Salvatore Difalco

Roger Plays Alone  

Roger doesn’t know you from Adam, he says.
He doesn’t want to share his toys with you.
Roger thinks that guillotines are cool. A toy
one would be cooler. He is the last twig

of the family tree, big for his age,
fond of dinosaurs, locusts, Candy Crush
and Dinky cars passed down from Grandpa Joe,
Grandpa Joe died of oldness just last year.

Roger plays alone, thank you very much.
He keeps good company with himself.  
He eats his spuds and drinks his milk without a fuss,
the makings of a champion we see thus.

Roger, don’t be mean to the neighbour
he just wants to see your Dinky Toys,
he just wants to share the fun you have
because like you, he is an only child.

Roger doesn’t like the sounds of that.
Time to go to purple, he thinks. The default
hue to make things stop or go away is purple.
Here we go, Roger thinks, pinching his nose.

Love Me Tinder

Nothing she says makes sense, her words
come at me like miniature jesters, fully
capped-and-belled. The jingling belies
the arching brow and sausage-poisoned lips.

How many dates must a man tolerate
before he unties his skates and throws
them in the dumpster? The game’s much too
rough and tough for the old man, admit it.

I concede with a nod you might see
from a bearded fellow fan at a hockey game.
We can agree to disagree, we’re cool like that.
Living in the north has its rewards.

Except finding someone to love in winter
is like finding a glove you lost in a blizzard.
Everyone needs love, they say, even a man
past his prime, one who pees five times a night.

Aging reminds us daily how stupid we were
when we could triple-jump and do somersaults,
when a bottle of Southern Comfort still wasn’t
the last thing on earth you would drink.

So here we are, hitting the gym, going on
walks, pitching our hair to a hue we had
when were slicking it back with Brylcreem,
and asking the doctor for little blue pills.

Little blue pills, little blue pills embarrass me
with their lustless engorgement and promise
of sexual thrills as yet unfulfilled—but things
get weird when you’re old and cursed

with a rager a woman your age would find
untoward and a younger gal would eye
in horror. Forget the little blue pills.
I offer a natural man, unfree of warts and flaws,

and only ready for action when the moment
calls for it, not because a little blue pill
has given him a rod. There is no easy way
to talk about this shit, so for now we’ll sign off. 

Salvatore Difalco is a Sicilian Canadian poet.