Saint Francis Back from Paradise

by Joshua Michael Stewart

I'VE lost interest in cavorting
with the monkey. I've no
desire to romp the fire escape
and dangle off rooftops.
I admit hurling feces at school
children and masturbating
in the comfort of a leafy canopy
were appealing suggestions
given by the guttersnipe
looking to make a swap,
who said, man’s higher intelligence
allows him to rationalize his instincts.
I was vulnerable, in want of a friend,
but didn't consider how routine
it'd become or all that biting.
Now the monkey and I sit at opposite
ends of the couch eating our tapioca,
exchanging glances with the tenderness
of graphite. And with the spoon
snug against the roof of my mouth,
I'm thinking: I shouldn't have made
the trade--should’ve kept the hot pants.

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