A Poetry Sporadical of Repeating Forms

Defendant’s Testimony

by Anna Lewis

10 Crown St. Brooklyn. I’m 41 years old.
Whatever she related to you was real shit
oh, I apologize, sir folks, I’m sorry.
3 a.m. that night. On account of I’m alone,
I be prospecting craigslist for intimacy.
Soon a female Jenny Kim’s on her way from Queens.

4:30, she arrives with her pimp. Ain’t no queen,
let me tell you: scars, sweatshirt, her whole self was old.
Us three discussing the terms of intimacy
was crystal clear. Jenny Kim be shooting the shit
in English, no confusion no place. We’s alone,
me and her, ’fore too long. Just I was sorry

I give my hundred for the hour to his sorry
ass, beforehand. Fact is, my little hooker queen
be rubbing my neck but left the rest of me alone,
i.e. she be acting maybe ten years old,
some pretend beauty-parlor Asian massage shit,
when what our deal calls for is intimacy

beyond a shadow of a doubt. Intimacy
don’t mean compelling me to feel all sorry
for just trying to touch your old cow tit. Shit.
But I did. Feel sorry. So I’m like, “Miss Queen,
your wish is my command.” For real. It was old-
fashion to say but that collocation alone

was like, poof, we feel each of us less alone.
Not that I gained, held, nor secured no intimacy.
But she give me her small hand like we some old
couple where, years upon years, he be sorry
for his dark sins but she still his mighty queen
that time and again be granting him a clean sheet.

So I do not know nothing bout this rape charge shit.
When 9-1-1 come, I be maced up, all alone
in my bathroom, on the cold tiles, stung by that queen
bee bitch, for no cause ’cept to play her intimacy
game through. You think Jenny Kim sorry? I’m sorry
I’m the one that got punked in a game so damn old.

Bleak shit, I know. The liar here’s intimacy.
In all this old world, ain’t no way to queen a pawn.
Ain’t no feeling sorry. We each of us alone.

Anna Lewis studied English and French at Rutgers University and holds an M.A. in English Literature from Yale University and a Maîtrise degree in French Literature from the Sorbonne.  She lives in Brooklyn, New York.


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