Beauvoir’s art was fiction
or Sartre’s love for her was fiction
or both. And so
how to arrive at love—
the human instinct,
simple, tender desire.
Where Sartre and Beauvoir once lay together,
walls pink in their memory
Away from this room, lands away, the sub-Saharan
of her dreams—she can hardly remember.
The winds speak less of her.
It’s true: Sartre, ugly little man, all head,
cared less and less for her
so many times it is absurd.
I see his other women clinging like antidote
after they have drunk in despair.
He wanted them, yes, wanted women to surround
and stop his thinking, unscrew body from head.
What is the lesson in tragic, successful women,
men don’t desire older women.
He collects butterflies, she mused; his desire runs to identifying,
aging is mutilation.
(Sartre wasn’t the only one carving it up.)
growing old is horror.
It’s true. We mask and screen
once the process begins.
the heart is unseated in its hollow.
And all because.
Because he was sleeping with Dolores
and Michelle. Mainly Dolores.
Beauvoir hoped for
alchemy, turning Sartre's boredom into desire;
Beauvoir alone, waiting,
with a heart that loved