Three Poems From TWO NOVEMBERS: A Memoir of Love ’n’ Sex in Sonnets

Liza Achilles

Sonnet 41 

I miss your bod. I scheme incessantly
To get so I might lounge—luxuriate!—
Within the same hotel room, therapy
Outpatient treatment center, real estate
Possessed by you or me or party else, 
Car, tent or cave as you. Remember I
This fondly:—I curled up tiny dumbbells—
As, in the chest machine, you raised on high—
Enthroned there!—nearly the full stack of weights.
And this:—I hopped the hip adductor strut
And toward the tables glanced—to learn the Fates
Had spun you’d be massaging some girl’s butt.
To bunk by you, must I induce pain chronic?—
A brilliant plan!—if I were that moronic.

Sonnet 45 

My demons—on the loose again—are saying
False, wild and nasty things about you, hon:
According to their chorus, you’ve been preying
On my sensitive temperament, for fun.
It suited you just fine—our two-night stand,
But further hooking up would be—(they sneer)—
Indulgent, since you of yourself demand
A stoic life,—’xcept when from it you veer.
You crave my body, but my brain annoys:—
When I ask questions, passionate words use
Or share my close-held secrets. Classy boys
Won’t tell me why,—just snub me—(they abuse)—
But as they kept on screaming—inhumane—
I snuck out:—fled cross-country on a plane!

Sonnet 51 

Engulfed am I by emptiness. The rain
Subsides and seeps to dryness. When I think
About you, I despair. Like ice, my pain
Absconds in drops,—but only when I drink.
That doleful day for valentines—it passed—
And as I’m Pisces—(sensitive,—marine)—
My birthday did. The gifts you gave—(aghast
Am I at their brutality)—pristine
Are in their barrenness. To you return
The favor—that constrained am I to do.
So when your birthday pops around, I’ll burn
No candles,—send no ode, lay or haiku;—
Instead I’ll—(since you leave me here in limbo)—
Long hair—white dress—just flit:—window to window.

Liza Achilles is a writer/editor in the Washington, DC, area. She is published in the Washington Independent Review of Books, the Silent Book Club blog, Beltway Poetry Quarterly, The Headlight Review, Tofu Ink Arts Press, and The Big Windows Review (forthcoming). The focus of her blog ( is seeking wisdom through books and elsewhere.


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