Breakup Song

Tell me what will be will be no more
Tell me we just drifted apart
Tell me love hurts
Tell me love scars

Tell me I was your thirst
Tell me you think of me when you hum
Tell me I sweat the small stuff
Tell me to grow a pair

Tell me size more or less matters
Tell me I’m the one that got away
Tell me love is a battlefield
Tell me all you need is lust

Tell me I’m more than a hound dog
Tell me I’m a good boy
Tell me I drove you mild
Tell me I don’t look fat in these jeans

Tell me nice guys let the girl finish first
Tell me you never faked the news
Tell me you bought my book on Amazon
Tell me the shipping was free

Tell me God is binge-watching us
Tell me everybody dies in the end
Tell me I’m a good sinner
Tell me fate isn’t fair

Tell me what will be will be no more
Tell me we just drifted apart
Tell me love hurts
Tell me love scars

Free Writing #2

all the women i love
have a hard-on
for the other guy

all the women i love
undress me
with their sighs

all the women i love
are secure
in my manhood

politically direct
anatomically erect
i long to be the

action figure of her
socially constructed
gender role

a pebble
in the flip-flop
of her undertow

all the women i love
bust the balls
of mama’s boys

all the women i love
prefer dumb

all the women i love
inherit the welts
of 12 step fathers

swipe left
swipe right
i long to be

the blind date
she stands up
humble servant

of a mistress
refusing to
untie the knot

if you liked it
then you should’ve
put a finger on it

if you liked it
then you should’ve
put a finger on it

if you feel the love
you still can’t
put a finger on it

c b snoad

Love And Marriage

In a few days my first love is marrying a man who isn’t me. I wished her a wonderful time and told her to remind her soon-to-be-husband how lucky he is.

This doesn’t mean I’m free of regret. I met my ex in high school and we dated ten years. Life, as it often does, “happened” and we slowly grew apart, but against the odds remained friends.

We almost tied the knot in high school—in a marriage and family class, for credit only. We had a chance to play house and raise a ten-pound bag of flour. I got sick and changed schools to avoid seeing a classmate who hurt me emotionally and physically. He’s got a family of his own now—funny how the universe works.

I used to watch from the window as my ex walked to the bus stop, wishing I were there beside her. When I think today about a life for us that never happened, a tremendous sorrow fills my soul. Then I look again, through a different window. I’m happy she’s found love, because she has loved me.

Hot Pursuit

In grade school I used to chase girls on the playground. The cute ones. The ones that drove me crazy. Sometimes girls chased me. We were children caught up in a game no one understood. But we liked it.

It feels like I’m working with a child’s concept of romance. Often I push too hard for the attention of a woman I like. Rather than allowing the game to naturally unfold, I shout, “Okay, I’m here and I’m going to chase you now,” telegraphing my every move. And when the game doesn’t go as planned I assume I’ve played it wrong from the start.

My culture dictates that the Boy “go after” the Girl. I get that. But at 34 I’m starting to wonder what being chased might look like. Maybe I should play it cool. Maybe she’ll come after me.

At any rate, I’m tired. Recess ended twenty-five years ago. And I’m out here all alone.

Recovering Neurotic

A few days ago I joined an online dating site for people living with mental illness. During the sign-up process, I answered basic questions about myself and the type of woman I’m looking for. Unlike eHarmony or Match, this site contains a question about each user’s diagnosis. I searched and searched for the label that best describes my situation but was unable to locate the box for “Recovering Neurotic.”

I find this an apt description of my current state. Contemporary psychology has little use for the term “neurosis,” but I like it because it’s a polite way of saying I’m kind of nutty. Some days I’m more neurotic than recovering. But every day I go without a date I’m more than a little lonely.

Courting Confusion

I made a mistake recently. Well, I’ve made numerous mistakes lately, but one stands out in my mind almost two weeks later.

In an attempt at acting like a gentleman, I held a door open for a woman I am no longer dating. I doubt that she said goodbye because of this; in many ways, though, it was a microcosm of all that didn’t work with us.

It’s safe to say that my former date is a thoroughly modern woman. She knows what she wants and doesn’t shy away from expressing it. I admire this quality, but to a point. When she applied her “liberation” to my door-holding gesture, I was left confused and frustrated.

“Oh, you don’t need to do that,” she said with a laugh. You’d have thought I had insulted her intelligence.

There is no law stating: “Man Must Always Open Door For Woman,” but if there were I’m sure my date would claim a caveman had written it. Let’s just say, on our way out, she went first.

I know very little about women, but I do know that deep down women want respect. Today, however, there are no rules for how one shows respect. Some women like to have a man who opens doors. Some women like to open doors themselves. Some don’t care either way. The point is that, as a man trying to date in the twenty-first century, I don’t know what women want.

It’s like we’re dancing, but nobody’s quite sure of the moves. We’re learning as we go, and right when we think we’ve got it, the song changes from ballroom to polka to techno.

Now I’m not sure about next time, with a new partner, if I should lead or follow. I just know I want to dance.

The Dating Game


We connected on the internet
Auto-matched by profile page
I set a date for a closer look
After breezing through the intro stage

In the bookstore café she arrived
Smiling with a “nice to meet you”
The give-and-take of partial truths
Engaging strangers at a table for two

Three hours in we had to split
She went left and I turned right
If I factored in her future plans
She wasn’t letting on that night

But a morning text made it clear
“No connection–nice to meet you”
Her goodbye leaving me confused
Alone again at a table for two

A Poem About Rejection


met a woman and tried to love her
but her heart yearned for another

it wasn’t my fault or so she claimed
thought for him her passion waned

one week in, she had to confess
being with me only brought stress

“deep down, you’re a real nice guy”
but nice alone couldn’t catch her eye

wished me luck, a token “take care”
her words, yes, but she wasn’t there

she wasn’t there, behind the intent
like the day I knew all she meant

the day we laughed and I was sure
for what ails me she’d be the cure

drunk with hope, I soon forgot
sole poet of my verse I’m not

we plot and dream, tinker and fuss
but fate has a way of choosing for us