Things I Didn’t Know I Loved

after Nazim Hikmet

Men. Once upon a time
I didn’t know I loved men.
My father’s body scared me
and then my own. Now
I love the way a man loves mine.
Onions. Which I once despised
almost as much as mustard
and tomatoes. Today
I love all three
too much to love bread.
Sadness. Who knew
one could love something sad?
I think I’ve always known
that sadness was lovable,
and sadness is everywhere,
especially outside
because I think light is sad
the way it misses so much.
Water. Nobody – and I mean
no body wants to know
what I wouldn’t do for water.
And speaking of me,
I should confess I have a crush, yes
my very own self has recently made the list
of things I didn’t know I loved.
We’ve been going on walks,
holding hands until our palms
get all sweaty so we have to let go.
Now that I think of it,
letting go of what I didn’t know I loved
is what I didn’t know I loved the most.
Because sometimes, not often,
it all comes right back
in a way only those of us
who love the unknown are capable
of loving, of receiving, of being held,
which all of us, let’s admit , may never know
how much we really love.

Marco Anders

Marco Anders (he/him) lives in South Saint Paul, Minnesota, with his husband, two cats, and two chihuahuas. He received his MFA from Hamline University where he briefly served as a poetry editor for Water~Stone Review. Anders was managing editor for Flash Fiction Magazine (2016-2019) and has been previously published in now defunct journals, Versewrights, concīs.