Throwing Lines from an Unfinished Script
by Abner Dormiendo
Do you love him, Jennifer? Do you love each other
as much as that couple in the last script we were
writing together? Do you remember, the boat sunk
by their tiny, tiny hands? Their cold, tiny hands
crushing the boat like a handful of ice, do you
remember? Have you thought about that question
I asked you, left floating like the wreckage on the sea
after the great sinking—we were about to write
that part—luggage and scores of dead bodies
included? Do you even remember the question?
Something about love, or something that rhymes
closely to desire? How do you want this movie to end?
How do you see the final act: exterior, sunset, PM,
John and Leslie looking at the stars before the water
takes them away, what do they say to each other before
the words are snatched by waves? Can you say it to me
line by line, the last words of the lovers as they finally sink
into the cold sea of untamed hungers? Let me ask you again,
do you love him, Jennifer? Do you love him enough
that you are willing to fake the whole scene just to relive
that night with him? Remember, you told me about this?
This script wasn’t ours to finish, it was yours, wasn’t it?
His hands across your back and fingers poised as if
on a typewriter, fire away, blooming ink, sink the story in,
do you recall the words he made for you? The scars
blossoming on the underscore of your neck, were they
bite marks, fingernails, or were they misplaced phrases
in this movie, starring you, starring him, also starring
the man who shot him dead in an alleyway you don’t even
have a name for? How do you bury a memory? How do you
rewrite it? Who wins this time around? Who gets saved?
Who gets to ride the roofless car across the desert before
the bruising of the sky? Who gets to be the hero? Who
is the villain in this story then? Is it me? Tell me now if it is me,
Jennifer, then we could drop the act, cut the scene,
roll the credits, fade to black, goodbye for the last time,
goodbye disguised as the lingering silence in the last line.
Day 14: A poem where every sentence, except for the last one, is a question.
Funny story: I wrote a poem this morning with the understanding that the prompt was asking for every line to be in declarative form except the last line. This was just written after realizing I did the prompt wrong (AKA: about twenty minutes ago), so there are a lot of things I can still work on.