Tuesday, 26 February 2019

The kiss, VJ Day

It’s black and white. It’s anything but.
First I just see her, motion arrested,
back foot poised in a delicate tap
as he swarms over her.
So far everything’s conventional
but then I see the jut 
of his elbow at her neck, 
the unnatural
twist back of his wrist -
*he’s locking her in*

we think he’s kissing her lips, 
the angle’s deceptive,
surely she’s twisting away?
He’s over her like Nosferatu,
he’s almost drinking from her neck
he’s so insistent.
Sure he looks cool with his brow,
his quiff, his stiff sailor’s hat, 
a hint of jimmy dean yet to come,
what a guy,
but he’s too big on her screen,
the ultra close-up she’s not ready for,
staggers back from.

Sure it’s a bit of fun. Why make
heavy weather? He’s just trying it on,
and what red-blooded man wouldn’t,
on this day? The atomic bomb of his joy
has to go off somewhere, why not here
in this controlled detonation?
She’s the prize he deserves,
his fruits of victory,
just like it’s been in every war
from Troy to today.
Every war ends
with men taking women,
claiming the prize she.

It’s everything that’s right,
it’s everything that’s wrong.
The guys are laughing, 
inwardly applauding.
Wish we’d had the guts.
It’s just a captured minute,
out of so many.
Nothing to see here, move along.

© Adrian Salmon

Sailor Who Kissed Woman in Iconic Times Square V-J Day Photo Dies at 95

V-J Day in Times Square

Adrian Salmon lives in Bingley, West Yorkshire. His poetry has appeared on Algebra of Owls, i am not a silent poet, and Ink, Sweat and Tears.