by February 26, 2009 0 comments

I loved John Wayne
long before I ever
felt that way
about someone female.
Before the melting heart,
there was the trigger finger.
Before the tingling
down the spine,
there was the long
held breath
at the approaching
Apache horde.
I must have willed
John Wayne
to a thousand
dead Indians
before my father
informed me,
“They’re all
just actors.”
So from there,
it was on to
real people.
And in familiar places
not up there
on the screen.
Like the pretty blonde girl
in pigtails
when I was in
the fifth grade.
I kissed her
though I still cried foul
when John Wayne
swapped spit
with the heroine.
Ugh, was my reaction.
At first,
I hated it for real.
And then later
for the acting.

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