Even If

By Gianmarc Manzione
Originally published in Raritan 27.1 (2007): 65-66.

Even If

the terrorist slits the journalist’s throat for the camera,
and a truckload of mothers and children is greeted by
a checkpoint of bullets—

Still my fingers forgetting themselves among your blouse
buttons loosen a withheld mercy, and once we are asleep
in the locked house, assured that my ribs tilting into yours
do not imply a loneliness poised to assault me like a season,
how can I help my happiness?