Whom You Love

Whom You Love
by Joseph O. Legaspi 

“Tell me whom you love, and I’ll tell you 
who you are.” — Creole Proverb

The man whose throat blossoms with spicy chocolates 
Tempers my ways of flurrying 
Is my inner recesses surfacing 
Paints the bedroom blue because he wants to carry me to the skies 
Pear eater in the orchard 
Possesses Whitmanesque urge & urgency 
Boo Bear, the room turns orchestral 
Crooked grin of ice cream persuasion 
When I speak he bursts into seeds & religion 
Poetry housed in a harmonica 
Line dances with his awkward flair 
Rare steaks, onion rings, Maker’s on the rocks 
Once-a-boy pilfering grenadine 
Nebraska, Nebraska, Nebraska 
Wicked at the door of happiness 
At a longed-for distance remains sharply crystalline 
Fragments, but by day’s end assembled into joint narrative 
Does not make me who I am, entirely 
Heart like a fig, sliced 
Peonies in a clear round vase, singing 
A wisp, a gasp, sonorous stutter 
Tuning fork deep in my belly, which is also a bell 
Evening where there is no church but fire 
Sparks, particles, chrysalis into memory 
Moth, pod of enormous pleasure, fluttering about on a train 
He knows I don’t need saving & rescues me anyhow 
Our often-misunderstood kind of love is dangerous 
Darling, fill my cup; the bird has come to roost

About this Poem:
“Simply, unabashedly, this poem is inspired by, dedicated to, and about my beloved, the Dolly to my Lucinda, my husband.” –Joseph O. Legaspi

Joseph O. Legaspi is the author of Imago (CavanKerry Press, 2007) and the forthcoming chapbook, Subways (Thrush Press, 2013). He is a co-founder of Kundiman, a non-profit organization serving Asian American poetry. He lives in Queens, NY and works at Columbia University.
“…Legaspi, like William Carlos Williams, can find poetry anywhere. And like his mentor Pablo Neruda he seems able to locate the mysterious and the magical in the most common and overlooked objects. It is difficult to overestimate the daring and resourcefulness required to complete successfully this astonishingly original book. I believe this collection of poetry, so rich in the dailyness of the world and what wisdom we can draw from it, is ample evidence that Joseph O. Legaspi has arrived to a place none of his ancestors in life or in poetry have ever journeyed, and we his readers are the richer for it.”–Philip Levine

About Joe

I began my life in the South and for five years lived as a closeted teacher, but am now making a new life for myself as an oral historian in New England. I think my life will work out the way it was always meant to be. That doesn't mean there won't be ups and downs; that's all part of life. It means I just have to be patient. I feel like October 7, 2015 is my new birthday. It's a beginning filled with great hope. It's a second chance to live my life…not anyone else's. My profile picture is "David and Me," 2001 painting by artist Steve Walker. It happens to be one of my favorite modern gay art pieces. View all posts by Joe

3 responses to “Whom You Love

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