Mark Yakich is the author of The Importance of Peeling Potatoes in Ukraine (Penguin, 2008). He teaches at Loyola University New Orleans.
You Are Not a Statue
And I am not a pedestal. We are not a handful of harmless scratches on pale pink canvas. Today is not the day to stop looking for the woman to save you. What was once ivory is wood. What was once whalebone is cotton. My coif and corset are duly fastened, and your shirttail is tied in a diamond knot. You may be the giver of unappreciated nicknames and the devoted artist who has given my still life life. But we can never reach each other's standards. You want to condemn me to eternity. I want to make you no more perfect than you used to be. We are not together, we are not alone.