Shall I compare thee to a pugilist
With butterfly’s bright float, bee’s brighter sting?
We never vowed we never would get pissed
Enough for heated rounds inside this ring.
To be one flesh and yet not of one mind
Can lead to clamming up or thrashing out;
The latter, all the research seems to find,
Is better for longevity. No doubt
We’ve often opened wounds we should repent,
Have landed verbal barbs with too sure aim,
But the aerobic vim with which we vent
Feeds oxygen to love’s enduring flame.
So long as eyes can flash and breath come fast,
So long may this close-quarters combat last.
Chris O’Carroll is a writer, actor, and comedian. You can see him on stage in May in the Festival of New
Works at Mill Mountain Theatre in Roanoke, VA. You can read his poems in The Barefoot Muse, Measure, Umbrella Journal, and
other print and online journals.