For a splash of color this week, a new poem by Angelo Nikolopoulos.

DAFFODIL

______A poet could not but be gay.
____________—William Wordsworth

Don’t you know, sweetheart,
less is more?

Giving yourself away
so quickly

with your eager trumpet,
April’s rentboy

in your flock of clones,
unreasonably cheerful, cellulose,

as yellow as a crow’s foot—please.
I don’t get you.

Maybe it’s me,
always loving what I can’t have,

the bulb refusing itself,
perennial challenge.

I’ve never learned
how to handle kindness

from strangers.
It’s uncomfortable, uncalled-for.

I’d rather have mulch
than three blithe sepals from you.

I’m into piss and vinegar,
brazen disregard,

the minimum-wage indifference
of bark, prickly pear.

Flirtation’s tension:
I dare, don’t dare.

But what would you know
about restraint,

binge-drinking
your way through spring,

botany’s twink bucked
by lycorine, lethal self-esteem?

You who come and go
with the seasons,

bridge and tunnel.
You’re all milk and no cow—

intimacy for beginners.
The blonde-eyed boy stumbling home.

If I were you, I’d pipe down.
Believe me,

I’ve bloomed like you before.

——

ANGELO NIKOLOPOULOS is a recent graduate of NYU’s Creative Writing Program. His poems have appeared in The Awl, Boxcar Poetry Journal, Ganymede, Gay and Lesbian Review and Los Angeles Review. He hosts The White Swallow, a reading series in Manhattan’s West Village.



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