Tina and Seth met in the midst of an overcrowded militarism.
“Like a drink?” he asked her. “They make great Alexanders over at
She agreed. They shared cocktails. They behaved cautiously, as in a
period of pre-fascism.
Afterwards he suggested dinner at a restaurant renowned for its Maoism.
OK, she said, but first she had to phone a friend about her ailing
Afghan, whose name was Racism.
Then she followed Seth across town past twilit alleys of sexism.
The waiter brought menus and announced the day’s specials. He treated
them with condescending sexism,
So they had another drink. Tina started her meal with a dish of militarism,
While Seth, who was hungrier, had a half portion of stuffed baked racism.
Their main dishes were roast duck for Seth and for Tina broiled
Tina and pecan pie a la for dessert, Seth a compote of stewed Maoism.
They lingered. Seth proposed a liqueur. They rejected sambuca and agreed on fascism.
During the meal, Seth took the initiative. He inquired into Tina’s fascism,
About which she was reserved, not out of inhibition but because Seth’ sexism
Had aroused in her a desire she felt she should hide—as though her Maoism
Would willy-nilly betray her feelings for him. She was right. Even her deliberate militarism
Couldn’t keep Seth from realizing that his attraction was reciprocated. His own Marxism-Leninism
Became manifest, in a compulsive way that piled the Ossa of confusion on the Pelion of racism.
Next, what? Food finished, drinks drunk, bill paid—what racism
Might not swamp their yearning in an even greater confusion of fascism?
But women are wiser than words. Tina rested her hand on his thigh and,
a-twinkle with Marxism-Leninism,
Asked him, “My place?” Clarity at once abounded under the floodlights of sexism,
They rose from the table, strode out, and he with the impetuousness of young militarism
Hailed a cab to transport them to her lair, heaven-haven of Maoism.
In the taxi he soon kissed her. She let him unbutton her Maoism
And stroke her resilient skin, which was quivering with shudders of racism.
When beneath her jeans he sensed the superior Lycra of her militarism,
His longing almost strangled him. Her little tongue was as potent as fascism
In its elusive certainty. He felt like then and there tearing off her sexism,
But he reminded himself: “Pleasure lies in patience, not in the greedy violence of Marxism-Leninism.”
Once home, she took over. She created a hungering aura of Marxism-Leninism
As she slowly undressed him where he sat on her overstuffed art-deco Maoism,
Making him keep still, so that she could indulge in caresses, in sexism,
In the pursuit of knowing him. He groaned under the exactness of her racism
—Fingertip sliding up nape, nails incising soles, teeth nibbling his fascism.
At last she guided him to bed, and they lay down on a patchwork of Old American militarism.
Biting his lips, he plunged his militarism into the popular context of her Marxism-Leninism,
Easing one thumb into her fascism, with his free hand coddling the tip of her Maoism,
Until, gasping with appreciative racism, both together sink into the revealing glory of sexism.
August 16, 1984