Love Poems Never Start With Periods Because

by Jonathon Garcia

At Barnes and Noble I met a geology book Period who felt it was
disquieting duty to end things, the way a boulder breaks a

Another Period, from a trailer instruction manual, saw himself
as a ball hitch, sentenced to aging taskheavy constant under the
weight of words—

Then, skimming a road atlas at Jiffy Lube, I overheard Periods
boasting of their travel credentials; soon they were surrounded by
gang of parentheses saying they were only mere odometer reset
cleared at the push of a button—

In the New York Times, one agitated young Palestinian Period
demonstrations at the Israelis like rocks, the fullness of his intent
reclaim his homeland with a form of reverse erosion, stoning
stones back to where they once were—

Finally, as I read the classifieds, a low-income Period complained
me that his unmarried status translated into astronomical
withholdings from his paycheck, noting that the families of
are the only punctuation marks to get tax breaks—

I told him the only surefire way out of sweeping Wal-Mart’s floors
was a degree or a lover—

Last I heard, he’s studying English to teach high school grammar
and at nights he dances over at the Azucar Morena Salsa Club,
caramelized in the heat of Maribel’s question mark curves—

Puerto Rican she!  Exclamation pointing him, beckoning him inkfresh off the page—

*Whispering in her ear, he promises to love her with all the
beauty in the world but a Period—