Jane Cassady

Love Poem with Traditional Anniversary Gifts

Shred the bills and soak the paper,
cotton together a place on the couch.

Never mind the leather hearts that voted against us,
I’m building you a house out of flowers and fruit.
(Stronger than wood, to postpone the burning.)

Festoon it with garlands of candy,
iron the perfect sheets.

I’m melting all of your heads-up pennies,
to make us copper cups.

I’ve had Saturday mornings bronzed for us,
buried the broken pottery.
(You can willow it out if you want.)

Never mind the aluminum music
of the Tuesday night recycle bin,
and maybe, darling, bad luck isn’t made of steel.

I’m embroidering silk pillows
with all your equations,
linen tablecloths of elements―
what falls through the lace, leave it.
Don't worry the edges.

Roll the ivory dice and smash the crystal.
Our china is patterned in contemporary verse
and TV plots.

What’s in your shoulder bag, flashing silver?

What do pearls do besides annoy oysters?

Do mistakes grow their own coral?

Do we have enough ruby in our blood?

Can we go to Cape May
and look at the ocean till it turns to sapphires?

Do you believe in gold?

When will you weedwack
the emerald backyard?

Will you plant me some facets, diamond?

Jane Cassady writes pop-culture horoscopes for the City Paper’s Arts and Culture Blog, Critical Mass. She is the Slam Mistress  of the Philadelphia Poetry Slam. Her poems have appeared in The November 3rd Club, The Comstock Review, Valley of the Contemporary Poets, and other journals. She's performed at such venues as LouderArts in New York City, Valley Contemporary Poets in Los Angeles, and The Encyclopedia Show in Chicago.