hasn’t changed much

from a troubled childhood.

He just doesn’t get it,

never having learned

what feelings are all about.

Taunted mercilessly as a youngster,

he buried himself in astronomy books.

He rocked his arms back and forth

as if he had wings ready to fly.

He was my teacher at Oxford.

I was smitten by his brilliance

and musical talent. He played

sonatas and concertos

after hearing them once.

After a 20-year marriage I anticipate

his lunatic behavior in social situations.

He’s an embarrassment in restaurants:

If he sees a smoking patron, he confronts

them with a command to cease and desist,

threatening to vomit in their face.

When we have visiting guests, he worries

about our water bill. When a guest lingers

in the shower, he bangs on the window.

When shopping, if I keep him waiting,

he flies into a rage, complaining,

that I treat him like a tied up dog

waiting for his master.

He’s at home in the world of the black hole,

quantum mechanics, string theory, big bang,

neutrinos and quarks, but never mastered

the art of empathy.

I won’t begin to describe

what he likes to do with me in bed.

It would make Havelock Ellis blush.

He claims, it’s the only way

for a man to reach infinity. Milton P Ehrlich 199 Christie St. Leonia, N.J. 07605