I Don’t Think We Should Call it Love Anymore


When Ford picked Marianne Moore
to name his new car,
he rejected Mongoose Civique and Utopian Turtletop.
Six thousand tries later he picked
Edsel and lost two hundred and fifty million dollars.
He should have listened to the poet.

Her Bullet Cloisonné was rejected too.
Pardon me while I appropriate and verbify:
I bullet cloisonné you.
Maybe you will someday bullet cloisonné me.

Cloisonné, so decorative, so little-thing,
made full melt or sunk melt, so easy to covet.
These days we’re talking cheap, light,
easily hammered.
Tell me about it.

In the 1980s, the Oklahoma health department
issued a warning to women: half
the cloisonné in Oklahoma City
was radioactive.
Uranium in the enamel could cause a skin rash.

Decorative, melty,
and bad for my skin.
Tell me this is not a metaphor.
Tell me bullet isn’t self-explanatory.
Remind me none of this will kill me,
none of this will make me permanently ill.