a different person at the end. Well done. I like “straight-A virgin” who “hasn’t mastered” sex or alcohol. This is a pretty straight up story of seduction. Maybe add something that makes it more original? Or that surprises the reader? Thanks for a great poem!
Review by Dave Mehler
The thing I most admire about this poet and her poetry, here and across her body of work is her honesty! There’s poetic ability and narrative skill, but it’s the honesty and lack of pretension and ego that hits me in the gut everytime.