E·ratio 11 · 2008



E·ratio 11 · 2008




Three Poems


  by Jennifer Juneau





Distance Lends Enchantment



My fault-finding slid off you,

as if throwing grease to Teflon air.

I saw the icky side of romance

and lie here with a difficult heart.

Our home became a time share.


Often enough you tiptoed in

carrying cut-rate love.  Stale vinegar

on my tongue.  When I said I wanted it all,

self-service isn’t what I meant.

How easy it would have been


to give you the slip,

when the slightest thing you did

sent our union into a tailspin.

But I can’t volunteer to flee this nest

Because honey, I’ve been drafted. 


So I’ll do my time until my time is done.

As for the heart, that sump

brimming with sodden love

I’ll teach it other angles and if all fails

I’ll teach it how to swim.







Next Time We Meet



Next time we meet

it will be at a restaurant,

not your pad for a take-out mess.

I confess: I’d rather sit and rap


about the new democrats

than to have sex between the cartons

and the sheets.  I’m sick

of indulging you


while listening to other women fan

     their requests

for you to pick up on your neon-lit

answering machine.  Besides, I have a voice too

and our affair is overrated.


Next time we meet

we won’t be alone.  I’ll dab my wrists

with French cologne and smolder

in some place you cannot reach.







In Paris



You ordered escargot to impress me,

then complained of a burnt tongue.

You were no longer having fun

so I ate it for you.  When we returned

to our room, to my distress,

your head hurt too much to undress me.


The next day we argued,

about love, or lack of,

nixing our chance to tour the Louvre.

I pretended not to care and sat on the bed,

flipping through an issue of Vogue.


Air conditioner broken and a grudge

greasing the air, I looked out the window

to find Notre Dame.  Although I couldn’t see it

I knew it was there but a wall in my sight


wouldn’t budge.  Shacked up in a crummy

     hotel with no view

I turned and remembered “I’m in Paris
     with you.”






Jennifer Juneau was a finalist in the 2006 National Poetry Series.  She has new work forthcoming in Confrontation, Passages North, Rio Grande Review and Seattle Review.  She lives in Zurich, Switzerland.

E · Poetry Journal