You could have a big dipper   

Lounging in Your Lounge Pants by William Doreski


In your house at the edge of town

the kitchen sink sports three faucets:

town water, well water, hot water.

The town water tastes of chorine,

the well water reeks of iron,

the hot water squeals and emits

the spirit of the former owner.


You lounge about in lounge pants

while I pack my bag for my trip

to the dismal side of the moon.

We’re too old for the raucous sex

this neighborhood likes to indulge.

We’re too timid to nail each other

to crosses spiked in the churchyard

to discipline freethinkers like us.

I’m sorry to leave you lounging

in your lounge pants, but duty

calls me to my early vocation—

freelance astronaut, unpaid.

This house of awkward proportions

feels restless, about to rip itself

from its foundations and bolt.

I wish the water were drinkable,

but tasting either cold tap

puckers me like a rotten orange.

You’ll be okay for a month or two

while I’m whirling among the stars.

I’ll return with a valuable stash

of meteorites and rare metals—

enough to finance us for years.

You’ll still be lounging in lounge pants

as if you hadn’t entertained

a hundred lovers in my absence—

flushing them all down the drain

with town or well water or maybe

scaring them to death by loosing

the hot water’s misty ghost.


William Doreski lives in Peterborough, New Hampshire. He has taught at several colleges and universities. His most recent book of poetry is Mist in Their Eyes (2021). He has published three critical studies, including Robert Lowell’s Shifting Colors. His essays, poetry, fiction, and reviews have appeared in various journals.


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