Poems by Greg Marzullo

HIV-1 M

from black

                 indiscriminate womb

         We swarmed
             simian streams

                                                 until We discovered
                                                            you
                                                     We changed
                                                           to fit
                                                 inside We hatched

We modify

            improving perfection unrelated to singular longevity

                     no fair-weather

                                               sentiment     clouds
                                               Our purpose

                     no individuation
                                                  infects the hive

                                replication       Our singular achievement

                                        in you We are
                                           becoming

                                          you are just
                                        another chimp
                               fecund oasis of evolution


Summer Arts Camp

By bare-bulb light from center stage
you taught Tai-Chi and I
took refuge:

Grasping the Sparrow’s Tail
Parting the Wild Horse’s Mane
Carrying the Tiger Over the Mountain; 

after camp was over,
after Max caught me
looking
in the dressing room,
after a teacher shouted “Don’t
deliver your lines
like a little girl”
and an older boy called me
fag
and Max

                      laughed
I practiced 

Grasping the Sparrow’s Tail
Parting the Wild Horse’s Mane
Carrying the Tiger Over the Mountain

because I knew when you spoke
we were kin

and I hoped
with practice to be
just like you.

 

– For (write in your
favorite camp counselor
here:            

You know the one.
The one who wore
capezios
and black, sleeveless t-shirts,

the one who smoked
Virginia Slims with a
Dietrich-Davis-Taylor flair, 

 

the one who lent you
tapes, ‘A Little Night Music,’
‘The Rink,’ Judy at Carnegie Hall,

the one who  
never came back and
no one said

why.

For all of them.)


 Photo credit: Drew Xeron

Photo credit: Drew Xeron

Greg Marzullo is an award-winning writer and journalist who has worked for the Washington Blade and the Phoenix New Times, among other publications. He won a Society for Professional Journalists award for arts criticism, secured a semi-finalist place in 2017's Tucson Festival of Books for his poetry and was published on the 'HIV Here & Now' website as part of their poem-a-day feature leading up to World AIDS Day.

Posted on January 9, 2018 .