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Guest Poet Gaetana Cannavo

Valentine's Day in the New Millennium

If you should feel an "I love you"
coming on, kill it,
or you will find yourself
haunting midnight streets
of no return.
Reporters will block your way
wanting to know your species
and what old world you hail from.
Strangers will come up to you
with thin lipped advice -
the voices of wizened experience -
telling you to turn and go back.
Children will taunt you
and follow you with brickbats and stones.
The aged will cringe
but silently spare you for old time's sake.

If you are thinking of friends
half those you have
will think you mad.
They will send up prayers to the ozone
for your salvation
and ask the green gods
to heal you of your malady.
The other half will shun you.
The on-liners will kill your email,
or you, whichever comes first
How will you survive such onslaught?
What house will receive you?
What Samaritan defend you,
or recovery group admit you?
And for all of that,
to whom would you send an "I Love You" ?
All the romantics are dead.
In this most possible of worlds
we have all become
illiterates at heart.

February, 2001

Gaetana Cannavo's Questions:

1. Is the title apt?

2. Is the language consistent in tone?

3. Is it clear what is being said about our current society?

4. Do I sound judgmental? I want very much not to.

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