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Dear Future Husband,

It looks like you're trying to write a letter.
Do you need assistance?

There had better be rayguns
and cures for loneliness
that don't carry
Surgeon General's Warnings.

 

There is a form to this,
a dance of commas and space—
a letter begins and ends
with confession,
an acknowledgment that we lack
and want that to change.

You had better be fine,
ass so firm
no one thinks to ask
why I didn't go for a woman.

Whatever you write says something
about you
but also about your world
and every letter is an artifact
from another universe
a reality unto itself.

You had better be tall,
broad shoulders, bright smile
but I'm not shallow—
you can have brown eyes or green.

You're going about this all wrong—
a letter is not
a list of demands
unless you have taken hostages,
at which point
you're beyond my help.

It has to be better
in that future with you
or what's the point
of my desperate need
for your strong arms
and fierce pride
and skillful cock?

A letter is a void, an absence
that you try to fill with words.

A letter is a raw cry,
a prompt, a goad, a caress—
Do you need assistance?

Yours truly,
Past Husband




Charles Payseur is an avid reader, writer, and reviewer of all things speculative. His fiction and poetry have appeared in The Best American Science Fiction and Fantasy, The Book Smugglers, Lightspeed Magazine, and many more. When not hunting Hodags across the wilds of Wisconsin, you can find him gushing about short fiction (and his cats) on Twitter as @ClowderofTwo.
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