"Hold on tight!" That is what cold Men say to desperate children. "Hold on tight" to ladies of Situations, complications Tied up in implications But still leaning, keening still Holding onto that man whose Touch rips the skin off hands, dreams, Future life and rice pudding Treats. It is all well and good to keep on Holding, enduring, lured in By white picket fence longings, Kept there by expectations Cats cradle devastations, The rent that gets paid: he gets laid. And what? What of love? Exchanges Plural ties held for ages, That clock tick tocking. Christmas Cake Heart, just past it's best, stale Almost, not quite fresh unless Some deal can be done, sea-tide Frown, as the lighthouse bends rays And the conch shell beach sirens Drown out quiet cautions remnant Whispers, his whiskers scratch skin "What is this, mine fairy kind?" Losing, dying increments Fold. "Hold on tight!" cold men insist Even when holding on drains Pains, claims; yet never inflames The center, the core, nor mentors The life of the very woman They dare to say they adore. I abhor, no, more than that I tear out the page, start anew Writing over me, writing out You.